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​What is the Most Common Cause of a Crash between a Car and a Motorcycle?

Every motor vehicle crash is unique. However, there are some common causes of traffic accidents. If motorists learn what causes accidents, we can avoid the collision altogether and severe or fatal injuries.

A lawyer is your best bet if you have suffered an injury in a traffic accident caused by another driver’s negligence. An injury lawyer will fight to ensure you receive compensation for your damages following an accident. Despite what caused the accident, it is vital to put your legal team together as soon after the accident as possible.

Continue reading to learn more about what causes crashes between motorcycles and cars.

What Causes a Traffic Accident?

There are many causes of traffic accidents between motorcycles and cars. Call an attorney immediately if you suffered an injury in a traffic accident because another motorist was negligent. Keep reading to learn more about common causes of crashes between cars and motorcycles.

Recklessness

Reckless driving causes traffic accidents. When motorcyclists must share the road with reckless drivers, they are in danger. Motorcyclists do not have the same protection as drivers in trucks or cars. Because of motorcyclists’ exposure to traffic, it takes only a small amount of force from a car to throw the motorcyclist from their bike, causing severe injuries.

Reckless driving has been more prevalent across the country, particularly since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. At the beginning of the quarantine, roads and highways across the country were empty because everyone was at home. With fewer people on the road, drivers began to take more chances on the road.

Carelessness

Distinct from recklessness, careless drivers put motorcyclists at risk of harm each time they are on the road. Careless driving includes drivers making avoidable mistakes, not paying attention to the road, failing to check their blind spots before turning and changing lanes, and failing to yield. Careless driving also puts motorcyclists at risk of severe injuries.

Speeding

Speeding is a significant cause of traffic accidents. Speeding accidents are entirely avoidable. If a driver speeds, it is unlikely they can stop in enough time to avoid a crash with a motorcycle. Rear-end accidents are prevalent between cars and motorcycles, especially when the driver is speeding because there is no time to stop the car.

Speeding accidents between cars and motorcycles can be deadly. Injuries and death are more prevalent when cars and motorcycles crash because motorcyclists do not have protection from any vehicle covering, unlike trucks and cars’ coverings.

Impaired Driving

Impaired driving causes deadly accidents. When a driver operates their vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, they put everyone else on the road, including other drivers, pedestrians, cyclists, and motorcyclists, in danger. Every driver should avoid operating their vehicle while impaired.

Driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol lowers a driver’s inhibitions. Intoxicated drivers take more risks and have dull reflexes. Motorcyclists are particularly vulnerable to impaired drivers. Drivers who operate under the influence of drugs and alcohol tend to have slowed reflexes and sometimes blurred vision. Because of the decrease in these motor functions, impaired drivers do not think to check their blind spots. A motorcyclist may suffer severe injuries or even die if they are in the blind spot of a driver who is impaired.

Distracted Driving

Distracted driving accidents can cause injury or death. Distracted driving includes any activity that takes the driver’s focus off driving. Texting while driving, talking on a cell phone, eating, changing music, and talking to passengers are all examples of distracted driving.

Fatigued Driving

Driving while sleep-deprived may seem like no big deal, but it causes many traffic accidents and injuries annually. Fatigue happens because of prolonged sleep deprivation. If you lose sleep for even one day, you can microsleep. During a microsleep, a driver closes their eyes or falls asleep for only a few seconds. An accident can happen in those seconds.

Drivers who operate their cars without adequate rest put motorcyclists at risk for severe injury or death. Like impaired driving, if a motorist drives while fatigued, their inhibitions and motor functions are decreased. Because of the decrease in function, drivers do not see motorcyclists. Drowsy drivers cause crashes.

Poor Road Maintenance

Lack of road maintenance and poor road conditions cause crashes each year. Poorly maintained roads are an issue across the country. Bad roads are dangerous for motorcyclists. Because a motorcyclist does not have the covering a car or another type of vehicle has, the rider is vulnerable to getting injured in a crash. If you crashed your motorcycle because a government agency improperly maintained the road, you might have a claim against the city. If you think that the government is responsible for your damages, you should talk to an attorney in your area.

Examples of poor road conditions that may cause an accident include:

  • Unmarked lane changes
  • Poorly lit roads
  • Lack of visible lane dividers
  • Vegetation-obstructed views
  • Hidden driveways or entrances

Defective Parts

Sometimes crashes are caused by defective auto parts. Every manufacturer must put safe products into the marketplace, and car manufacturers are not exempt from that duty. So, when your vehicle has a defective part, and you suffered an injury, you may file a claim against the car manufacturer. To learn more about your options in this circumstance, reach out to a motorcycle lawyer in your area.

Bad Signage

The city is responsible for maintaining road signage. Failure to properly maintain signage can cause an accident between two motorists, and neither of them did anything wrong. Here, you may have the right to file a lawsuit against the city. If your accident happened because of poorly maintained signage, you need to hire an experienced attorney immediately. After the accident, contact a lawyer in your area as soon as possible.

Bad Weather

Bad weather can cause a nasty traffic accident. Motorists can lose control of their vehicles while traveling in inclement weather. Remember that sometimes driving the speed limit is negligent when the conditions require slower speeds to keep the roads safe.

How to Prove a Negligence Case

All car crash cases are negligence cases. Negligence has four elements. Plaintiffs who fail to prove these elements lose their cases. If you want compensation after an accident, you must prove fault. The elements of a negligence case are:

Duty

Every motorist has a duty to others sharing the road to operate their vehicle safely. A driver cannot act unreasonably while they are behind the wheel. Unreasonable acts include speeding, recklessly switching lanes, and running red lights.

Breach

A driver breaches their duty to other motorists if they do not drive safely. A driver may breach their duty by speeding, but they may breach their duty even while following the speed limit when inclement weather requires them to slow down to maintain a safe speed.

Causation

An accident victim must prove that the other motorist caused the accident. Call a local motorcycle accident lawyer if you are a motorcyclist who suffered injuries in an accident with a negligent driver. Your lawyer will work with you to gather information and evidence that proves the other driver caused your injuries.

Damages

A plaintiff must prove damages after an accident. For example, your lawyer will use medical records and bills to prove damages. That is why you must go to the hospital after an accident, even if you do not think you suffered a severe injury.

What Evidence Proves a Motorcycle Accident Case?

You and your lawyer will work closely to prove your motorcycle accident case. Proving your case starts at the moment of impact.

You should keep a record of:

  • Witness testimony. You will want eyewitnesses to testify about what they saw. Your friends and family may also testify about how your personality changed after the accident. This testimony may help your lawyer prove a claim for pain and suffering at trial.
  • The police report.
  • As much visual evidence as possible. Your attorney will watch traffic camera footage if available; they will look at pictures of the accident scene, the damage to your bike, and your injuries.
  • Any protective gear you wore, like a helmet. They want to know this because insurance companies work hard to downplay your damages or claim that you were not hurt.

How Do Insurance Companies Avoid Paying Motorcycle Accident Victims?

Insurance companies do not like motorcycle accidents, and they typically discriminate against motorcyclists. Because insurance companies think poorly of motorcyclists, they work overtime to blame a motorcyclist for their injuries. If you have an attorney working for you, the insurance company cannot bully you just because you are a biker.

If an insurance company cannot successfully blame you for your injuries, they will try to downplay them. You should never sign anything that an insurance company gives you without speaking to an attorney first. The insurance company may claim that the injuries you suffered in the accident were due to prior harm to downplay your injuries.

Never sign a release of medical information authorization because that is how the insurance company gets the information it needs to build a case against you. Your lawyer will make sure that you do not fall for that trap.

How Can an Attorney Help Me Win My Motorcycle Accident Case?

Dave Abels Personal Injury Lawyer
Chicago Motorcycle Accident Injury Lawyer, Dave Abels

Most states allow you to represent yourself in a motorcycle accident case, but that usually is not a good idea. An experienced motorcycle accident attorney knows what strategies to use, what questions to ask, and how to avoid any tactics from opposing parties that will increase your chances of maximizing your settlement.

Examples of how an experienced accident attorney will help your case include:

  • An attorney does more than stand up for you in court and negotiate for you; they will also work as an investigator. Your attorney will review the scene of the accident, look at pictures, watch the traffic camera footage, and talk to witnesses to improve your odds of getting a high settlement amount.
  • Your attorney will talk to the accident attorney on your behalf. You do not need to worry about leaving money on the table. If you hire an attorney, they will ensure you do not settle for less than all the available damages, including present and future medical bills, loss of wages, and all other continuing damages.
  • Your lawyer will help you determine if a settlement offer from the insurance company is reasonable. You can trust that your lawyer will be honest with you about whether it is a good idea to settle or if you will get more money at trial.
  • If you cannot reach a satisfactory settlement from the insurance company, your lawyer will take your case to trial. It may be tempting to represent yourself in a courtroom, but trial advocacy is an art, and you need someone with experience getting successful results working on your behalf.
  • If you hire an attorney, you will have a resource who can answer your questions during the litigation. Your attorney can inform you about the progress of your case and ensure you understand any settlements before you agree to them.

If you have suffered an injury in a motorcycle accident, you need an attorney to help protect your legal interests. Never go it alone after an accident—doing so may jeopardize your financial recovery, leaving you with unpaid losses. After an accident, call a local motorcycle accident lawyer immediately.

