Making a claim for damages after an automobile accident involving a bicycle is similar to making a claim for collisions involving two motor vehicles. First, in Louisiana you have one year after the accident to make claim for personal injuries and damages to your bicycle caused by a vehicle’s negligent driver. Second, you will be entitled to pain and suffering and lost wages from the negligent driver’s insurance company.
Listed below are To-Do’s when making insurance claims after an auto accident involving a bicycle:
- Use your phone to take pictures. Take pictures of the accident scene, damage to your bicycle and injuries to your body. You will need to send these pictures to your attorney and the insurance companies.
- Call the police to make a report. The responding police officer will create a report that will be use by the insurance companies to determine who was at fault for the accident. The police report will also document any injuries and the insurance providers of the involved vehicles. The police officer will also usually identify who he or she believes was at fault for the accident.
- Contact an experienced automobile or bicycle accident attorney before making an insurance claim. This is because an attorney will look out for your best interests. The insurance company will not look out for the interests of the person making a claim against it. An attorney will help you make decisions like whether you should give a recorded statement and when to send proof of loss. Your attorney will fight the insurance company adverse to your interests for the money you deserve.
- Make claims with all insurance companies involved. Whether you or an attorney makes the claims, you should make an insurance claim against all applicable insurance companies after a bicycle accident. Do this by calling the 1-800 number associated with the insurance company or the number listed on the insurance card. The sooner claims are made, the sooner the insurance company can start its accident investigation. The sooner its investigation is complete, the sooner it will make a decision on whether it will pay your claim. Ask your attorney whether you should send your accident scene photos to the involved insurance companies at the time the claim is made.
- Seek medical treatment. It is always important to seek medical treatment soon after an accident. First, doctors will help you heal quickly and identify serious health risks. Second, doctors will document your injuries. This documentation will be used by insurance companies to give your injuries a value during settlement negotiations.
The above suggestions apply if you are in accident on the West Bank or East Bank of Jefferson Parish or in New Orleans or any other Louisiana Parish. The insurance companies have certain time deadlines to fix your bicycle’s property damage. The insurance companies also have a duty not to lie to you. An experienced attorney will hold the insurance companies responsible for addressing your bicycle’s damage timely and honestly.
If you have questions about making an insurance claim after a bicycle collision contact the Lawyer Don D’Aunoy today for a free consultation: 504-508-6414.