You should hire a lawyer as soon as possible after suffering harm because of a motorcycle accident. The sooner you have an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer fighting to protect your rights, the better your chances of receiving maximum compensation for your losses. Here’s why.
Getting a Clearwater Motorcycle Accident Attorney
For many people, the aftermath of a motorcycle crash can be a traumatic experience. Accidents are always unexpected, and the injuries they cause can throw victims' lives completely off track. Juggling their physical recovery, while caring for their mental well-being can be more than enough for injured victims to handle. And, due to their lack of knowledge of the legal system and claims process, many victims are hesitant to add consulting with a lawyer to their already full plate.
Put simply, injured victims don't need to contact a lawyer the day after a motorcycle accident. However, victims who wait too long to consult an attorney risk losing their legal right to seek compensation for the losses endured in an accident. To protect injured victims' legal rights, they should contact a motorcycle accident attorney as soon after an accident as they are able.
Your Rights as a Motorcycle Accident Victim
If you got hurt in a motorcycle accident or someone close to you died in one, you may have rights to receive significant monetary damages from at-fault parties or insurance companies.
Others’ Liability for Your Damages
By law, anyone whose unreasonably dangerous decisions, actions, or inaction harmed you has liability to you for the harm you suffered. Other parties may also share that liability, if they have a legal or contractual obligation to answer for an at-fault party’s wrongdoing.
The parties with liability for a motorcycle accident might include, for example:
- Motorists who carelessly or recklessly cause collisions with motorcyclists
- Businesses that employ drivers who crash with motorcyclists
- Public or private parties responsible for unreasonably dangerous road conditions
- Manufacturers of faulty automotive or motorcycle parts
- Bars, restaurants, or social hosts who serve alcohol to drunk driver
- Insurance companies that issued liability coverage to at-fault parties
- Insurance companies that issued accident coverage to you.
These are just a few examples. The point is, in every motorcycle accident there’s a possibility that multiple individuals, businesses, or entities could owe monetary damages to a victim like you.
Monetary Damages You Could Receive
As the victim of a motorcycle accident, you generally have the right to receive full compensation for the harm you suffered.
Liable parties may have to pay you for your:
- Medical expenses in treating your injuries
- Costs of repairing or replacing your damaged bike or other personal property
- Out-of-pocket expenses in living with your injury
- Past and future lost income and job benefits due to injury or disability
- Physical pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Diminished quality of life
- Loss of independence
- Scarring and disfigurement
If your loved one died in a motorcycle accident, you may similarly have the right to receive monetary damages for wrongful death.
Depending on the laws of the state where the accident happened, these can include compensation for:
- Loss of the deceased victim’s income, financial support, or services
- Loss of the deceased victim’s companionship, consortium, guidance, or society
- The deceased victim’s pain and suffering before dying
- Your emotional distress from the loss
- The deceased victim’s accident-related financial losses before dying
- Funeral and burial expenses
The circumstances of some motorcycle accidents also justify a court award of additional, punitive damages as punishment for an at-fault party’s misconduct.
The total amount of monetary damages a motorcycle accident victim like you might have the right to receive can vary widely depending on the details of what happened and who has liability. Given the high cost of medical care and the severity of many motorcycle accident injuries, however, compensation levels often reach hundreds of thousands of dollars, if not more.
What a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Can Do for You
A motorcycle accident lawyer handles every part of the process of getting you money for the physical, emotional, and financial harm you’ve suffered. A lawyer can also act as your representative, advisor, and ally during a difficult period of your life.
For example, an experienced motorcycle crash lawyer can:
- Investigate a motorcycle accident to identify its causes and the parties responsible
- Analyze insurance to determine whether and for how much it covers your losses
- Handle all dealings with insurance companies on your behalf, so that you won’t have to receive any more phone calls from aggressive claims adjusters
- Explain your options, answer your questions, and advise you on making important health, life, or financial decisions that could affect your rights
- Prepare and file insurance claims and lawsuits on your behalf
- Negotiate settlements of your claims whenever possible
- Give you guidance about whether to accept or reject a settlement offer
- Go to court to prove your case to a judge and jury when necessary
- Collect all money owed to you from insurers and at-fault parties
In other words, a motorcycle accident lawyer can play a pivotal role in helping you deal with the aftermath of your crash. A lawyer represents your interests, and your interests alone, handling the many tasks of getting you paid so that you have the time, space, and resources you need to heal and rebuild.
Why You Should Hire a Lawyer Immediately
There are many reasons to hire a lawyer as soon as you can after suffering harm in a motorcycle accident. Here are just some benefits of bringing a lawyer on board immediately.
Your Strongest Case Is the One a Lawyer Starts Building Today
To obtain maximum compensation for your losses, your lawyer must be able to prove in court (if necessary) that someone has liability to you and that you suffered the amount of damages you’ve claimed.
But with every day that goes by, evidence to support that case can become a little more difficult to locate and witnesses’ recollections of a crash can get a little less accurate. Similarly, the less time a lawyer has to prepare your case, the more limited the lawyer’s opportunity to explore the details, research the law, prepare documentation, and evaluate your options.
