From Our Kansas City Motorcycle Accident Attorney
The days and weeks following a motorcycle accident can be hectic and overwhelming. It may be difficult to know what you should do to protect your legal rights regarding a motorcycle accident claim. Insurance agents and claims adjusters may be directing you to take certain actions.
If you are struggling with these issues and are wondering what to do next, you are in the right place. Below our Kansas City motorcycle accident attorney answers to the top 4 questions that arise after a motorcycle accident in Kansas or Missouri. These questions about motorcycle accident claims are:
- What Should I do after a Motorcycle Accident?
- Who May Pay My Medical Bills?
- Should I Sign the Insurance Company's Forms after a Motorcycle Accident?
- What Damages Can I Recover for a Motorcycle Accident Injury?
Answers to Motorcycle Accident Questions for Missouri and Kansas
1. What Should I do after a Motorcycle Accident?
Immediately after a motorcycle accident, call 911 to report the accident and request assistance. Regardless of the severity of your injuries, you want to have an official accident report to include with your insurance claim.
While you are waiting for the police to arrive, try to take pictures and make a video of the accident scene. Also, ask bystanders for their names and contact information so that your attorney can contact the witnesses to obtain statements.
Do not admit fault! Regardless of whether you think you may have contributed to the cause of the motorcycle crash, you cannot be sure until you speak with an experienced Kansas City motorcycle accident attorney and fully understand how the crash happened and the legal rules that may apply. Admitting any degree of fault can significantly reduce the compensation you might receive for a motorcycle injury claim.
2. Who May Pay My Medical Bills?
It is always important to seek medical care as soon as possible after a motorcycle crash for two reasons. First, you could have injuries that are not immediately known after a collision, such as traumatic brain injury (TBI), concussion, broken bones, a neck or spinal injury, nerve damage, and soft tissue injuries. It is best to be checked by a physician to protect your health.
It is also important to be seen by a doctor to protect your legal rights. To recover compensation for an injury claim, you must prove that you were injured as a result of the motorcycle accident. Insurance companies often use delays in medical care as a defense against an injury claim. The sooner you seek medical care, the better.
Unfortunately, you are responsible for your medical bills until an insurance company or other party accepts liability for the accident and agrees to pay compensation for your claim. Settling a motorcycle accident claim could take several months or over a year. Your claim should not be settled until your doctor releases you from treatment, and you know the full extent of your injuries and any permanent impairments.
If you have certain kinds of health insurance, such as Medicaid or Medicare, you can submit the medical bills against your health insurance. When your claim is settled, the health insurance provider may have a claim (known as a lien) against the proceeds for any money paid to medical providers related to accident injuries. Your attorney should assist you in negotiating the health insurance liens to lower the amount that must be reimbursed to the extent permitted under applicable law.
Some medical providers work with patients to wait for payment until the injury claim is settled, especially when the person does not have health insurance to cover the expenses. In some cases, a medical provider requires a signed medical lien. It is wise to allow an attorney to review any agreement before you sign it.
Documenting medical expenses so that you can include each expense in your claim for reimbursement is essential. Our legal team assists clients as they document medical and personal care expenses to maximize the amount of compensation they may receive for their motorcycle accident claim.
3. Should I Sign the Insurance Company's Forms after a Motorcycle Accident?
Insurance adjusters overwhelm accident victims with forms and documents they urge must be signed to process the claim. Two common forms an insurance company may request from a motorcycle accident victim are a written statement and a medical release form. It is never a good idea to sign these forms without first consulting a motorcycle accident attorney in Kansas City. It is also not a wise idea to provide a recorded statement before speaking with an attorney. Statements made to the insurance company can be used against you later in your claim. Giving an insurance company access to your entire medical history is also not wise.
WARNING! When you sign a release or settlement for the insurance company, you have given up your right to any further payment or compensation.
Once you accept a settlement and sign the forms, you release the insurance company (and maybe other parties) from any further liability for your claim. In other words, if you discover you need additional medical treatment or you have a permanent disability, you cannot go back to the insurance company to demand more money. Therefore, it is a wise step to allow an attorney to review any forms the insurance company requests before you sign the forms.
4. What Damages Can I Recover for a Motorcycle Accident Injury?
The damages caused by a motorcycle accident vary. Most individuals suffer physical injuries from the accident. Additionally, riders sustain financial damages because of the crash.
Typical damages included in a motorcycle accident crash claim include:
- The cost of medical treatment, including emergency room visits, hospitalizations, surgeries, doctor bills, physical therapy, diagnostic tests, medications, and medical equipment.
- The cost of personal care, including assistance with household chores and childcare.
- Loss of income, including future lost wages and loss of earning potential.
- Property damage.
- Physical injuries, including pain, suffering, scarring, disfigurement, and permanent disabilities.
- Emotional distress and mental anguish, including PTSD, anxiety, and depression.
- Other financial losses and expenses related to the motorcycle accident and your injuries.
The value of your motorcycle accident claim depends on many factors. Our legal team works closely with clients to document damages, which increases the chance of receiving full compensation for all damages. Our Kansas City motorcycle accident attorneys use the evidence in the case to maximize the value assigned to the noneconomic damages (pain and suffering) damages to help you receive a fair settlement for your motorcycle injury claim.
Contact a Kansas City Motorcycle Accident Attorney for More Information
Our Kansas City motorcycle accident attorney can help protect your rights and present a claim to recover damages after a motorcycle accident in Kansas or Missouri. Let us fight to ensure you recover fair and full compensation for your injuries, losses, and damages after a motorcycle accident.
Call 816-203-0143 for a free consultation with a motorcycle accident attorney in Kansas City today. You may also want to download one of our free consumer guides for accident or injury victims in Kansas City.