Small Accident, Big Consequences: The Need for Legal Guidance After a Crash

Small Accident, Big Consequences: The Need for Legal Guidance After a Crash

Minor Crash, Major Impact: The Importance of Consulting a Lawyer

Introduction

Imagine this: you’re cruising down a scenic Iowa road on your motorcycle, the sun setting in the distance. Suddenly, a car swerves into your lane, causing a minor scrape. You feel fine, the bike has just a few scratches, and the car driver is apologetic. It seems like a straightforward, minor incident.

Yet, the next day you start having pain in your back and left shoulder, and the quotes for the repair bills are higher than expected. This story is all too common in the biking community, highlighting a crucial but often overlooked issue: the importance of consulting a lawyer after even the most minor of crashes.

Why? Let’s delve into it, uncovering why legal advice is not just a precaution, but a necessity.

TL;DR:

  • Even minor crashes can lead to significant legal and financial issues.
  • Lawyers help navigate insurance claims and ensure fair compensation.
  • Legal advice is crucial for addressing potential delayed injuries.
  • Attorneys can identify and pursue compensation for hidden damages.
  • Consultation with a lawyer safeguards your rights and future claims.
  • Consider the 4 common concerns after a crash:
    • Cost NOT to hire a lawyer
    • When to consult with an attorney
    • If you actually need a lawyer
    • The risks of going alone against an insurance company

Understanding Your Rights and Insurance Claims

Even the most minor of crashes can result in an overwhelming process to find a resolution. No one expects you to be an expert on what your individual rights are in every situation or on the nuances of navigating negotiations with insurance companies. 

Frankly, insurance companies are banking on being able to take advantage of your understandable lack of knowledge of the ins and outs of personal injury law.

Look at it this way, if your bike had a problem and you didn’t know how to fix it, you wouldn’t trust just anyone to work on it. You’d bring it to an expert mechanic to make sure it’s done right. We’re like legal mechanics when it comes to crashes – no matter how minor or extreme.

Dealing with Insurance Companies

Watercolor Splash image of a greedy insurance adjuster sitting in piles of cash

Navigating the complex world of insurance claims is challenging. After a minor crash, insurers often aim to settle quickly and cheaply. A lawyer understands the tactics insurance companies use and ensures you don’t settle for less than you deserve.

Protecting Your Rights

It’s crucial to understand your rights following an accident. A lawyer can explain your rights, helping you avoid decisions that could jeopardize future claims. They ensure that your rights are protected throughout the process.

The Hidden Impacts of Minor Accidents

Image of a technician working on detail work of a motorcycle's paint job

Just as a small, unnoticed leak can eventually cause major damage, the impact of a minor accident might not be immediately apparent. It’s easy to overlook the potential consequences when everything seems fine on the surface.

Like a mechanic who catches those sneaky under-the-hood issues, a lawyer spots the hidden effects of a minor crash. This includes stuff like delayed injuries or unseen bike damage – problems you don’t want to miss.

A key NHTSA study, ‘Exploring the Relationship Between Entry-Level Motorcycle Rider Training and Motorcycle Crashes‘, backs this up. It shows that bike crashes, big or small, are complex beasts. The study dives into how crashes affect both new and seasoned riders differently, highlighting why expert legal help is a must. 

It’s not just about the crash; it’s about the curveballs that are thrown at you later.

Delayed Injury Symptoms

A man with a neck injury being evaluated by a doctor

What seems minor initially can evolve into significant health issues. Many injuries, like whiplash or internal bruising, aren’t immediately apparent. A lawyer helps link these delayed symptoms to the accident, crucial for compensation claims.

The Value of Legal Expertise

Personal Injury Attorneys, The Biker Lawyers Dan Matzdorff and Pete Leehey consult with a client

Navigating the aftermath of a motorcycle crash, big or small, can be as complex as disassembling and reassembling an engine. Just as you wouldn’t attempt a major engine overhaul without the right knowledge and tools, handling legal matters without expertise can lead to missed opportunities and unresolved issues.

Attorneys specializing in motorcycle accidents bring a level of expertise that’s like a master mechanic for your legal needs. They have the tools, knowledge, and experience to meticulously work through the legal complexities, ensuring that every component of your case is handled with precision and care.

Expertise in Accident Law

Lawyers specializing in motorcycle accidents possess deep knowledge of relevant laws and regulations. Their expertise is invaluable in navigating legal complexities and advocating on your behalf.