Your strongest case for monetary damages, in other words, is the one a motorcycle accident injury lawyer starts building for you today. Waiting to connect with a lawyer offers no upside benefit and potentially significant downside risks.
You May Have Deadlines to Meet
Your right to receive compensation for your motorcycle accident losses comes with an expiration date known as the statute of limitations. That’s a law that sets a maximum time limit on filing a lawsuit seeking monetary damages from at-fault parties or insurance companies. Missing that deadline means losing out on the money you deserve.
Other deadlines may also apply to your motorcycle accident case. You may have to give notice of your potential claims to an at-fault party (such as a government entity) or an insurance company. You may have obligations to respond to requests for information from accident investigators. And you may have creditors or bill collectors breathing down your neck to get paid for accident-related goods and services.
Hiring a lawyer immediately addresses these issues. A lawyer understands how to calculate and comply with the statute of limitations applicable to your case, can handle giving notice of your claim to anyone who needs it, and can act as your representative in dealing with investigators, insurance companies, and other interested parties.
If you face pressures from creditors such as hospital billing departments, a lawyer can also step in and negotiate with them on your behalf to buy you some time until your case produces funds.
Someone is Probably Targeting Your Rights Right Now
Being a motorcycle accident victim makes you legally and personally vulnerable. And that, in turn, makes you a target for insurance companies and others who want to avoid paying you what they owe for your accident-related losses.
Insurance adjusters working for the at-fault party, in particular, are notorious for trying to take advantage of motorcycle accident victims like you during the difficult weeks and months after a crash.
They may, for example, constantly pressure you to give them a recorded statement about the accident, only to ask you loaded questions designed to trick you into saying something that undermines your claim. Or, they may offer you a quick, lowball cash settlement of your claim, presenting it as a generous gift or the maximum you can hope to receive from them.
Hiring a motorcycle accident lawyer immediately protects you from those unscrupulous tactics. A lawyer stands between you and the aggressive insurance adjusters who want to harm your interests. Lawyers know the games insurers play and understand how to negotiate to force them to pay what they owe for your accident-related losses. Once you have a lawyer in your corner, aggressive texts and phone calls from insurance adjusters should stop for good.
It Helps to Have an Advisor
A motorcycle accident lawyer’s principal mission is to get you the most money possible to compensate for your losses. But that’s not all a lawyer does. Seasoned motorcycle accident attorneys also act as counselors and advisors to their clients. They’ve seen others go through similar difficulties and can put that experience to work helping you confront the challenges you face.
That’s important, because the days, weeks, and months after a motorcycle accident can feel overwhelming. Crash victims and grieving families frequently struggle to make medical, financial, and life decisions. They may have doubts about who they can trust to look out for them. Sometimes it’s all they can do just to get out of bed in the morning.
Lawyers take their job as advisors seriously. They can point you in the right direction when you face difficult choices, connect you with resources to help you overcome obstacles, and be the person you can rely on to have your back, look out for your interests, and always tell you the truth. Having that sort of ally and advocate can make a world of difference in surviving this difficult moment of your life.
It’s Too Easy to Make Costly Mistakes
The other side of the coin of needing an advisor is that if you don’t have one, you run the constant risk of making mistakes that could cost you lots of money. Simply going about your everyday life after a motorcycle accident can feel like an exercise in avoiding pitfalls. Worse, you may not realize some of the dangers hiding in your path.
Every experienced motorcycle accident lawyer can tell stories about crash victims who’ve made catastrophic errors they could have avoided by having a lawyer in their corner.
Without proper guidance it’s all too easy to, for example:
- Give damaging information to an insurance adjuster
- Sign a piece of paper that sacrifices your rights
- Say the wrong thing in public or on social media about your injuries
- Agree to an inadequate settlement
- Violate technical provisions of an insurance policy
- Miss a critical deadline for protecting your rights
Don’t run unnecessary risks. Connect with a lawyer immediately to keep yourself protected.
Hiring a Lawyer Costs You Nothing Upfront and Nothing Unless You Win
Hiring a motorcycle accident lawyer immediately is also a good idea because it won’t cost you anything upfront to do it. That’s right. Not one penny.
To begin with, all reputable motorcycle crash law firms offer free consultations for people in your situation. They’ll meet with you in-person or remotely at your convenience. In a free consultation, they’ll learn about your circumstances and give you their initial evaluation of your rights and options. You’ll never have to pay them for the time they spend with you in a consultation, even if you decide not to hire them.
No matter which motorcycle accident you choose to hire, it’s also a good bet they’ll agree to represent you on a contingent fee basis. That means their fee depends on whether they get you results. You don’t have to pay them anything upfront and they won’t bill you by the hour for the time they spend working on your case. They only get paid if they succeed in getting you paid.
Contact an Experienced Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Today
You have no time to lose after suffering harm due to a motorcycle accident. The sooner you hire a skilled motorcycle accident lawyer to handle your claim, the better your chances of receiving the money you need to pay your bills and move forward with your life. Plus, hiring a lawyer gives you an advocate and ally who can guide you through this difficult period toward a better future.
Don’t wait another minute. Contact an experienced motorcycle accident injury lawyer now for a free consultation about your rights and options.