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Discussion Starter #1
Good day all. I wanted to ask advice and/or draw on the past experience of forum members. I will try to make this as brief as possible. I was involved in an accident 6/18. A 79 y.o. male attempted to make an illegal U-turn across a two lane road from the far right lane. I was coming up behind him, got into the left lane, and as I attempted to pass him, he turned left into my lane of travel. He was ticketed for improper lane change, I was transported to the ED, and his insurance has accepted responsibility. My bike was disabled. Damage was done to right side of fairing, loss of side mirror, crumbled exhaust, and tore a hole in right bank head cover.(loss all fluids at that time) The seat also has a ripple in it, which makes me question if the frame was bent. It has been taken to a BMW dealership due for assessment of damages. I don't know if it is repairable or will be a total loss. My injuries are mostly soft tissue damage with a few abrasions and no broken bones. I wear good protective clothing while riding, but am sore. I wanted to get some advice from others that have gone through this experience and how to handle my case with the the other driver's insurance. Looking around on the internet, which can be misleading, instills a feeling of getting stuck for my inconvenience. Also, it a 2010 R1200RT. Looking for fair market values for replacement. Already have estimates from NADA and Kelly. Thanks in advance. Previous experience on the forum has been excellent. I really don't want to make a mistake handling this situation.

Sincerely,
John
 

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Old Slow Guy in A Fast Car
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I really depends on the other guys insurance. If they are a good company they will treat you fair, if not get a lawyer & pray for the best. I would also ask the BMW dealer what the "Replacement" value of your bike is & use that as your "fair" replacement value. NADA & KBB can sometimes be all over the place on price. Good luck & glad to hear you were not hurt too bad.
 

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Glad that you were not hurt too badly. Just to be sure, sometimes it can take a few days before all pain and suffering shows up, a doctors visit might be warranted.

If you need transportation, the other insurance co should provide you with a rental.

Market value, if the bike is totaled is negotiable. Be well equipped with "replacement" values. You are entitled to replace your riding gear/clothing boots helmet too.

Be sure your insurance co has been notified too.
 

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I agree with what has been said above and would add, be PRO-active. Do not wait for them to call you, call them. Additionally get a copy of the citation and press you case.

Good luck, happy hear you are only sore.
 

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I think you will be better off dealing with his insurance company. I was in a accident over a year ago and I dealt with my insurance company (Liberty Mutual). They were such a pain that I wish that I went to the persons insurance company that hit me.
 

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John - glad that your mishap left you able to walk and talk about it.

About the bike - I'll be something of a contrarian here. You seem presupposed that the bike will be a total loss. Is that what you want? Do you want to have to find another bike that someone else has broken in, or do you want to try to save the one you chose, babied in its infancy, and like? The dealership should be easily able to take measurements to determine if the frame is bent. If it isn't then it gets to be pretty much of a parts replacement exercise. With a 2010, even if you have to rebuild one jug the engine is new enough that there shouldn't be a mismatch significant enough to cause worry.

My frame of reference is an accident I had in January. No, it wasn't a 79-year old driver cutting me off, it was a washing machine (perhaps a similar level of cognition) bouncing merrily down the freeway that I sideswiped. Took out the entire left side of the bike (fairing, spoiler, saddlebag, cylinder, head and exhaust). I didn't go down but I'm not sure why. Frame was unaffected, and I made the decision that if the insurance company would go for it I would advocate rebuilding the bike rather than totalling it. It was close, but in the end the repair was successful and the bike rides good as new.

Only caveat to that is to make sure that there isn't any title endorsement of "totalled" or whatever they call it. That will be a big red flag for resale.

