I’ve Been Hurt in a Motorcycle Accident—Do I Need a Lawyer
Summary: Find out more about when you might need a personal injury lawyer if you've been involved in a motorcycle accident.
If you ride a motorcycle, you know how much fun riding can be. The exhilaration of the open road and the challenges of controlling a motorcycle make it an experience many enjoy. Whether you ride for pleasure on the weekends, or the bike is your primary source of transportation, you also know the dangers associated with motorcycle riding.
Injuries from motorcycle accidents can be more extensive than those of other motor vehicles, and unfortunately, fatalities are also more common. A study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) found that motorcycle accident fatalities decreased by five percent in 2018, but deaths are still substantially overrepresented in motor vehicle fatalities.
If you were hurt in a motorcycle accident, you have a lot on your mind. Your injuries, which may interfere with your ability to earn a living, how long the recovery period might be, and the impact all of this will have on your life are just a few of the thoughts reverberating through your mind. You may have already been contacted by an insurance company offering you a settlement for your claim, so you wonder why you need an attorney?
Why You Need a Personal Injury Attorney After a Motorcycle Accident
At Lattof & Lattof, P.C., we see those injured in motorcycle accidents take the first settlement offer made by an insurance company far too often. Later, when the person realizes the repercussions of their injury, they wish they could renegotiate. Unfortunately, once the settlement has been accepted, there is no further recourse you can take.
The initial settlement may have seemed more than fair, or you were desperate because medical bills and living expenses pile up quickly, especially if you are unable to work. But, if the injury keeps you from returning to work for longer than anticipated or even leaves you with a permanent impairment, you need someone knowledgable about insurance companies and how the settlement process works.
Situations like that are why it is crucial to talk to a skilled personal injury attorney before you speak to an insurance adjuster. A competent Alabama personal injury attorney will review your case thoroughly and determine what parties contributed to the accident. An attorney will also conduct a thorough review of your medical records since the crash, and may even use medical and rehabilitative experts to determine how long before you can return to work, and any lasting impairment you might have.
Once they have talked to you about your situation and investigated the accident, they will prepare a claim for the insurance company. Having a personal injury attorney compile the information, and handle the settlement negotiations on your behalf, allowing you to focus on what is most important—your recovery.
How Do I Know if I Have a Claim?
If the accident was caused by another party, you could file a claim against their insurance company for your injuries, lost wages, pain, suffering, loss of future earning capacity, and more. If the other party was uninsured, you could sue the individual responsible for the accident.
What if I Contributed to the Crash?
Alabama remains one of the only states with a strict “contributory negligence” doctrine that can bar you from any recovery if you contributed to the crash. The doctrine of contributory negligence can be used by insurance companies to attempt to avoid paying for your injuries by blaming you for having some part in the crash.
Insurance companies use a range of tactics, including fake empathy, to get you to admit some fault in the accident unwittingly. For this reason, Lattof & Lattof, P.C. recommends that you do not speak with an insurance company representative until you have had a consultation with your personal injury attorney.
A knowledgable personal injury attorney in Alabama will work hard to discredit claims that you were responsible for the accident. Accident investigations can include accident reconstruction, retrieving camera footage from dashcams, or nearby security footage that might have captured the accident, and witness statements.
Find an Alabama Personal Injury Attorney to Protect Your Legal Rights
Most personal injury cases, including motorcycle accidents, are resolved through the settlement process. An insurance company, and the injured party, reach an agreement about an amount that covers your damages. At Lattof & Lattof, P.C., in Mobile, AL, we have decades of combined experience in negotiating with insurance companies.
We will always do our best to make sure your injuries and other damages are fully accessed so that the compensation you accept is adequate to care for your needs. Serious injuries can take some time before even experts can begin to determine whether there will be lasting impairment, or how long it will take to regain full function.
Call our offices to schedule a free consultation before you accept a settlement from an insurance company. Consultations are always free, and our experienced attorneys will give you an honest assessment of the value of your claim.
156 St Anthony St,
Mobile, AL 36603
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