Motorcycle accidents by default can lead to high-risk injuries because of how exposed a rider can find themselves in the event of a crash. For most accidents, each party will discuss the accident, exchange information, call the police if necessary, and contact their insurance companies. However, this is not always the case, and sometimes the at-fault driver in a motorcycle accident will flee the scene.
If you are a motorcycle rider that has been involved in a motorcycle accident in Maryland where the other at-fault driver fled the scene, there are several steps you need to take to protect yourself.
Call the Police
Accidents can be traumatic experiences, especially if you were injured as a result of it. One of the most important things you can do is call the police. Not only will you receive the medical treatment you need, but you will have the opportunity to file an official police report.
As per the Maryland Code of Transportation, 27-113, fleeing the scene of an accident is a crime, and in cases where serious bodily injury has occurred, it is even a felony. If an at-fault driver knowingly flees the scene of an accident, they can face up to 60 months in prison and over $5,000 in fines. Furthermore, if the accident causes death, they can face up to 120 months in prison and $10,000 in fines.
By calling the police, you will record the details of the accident, your condition, the condition of your motorcycle, and create a paper trail. You will want to share every detail you can with the police including specific facts such as the color of the at-fault driver’s vehicle, their license plate number if you saw it, any distinguishing features, and other details. Police officers will likely speak with any witnesses that stayed behind to ask them for their account of the accident.
If you feel like you need some legal help, contact our Motorcycle Accident Law attorney to schedule a free case evaluation today.
Call Your Insurance Company
You will also need to get into contact with your insurance company after your motorcycle accident. Even if the at-fault driver fled the scene, an insurance claim has to be made. All insurance claims, regardless of fault, are made through your insurance. If the at-fault driver is caught, your insurance company will still process the claim internally, but fault will be assigned to that driver, and the accident will be listed as a no-fault claim on your insurance record. In addition, the liability portion of the other driver’s insurance policy should cover your medical costs, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
If your local police department is unable to locate the at-fault driver, you will have to make a claim through your insurance under your uninsured motorist policy.
Depending on the severity of your motorcycle accident and injuries, you will most likely need to see a doctor for medical treatment. It is also important to document everything you remember related to the accident. You need to create a detailed account of the events that transpired. You will want to record items such as:
- The time and place of the accident
- Details related to the at-fault driver
- Make a note of any calls you make with the police and your insurance company
- The names and phone numbers of any witnesses
- Any other details that will prove useful in a legal case
While the police report will contain a lot of this information, it only benefits you to keep an accurate record of the accident itself.
Seek Legal Help for Your Motorcycle Accident
Whether the at fault driver was identified or never found you can still seek legal action. You will want to consult with a qualified lawyer that has experience dealing with motorcycle accidents. They will be able to explain all of the legal options available to you.
Zirkin and Schmerling Law has extensive experience helping our clients pursue motorcycle accident lawsuits. If you have any questions at all, please contact us today at 410-753-4611. Our team of legal experts will fight for you to help you get the money you deserve.