In the aftermath of a motorcycle accident, you have an obligation to exchange certain information with the other driver. This is true even if that driver is at fault for the collision. This information is not limitless, as you have the right not to speak to the other driver about certain topics.
If you are unsure of what information you should get from the at-fault party after a motorcycle accident, you could benefit from a discussion with an attorney. Your attorney could advise you on your obligation to share information with the other motorist.
Exchanging Information at the Scene of the Accident
There are specific pieces of information that the other driver must share with you following a motorcycle accident. Likewise, you have an obligation to share the same details with them. This is true regardless of who was at fault for the accident. This information includes:
- License information. They must show their driver’s license on request and provide their license number.
- Biographical information. The driver must also provide you with basic details about themselves, including their name and contact information.
- Plate number. In addition to the driver’s license, you are also entitled to know the license plate number of the vehicle. This information should be easily obtained from the plate itself.
- Insurance information. You are also entitled to their insurance information. Typically, the other driver will show you their insurance card, giving you the chance to copy that information down or take a photo of it.
If the other driver fails to share information with you, they could face criminal sanctions. If they refuse to speak to you directly, the police often facilitate the exchange of information as an intermediary.
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What to Avoid Discussing with the Other Driver
Outside of the exchange of important information, you are not obligated to speak to the other driver at all. While it is natural to want to check on their condition or even discuss how the collision happened, it is never in your best interest to do so.
The things you say to the other driver after a motorcycle accident could be used against you. An apology could be misconstrued as an admission of guilt. An off-hand comment about how you are feeling fine could be twisted to suggest you later faked your injuries.
There are few benefits and numerous risks when it comes to talking to the other driver. Instead, rely on legal counsel to serve as your mouthpiece when dealing with the other party.
Communication After the Date of the Accident
Your obligation to exchange information with the other driver does not extend beyond the vital details like your license and insurance information. What’s more, you are never under any duty to speak to the attorney or insurance carrier of the other motorist in the days or weeks following a crash.
That will not prevent those parties from reaching out to you. In fact, the insurance adjuster for the other motorist might call you the same day the accident happens. Their goal is usually to secure a statement from you about the accident that could be used against you in the future.
There is no reason to speak with the insurance adjuster for the other party immediately after the accident. While it might be necessary to deal with them in order to resolve your claim, the best approach to this is relying on an attorney to serve as your advocate. An attorney could deal with the insurance company and prevent you from providing a recorded statement that could be used against you.
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What If the Other Driver Wants to Avoid Insurance Claims?
There are times when the at-fault driver will offer to pay for the damages to your vehicle in cash instead of going through the insurance company. While that might seem appealing at first, this is a risky proposition that could have greater consequences compared to simply exchanging information with the other driver.
If the other driver asks to avoid insurance, there is nothing stopping them from later refusing to pay. In these situations, they might even deny the accident happened at all. This approach could jeopardize your own insurance coverage, as your carrier could void your policy for not reporting an accident.
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Contact an Attorney After the Accident
Once you have exchanged information with the other driver, it is best to leave the specifics of your case to an attorney. Your legal counsel can deal with the other motorist’s lawyer or insurance carrier, leaving you to focus on your injuries.
After you get information from the at-fault party after a motorcycle accident, you can place your case in the hands of our attorneys. Contact Sevenish Law Firm, P.C. right away for a free consultation.