Being injured in a bike accident can be unsettling and traumatic. However, it is crucial to know what to do and respond appropriately in this unexpected situation. Your actions after the accident can have a significant impact on how much compensation you’ll get for your severe bodily injuries and damage to your bicycle. It can also affect any personal injury lawsuit resulting from a bike accident. Consult with reliable Elkhart personal injury attorneys today so we can help you with your case.
Making wise decisions immediately after the accident will have a positive effect on your injury case. It is advisable to consult a knowledgeable bike accident attorney in Elkhart, IN to help you know what you should do if you get involved in a bike accident. Here’s what you need to do:
Seek Medical Treatment
The first thing you can do after a bike accident is to check whether anyone is injured. Following a bicycle accident, your health should be your top priority. If appropriate, call 911 as quickly as you can and request medical assistance. If there’s a trained first responder on the scene, they may provide first aid assistance to an injured victim, depending on the severity of the injury.
Even if you feel that you’re not injured, you should still visit your doctor as soon as possible. Many injuries from a bike accident may not manifest right away. They may have very subtle symptoms, or initially no symptoms at all.
Wait for the Police to Arrive
It is essential to wait for the police to arrive first before you leave the scene. The police can write a report and conduct a brief investigation that may help support your future insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit. A police report provides documentation detailing the incident, including the identity of witnesses. Don’t hesitate to give them a factual, complete, and accurate statement of the accident. If you leave the accident scene, you may have difficulty identifying the at-fault driver.
Obtain Driver and Witness Contact Information
Take note of the personal information of all drivers, victims, or witnesses, including name, address, contact number, vehicle license number, driver’s license number, and insurance information. After you leave the scene, it might be challenging to track down everyone involved in the accident. Thus, you must have the details you need to contact them. If you can’t get this information yourself because of your injuries, ask someone else to do it for you.
Seek Legal Advice from a Bike Accident Attorney
Dealing with bike accidents can be stressful and complicated. It requires an in-depth understanding of complex legal issues and state laws. If you were injured in a bike accident that leads to substantial medical expenses, pain, and suffering, lost wages, diminished quality of life, you must get legal help from a seasoned bike accident attorney in Elkhart. Our bike accident attorneys can fight for your right as a victim and help you get the compensation you deserve.
You may consult a bike accident attorney who understands bicycling or has handled bike accident cases. Such an attorney can advise you on how to proceed, represent you in a lawsuit, and negotiate with the insurance companies.
Document the Accident Scene
Take photos from multiple angles of all the bicycles and vehicles involved in the accident. Take clear pictures of the damage to all vehicles involved. Document the bike accident scene and identify what happened, how, when, and where it occurred, and road, traffic, and weather conditions.
After an accident, finding and preserving evidence can be the key to a successful personal injury claim. Leave your damaged bike or other property in the same state as after the accident. Don’t fix or inspect anything to preserve significant physical evidence that can help prove the extent of an injury.
The best way to preserve evidence of your injuries is by promptly reporting all of them to a doctor or other medical provider and by photographing any visible marks, cuts, bruises, or swelling, including any casts, splints, or bandages. The first few days immediately following an accident are often the most important for finding and preserving evidence of what happened.
Do Not Negotiate with the Driver
Never negotiate with the driver of the vehicle, regardless of who may be at fault. In most cases, some drivers initially accept the blame and apologize, only to later deny their negligence and presence at the accident scene. The officer who will respond to the accident has to document everything that happened in the police report. They may ticket the driver involved in the accident, which may help settle the personal injury case with the insurance company.
Do Not Communicate with Insurance Companies
Avoid communicating with your insurance company without the presence of a qualified Elkhart bike accident attorney. Keep in mind that they could use anything you say to the insurance company against you later. Sometimes a letter from an attorney to the insurance company will resolve issues while avoiding legal pitfalls. Most injury cases are settled without ever going to trial.