 

​How to Choose a Motorcycle Accident Attorney

After a motorcycle accident, you have many things to focus on, like getting medical treatment. Most accident victims have some primary concerns in the aftermath of a car accident. A big concern is if you should get a motorcycle accident attorney.

If you suffered an injury in a bike accident, you need a motorcycle accident attorney to help you protect your legal rights, but it is essential that you feel good about the decision you make about the lawyer that you choose.

How Much Experience Does the Attorney Have?

​How to Choose a Motorcycle Accident AttorneyIt is vital to choose an attorney with experience handling motorcycle accident lawsuits. Your case will have its unique challenges, so you want a team that has studied the law applicable to your case. Your motorcycle accident attorney should know negligence law. The attorney and their team should also know about the insurance company’s legal tactics and other methods. The details of the laws in these areas will impact your case.

During your initial consultation, talk to the attorney about what experience they have specifically with motorcycle accident lawsuits. It is crucial to prepare yourself with questions during an initial consultation. Do not be afraid to ask about the cases they have won in the last year that relate to your case. Although the attorney will not share confidential information from their past clients, they can share their strategies and techniques to get a successful result. Do not hesitate to ask questions to ensure that you are confident in your decision to hire an attorney.

Does the Attorney Have a Successful Record?

In addition to having experience in the area, you must know the attorney’s track record for success in motorcycle accidents. Choosing the best motorcycle accident attorney is like selecting the best person or company for any other service where you need some work done.

You want to do your due diligence to get the best person on your side. Ask about the firm’s record for taking cases to trial and how much they typically settle cases for during your initial consultation with an attorney. Do not hesitate to ask all your questions so you can get the information you need to make a good decision about what attorney should represent you.

What happens if you find an attorney with who you connect, but they do not have a large amount of experience in the area? While you should always have experienced legal representation, having a good relationship with your attorney is also very important. Weigh the costs and benefits of experience versus a potentially good relationship with the attorney.

Read Client Reviews

We have much of the information we need at our fingertips in today’s world. Any of us can go online and find the best restaurant, what car will fit our needs best, or what vacuum cleaner to buy, and that is possible by reading online reviews. Online reviews are a great resource to see how much confidence past clients have in attorneys.

To find an attorney, you can do a Google search and read the firm’s reviews. Although online reviews are mostly a good source of information for how the attorney performs, keep in mind that every review is not honest. Even if the attorney did a good job, some clients are unhappy because their case did not resolve in the way they wanted.

Speak to Your Friends Who Have Been There Before

If you have friends who have filed a motorcycle accident lawsuit in the past, they might give you a recommendation for a reasonable attorney. Getting a recommendation from a friend who has been through the process before and loved their attorney may be the best way to find an attorney who you trust and who has a team you are comfortable working with for as long as the case takes to resolve.

Although talking to people within your inner circle can help you learn about local attorneys, remember that it is okay to disagree with your friend’s assessment or to have different representation goals than your friend had.

Maybe another person wanted a no-nonsense lawyer to take the case to trial.

Maybe you want to settle the case as soon as possible with the most considerable settlement amount available. Some people just want enough money to pay for their bikes and medical bills and move on with their lives.

Every motorcycle case is different. No matter your goal, get the legal team that best suits your needs.

Are You Comfortable with the Attorney and Their Team?

After you meet an attorney, you will know if you are comfortable with them and their team. Often you can judge if you want to work with an attorney or their office after your phone call to schedule a consultation.

You should feel good when you speak with your attorney. During a motorcycle accident lawsuit, you will share intimate details of your life with your attorney and their team, such as how your mental health has been affected by the motorcycle accident, how the accident changed your financial situation, and how your long-term medical treatment is going.

The attorney you choose and their staff will read your medical records and ask you sensitive questions that elicit the information they need to represent you effectively.

Because you must put your life on display during a motorcycle accident lawsuit, you need a trustworthy legal team. To make a good decision about what attorney to hire, make sure you feel you can trust the attorney and their team to work well for you while remaining sensitive to the vulnerable position you are in as an accident victim and getting positive results for you.

Do You Agree With the Attorney’s Payment Structure?

A practical matter when choosing an attorney is choosing an attorney you can afford. Each attorney you meet will have different payment structures and charge different fees for their legal services. Simply stated, you need an attorney who you can afford to pay. During your initial consultation, the attorney you speak with will talk to you about what they charge to represent a client in a motorcycle accident lawsuit.

Typically, an attorney who represents motorcycle accident victims works on a contingency basis. A contingency plan is a fee structure that allows a client to defer payment for legal services until the end of the case. You may have heard some version of “We don’t get paid unless you do.” Well, those advertisements describe a contingency plan. During your initial consultation, ask the attorney about their payment structure.

Under a contingency payment agreement, the attorney and client agree that the client will pay no money until the end of the case. Usually, an attorney will collect a percentage of the client’s settlement for their legal services. For example, if the total settlement is $60,000, the attorney will collect $20,000 as their fee plus any litigation costs they paid during the lawsuit.

The terms of a contingency fee agreement must be in writing, and both the attorney and the client must sign the contract. Contingency fee agreements are usually detailed and include an agreement about what litigation costs will occur and who will pay them during the lawsuit. There are many potential litigation costs in a motorcycle accident lawsuit. In some instances, a client can choose whether to incur the cost or avoid the cost.

For example, an attorney may want to participate in mediation to resolve the case before trial, and mediation is an expense. The client may not feel confident that the case will settle at mediation, so they want to avoid the expense. Unless the local court requires mediation, the attorney can help reduce the total litigation costs by avoiding mediation.

In motorcycle accident lawsuits, the attorney and their office can front the litigation costs and get reimbursed at the end of the lawsuit, or the client can choose to pay the litigation costs and not have to pay any other amount after settlement other than the attorney’s fees.

Speak to Multiple Attorneys

Like with any other service, you can meet with several attorneys before you find the right team. Different attorneys have different litigation, negotiation, and trial styles, and you need confidence in the attorney you choose to represent you in a motorcycle accident.

It is okay to speak with many attorneys before you make your final decision. However, most attorneys only offer one initial consultation, so ask all the questions you have during your first meeting with the attorney.

Why Do I Need an Attorney?

Hire an attorney any time you face a legal challenge. Having an experienced litigator on your side when you suffer an injury in a motorcycle accident helps you maximize your chances of obtaining total compensation. Accident attorneys are a valuable resource for injury victims.

Unrepresented Accident Victims Face Challenges

An unrepresented motorcycle accident victim can face many challenges while trying to get the compensation they deserve after an accident. One of the difficulties that an unrepresented client can face is intimidation from an insurance company. Insurance companies are only concerned with the bottom line and maximizing profits.

To achieve those goals, an opposing party’s insurance company will purposely give lowball settlements, try to trap you by asking for a recorded statement, and may assert that your injuries are not genuine or that the motorcycle accident did not cause them. An accident lawyer can help you avoid common pitfalls to which many unrepresented accident victims usually fall prey.

Accident Victims and the Insurance Company

In addition to protecting your interests against the insurance company, an accident attorney usually has resources that the average person does not. For example, accident attorneys with experience trying cases typically have relationships with expert witnesses. Expert witnesses, like medical doctors, are valuable because their testimony can help prove your physical injuries and help connect your injuries to the accident. Without the resources of an accident attorney, you may not recover the maximum amount of compensation from the accident.

What About the Procedural Rules?

An attorney knows the procedural rules. Each state has rules of procedure for any lawsuit that enters the legal system. Some rules are strict, like a statute of limitations, and if an attorney does not follow them precisely, a court may dismiss your case. Hiring an attorney can help you avoid your case getting dismissed on a technical issue.

How Can an Attorney Help Me at Trial?

An experienced accident attorney can also help you by presenting your case to a jury or judge. Representing yourself in court may seem easy to some people, but good trial work takes many years of experience to hone the skills necessary to get the best results on your claim. An experienced accident attorney has the skill, experience, and knowledge to bring you the best results with your motorcycle accident claim.

Contact a Motorcycle Accident Attorney Today

Dave Abels Lawyer
Motorcycle Accident Attorney, Dave Abels

If you have suffered an injury in a motorcycle accident, start researching motorcycle accident attorneys immediately. You only have a specific amount of time to file a lawsuit, and since you have limited time, choose the right attorney as soon as possible.

Be proactive about what kind of person you want your attorney to be and how you want them to work with their team. Be sure that you are comfortable with the legal team that you choose. Ask as many questions as you can during your first meetings with attorneys. Your attorney is your advocate, and they want the best outcome for your case. Contact experienced motorcycle accident attorney today.

​How Much Does a Helmet Improve Survival in a Motorcycle Crash?

An accident is one of the most devastating events many can imagine. Losing someone in a motorcycle accident is tragic, and the feelings are even more tragic because of how sudden the loss occurs. A helmet can improve the chances of survival in a motorcycle accident but does not prevent every tragedy.

If you have suffered an injury in a motorcycle accident, you are entitled to compensation whether you were wearing a helmet at the time of the accident or not. To ensure you get the compensation you deserve, a motorcycle accident attorney. Do not be fooled into thinking that because you were not wearing a helmet, you cannot recover money for an injury you sustained from an accident. Every state allows accident victims to pursue a claim against a negligent party and attempt to recover compensation for their harm.

