What to do after an accident that isn’t your fault?

What to do after an accident that isn’t your fault?

You’ve been involved in an accident that isn’t your fault. You’ve turned the engine off, checked no one is hurt, but what next

We’ve all heard the horror stories, so, we wanted to compile a quick go-to list for what to do next.

Take lots of photos

The joy of modern technology means that the majority of us will have a smartphone readily available to take photos with. It doesn’t matter if it feels a little excessive at the time, you’ll be thankful for them later on, take as many photos with as many angles as possible, both of the vehicles involved and the road/any objects involved.


Make sure you take the details of anyone who saw the accident. You will need at least their name and phone number but insurance companies would also like it if you get their address. The more witnesses, the better.

Alternatively, if you are the witness to an accident read our article on what to do if you’re the first to the scene here.

Record the other person admitting fault

If the other person admits the accident was their fault, if possible, get them to sign something saying it. Or record them on your phone – if you can’t manage this, get the other person to admit fault in front of a witness. It is important to try to do so as many people deny fault after the adrenaline has settled and it’s time to make your claim.

Record any injuries

If you feel anything out-of-the-ordinary, or something that could be worse when the adrenaline wears off, get it checked out. The police can also make a record of the injury if they are present. If the injury causes you to take some time off, it’s imperative to have proof of when it occurred.

Stay calm

Even if your pride and joy has been demolished, don’t do anything you may come to regret.

Once you’re home safe and well and the shock has passed, you will need to make your claim, see our full article on how to do so here.

Call our experts

MCN Compare have teamed up with Bikelawyer and are now offering a free accident advice line with you if you have taken out a policy with MCN Compare, this advice line is available to customers for the full year their policy is active for. Bikelawyer is a leading firm of specialist motorcycle accident solicitors founded on the principle of providing injured bikers with unparalleled expertise coupled with first rate service. So if you have an insurance policy with us and are unsure following an accident call 01446 794199 and reference your policy number for free accident advice from our experts!

What about if the person at fault doesn’t have insurance

There are various options available to you in the unfortunate event that the person who hit you is uninsured, from suing them personally to going through the small claims court, read our article on does no insurance policy mean no payout to find out more.

Consider litigation risk

 Litigation is the process of taking a case to court so that the judge can reach a decision on the outstanding issues. Most injury claims never reach court. However, because bike accidents tend to involve more serious injuries than other accident claims more is at stake to the paying party so they are contested more often. The ‘litigation risk’ is a way of settling without going to court.

The idea is that in some cases a Claimant can accept a 20-25% deduction on the value of their claim to reflect the risk of going to court and not achieving the desired outcome. That is the risk of attending court, getting a judge who is prejudiced against bikes, poor witness evidence, a sudden surprise in what is said or even new evidence at the last minute. The point being, going to court is risky and litigation risk “buys off” the risk.

It is important to remember that if you end up at court it means that lawyers on each side have opposing views of what the result should be and clearly the judge will have to make a decision. That decision can always go the wrong way.

We don’t advise accepting a reduction for litigation risk though unless there are obvious problems that may arise, but when 25% is not much monetarily it often makes sense as most people don’t like attending court. 

To avoid any future accidents from occurring read our article on avoiding common accidents here.

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Written by Dan Sutherland, motorcycle journalist for MCN.
Reviewed on 2nd April 2019 by Andrew Campbell, MCN Legal Advisor.
Edited by Sian Daly, MCN Compare content editor.