The minutes, hours, and days following a motorcycle accident are always difficult. However, when the driver who hit you fled the scene of the accident, the situation can be much more frustrating. How will you claim insurance coverage to pay for your injuries? And how can you hold the driver personally liable when you don’t know who the person is?
If you’ve been in a hit and run motorcycle accident, it’s important to understand that you are likely covered by your own insurance. In Illinois, all motorists are required to carry uninsured motorist coverage, which protects them in case of a hit and run. If you’re hurt and the driver left the scene of the accident, it’s crucial that you speak to a Chicago hit and run motorcycle accident attorney about your rights.
Call Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard, P.C., now for a free consultation.
How a Hit and Run Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Can Help You
When you file a claim with your own insurance company after a hit and run motorcycle accident, they will do everything they can to deny, delay, or reduce your total settlement. They may try to blame you wholly or partly for the accident, and they may take your statements out of context.
An attorney will make sure that doesn’t happen. A hit and run motorcycle accident attorney can help you determine the full extent of your injuries and take the insurance company to task to pay for them. A lawyer will understand the full value of your claim and negotiate effectively with the insurance company to demand fair compensation for you.
After an accident, you should be focusing on your injuries. An attorney will make it easier to do that by managing all the details of filing your claim and handling all negotiations until it has been settled. If the insurance company refuses to offer a fair settlement, an attorney can also move the case to arbitration.
Sources of Compensation After a Hit and Run Motorcycle Accident
One of the first sources you should seek compensation from after a hit and run motorcycle accident is your own insurance company. Due to the fact that you’re required to carry uninsured motorist coverage in Illinois, you are entitled to claim compensation through your own policy. The minimum required amount of coverage is $25,000, the same as your liability insurance.
If your attorney or law enforcement is able to find the at-fault driver, you could claim compensation from their insurance company as well.
Motorcycle accidents are extremely serious, and the injuries that result from them can be costly to treat. As such, even if you can claim compensation through your own insurance company, as well as the driver’s, it may still not be enough to fully cover the cost of your injuries. When that is the case, you can file a lawsuit directly against the driver if he or she is found.
Damages You Could Recover
Similarly to if you filed a claim against the driver’s insurance company, you can claim the same types of damages through your own policy. These include economic and non-economic damages, such as compensation for:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Lost income and diminished earning capacity
- Property damages
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Permanent disability
A hit and run motorcycle accident lawyer in Chicago can evaluate your claim and help you pursue the full amount of compensation you are entitled to receive.
What to Do If You’ve Been Hurt in a Motorcycle Hit and Run in Chicago
Get treatment for your injuries immediately. After any accident, the most important thing to do is to get medical attention for your injuries. Call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room right away. Seeking immediate medical treatment is, of course, important for your own health and safety. However, it also begins the documentation process that is necessary in a personal injury claim.
Call the police. While still at the scene, if possible, it’s important to report the accident to the police. The police will begin an investigation to find the hit and run driver. They will also take your statement and will likely make their own assessment of the scene. This won’t automatically prove guilt, but it could help you later on with your claim.
Make notes about what you remember. If it’s possible while you are still at the scene, try to get as much information about the driver as you can. Try to document the make and model of the vehicle, the license plate number, and any features of the driver if you saw the person. This can help your attorney and law enforcement find the driver, which could benefit you in the future.
Talk to witnesses. There is a good chance there were witnesses who saw the crash and how it happened. They may have also seen the driver or the license plate number. If there are witnesses, write down their contact information. You may need them in the future if your insurer doesn’t want to pay a fair settlement.
Take photos. If you’re able to, take pictures of the accident scene. Photograph the position of your bike and any damage it sustained, and any relevant details such as traffic lights. Also take photos of your injuries.
Be careful what you say to the insurance company. Soon after the accident, you should contact your insurance company to notify them of the crash. However, you should not provide a statement and you should never allow them to record it. Only tell them there was an accident, and that the driver who hit you fled the scene.
Seek legal advice. You also need to speak to a hit and run motorcycle accident attorney as soon as possible after the crash. You can even do this before contacting the insurance company. An attorney will get to work on your claim and help you pursue the full amount of compensation you’re entitled to receive.
Talk to a Hit and Run Motorcycle Accident Attorney Now
If you have been the victim of a reckless driver who fled the scene, you need the help of an experienced Chicago hit and run motorcycle accident lawyer. At Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard, P.C., our skilled accident attorneys know how to hold insurance companies accountable for paying you the compensation you need.
Contact us for your free consultation so we can get started on your case today.