Injuries and deaths caused by motorcycle accidents are often preventable. Although not wearing a helmet will not prohibit your chances of legal recovery following a crash, a motorcycle helmet can save your life. The right helmet can be the difference between filing a personal injury claim or your family filing a wrongful death claim.

Statistics for Injuries and Death in Motorcycle Crashes

​How Much Does a Helmet Improve Survival in a Motorcycle Crash?According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), deaths and injuries will reduce significantly if motorcyclists and their passengers use helmets while they ride their bikes.

The CDC has gathered the following statistics about helmet use and motorcyclists:

  • Five-thousand five-hundred motorcyclists lost their lives across the country in 2020, and 180,000 motorcyclists received treatment in emergency departments.
  • Recent years have shown that a helmet reduces the risk of a traumatic brain injury by 67 percent.
  • Motorcycle riders that use a helmet reduce their risk of death after a crash by 37 percent.
  • Motorcycle passengers that use a helmet reduce their risk of death after a crash by 41 percent.
  • In recent years, helmets saved more than 1,000 lives of motorcyclists across the country.
  • The CDC reports that we might have saved approximately 749 more lives in recent years if every motorcyclist wore a helmet while they rode.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, motorcyclists suffered some of the following injuries:

  • Of the recently reported motorcycle crashes, 80 percent of the crashes involved severe injury or death.
  • Motorcyclists were 28 times more likely to get into an accident than other motorists, bicyclists, or pedestrians.
  • Motorcyclists are four times more likely to get injured if they are involved in an accident than other motorists, bicyclists, or pedestrians.
  • Of the fatal motorcycle accidents that happened in one year, 36 percent of the accidents involved unlicensed motorcyclists.
  • In 2020, 5,579 motorcyclists were involved in fatal accidents across the country.

Universal Helmet Use Laws

Universal helmet law is a statutory requirement that all motorcycle riders and passengers wear a helmet while on public roads. The implementation of universal helmet laws has shown that the increased use of helmets by motorcyclists and their passengers leads to a lower rate of deaths and injuries.

Universal Helmet Laws can require total or partial compliance. Some states have enacted Universal Helmet Laws, and others have only enacted partial helmet laws. Unlike Universal Helmet Laws, partial helmet laws do not apply to passengers to wear a helmet while riding. Partial helmet laws also typically apply only to specific riders.

The motorcyclists to whom partial helmet laws apply include:

  • Motorcyclists that do not qualify for state medical health insurance
  • Motorcyclists that do not meet age requirements- typically motorcyclists that are eighteen years old
  • Partial helmet laws usually cover new motorcyclists. Novices include motorcyclists that have been riding motorcycles for less than one year.

The first Universal Helmet Law went into effect in 1966, and motorcyclist deaths and injuries have decreased substantially since then. The CDC reports that states with Universal Helmet Laws enacted show a decrease in the number and severity of motorcycle accidents across the state.

Some statistics that the CDC reports include:

  • In the first year after the Universal Helmet Law went into effect in the state, the use of helmets increased from 63 percent to 67 percent.
  • The protective benefit of helmet use was apparent because of a 42 percent reduction in the risk of motorcyclist death and a 69 percent reduction in the risk of head injuries from a crash.
  • The data shows that states that have enacted Universal Helmet Laws have seen an 86 percent increase in helmet use among motorcyclists.
  • Only 55 percent of motorcyclists used a helmet while riding in states that have not enacted a Universal Helmet Law.

According to the CDC, a helmet is the best way a motorcyclist can protect themselves and their lives during an accident.

After universal helmet laws became widespread law, the data showed:

  • The law reduced motorcycle fatalities (both riders and passengers) by 30 percent.
  • The rate of severe and moderate injuries has decreased significantly since the passage of universal helmet laws.
  • The universal helmet laws have increased the likelihood of motorcyclists wearing a helmet by 11.7 percent.

The data suggests that the best way to save lives is for motorcyclists and their passengers to wear a helmet. The data also indicates that if the laws are relaxed, then the use of helmets by motorcyclists and passengers will also decrease. If the number of motorcyclists wearing helmets decreases, there will be a directly related increase in fatalities and injuries.

Call a qualified motorcycle accident attorney if you have suffered an injury in a motorcycle accident. Using a qualified accident attorney can help you maximize your potential compensation.

Can I Suffer a Head Injury Even If I Wear a Helmet?

Unfortunately, even if a motorcyclist and their passengers wear a helmet, they can still suffer a head injury. As stated above, the more motorcyclists and passengers wear helmets, the lower the likelihood of death or injury. There is no guarantee that you will avoid all head injuries if you wear a helmet. Head injuries are complex and can range from a concussion to permanent brain damage.

All it takes to cause a head injury is a blow to the head. Therefore, a motorcyclist or a passenger can suffer a traumatic brain injury even if they are wearing a helmet while riding.

Motorcyclists are exposed to danger because they do not have the protection provided by a car or truck. Therefore, if a motorcyclist gets into an accident, their head and body may sustain a severe injury, despite the safety measures they employ to avoid injury. You cannot protect yourself from all risks no matter how much caution you exercise. If you suffer an injury after getting into a motorcycle accident, call an experienced accident attorney.

Can I Recover Compensation if I Did Not Wear a Helmet?

Whether you were wearing a helmet or not during a motorcycle accident, you deserve to receive compensation for your injuries. Every state has an avenue for accident victims to pursue compensation after they suffer an injury in an accident, and the issue in motorcycle accidents is negligence. If you suffered an injury in a motorcycle accident that another driver’s negligence caused, you are entitled to compensation, regardless of helmet-wearing.

There are many types of damages that you may suffer after being in a motorcycle accident. You may suffer a head injury or an injury to another area of your body. In addition to the injuries that you may suffer to your person, you may be unable to work after the accident. You may have a claim for lost wages and lost earning capacity. Earning capacity refers to the inability to return to the same work as before the accident. You may also recover the cost of the emotional trauma that you suffered because of the accident.

If you have suffered an injury in a motorcycle accident, seek medical treatment immediately and call an experienced motorcycle accident attorney.

 

What Happens If I Get into a Motorcycle Accident?

If you are in a motorcycle crash, the laws of most states allow you to file a lawsuit to recover damages for your injuries. Traffic crashes are negligence cases. Negligence cases have four elements: duty, breach, causation, and damages. A plaintiff must prove each of these elements for them to recover their damages after a motorcycle accident.

Unrepresented accident victims have trouble getting the compensation that they need. Having an accident attorney on your side helps you maximize your potential for compensation after a motorcycle accident.

How Can an Accident Attorney Help Me Win My Case?

The best thing about having an attorney and a legal team after you get into a motorcycle accident is that you have a dedicated group of professionals on your side to advocate for you during a lawsuit. An experienced attorney can negotiate with the insurance company and get better results from the company than an individual can because they know the tactics that insurance companies use to avoid paying settlements.

A motorcycle accident attorney has resources that can help prove your case after you suffer an injury in a motorcycle accident. A motorcycle accident claim is a negligence case. A negligence claimant must prove four elements in their case, including duty, breach, cause, and damages. Accident attorneys may call expert witnesses to establish the elements of a negligence claim.

For example, a medical doctor can provide expert testimony about your injuries. The expert witness’s testimony can prove that the accident caused your injuries and prove the severity of your injuries. An unrepresented accident victim may not recover the maximum compensation from an accident if they do not have the resources of a motorcycle accident lawyer.

An accident attorney also knows the procedural rules of the state and the local rules of court. These rules are somewhat complex, and an attorney must follow them precisely to ensure that your claim does not fail on a technicality.

You need an attorney to represent your cause at trial. An attorney knows how to structure a case and present it before a judge or jury in a way that allows them to understand what happened and how the accident affected your life. These skills help accident victims recover full compensation for their damages.

What if I Cannot Afford an Attorney?

One of the best practical things about a negligence claim is that many accident attorneys across the country work on a contingency basis. A contingency fee agreement is a payment arrangement that allows deferment of payment for legal services until a settlement is received. Typically, the attorney collects a percentage of the settlement from the client. The attorney and the client must agree on the payment before any legal work begins. Usually, the attorney receives around one-third of the settlement amount as their fee plus any litigation costs that the firm prepaid.

The American Bar Association requires a contingency fee agreement to be reduced to writing and signed by the attorney and the client. Ask any questions about the contract and ensure you understand its terms before you sign it.

Contact a Motorcycle Accident Attorney Today

Dave Abels Lawyer
Motorcycle Accident Attorney, Dave Abels

The first priority after being in a motorcycle accident is to protect your health and your legal rights. The best thing to do after an accident is to seek medical attention immediately. The next step is to contact a motorcycle accident lawyer.

Choosing the right motorcycle accident attorney is the first step to creating a legal team that will champion your cause against the insurance company and defense lawyers. Hiring a motorcycle accident attorney puts you in the best position to recover the compensation you need to restore yourself after an injury.

After a crash, you should focus on recovering physically, mentally, and emotionally. Let a motorcycle accident attorney take care of the legal side of the accident. Contact Ables & Annes, P.C. for a free consultation today.