Maximizing Compensation

A lawyer evaluates all aspects of your claim, including medical expenses, lost wages, and emotional distress, ensuring you receive fair compensation for all damages.

4 Common Rider Concerns After a Crash

Digital art piece showing two people talking in a motorcycle garage

Feeling a bit overwhelmed or uncertain after a minor crash? You’re not alone. 

Over the years, we’ve stood shoulder-to-shoulder with countless riders just like you, addressing worries and smoothing out those post-crash anxieties. 

We get it – the road after an accident can be full of twists and turns. But here at The Biker Lawyers, we’ve seen it all and understand exactly what’s on your mind. Let’s tackle your concerns together, ensuring you’re equipped with the knowledge and confidence to navigate this journey.

1. I can’t afford a lawyer, so why hire one?

Think of it like this: the initial legal consultation is like a free test ride. You’ve got nothing to lose and a whole lot to gain. 

Our firm works on a contingency fee basis. That means you don’t pay attorney fees unless we get you money. We’re in it together. There’s no downside to talking to us about your rights. It is likely we will be able to help you recover far more from the insurance company than if you try to go it alone.

2. How quickly should I consult a lawyer after a minor crash?

It’s like checking your bike right after a rough ride. The sooner, the better. Legal issues, like mechanical problems, can get worse over time if ignored. Consulting a lawyer immediately ensures that your rights are protected right from the start, and important evidence is preserved.

3. What if I only have minor pain after the accident? Do I still need a lawyer?

Minor pains after an accident often become worse over time. Even minor injuries need to be checked out and followed. That way, if the injuries get worse later, you will have made a record of your injuries. 

Seeing a doctor for the first time weeks after the accident opens the door for the insurance company to claim your injuries were caused by something other than the accident. 

A lawyer can best help you navigate the problems that can be caused by delayed symptoms if you get the lawyer involved shortly after your accident.

4. Can I handle the insurance claim myself?

Handling an insurance claim alone is like tuning your bike’s engine without the right tools and expertise. You might manage the basics, but you could miss critical details. A lawyer knows the ins and outs of insurance claims and can help you navigate the process effectively, ensuring you get what you’re entitled to.

Conclusion

Cedar Rapids Iowa based Personal Injury Attorney Pete Leehey meets a client outside a courthouse.

The story from our introduction isn’t just a narrative; it’s a reality for many bikers. Consulting a lawyer after a minor crash isn’t about being litigious; it’s about protecting your health, finances, and rights. Don’t let a minor accident turn into a major headache. 

Remember, at The Biker Lawyers, we’re not just attorneys; we’re bikers too. We understand your journey because it’s ours as well. Our role as your legal mechanics is to ensure your journey through this process is as smooth and successful as possible, making sure you’re back on the road with confidence and peace of mind. 

For a free consultation and to ensure your ride remains safe and just, contact us today.

When do I need a personal injury lawyer after a crash?

When do I need a personal injury lawyer after a crash?

When do I need a personal injury lawyer after a crash?

Posted on June 16, 2022 at 8:00 AM by The Biker Lawyers

It seems more car accidents happen this time of year than any other. There are few events in life as jarring and filled with potential consequences as getting into a crash. If you’re lucky, all you have to deal with is some injuries and a damaged car or motorcycle. However, if the crash leaves you or someone else seriously injured, life can become very complicated.

This guide is by no means comprehensive. For ease of navigation, if you have a specific question, click below to jump ahead. Otherwise, read on.

What to do First When to speak to a lawyer
Accidents involving a Car and Motorcycle  Questions about Insurance
Questions about Wrongful Death Should I Hire a Lawyer?

This complexity doesn’t just stem from the physical pain of your injuries, but also from the potential legal ramifications of the accident.

For instance, if your vehicle was damaged or totaled by another driver who was behaving negligently (i.e., speeding, distracted driving), then that negligent driver could be held legally accountable for any damages they caused—and this is where it gets even more complicated.

In many cases like this one, an injury attorney will be required to help you recover compensation for damages caused by someone else’s negligence. Read on to learn what happens after a serious accident, when do I need an injury attorney after a crash?

 

The first thing to do after a crash is to make sure you (and your passengers) are alright.

“After a car crash, the first thing you should do is make sure no one is seriously injured. You may need to call emergency services. Regardless, you’ll probably need to call the police and/or ask 911 to send an ambulance. If you are injured and not sure if it’s serious, call a friend or family member who can come over and stay with you and help you stay calm until help arrives.” – Pete Leehey, Personal Injury Attorney, The Biker Lawyers

The second thing you need to do is call your insurance company. Your insurance agent will help you figure out what to do next.