But - by all means, keep track of any losses you've suffered and make a claim. The claim for your bike will actually go through your insurance company - they fix or total it, and seek reimbursement from the driver at fault. So your issue will at least start out to be with your company, not the other driver's. But for your non-vehicle losses you'll probably need to go directly to the other company. New protective gear (including helmet - you should never reuse a helmet that's been in a collision), insurance copays, the 500-count Ibuprofen you had to buy, everything is good. Those may add up to hundreds of dollars to you but they are a drop in the bucket to the other insurance company. And don't let them get you into the "depreciation" game ("That helmet was three years old, so you only get 25% of the replacement value"). Your justification should rest on whether you would have had those expenses, at that time, without the accident. You don't have to settle with the company, you can always take it to small claims court (which insurance companies generally don't like because it makes them look like bullies).

And, as Dan mentioned, get a thorough evaluation by the doctor as the other insurance company will probably ask you to sign a document stating that you won't go after them for any more.

Good luck, rest up, and keep us advised how it goes. Any one of us could be the next one in your shoes.

JayJay
 

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Get yourself a good personal injury attorney quickly. You are not prepared to negotiate with or understand that the adjuster is being paid to give you as little money as possible. Some will outright lie about your rights, repair issues, and what your claim is worth in order to get you to sign a low-ball release.

This may sound jaded, but being an attorney, I fight with these issues all the time. I also basically distrust adjusters and insurance companies because of their tactics.

Get an attorney. Quickly ! End of discussion.

P.S. - You DID notify your insurance carrier didn't you? Many if not most policies have a clause that requires that despite the fact you are not at fault.
 

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ka5ysy said:
Get yourself a good personal injury attorney quickly.

IMO this is the most important thing anyone has mentioned yet.

Seriously.

Glad you are OK.
 

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Read your policy. Do you have comprehensive and collision coverage? If not the advice to go through your insurance company is not applicable. Go through your insurance company and you pay your deductible until it is recovered from the at-fault old codger's company; but it should be faster. Your carrier then fights with the other carrier to recover what they paid.

Dont' wait around for someone else to do something. Contact the codger's insurance company to confirm they have established a claim file and get the claim number and follow up on it yourself. If they have not assigned an adjuster immediately that is a bad sign. Just because the old codger was at fault and got a citation, does not mean his insurance company will accept that "diagnosis."

Make sure you really are ok physically. Soft tissue injuries can be strange things and it will take some time to make sure you actually are ok.

Don't be in a hurry to sign anything that waives your rights even if someone is waiving a check in front of you.

If you are sure you are not injured and you are satisfied with the offer, you may not want to pay an attorney. If you get the least bit of run around or are at all uncertain, however, "Get an attorney" is good advice but if you follow it, get a good attorney. Generalization is a dangerous thing, but the guys who advertise on TV are the like the puppy mills of the legal profession. Ask around, if no one you know can recommend a reputable attorney, look on line at Martindale Hubbell and search for an attorney who has an AV rating and handles insurance and personal injury. Your wife's sister's bother is probably not the right guy.

Good luck.
 

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johnbaker15 said:
...be PRO-active. Do not wait for them to call you, call them. Additionally get a copy of the citation and press you case.
Glad you're relatively OK. Above statement says it all....

ka5ysy said:
Get an attorney. Quickly ! End of discussion.
More great advice... Insurance companies are the devil...
 

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Similar accident happend to my brother. Get a lawyer. My brother did and his own insurance totaled the bike, has come and taken possession of it and still no payment even after they told him what they would pay him. The other party falsified that they had insurance at the time that the police were taking the report. So he has no recourse in hiing after the driver Do not go this alone get a good attorney and let them do the work.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks for all the responses so far. I have been in touch with my insurance provider and filed the claim. The responsible party's insurance, State Farm, has contacted me, got information concerning the accident, sent me an email to mail them all paperwork concerning the claim, and the bike has arrived at a BMW dealership to be assessed. I contacted a personal friend, who is a Commonwealth Prosecuting Attorney, and he is going to see if the appropriate charges where filed and suggest a local, reputable, personal injury lawyer. According to him, it seems that everything is going as it should and the claim is moving forward. I have followed up with my primary care physican. He is going to review Xrays, where I swear my ribs are at least bruised. I will get him to file paperwork for work, since I am not able to work presently, and follow up on that. I have an excuse from work, but I may need to extend it beyond what he wrote. Plus, I have to get him to clear me to return to work. I don't know yet if this is going to extend beyond medical leave into short term disability.
Concerning the bike, I first hoped it would be totalled. I'd love to get a 2012 RT, but that would require some out of pocket on my end. However, I now hope it can be repaired. I have a 22,000+ mile relationship with it. It is an incredible bike and I love riding it. My only concern is safety. I don't want the safety and integrity of the bike questionable. That just for my safety. I hoped to put 100,000+ miles on the bike, so I don't want any issues after it is repaired.
Again, thanks for the comments thus far. I will keep the forum posted on any further issues and eventual resolution to this event. Take care all and keep the shiny side up and the rubber side down! :dance:
 