​How Long Does a Motorcycle Accident Lawsuit Take?

Like any other motor vehicle accident, motorcycle accidents occur frequently and sometimes require victims to file a lawsuit to recover compensation for their injuries. Most people are new to the civil litigation world because this is their first experience needing the court system to help them protect their rights. It is hard to know what steps to take or what to expect after getting into a motorcycle accident. If you suffered an injury in a motorcycle accident, call an experienced accident attorney to ensure that you protect your legal rights after the accident.

Not knowing how long a motorcycle lawsuit will take to resolve is frustrating for many accident victims. Many questions may arise before you decide to file a lawsuit and during the duration of the suit. The speed of a motorcycle lawsuit depends on many factors, and no timeline applies to every motorcycle lawsuit. To learn more about motorcycle accident lawsuits and things that affect the speed of a lawsuit, continue reading.

What Is a Personal Injury Lawsuit?

​How Long Does a Motorcycle Accident Lawsuit Take?Personal injury is possibly a new term for you, especially if this is the first traffic accident you have had. Accident victims use personal injury lawsuits to recover compensation for the injuries they sustained in an accident they didn’t cause.

Personal injury is an area of the law that some attorneys choose to focus their legal practice on. Like other lawsuits, a personal injury lawsuit can be quick or last for several months or years, depending on the facts of the case. Having an experienced accident attorney on your side during a personal injury lawsuit can help you maximize your compensation.

Should I Hire an Attorney?

You should hire an attorney to protect your legal rights and advise you on strategies to increase the potential for a successful outcome in a motorcycle accident. There are various benefits to hiring an attorney after an accident.

The benefits of having an attorney represent your interests include:

  • A represented injury victim will face little intimidation from insurance companies. Unrepresented accident victims face the risk of manipulation by the insurance company, but if an accident victim has an attorney during negotiations, the likelihood decreases of the insurance company trying to string them along.
  • An attorney typically has relationships with expert witnesses. Every personal injury lawsuit is a negligence lawsuit, including a motorcycle accident lawsuit. A plaintiff must prove that the defendant’s actions caused their injuries. Expert witnesses help prove causation. It is unlikely that unrepresented motorcycle accident victims can hire and appropriately depose an expert witness.
  • An experienced motorcycle accident attorney knows the applicable procedural rules. There are many rules that all must follow and standards that each party in a lawsuit must meet. Failing to follow some procedural rules will lead to the dismissal of your case. Hire an attorney to protect your claim from dismissal on a technical issue.
  • An attorney can effectively represent you in court before a judge or jury. Although you have the right to represent yourself in a civil action, it is a good idea to have an attorney on your side during trial. An attorney knows how to tell your story clearly to the jury and can maximize the potential for success.

What If I Cannot Afford an Attorney?

The cost of legal services is one reason accident victims do not pursue litigation. They believe it is not worth the money it will cost to hire an attorney. Accident victims may not know that injury lawyers often work on a contingency basis. A contingency fee is an agreement between the accident victims and the attorney to delay payment until the end of the case.

Many attorneys do not require payment unless there is a monetary settlement reached. The attorney and the client must agree before legal work begins. According to the Rules of Professional Conduct, attorneys must have a contract for a contingency payment agreement in writing. Additionally, before you sign anything, you should ensure that you understand the terms of your agreement.

Terms of a contingency agreement will include the percentage of the settlement that the attorney takes for their payment and the arrangement for paying litigation expenses.

Typically, an attorney will take one-third of the total settlement amount plus litigation expenses, though this percentage can vary.

You and your attorney may agree that the attorney’s firm will front litigation costs, and you will reimburse the firm once the case reaches its resolution, or you may pay the expenses as the case continues.

Examples of litigation costs include:

  • Costs of expert witness testimony
  • Filing fees
  • Costs of obtaining medical records
  • Cost of postage and copying

What Is the Process of Filing a Lawsuit?

A personal injury lawsuit starts long before the court gets involved. You will begin by speaking to the other driver’s insurance company.

After each driver reports the accident to their respective insurers, the insurance companies will investigate. During its investigation, the at-fault driver’s insurance company will try to speak to you. The insurance adjuster will ask you to give a recorded statement and agree to a settlement.

Before agreeing to a recorded statement or accepting a settlement offer, you should talk to an attorney. After you hire an attorney, your attorney will speak to the insurance company as well. If a satisfactory settlement still is not reached, your attorney will start the lawsuit process.

Filing the Complaint

The next step is to file a lawsuit. A lawsuit begins by filing a complaint with the appropriate court. The complaint will have a statement of jurisdiction, a statement of allegations, and requests for relief. The complaint will also name the defendant responsible for the accident.

Service of Process

The defendant must receive a copy of the complaint. A defendant receives the notification of a lawsuit by getting served with the complaint. Proper service happens when a complaint and summons are delivered to the defendant by a person who is over 18 and who is not a party to the lawsuit. The defendant must sign the summons. The court clerk will file the signed summons and include it with all other case pleadings.

Defendant Files an Answer

After the defendant receives the complaint, they have time to file an answer to the complaint. The time that the defendant must submit a response to the lawsuit differs depending on the state. The defendant may choose to answer the complaint on their own or hire an attorney. The lawsuit continues after the defendant files an answer to the complaint.

Discovery and Depositions

Next, the parties will participate in discovery. Discovery is the investigation phase of the lawsuit. The first step of discovery is interrogatories. Interrogatories are questions that each party to a lawsuit sends to each other with the expectation that each party will answer the questions fully.

Everyone must follow procedural rules when you send interrogatories to the other side of a case. An experienced accident attorney knows how to draft interrogatories to comply with the procedural rules and get the most information from the other party.

Another part of the discovery process is depositions. Depositions happen outside of a courtroom but are formal, and the testimony provided is admissible in court. Witnesses are deposed. Lawyers may depose eyewitnesses during discovery, but expert witnesses are more likely to be deposed during a pending lawsuit. Depositions may increase the time that it takes to settle a motorcycle lawsuit just because of the number of witnesses that lawyers must depose and the length of time that it can take to depose a witness.

Negotiations Before Trial

As the case continues, negotiations between your side and the defense attorney will continue. Your lawyer may send out a demand letter to try to settle the case without a trial. A demand letter is a letter that outlines the facts of the case and your damages. Sometimes demand letters include an itemization of your medical bills, as well. In the demand letter, your attorney will ask for a final settlement amount.

Trial Preparations

If both parties haven’t agreed to a settlement after depositions finish, your attorney will start preparing for trial. The trial prep process can be grueling. Your role in trial prep is to listen to collaborate with your attorney to ready your testimony for trial if you choose to testify. Every reasonable attorney will prepare each witness, including the client, to tell their story on the witness stand. Moreover, they will prepare witnesses for cross-examination, when the defendant’s attorney asks you questions. Each lawyer will ask questions to assess witness credibility and bias.

Before a trial begins, your attorney and the defendant’s attorney will participate in jury selection. Jury selection is the process of choosing the jurors that will decide the facts of the case and determine liability. During jury selection, the attorneys will ask the jury pool questions that evaluate their bias regarding the facts of your case.

After the jury selection process is complete, your attorney will present your case. During your case, your witnesses will testify, and your attorney will present evidence that proves your case. After your case-in-chief is complete, the defendant has a chance to do the same thing. In most civil cases, the plaintiff may put on rebuttal evidence after the defendant presents their case. Once both sides rest, the jury will get the case and decide the facts and liability.

The jury decides the case and may award a settlement amount. You may receive compensatory damages and punitive damages. Compensatory damages include money to pay for your injuries and property damage. Punitive damages punish wildly outrageous behavior. Many jurisdictions cap punitive damages.

Trials can span weeks or months. The more complicated a case is or the more evidence the parties present correlates to the time the trial will take. Some courts will allow a specific number of hours for a trial and give each side a set number of hours to present their cases so we can better predict the length of those trials.

What Happens If I Cannot Collect My Judgments?

Sometimes even after a jury awards you money for the damages you sustained in a motorcycle accident, the defendant may refuse or be unable to pay your judgment. If you sue a company, it is unlikely that you will have to fight to receive your judgment. However, if you sue a private person, they may be reluctant to pay the judgment against them. If that is the case, there are options for plaintiffs to receive their money from the defendant.

One option is to pursue a garnishment action against the defendant. A garnishment is a legal order where a creditor may receive a partial payment of a debtor’s wages to pay off a debt. Here, the plaintiff is the creditor, and the defendant is the debtor. A garnishment is a new case and must go through many of the steps we discussed above.

If you must use a method like a garnishment to collect your judgment, it may extend the time it takes to resolve your motorcycle accident claim.

Contact a Motorcycle Accident Attorney Today

Dave Abels Lawyer
Motorcycle Accident Attorney, Dave Abels

If you have suffered an injury in a motorcycle accident, you should call an experienced accident attorney. Having an accident attorney represent your interests in a motorcycle accident can only increase your chances of a successful outcome in a lawsuit. After you are hurt, your focus should be on getting better.

Contact a qualified and experienced motorcycle accident lawyer in your area today to manage the legal issues that follow an accident

​How Long Can I Wait to Hire a Lawyer For a Motorcycle Accident?

