Riding motorcycles is a great stress-reliever, especially when you can take off into the mountains of West Virginia for some peace—it really is almost heaven. Unfortunately, not everyone driving a vehicle with four or more wheels looks out for bikers. In some cases, you might avoid an accident if you can see it coming and if you have room to maneuver out of the way. Other times, it happens so fast that you don’t have time to blink, never mind react.
If a West Virginia motorcycle wreck injured you or you lost a loved one in a motorcycle crash, contact Wagoner Desai’s West Virginia motorcycle accident lawyers for a free consultation. We’re ready to help you fight for the compensation you need.
What to Do After a West Virginia Motorcycle Wreck
After a motorcycle accident in West Virginia, you should take the following steps if you can move without incurring further injury:
- Check on others involved in the accident.
- Call first responders.
- Ask others involved in the accident for their contact information, license, insurance, and registration information. If another driver is a commercial truck or other large vehicle drivers, ask to see their CDL.
- Take plenty of photos of the accident scene. Be sure to capture any skid marks and property damage.
- Speak to witnesses to get their version of what they saw.
- Ask witnesses for their contact information. You need their names, good phone numbers, mailing addresses, and good email addresses.
- Even if you feel that you are not injured or that your injuries are minor, seek medical attention. Some serious injuries don’t manifest symptoms until hours or even a day or two later.
- Contact a West Virginia motorcycle accident attorney.
Do I Need a Lawyer to Settle My Accident Claim?
While you do not have to hire a personal injury attorney to settle your West Virginia motorcycle accident claim, it’s always best to retain an attorney with experience in motorcycle accidents. Insurance companies are in business to make a profit. Any money they have to pay you impacts the insurance company’s bottom line. Having an attorney on your side can make all the difference in negotiations for a fair settlement.
When you contact an insurance company, the only information you should give them is your contact information, the date, time, and location of the accident, and your attorney’s contact information. Most insurance companies will try to twist your words and use what you say as a reason to deny your claim or to offer you an amount that might not even cover your medical expenses.
West Virginia motorcycle accident lawyers know exactly what to say to insurance company representatives, making it more difficult for an insurance company to twist the facts.
Injuries in a West Virginia Motorcycle Wreck
The injuries you might suffer in a West Virginia motorcycle crash could range from seemingly minor injuries such as bruises, cuts, scratches, and scrapes, or they could be as serious as traumatic brain injuries or spinal cord injuries.
Regardless of the type of injuries, you should seek medical attention. Open wounds, including road rash, could become infected and cause additional problems.
Broken bones and many soft-tissue injuries such as sprains, strains, pulled muscles, and torn muscles can take weeks to heal. Compound fractures usually require surgery. Torn and pulled muscles could also require surgery.
Spinal cord and other head, neck, shoulder, and back injuries can cause long-term neurological issues or even paralysis. Even a minor concussion, which is a form of traumatic brain injury, could lead to long-term problems days, months, or even years later.
Medical professionals can perform specific tests to determine whether you have injuries that take their time to cause symptoms, including internal bleeding, traumatic brain injuries, simple fractures, and even burns. In some cases, burns might look red, but after several hours, they could blister and even become infected.
Compensation for a West Virginia Motorcycle Accident
After a West Virginia motorcycle accident, you may be eligible to collect compensation in the form of economic damages and non-economic damages.
Economic damages, also known as special damages, are those that have a clear monetary value.
Economic damages include:
- Past medical expenses for injuries incurred because of the accident and before settlement or the trial award.
- Future medical expenses you expect to incur after the settlement or trial award.
- Past lost wages from the time of the accident until you settle or win a trial award.
- Future wages you expect to lose after a settlement or trial award. Even if you can go back to work in some capacity but your injuries require you to take work that pays less or work fewer hours, you may collect partial lost wages.
- In the case of the death of a loved one, you may receive reimbursement for funeral, burial, and cremation expenses.
- Replacement or repair of destroyed or damaged personal property, including your motorcycle.
Non-economic damages, like economic damages, attempt to make you whole again. Non-economic damages do not have a monetary value but still cost you.
Non-economic damages include:
- Pain and suffering, including emotional distress.
- Loss of consortium if you can no longer have a physical relationship with your significant other.
- Loss of companionship if you can no longer enjoy family outings and events.
- Loss of use of a body part or bodily function, such as a hand or your eyesight.
- Disfigurement from broken bones, burns, and severe road rash.
- Inconvenience if you can no longer perform household duties, such as shopping or lawn maintenance, and you have to hire someone to do it for you.
After an Accident, Call Wagoner Desai, PLLC’s West Virginia Motorcycle Accident Attorneys Today
Money cannot remove the pain of injuries, make up for the challenges of long-term or permanent disabilities caused by motorcycle accident injuries, or bring back a loved one who died in a motorcycle wreck. It may, however, reduce the financial stress of having less income than you need to pay the bills. It also takes care of medical expenses that you otherwise would not have had to pay.
Wagoner Desai, PLLC
265 High Street, 3rd Floor
Citizens Bank Building
Morgantown, WV 26505
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