Wrecked motorcycle on street by car indicating accident

Follow These Crucial Steps After a Motorcycle Accident in South Carolina

Whether cruising Caesars Head State Park near Greenville and Anderson or commuting between Summerville and Charleston, South Carolina motorcycle accidents can be a devastating, life-changing event. Due to differences in safety measures, bike crashes have a greater risk of severe injury or even death, so it’s critical to take the right steps to protect your legal rights if you’re the victim of a collision that wasn’t your fault. 

What should you do after a motorcycle accident? First, take care of your health. Then, consult an experienced South Carolina motorcycle accident lawyer who can guide you through this difficult time. Attorney Christopher Pracht and the legal team at Pracht Injury Lawyers are ready to alleviate the burden of the personal injury claims process so you can focus on recovery.

Steps to Take at the Motorcycle Crash Scene

If it’s safe to do so and you feel up to it, move to the side of the road. This may reduce the risk of further injury or additional collisions. Then, follow these key steps to ensure your wellbeing and protect your legal rights after an accident. 

Get Emergency Medical Help

Your health and well-being are the top priority. Call 911 so emergency personnel and law enforcement are dispatched to the scene immediately. Don’t remove your helmet or other protective gear until the paramedics arrive. 

Take the time to assess your injuries and get the emergency medical attention you need. Even if your injuries seem minor, arrange for a thorough medical exam within a day or two. This action counters a common claim rebuttal from insurance companies. 

Call the Police to Report the Accident

South Carolina Code of Laws Section 56-5-1260 states that motorists are legally obligated to report accidents to authorities immediately. This is for any car, truck, or motorcycle accident resulting in personal injury or property damage of at least $1,000, or a fatality. You must call the local police department, county sheriff, or South Carolina Highway Patrol. 

A local law enforcement officer will arrive at the scene to investigate. They may issue you a document before they leave, but this isn’t the official police report. You or your accident lawyer must request a copy later on. 

Take Photos and Videos for Evidence

If you’re able, document the motorcycle accident scene by taking pictures and videos. This includes photos of:

  • Visible injuries, like cuts and broken bones
  • Physical damage to your motorcycle
  • Physical damage to the other vehicle(s)
  • The larger accident scene area
  • Notable traffic signs 
  • Prevailing traffic conditions
  • Road and weather conditions
  • Other circumstantial evidence

When you exchange insurance information with the other driver, it’s also important to note other details. This includes the date and time of the accident, location, the speed and direction of travel for both vehicles, and so on. All of this can serve as evidence to support your personal injury claim. Give these pictures to your attorney. 

Collect Witness Names and Contact Information

Talk to eyewitnesses at the scene who can confirm your version of the events. Get their names and contact information. As your case proceeds, your personal injury lawyer may follow up with them for clarification. 

Steps to Take in the Weeks After the Accident

In the days, weeks, or even months after a motorcycle accident, you may still feel shaken. Even so, taking certain steps after the crash is essential to building a solid injury claim.

Continue Seeking Medical Care

Your claim for potential injury compensation hinges on proof that you’re doing all you can to recover. For example, if you refuse medication and treatment, insurers may use these actions as evidence that your injuries are minor or nonexistent. Additionally, symptoms of more serious conditions, such as traumatic brain injuries or organ damage, might not appear until some time after the accident, or seemingly minor injuries can develop into chronic pain and permanent disability. Keep getting medical care and follow the advice of your doctor. 

Avoid Sharing on Social Media

A common mistake after a car accident in South Carolina is discussing the case online. Don’t do it. Resist the urge to pour your heart out on Facebook or share photos of your recovery on Instagram. Insurers, lawyers, and other interested parties may misinterpret your posts and use them as evidence against you. 

Hire an Experienced South Carolina Motorcycle Accident Lawyer

Navigating personal injury claims is a complex and nuanced process. Even if it may seem obvious to you, don’t take proving fault in a motorcycle accident for granted. Christopher Pracht and the team at Pracht Injury Lawyers have years of experience representing clients involved in motorcycle crashes caused by the negligent actions of others. We have a firm understanding of the South Carolina legal system and will fight to protect your rights to fair compensation from the responsible parties. 

Don’t Talk to the Insurance Companies

One of the most valuable ways a skilled accident attorney will help you is by dealing with insurance companies after a crash. The other insurer has a vested interest in reducing its liability as much as possible. Anything you say to them could be misinterpreted or misconstrued. They may lowball your settlement. Instead, discuss your case with your attorney and let them handle the insurance issues on your behalf. 

What You May Recover After a Motorcycle Accident

By closely following the steps above, you improve your chances of receiving full compensation for your injuries and losses. The economic and non-economic damages you may recover after a motorcycle in South Carolina include:

  • Current medical expenses like hospital visits and treatment
  • Expected future medical bills, like medication and rehabilitation
  • Current lost wages and anticipated loss of future earning potential
  • The cost to repair or replace your damaged motorcycle
  • Emotional distress and loss of enjoyment of life
  • Pain and suffering
  • Punitive damages

Pracht Injury Lawyers has a strong record of defending our clients and negotiating for maximum settlement amounts.

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