The National Safety Council (NSC) reports that motorcycles only account for 3 percent of all registered vehicles in the United States, yet somehow made up 14 percent of all traffic fatalities, 18 percent of all occupant fatalities, and 4 percent of all occupant injuries in 2020.

Additionally, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) and Highway Loss Data Institute (HLDI) reported that the 5,579 motorcyclists killed in crashes in 2020 were the highest number ever recorded and an 11 percent increase from the previous year.

The bottom line remains that riding a motorcycle remains incredibly dangerous, even for the most experienced riders. When you suffer any injuries resulting in medical bills in a motorcycle accident, it becomes crucial for you to quickly contact an experienced motorcycle accident attorney.

Contact a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer About Your Legal Options

​How Long Can I Wait to Hire a Lawyer For a Motorcycle Accident?If you sustained injuries or your loved one lost their life in a motorcycle accident, do not wait to find legal representation to help recover all of the financial compensation available.

A motorcycle accident attorney will make a world of difference in the effectiveness of handling your case, as many people who take legal claims on their own have little to no idea how to negotiate settlements with insurance companies and end up leaving considerable amounts of money on the table.

Never worry about affording a lawyer for assistance handling your motorcycle accident claim, because these attorneys work on a contingency fee basis, meaning you do not pay anything without receiving a financial award.

Make sure you call a lawyer who handles motorcycle accident claims or contact one online right away to take advantage of a free consultation that will let you sit down with the attorney and thoroughly go over everything that happened and what you can do.

The Importance of Timing – Don’t Wait to Consult with an Attorney

The first thing you will need to understand about your motorcycle accident is that any legal action will be subject to a statute of limitations, which is essentially legal terminology for the time limit a person has to file a case. Depending on the state in which you file your claim, this limit can be only a few months to not more than a couple of years.

If your loved one lost their life in a motorcycle accident, then you can pursue a wrongful death claim, but this too will be bound by a statute of limitations. The difference here is that whereas a typical injury action’s time limit begins on the date that a victim suffered injuries, a wrongful death claim begins on the date of a person’s death, and this date can be much later than the date of the accident if the accident did not immediately kill the motorcyclist.

The statute of limitations can also be different when a motorcycle accident victim happens to be a minor. In these cases, state law usually allows someone who is a minor to file a lawsuit later when the minor becomes a lawful adult, and the limitations period usually begins upon the minor turning 18 years of age.

The other important aspect concerning timing in your case is that you must give your legal counsel appropriate time to conduct a thorough independent investigation into your crash. If you don’t give a lawyer adequate time to do this, then they may be unable to accept the case.

It is vital to get an investigation performed as soon as possible because certain forms of evidence are highly time-sensitive. Some evidence may disappear, and independent witnesses may not remember events with needed clarity if you wait too long.

Evidence an attorney may obtain can include:

  • Photographs of the crash scenes
  • Any available video surveillance
  • Eyewitness statements
  • Statements by other drivers and passengers
  • Accident reports filed by police officers
  • Any vehicle “black box” data
  • Any mobile device data

When you do not file your case in time, an insurance company can file a motion to dismiss your case, and a judge will probably grant the motion. An insurer will have no further reason to offer you any settlement.

You will probably begin receiving medical bills immediately after receiving medical care. The bills will continue to mount while you may be out of work with no hope of earning anything to pay these bills, so you should not delay in seeking legal representation.

Another important reason for hiring a lawyer can be confusion about liability. You may only know you were involved in an accident but be utterly clueless about who was actually at fault.

Again, an independent investigation by a competent attorney will help you get answers to these questions so you can be sure that you are taking action against the appropriate party. It is not uncommon for multiple parties to share degrees of fault for a motorcycle crash.

Some of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents include, but are not limited to:

The law requires motorcycle riders to wear helmets in many but not all states. Victims in motorcycle accidents who did not wear helmets can face immediate scrutiny by insurance companies claiming that victims worsened their injuries by not taking proper precautions. Once again, this represents another case for which you need legal counsel because a lawyer will know how to overcome this presumption and still recover appropriate damages.

Types of Motorcycle Accident Injuries

Motorcycle accidents have the potential to cause a wide range of possible injuries. Some people can walk away from certain collisions with only minor harm, but many others will require medical attention immediately after the crash and possibly for months or even years of follow-up.

Keep in mind that the occupants of most passenger vehicles are afforded much greater levels of protection in collisions, meaning that safety features such as airbags reduce the chances of severe injury or death, whereas motorcyclists do not enjoy any such protections. Motorcyclists, in many cases, can be thrown several feet from their bikes and may sustain additional injuries depending on what the accident throws them into.

Some of the most common kinds of motorcycle accident injuries include, but are not limited to:

  • Severe head injuries such as concussions
  • Back injuries
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Paralysis
  • Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
  • Bulging discs
  • Soft tissue injuries
  • Cuts and lacerations
  • Pinched nerves
  • Fractures or broken bones
  • Nerve damage
  • Joint damage
  • Muscle strains
  • Knee injuries
  • Sprained muscles, tendons, or ligaments

Some motorcycle accidents can potentially cause severe disfigurement that dramatically limits the functions of particular body parts. Many victims may be disabled for lengthy periods of several months or possibly even years.

Cases of more permanent injuries require legal help because insurance companies often suggest that somebody will ultimately recover, so there is no need to pay extended benefits. You may know differently, but you need help proving your claim.

You need to be aware that many insurance companies tend to minimize the extent of damage caused by a motorcycle accident. Just because you are claiming one type of injury does not necessarily mean an insurer will accept the claim as valid.

It is always essential to get medical attention after any motor vehicle accident, especially a motorcycle crash. You must show that you received treatment for your injuries if you hope to obtain compensation for them.

How a Lawyer Can Help Motorcycle Accident Victims

The primary benefit of having legal representation in a motorcycle accident case is that a lawyer can fight to help you recover as much money as possible for your claim.

An attorney can help you recover:

  • Lost wages
  • Medical bills
  • Medication costs
  • Ambulance fees
  • Emergency room treatment costs
  • Costs of hospital stays
  • Nursing services
  • Costs of surgical procedures
  • Emotional distress
  • Mental anxiety
  • Pain and suffering

Again, the primary benefit of hiring a lawyer will be their ability to perform an investigation into your crash. This will mean that the attorney will speak to law enforcement and all relevant witnesses while also digging into all of the paperwork filed surrounding your crash.

A lawyer can assist you when you are dealing with:

  • Disputes about liability
  • Multiple liable parties
  • Catastrophic or permanent injuries
  • Wrongful death
  • Inadequate settlement offers
  • Wrongfully rejected insurance claims
  • Difficulty proving your claim
  • Bad-faith tactics by the insurance company

Insurance companies typically use many excuses to deny compensation to motorcycle accident victims. They might tell you that a failure to properly maintain your motorcycle caused your motorcycle accident or that you drove your bike improperly.

Some cases can also involve governmental entities, such as when a government agency’s failure to fix a road or warn road users about certain dangers causes a motorcycle accident. These cases can have even shorter statutes of limitations.

Resources for Accidents With Uninsured Drivers

Facts + Statistics: Motorcycle crashes | Insurance Information Institute (III) – III, or Triple-I, compiles interesting statistics relating to motorcycle accidents, including motorcycle helmet use for the last 20 years and motorcyclist fatalities and fatality rates over ten years. You can also find information about motorcyclist injuries and injury rates for the last decade, occupant fatality rates by vehicle type, and motorcyclists killed by the time of day and day of the week in recent years.

You can also find vehicles involved in fatal crashes by vehicle type, persons killed in total and alcohol-impaired crashes by person type, and drivers in deadly crashes by blood alcohol concentration (BAC) and vehicle type.

Motorcycle Crash Causation Study | Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) – The Federal Highway Administration, a division of the United States Department of Transportation (USDOT or DOT), called this the most comprehensive data collection effort to study the causes of motorcycle accidents in the country in more than 30 years. The study found that there were 4,462 motorcycle crash-related fatalities in a recent year in the United States, which was more than double the number of motorcycle rider fatalities 20 years ago. That contrasts with a 27-percent reduction in fatalities in passenger cars and light trucks.

Motorcycle Safety: Helmets, Motorists, Road Awareness – The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is another agency of the USDOT, and this page stresses the importance of motorist awareness and motorcyclist safety. When talking about road-ready, the page highlights making sure you are correctly licensed and operating your motorcycle. It stresses checking a motorcycle’s tire pressure and tread depth, hand, and foot brakes, headlights, signal indicators, and fluid levels before riding. On the road, motorcyclists are encouraged to ride responsibly while being alcohol- and drug-free.

Motorcycle Accident Attorneys

Dave Abels Lawyer
Motorcycle Accident Attorney, Dave Abels

Did you recently suffer serious injuries, or was your loved one killed in a motorcycle accident caused by another party’s negligence? You should not delay in seeking the help of a personal injury lawyer who can prepare your legal case and ensure it is as strong as possible.

Do not try to deal with insurance companies on your own when you can contact an attorney because a lawyer will know how to negotiate with an insurer and recover damages that will adequately provide for your many needs. You should call an attorney as soon as possible or contact one online, so you can receive a free consultation that lets you fully explain what occurred in your accident and what kinds of issues you now need compensation for.