Do not admit fault to anyone. Often, even in a motorcycle or car accident that seems pretty straightforward, things aren’t what they seem.

If possible, document everything that happened by taking photos or videos from different angles of both vehicles involved in the crash (front and back). This will help prove how much damage was done by other drivers at fault for causing injuries instead of just trying to minimize them as much as possible. It may also help prove where in the roadway the collision happened. Think of it as collecting evidence that could be very helpful later.

Accidents involving a car and motorcycle are especially devastating

Motorcycle accidents are especially devastating to riders and their families, with the fatality rate being higher than for cars. This is due to a number of factors, including:

  • Motorcycles are less visible than automobiles. Drivers often don’t see motorcycles until the last moment, if at all.
  • Motorcycles lack many features that protect passengers in a car crash, such as airbags and seatbelts.

Injuries sustained during motorcycle crashes can be more severe than those sustained in an automobile accident because there isn’t as much protection between you and the road surface when your bike falls over or crashes into stationary objects like guardrails or parked cars.

A Motorcycle Crash resulting in Wrongful Death

There are many reasons why a motorcycle crash could result in wrongful death.

If the rider is hit by another vehicle, it can cause severe injuries that may kill the rider.

In fact, because of their small size and lack of protection, motorcycle riders are more likely to suffer traumatic brain injury (TBI) or even die after suffering a serious car accident than those in cars or trucks.

If someone’s negligence causes an accident that results in your loved one’s death (like if a distracted driver runs into them), you can work with a personal injury attorney and pursue legal action against that party for damages such as loss of support and services, loss of accumulations to the estate, and medical expenses or funeral costs associated with your loss.

The driving decisions of the motorcyclist before the crash will also be put under a microscope. Things like speed, braking, location on the roadway, and evasive action attempted will all be considered. There is 100% fault to be divided up between the drivers involved in a crash, so everything that happened in the moments leading up to the crash is important.

Each case is unique, so it is important to speak with a qualified wrongful death attorney early.

When do I speak to a lawyer about a personal injury?

  • When you have been injured in a car accident or motorcycle accident.
  • When you have been injured by someone else’s negligence.

In short, if another party is responsible for your injuries (whether it was intentional or not), then it’s important to contact an attorney as soon as possible. If you aren’t sure who is responsible, contact an attorney for a free case evaluation.

Will insurance cover all my medical bills after an accident?

You may think that the insurance company will pay for all of your medical and accident-related bills and other losses —but that often isn’t true. Commonly, an injured party fails to consider long-term factors such as pain and suffering, disability, or physical therapy. They tend to assume that the health insurance companies will cover these types of expenses in the future.

In fact, some insurance companies will still try to deny coverage or dispute damages even after they’ve admitted fault! That’s why it’s essential to contact an attorney immediately so that they can begin working on your case immediately and fight any efforts by the other party or their insurance company from trying to avoid responsibility for their actions.

Should I hire a lawyer?

If you have been injured in a car accident, motorcycle accident or slip and fall, you may need to hire an attorney.

Personal injury cases and filing personal injury claims can be complex. If you have been injured in a car accident, motorcycle accident or slip and fall, you may need an injury attorney. You should speak to a lawyer as soon as possible after an accident.

In most cases, people who are involved in accidents that occur on roads or sidewalks will contact the insurance company to file claims. However, if the at-fault party has no insurance or if your injuries were severe enough to warrant more money than the insurance coverage of the other driver, we recommend speaking with an injury attorney as soon after the accident happens as is reasonably possible.

If someone else’s negligence caused your injuries, then they should be held responsible for paying for those damages and losses associated with your injuries.

If you have been injured because of another person’s careless actions (i.e., failure to yield, driving under the influence, failure to maintain control of a vehicle, etc.) it may be possible for you to receive compensation from that person even though he does not have any money!

This is where hiring an experienced personal injury lawyer becomes critical for any victim looking for justice after suffering serious personal injuries resulting from someone else’s negligence behind the wheel!

Conclusion

If you’ve been injured in an accident, don’t just accept the insurance company’s offer. It may not be enough money to cover all your medical expenses, lost wages, disability, pain and suffering, and how it will affect your life in the future. A good personal injury lawyer can help you maximize the compensation you receive for your injuries and avoid long-term financial problems.

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