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IMO:
  1. If you have full coverage insurance your insurance company will go after the other with a voracious appetite. This is what they do and they know how to do it.
  2. Don't even talk to the other parties insurance. They will record everything you are saying to them and will use what you say against you if and when you come to settle (in court or otherwise). I know this for a fact and it isn't pretty.
  3. If you get a hunch that either your, or their insurance is giving you the run-around sprint to a PI Attorney. this is not a bad idea to do anyway. PI Attorneys do not charge you a dime until a settlement is reached. Have all of your ducks in a row when you shop around. The best way to get a good PI Attorney is a referral from an existing attorney you do business or from a trusted friend or family member.
  4. Question everything and don't sign anything. Don't agree, verbally or otherwise, to any settlement or status on your bike, riding gear or your hospital/doctor claims. If it is coming at you too fast stop and think about who has the advantage and who doesn't. You have the advantage now since they don't know which way you are going to go (attorney or not is their biggest threat). Get advice from your agent, or best your attorney. The best advice is from someone you paid for such advice and you can hold them accountable.
  5. Lay claim to everything damaged. Every piece of clothing and every nick on the bike is a claim. Box it all up and set it aside for the claim. Take pictures and document all of it. Get replacement values for you claim. Don't let them depreciate anything. Make them show you the laws of your state that allow them to depreciate you losses. Contact your attorney generals office in your state, or your insurance regulators directly to get the rules that the insurance company has to abide by and know when they are pulling your chain.
  6. Make sure your bike shop is not charging you "storage" on your bike while you are waiting for a settlement. Many times an insurance company can wiggle out of this cost since they were "willing to settle and it was your choice not to, therefore you are the cause of the storage fees". It is better to transport the crashed vehicle to your home until the settlement is reached and the repairs can be made.
  7. Finally, many of the bills are going to come directly to you until a settlement is finalized and you are considered medically stationary. Don't let the bills mount up unpaid. They will still be your responsibility and this can affect your credit rating (and you don't want someone else problem to torpedo your credit). This is a tactic that an insurance company uses to get a quick settlement. All they have to hear is, "who is going to pay these hospital bills! I can't afford it!" and they jump at a chance to settle quickly and you can get the short end of the stick. Make minimum payments and keep records of everything. keep the wolf away from the door and you will prevail in time.
I was involved in what seemed a non-injury accident in 2008. It turned into a nightmare when the pain in my wrist would not go away and a torn ligament had to be repaired. I hope my opinions help you, but they are from one perspective so therefore the best help is from one you trust and pay for.


Good luck!
 

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This thread could be saved in the Hall of Wisdom - lots of good advice here.

I helped a friend last year in a parking lot accident while were both out of state on our bikes. A guy backed his truck into my friend's Gold Wing. The other insurer was State Farm (as in your case), and I'm pleased to say they did a very thorough and fair job. No injuries were possible, as we were away from the bike at the time. Anyway...

+1: Document everything - expenses, names, dates, times, weather conditions at the time, sun spot activity, etc. We were reimbursed for extra meals, lodging, and towing to get my friend's bike back home. When I speak with others in these scenarios I document the date, the time, and the name/title of the person I'm speaking with - police, EMS, doctor, lawyer, towing company, insurance company reps, etc., etc. No detail is left undocumented.