​How Does Motorcycle Insurance Work After a Crash?

A motorcycle accident can happen in a moment. All it takes is for one negligent driver to take their attention away from the road to lead to tragedy and devastation. While motorcyclists can try to avoid accidents by using safety equipment and following the rules of the road, it may not be enough if other drivers are reckless.

A motorcyclist should carry motorcycle insurance. The law requires motorcyclists to maintain certain policy limits. You will need to check local ordinances to ensure you meet the minimum policy limits for your state and county.

Carrying motorcycle insurance is one thing. However, using the benefits within the insurance policy is a separate item. Insurance companies often take advantage of motorcycle drivers and their ignorance of what their policy covers.

They do not want to pay you the compensation you deserve when an accident happens. However, they are more willing to negotiate with a local motorcycle accident attorney. Even if the insurance company continues to give you a hard time, a motorcycle accident attorney can negotiate and take legal action to protect your rights.

Before buying a policy, you should know what the policy includes and covers within your policy. There are variables from policy to policy, but we outline the basics here. The critical difference from policy to policy is the maximum compensation limits. You must consider all coverage options even if you are not legally required to have them. When an accident happens, you may have wished you had opted for a specific coverage option.

You should also educate yourself on how helmet laws can affect your claim. Whether you are legally required to wear a helmet or not, you should do so for safety reasons. A helmet and other safety gear undeniably lessen the extent of some injuries. Consult with a motorcycle accident attorney in your area for more information on your insurance and legal options after an accident.

What Is Liability Insurance?

​How Does Motorcycle Insurance Work After a CrashIf you have liability insurance, you are protected if you cause an accident resulting in property damage to another person. You are also protected if they sustain any injuries. Without this insurance coverage, the motorcyclist who caused the accident will pay all expenses out of pocket. This financial burden can result in motorcycle drivers working the rest of their life to pay for someone else’s injury and property with no end in sight.

You might assume that since the motorcycle is smaller, there can not possibly be any damage to other vehicles. While it is unlikely for a bike to cause extreme damage, minor damage can still manifest. You must also consider pedestrians and cyclists on the road. They can sustain severe injury and damage if involved in an accident with a motorcycle.

After an accident, this coverage will cover damage to another vehicle up to the maximum policy limits. Insurance policies will cover injuries to a degree. Remember that it does not cover injuries and damage to the motorcycle or the bike’s driver.

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What is Collision Insurance?

Collision insurance is similar to liability insurance. The critical difference is collision insurance will also cover motorcycle repairs. This insurance coverage is only usable when the motorcycle driver causes the accident. You will also access this coverage if an outside force that no one could foresee caused the accident. A factor outside of the driver’s control is dangerous weather.

While you can repair your motorcycle with this insurance coverage, drivers will still need to pay the insurance deductible. You will also need to work with a certified repair shop the insurance company refers you to.

What is Comprehensive Insurance?

This coverage option is similar to collision insurance but covers situations where the motorcycle is damaged, but another vehicle is not involved.

Some common examples include:

  • Theft
  • Vandalism
  • Falling trees

You can repair or replace your motorcycle when you have this coverage option. After an incident, you need to contact your insurance company and work with them to get compensation for the damage to your bike. These claims can be tricky, and while you may want to work with the insurance company solely, you should seek advice from a motorcycle accident attorney who handles motorcycle damage claims.

Personal Injury Protection (PIP)

Another coverage option that can help you cover immediate costs associated with the accident is PIP coverage. PIP policy benefits can cover lost wages and some medical expenses. There must be an injury present to tap into this policy benefit, and there are also limits to consider. Many drivers are already familiar with this insurance coverage.

Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage

Some insurance companies offer underinsured or uninsured motorist coverage. Even though all drivers on the road must carry insurance, many do not. While there are steep penalties for not having insurance, drivers will still get on the road.

In the unfortunate event that you’re involved in a motorcycle accident with an uninsured motorist, you can tap into these benefits. While you have the option to pursue compensation from the negligent party individually, it is unlikely you can recover much. If the other person cannot afford car insurance, they cannot afford to pay you for your damages out of pocket.

The same is true for a driver who does not have sufficient insurance coverage. Your insurance company can advise you on what coverage and how much compensation you can obtain after an accident with an underinsured driver. While they have some, the other driver will likely reach their policy limits quickly after a severe accident. Luckily, you can tap into this coverage when their policy reaches its limit.

Other Motorcycle Coverage Available

Other coverage options are specific to motorcycle drivers. These are specific to motorcycles, and not every insurance company offers them.

You need to check with your insurance provider to ensure they offer these coverage options.

  • Added equipment coverage: This coverage option works alongside comprehensive converge to cover the costs of personal items. If you have any accessories like helmets, seats, and radios, this will fall into this category.
  • Original equipment manufacturer parts coverage: Motorcycles need to use original parts to run. This coverage option ensures that any replacement parts used are authentic and manufacturer-specific when an accident happens.
  • Personal item coverage: Like cars, motorcycles have places to store personal items. These items are susceptible to sustaining damage or even becoming unrepairable. You will have to replace these times, especially if they are critical to your daily life. A motorcyclist can recover compensation for any personal items lost or damaged in an accident.
  • Passenger liability insurance: If you have a passenger riding with you during an accident, they may also sustain injuries. Guest liability insurance is specific to passengers on motorcycles. It can cover lost wages and medical expenses that passengers incur. Not every state requires this coverage, but it is an excellent option.

Do You Need a Motorcycle Accident Attorney?

A motorcycle accident attorney is a must-have after an accident. Many motorcycle riders and other drivers on the road do not feel they need an attorney after an accident. This thought process is typical in minor accidents. While the insurance company is supposed to work for you, they often do not. Without a motorcycle accident attorney on your side, you can leave thousands of dollars on the table and lose your ability to file a claim.

A local motorcycle accident attorney wears many hats and can:

  1. Investigate your accident: One of the primary roles of a motorcycle accident attorney is to investigate your claim thoroughly. Your insurance company will conduct its investigation, which often does not paint a complete picture of the circumstances. Some concerns the insurance company will attempt to address are:
    • How the accident happened
    • What factors contributed to the accident
    • Your injuries and treatment
    • Damage to the motorcycle and estimated costs
    • Financial losses resulting from the accident
  2. Negotiate: Another benefit of having a local motorcycle accident attorney is their role in negotiations. After an insurance investigation, the company will offer an initial settlement. You can accept this offer and be issued a check, or you can decline this offer and submit a counter offer. Most motorcyclists are unfamiliar with how to negotiate, but a motorcycle accident attorney is not. An attorney can submit a counteroffer and work to negotiate on your behalf until you reach a fair settlement offer.
  3. Represent you in litigation: If you cannot reach a settlement covering all of your expenses, the motorcycle accident attorney will move your case into litigation. The attorney can represent your interests through the entire litigation process. Remember, a case can settle before ever reaching trial, so do not fear the litigation process.

An attorney will also request any critical documentation and evidence to build your case. Evidence collection includes witness statements, police reports, medical files, pay stubs, and copies of insurance policies. An attorney will have invaluable resources and knowledge to assist you.

Determining Liability in a Motorcycle Accident

We mentioned some of the critical roles a motorcycle accident attorney plays but determining liability is a complex one. Depending on where you reside, fault will play a crucial role in how much compensation you receive.

The insurance company will base their entire decision on who was to blame for the accident. They will also often shift the blame, so they pay out less. If a motorcyclist is at fault for the accident, they don’t qualify for some benefits. Determining liability is a complex topic, and you will need a motorcycle accident attorney who can investigate your claim.

Once the liability issue is determined, the claim can proceed to the next step. Settlement negotiations can be long and challenging. Once you have established the foundation of liability and damages, the process becomes more manageable. It is essential to lower your expectations because negotiations do take time.

While you may think hiring an attorney can speed up the process, it is still necessary to be realistic. The insurance company will offer you a low settlement initially.

You can reject or accept this offer. A motorcycle accident attorney will likely advise you on your options and whether this is a fair settlement or not. You will then need to decide whether you wish to proceed with negotiations. If you proceed, the attorney will then go back and forth with the insurance company to find a fair number. You do not need to worry that the insurance has no wiggle room.

Remember they are a big company and there is always room to work. Your attorney will best advise you whether a settlement is fair and what the outcome will be if you continue the process.

What Else Do I Need to Know About a Motorcycle Accident?

Even though you have car insurance, it does not extend to your motorcycle. You cannot use the insurance interchangeably and will be left to pay for any damages you incur independently.

Purchasing a policy is not sufficient. You need to carry proof of insurance with you every time you ride your bike. Insurance policies also do not cover modified bikes. It may seem like a good idea to add aftermarket parts so that your bike looks cool, but they can affect your ability to obtain compensation in an accident.

You may have the option to purchase additional coverage for modified bikes, but this is not a sure thing. Consult with your insurance provider before making any motorcycle modifications. If you ride your motorcycle in another state, your insurance coverage must meet that state’s requirement.

An accident in another state is very complex and can take an extended period to resolve. No matter how simple or complex your motorcycle accident claim is, you need to discuss your options with a motorcycle accident attorney immediately.

