What to do after a Motorcycle Accident

With the snow melted away and summer upon us, motorcycle season has finally begun.

Now is the time to finish your winter upgrades, dust off that old café racer, and get ready for Erie’s annual Roar on the Shore, where more than 100,000 bikers and enthusiasts are expected to gather around this lakeside city for one of the nation’s biggest motorcycle events and fundraisers!

Motorcycling is, of course, not without its risks. Last year, in Pennsylvania, according to the Department of Transportation, there were 3,411 motorcycle crashes in which 179 riders were killed. If you’re new to riding and looking to get licensed, we encourage you to do so through the free Pennsylvania Motorcycle Safety Program (PAMSP), which provides residents with free lessons on how to ride safely and skillfully on motorcycles provided by the state (so you don’t have to worry about dropping yours when learning!). The best part is that at the end of this course, you ride away with your license.

Do you already ride? PAMSP also provides free advanced courses for seasoned riders looking to learn advanced tips and maneuvers. Check with your insurance agent—you might even get a discount for attending these free courses. For more information and to find a location near you, visit www.PAMSP.com.

If you do find yourself in a motorcycle accident, there are a few key differences between motorcycle accidents and car accidents of which you should be aware. In Pennsylvania, after a car accident, your insurance company is required to pay for the first $5,000 of your medical treatment (at the minimum—you can opt for more). With motorcycle accidents, this unfortunately is not the case. You and your health insurance company are stuck footing the bills and co-pays.

The biggest difference is, in a car accident, if you elected “limited tort” coverage to get cheaper automobile insurance (which you should never do), you cannot recover for pain and suffering unless you fall under an exception. In a motorcycle accident, this is not the case: injured motorcyclists are entitled to recover for pain and suffering regardless of their “limited tort” election.

If you do get into a motorcycle accident, here are some important tips you should keep in mind:

  • Save your receipts and medical bills
  • Take pictures of your bike and your injuries
  • Document your lost wages
  • Contact an experienced motorcycle accident attorney
  • Do not talk to any insurance companies first

We have successfully represented injured motorcyclists for more than 35 years. We may be able to recover your lost wages, out-of-pocket medical expenses, and even get you something for pain and suffering. If you, a friend, or a relative has been involved in a motorcycle accident, or if you have any questions, we encourage you to give us a call for a free consultation.

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