+1: You've already seen a doctor. Absolutely should be doing that. Good for you, and glad to hear you are essentially OK.

+1: See an attorney, at least to speak with him/her about the accident. Don't sign anything he hasn't seen. At times like this a good attorney can save your hide.

This would be a good time for all of us to ask ourselves:
Are we FULLY insured?
Do we have higher limits than the state minimums?
Do we have uninsured AND underinsured coverage?
Do the physical damage and medical payment limits reflect what it really can cost to be in a major accident?

I think I'll call my insurance agent now and get reacquainted with some of this. :)
 

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hallzee said:
Glad you're relatively OK. Above statement says it all....


More great advice... Insurance companies are the devil...
Does that make "auto/motorcycle insurance" a necessary evil?

I'm glad the OP is OK and able to talk about it. That could have been one nasty turn of events. All great comments/suggestions...
 

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First, stop talking to the other guys insurance adjuster. They record everything you say and will turn it agaianst you to minimize their loss. Contact your insurance company and ask them if they will provide you an attorney. If they won't ,hire one on your own.

Typically speaking, most insurance companies just screw the motorcyclist regardless.

Don't wait for them to treat you fairly. It won't happen. Be patient but persistant.
 

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Remember, The first offer, Even from your own insurance company is a LOW BALL..

Balk and say it sounds like it's time for you to get an attorney..

Watch how fast that offer comes up..Mine changed by three grand and that was from my own insurance adjuster... They're not representing you.. They're representing the insurance company and they want to pay as little as they can get away with....

Get some prices together for similar bikes off the boards., Ebay, etc to support your value of your bike...

Everything that got damaged by the wreck needs to be replaced and paid for by the insurance company...

If your seat is tweaked your bike is probably totalled.. The last thing you want is a bike with a bent frame...

Good Luck

John
 

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What they said and
if it is repairable check to see if your state allows a diminished value claus.Most people never heard it. Wisconsin has it. The insurance companys hate it. Besides repairs they have to pay you extra because your bike is worth less now that it has been wrecked even though it might not be totaled. Two years ago my stepfather got his car repaired and $4500 extra. If you go it alone with out legal help ( i don't recommend it) and there offer is to low tell them to find a bike just like you had. Some adjusters are asses If yours is now it's your turn.
PS
Hope you are ok. :)
 

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I was injured by a "deficient" driver years ago.
Not motorcycle related though.

I had no property damaged so I can only speak of my experience with
with the Insurance Companies and the PI Lawyer.

Know that right off the bat the insurance companies will use
what you have spent on medical bills and triple that for what
you are "allowed" for personal injury compensation.
So go get thoroughly checked out from head to toe.
Just because you didn't break anything - doesn't mean
your not injured. And that those injuries, say back, neck,
aren't gonna pop up years from now.
You will be reimbursed - but no insurance company is gonna
tell you to go spend 20k on xrays, physicals, chiropractor, etc.
Go to a doc you trust and get their recommendation.

As far as the PI lawyer - don't trust them either.
Get everything from them in writing, especially their percentage
of your settlement for their work.

I used one recommended by a friend.
On our first meet I asked him what I could expect to be charged by him.
He told me 15% and that's it. He gets paid when I get paid.
Eight months later, after the settlement with the insurance co. was reached,
he hands me a bill for 25% plus a long list of extras. Extras like
paper clips, staples, photo copies, phone calls, etc. Another $2,500
worth of extras.

Your smart asking questions. Ask lots of questions.
Keep track of everything.

Glad your OK. The bike can be replaced - you can't. :wave
Good luck.
 

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Lots of good information in this thread that I hope I'll never need to look at again, but it would be good to have a Halls of Wisdom category for it.

BE SURE TO VOTE at the top to get it a few stars too! That helps to find it later.. I voted 5 stars.
 
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