The right attorney is ready to assist with every step of your insurance claim, so do not wait to start the process today.

​What Is the Process for Claiming Damages in a Motorcycle Crash?

One of the most vulnerable groups of motorists on the roadways is motorcycle riders. Even though they receive a negative reputation in many people’s eyes, motorcycle riders are the most at risk of suffering severe injuries from a motorcycle accident.

Think about it. Who is more likely to absorb most of the impact from an accident: a motor vehicle driver driving a vehicle composed of heavy materials or the motorcycle rider on a motorcycle surrounded by very little material? Like other accident victims, motorcycle accident victims have the right to pursue compensation for their injuries.

Who Are The Liable Parties in a Motorcycle Accident?

​What Is the Process for Claiming Damages in a Motorcycle Crash?The negligence of motorcycle riders is one of the leading causes of motorcycle accidents. However, every motorcycle rider is not the at-fault party of a motorcycle accident. There are other parties whose negligence contributes to the creation of motorcycle accidents. Here are some liable parties that can be legally responsible for a motorcycle rider’s injuries.

Passenger Car Drivers

One of the primary motorists whose negligence can lead to a motorcycle accident is a car driver. Unlike motorcycles, cars contain a heavy structure that can turn them into deadly weapons when drivers move recklessly. Even the smallest compact car can cause severe damage to a motorcycle rider.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that motorcycle riders are 27 times more likely to die from accidents than car drivers. Car drivers are likely to engage in the same dangerous behaviors that others accuse motorcycle riders of. Still, it is more likely for a car driver to cause a motorcycle accident from inattention. The limited visibility of a motorcycle rider makes it more difficult for car drivers to notice them.

Truck drivers

While being struck by any motorist will be devastating for many motorcycle accident victims, being hit by a truck driver presents a different ballgame. The commercial truck is the deadlier vehicle out of the two, a motor vehicle and a commercial truck. Trucks feature a more significant size and weight compared to other motor vehicles. Even worse, a truck’s blind spots are also more extensive due to the truck’s weight and size.

There are moments when motorcycle riders are not visible in a driver’s vicinity, and a truck driver decides to pass through the same occupied lane. Motorcycle accidents involving truck drivers are so deadly that the motorcycle rider will likely sustain serious injuries. It is very rare for motorcycle riders to walk away from a truck accident without significant injuries.

Motorcycle Manufacturers

Other motorists are not the only parties who can be held accountable for a motorcycle accident. Motorcycle accidents can be caused by manufacturers, specifically from their lack of care in manufacturing a motorcycle or its parts. Sometimes the motorcycle rider or the other motorist is not the at-fault party in a motorcycle accident.

Sometimes, a motorcycle accident happens because of a defective motorcycle part. Manufacturers who deliberately sell or distribute a faulty motorcycle or motorcycle part are causing severe harm to the general public. The flawed design and manufacturing of a motorcycle part can cost the motorcycle rider and other motorists their lives.

Government Agencies

Another common cause of motorcycle accidents is road hazards. Because motorcycle riders do not have additional protection around their motorcycles, they are sensitive to the road conditions. Road hazards like potholes, wet surfaces, uneven pavement, and scattered road debris can become a serious issue for motorcycle riders to avoid.

While car and truck drivers can somewhat maneuver around these road hazards, motorcycle riders who encounter these hazards can become seriously injured. Certain government agencies are responsible for the maintenance and safety of the roads. If government agencies have been negligent in upholding these responsibilities, they can be held liable for a motorcycle rider’s injuries.

Starting the Claim Process for a Motorcycle Accident

When one or several of these parties have been negligent towards a motorcycle rider, the motorcycle rider has the right to pursue compensation from the reckless parties. Motorcycle riders can reach out to a lawyer and file a motorcycle accident claim to seek compensation from the parties responsible for their injuries. Within this claim, motorcycle riders can list the types of damages that the defendants are responsible for.

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What Damages Can Motorcycle Accident Victims Pursue?

The types of damages that motorcycle riders are open to pursuing depend on the circumstances of the accident. Many motorcycle accident victims seek damages for the physical consequences of their accident, while others pursue damages that deal with the more psychological consequences. Both damages are acceptable to pursue in a motorcycle accident claim.

Some of the common damages that motorcycle accident victims seek are:

  • Economic damages. Economic damages are the damages that motorcycle riders can count and place a specific dollar amount on. These damages include lost wages and out-of-pocket expenses like prescription medications, rehabilitation care, and medical expenses.
  • Non-economic damages. Non-economic damages are the damages that motorcycle riders may not be able to place a dollar amount on but are still significant. These damages include pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, and emotional distress. Motorcycle riders who experience post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) will experience non-economic damage from their accident.
  • Punitive damages. In some cases, the negligent party’s behavior is so careless that judges want to make an example of the defendant. To deter other parties from engaging in the same behavior, some judges award punitive damages to motorcycle riders.

Having a Claim Evaluated by a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer

Motorcycle riders have many choices regarding the additional damages they can pursue from their accident. To help determine how valuable a motorcycle accident claim is, it will be in the best interest of a motorcycle accident victim to have their claim evaluated by a lawyer.

An experienced lawyer can consider the different factors of a motorcycle rider’s claim and determine how much the claim is worth.

Some of the various factors that judges take into account when rewarding compensation for motorcycle accidents include:

  • The severity of the motorcycle rider’s injuries
  • The motorcycle rider’s current and future medical expenses
  • The probability of a motorcycle rider recovering from their injuries
  • The motorcycle rider’s lost wages
  • The extent of the motorcycle rider’s pain and suffering

Being Offered a Settlement For Your Motorcycle Accident Injuries

When motorcycle riders file a motorcycle accident claim, two results will happen. Motorcycle riders can either be offered a settlement agreement by insurance companies or pursue a personal injury lawsuit. If the motorcycle rider is unsure what route to take, a lawyer can help advise the most beneficial option. Being offered a settlement in a motorcycle accident lawsuit can be a double-edged sword.

Insurance companies can offer motorcycle accident victims a settlement because it will be easy to prove that their client was negligent in the motorcycle accident. On the other hand, insurance companies can also offer a settlement agreement that does not represent the scope of the motorcycle rider’s injuries to silence the victim and move on from the incident.

How Insurance Companies Refute Motorcycle Accident Claims

Offering low settlements is not the only way insurance companies try to refute a motorcycle accident victim’s claim. Other ways that insurance companies deny the legitimacy of a motorcycle accident victim’s claim include stating a lack of information, having a bias against motorcyclists, and requesting recorded statements from those involved in a crash.

The companies also minimize the injuries suffered by the victim and claim that the victim failed to seek immediate medical attention after the crash.

Claiming a Lack of Information

One of the ways that insurance companies try to delay the claims process is by stating that there is missing information on a motorcycle rider’s claim. Insurance companies use this tactic as a stalling tactic and collect additional evidence to prove that the other party was negligent.

A Motorcycle Bias

Another common tactic that insurance companies use is to accuse motorcycle riders of being the at-fault parties in their accidents. Part of accusing motorcycle riders of being the at-fault parties of their accidents plays into the motorcycle bias that many people still believe. Motorcycle bias is the negative attitude that many people have towards motorcycle riders.

Motorcycle bias can lead judges and jurors to believe that motorcycle riders are bad drivers who constantly look for trouble. This bias can cause other drivers to view motorcycle riders negatively and potentially get held responsible for their accidents.

Requesting a Recorded Statement

Another common tactic that insurance companies use against motorcycle accident victims is requesting that the plaintiff issue a recorded statement. Like the claim that there is a lack of information, insurance companies will request motorcycle riders to submit a recorded statement allegedly to hear the victim’s side of the accident.

While this sounds as if the insurance company is trying to remain impartial, insurance adjusters are only interested in what is best for the company. For motorcycle accident victims, The best step is not to award compensation for motorcycle accidents. Insurance companies will use a motorcycle rider’s recorded statement against them to determine fault.

Minimizing a Motorcycle Rider’s Injuries

One of the ways that insurance companies question the seriousness of a motorcycle rider’s claim is by downplaying the motorcycle rider’s injuries. Insurance companies will accuse motorcycle riders of exaggerating the severity of their injuries. One of the standard methods that insurance companies use is accusing the motorcycle rider of having pre-existing medical conditions resulting from the accident.

Failing to Seek Immediate Medical Attention

Another medical-related tactic that insurance companies use is to accuse the motorcycle rider of not receiving immediate medical care after their accident. It is crucial to seek immediate medical attention for all injuries, no matter the accident.

Even motorcycle riders who do not feel immediate pain should seek immediate medical attention. Insurance companies will think it odd if a motorcycle rider waited to seek medical attention after an accident. It looks as if the motorcycle rider was not as seriously injured as they claimed, or the injuries occurred due to another action by insurance adjusters.

How a Lawyer Can Protect Motorcycle Riders From the Insurance Company’s Tactics

Insurance companies understand the unique position that motorcycle riders are in. Motorcycle riders have to fight against negative attitudes and watch out for the deceptive tactics of insurance companies. To help lighten the legal load, it will be best to seek the legal advice of a lawyer. A lawyer can stop the insurance company from practicing deceptive tactics before starting. Gathering the proper evidence to help build your case and expressing a motorcycle rider’s needs during negotiations can stop many insurance companies’ tactics.

Assisting With Every Step of the Process

A lawyer can assist from the time that a motorcycle rider is involved in an accident to trial. If a motorcycle rider wants to accept a settlement offer, a lawyer can negotiate for the exact settlement offer that the victim is comfortable taking. If the motorcycle rider wants to pursue a personal injury lawsuit, a lawyer can represent the rider and present the best case possible for victory. Even when it comes to determining the types of damages to pursue, a lawyer can assist with reviewing a claim and suggesting additional types of damages to include in the suit.

Speak To An Experienced Motorcycle Accident Attorney Today

Seriously injured motorcycle riders deserve compensation like all accident victims. An experienced motorcycle accident attorney is eager to fight for the compensation you and your family deserve. Call a motorcycle accident attorney today to schedule a free consultation to speak with a qualified motorcycle accident attorney. You deserve compensation for your motorcycle accident injuries, and a lawyer will fight for that right.

Do not let the responsible party off the hook. Hold them accountable with the help of an attorney today. Too many injured motorcyclists fail to obtain the compensation they deserve because they do not have the right legal help.

​What Is the Safest Type of Motorcycle?

Safety is a crucial concern when you are buying a motorcycle. Since you have a much higher risk of being injured in a motorcycle accident, the key is to avoid an accident altogether. The type of motorcycle you buy can have an immense bearing on whether you can prevent an accident entirely or reduce your chances of being seriously injured.

Of course, you cannot always control what other drivers on the road do, but you should do everything you can to increase your safety, including purchasing the best type of motorcycle and all the necessary safety equipment.

There Is No Escaping that Motorcycles are Dangerous

​What Is the Safest Type of MotorcycleIn general, all motorcycles have a certain degree of danger, no matter how the manufacturer designed and built the bike. Motorcyclists are almost entirely vulnerable in the event of an accident. If they are in a crash, the crash is almost sure to throw them from their bike, either onto a car or the pavement.

Motorcyclists have a fatality rate of more than 20 times higher than car drivers and their passengers. In addition, motorcyclists will be injured in over 75 percent of crashes, often suffering life-changing effects.

Common Motorcycle Accident Injuries

Some common severe injuries in a motorcycle crash include:

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Incremental Safety Measures Can Make a Large Difference

Nonetheless, even a tiny improvement in the bike’s safety can dramatically increase the odds that the motorcyclist will either not be involved in an accident or will suffer less severe injuries. You never quite know what feature will make the difference when you have an accident. They can start with the bike itself. Some motorcycles are better than others when it comes to your goal of reaching your destination more safely.

The Type of Motorcycle You Buy Can Dictate Your Safety

First, you should consider the type of motorcycle that you buy. Here, safety should be your first thought. After all, you want to keep enjoying your bike and not suffer a severe injury in an accident. Motorcycles have different types of designs, depending on what the rider wants. Some focus intently on the experience, enjoy the highest possible performance, and feel that they are getting extra power.

The Most Dangerous Types of Motorcycles

The most dangerous type of motorcycle is a supersport bike. Manufacturers design this type of bike for maximum performance and speed. They have extra power and put the rider in a permanent forward position.

Besides the engineering, one of the significant problems with a supersport bike is that the extra horsepower encourages motorcyclists to take additional risks and go even faster.

Buyers purchase these bikes for a reason, and they have the urge to “let it out.” In addition, these motorcycles will handle poorly in inclement weather (which can include the stiflingly hot days in the Valley).

Superbikes and naked motorcycles are variants of supersport bikes with the same safety risks. Although buyers are free to purchase whatever they want on the market, they should think carefully about these bikes and perhaps avoid them in favor of a safer motorcycle. Not everyone can handle these types of motorcycles.

What to Consider When Buying a Motorcycle

Manufacturers designed other motorcycles to be both sturdier and handle better. While they may not have extra horsepower, riders can still get the whole motorcycle experience with more safety.

Within these classes of motorcycles, buyers should consider:

  • Their experience level
  • Their comfort on a bike
  • What type of motorcycle they can handle the best
  • The safety features of each motorcycle

The Comfort of the Motorcycle Impacts Your Safety

In addition, motorcyclists should consider the bike’s comfort and the seating position. If the rider is physically uncomfortable, they are far more likely to make a costly mistake.

In some cases, motorcyclists should be prepared to sacrifice some degree of performance for safety. For example, a cruiser motorcycle puts the rider in a comfortable forwards seated position (hence the name cruiser). However, these motorcycles are not the fastest or most potent because twin engines power them.

The Safest Types of Motorcycles

There are generally three types of motorcycles that are better suited to safety and handling:

  • Standard motorcycles – These bikes are as they are named. They are often the choice of newer motorcyclists because of their smaller displacement. Standard motorcycles are focused on comfort with an upright seating position. Beginners opt for standard motorcycles because they are accessible and easier to ride.
  • Touring motorcycles – Manufacturers designed these bikes with safety in mind. They are usually the largest motorcycle on the road, and they are better at withstanding a crash. Their size offers protection from the wind and comfortable seating for a long-distance ride.
  • Adventure bikes – We call these motorcycles “adventure” not because they encourage dangerous behavior. The adventure is that they can carry bikers long distances. Accordingly, they are designed with safety and comfort in mind and get drivers to their destination.

Your Motorcycle Should Suit You as a Rider

Motorcyclists must also consider their current skill level in deciding which bike to buy. You do not want to have a motorcycle you cannot handle because it is far too advanced for you. Accordingly, you may start with a less expensive and advanced motorcycle while you learn the craft and which bike is better for you.

Some veteran riders may be better at handling more powerful and complex vehicles. If you want a different type of motorcycle once you get better and more experienced, you have that option available. You can always sell your current bike and buy another one.

Consider Individual Safety Features

In addition to the type of motorcycle, the individual safety features are also critical. Here are some safety features you should consider, regardless of your motorcycle.

If the motorcycle you want cannot have these safety features, you may want to consider a different kind.

  • Anti-lock brakesThese brakes operate the same way they do in a car. They keep your brakes from locking and your tires from skidding. Statistics show that they reduce the fatality rate in crashes because the motorcyclist has less of a chance of losing control of their bike in a crash. These brakes are often present on larger bikes, such as touring motorcycles. Some motorcyclists do not want these brakes because they may interfere with the bike’s appearance, overlooking their own safety in favor of aesthetics.
  • Stability control – These are a form of anti-lock brakes that analyze traction and lean-angle to keep the motorcycle from tipping when it is going through a corner. Braking force can sometimes be too intense, causing the tires to skid. Stability control reduces this braking force.
  • Onboard diagnostics – Motorcyclists can get early warnings of everyday things that can cause accidents. For example, you can be alerted when your motorcycle loses tire pressure. Many of the same features available in your car are now beginning to help bikers.

Personal Protective Equipment Also Helps

In addition to safety features on your motorcycle, you should also invest in personal protective equipment to improve your safety in a crash. Even though helmets are not mandatory in Arizona, it is good to have one because they reduce the risk of fatalities.

In addition, purchase airbag vests and jackets to protect you from an impact on the ground. An insurance company will consider the failure to wear a helmet as acting unreasonably and try to tie your injuries to the fact that your head was unprotected. They can do this even when a helmet is not mandatory in the state.

Your driving habits are also critical, even if you have a motorcycle with the most advanced safety features and the latest in protective gear. You still bear the usual risks that any biker carries. Dangerous motorcycle habits and recklessness will put you in the same amount of danger.

You Can Sue the Maker of the Motorcycle if the Bike Itself Fails

Even if you buy a motorcycle that meets all your safety needs and requirements, there is still no guarantee that it will work as you intend. Unfortunately, reports of motorcycles themselves being the problem are far too standard. If your motorcycle caused an accident, you can sue the manufacturer in a product liability lawsuit.

To win your product liability lawsuit, you will need to prove the following:

  • The product’s design is unreasonably dangerous, and a safer method is available.
  • The product’s design was safe, but something went wrong in the manufacturing process that caused the motorcycle to be unreasonably dangerous.
  • The manufacturer did not provide the public with adequate warnings of any dangers that they knew about or should have known about

Here are some ways that the motorcycle itself can be defective:

  • The brakes malfunction, and the rider cannot stop in time to avoid a problem
  • A bad tire causes the tread to separate from the tire
  • A defective frame endangers the motorcyclist in an accident
  • The motorcycle can have a faulty fuel system

Every Motorcycle Accident Requires the Help of an Experienced Lawyer

In any motorcycle accident, you should hire an experienced lawyer who knows the specifics of this type of crash. There are some unique features of motorcycle crashes that require an attorney who has handled these cases before. Insurance companies are very skeptical about motorcycle accidents because it is in their financial interests to be that way.

They know that if their policyholder was responsible for the crash, they will need to pay out a large amount of money because motorcycle accident injuries tend to be more severe. Your attorney should be comfortable handling more significant cases because your payout may be more prominent in light of the notable injuries you have suffered.

Insurance Companies Will Always Try to Reduce Your Check

Insurance companies will do anything to make a motorcycle accident the biker’s fault, no matter what their driver did. They take advantage of people’s impression that motorcycles are risky in general and use it to disparage the individual driver. An experienced lawyer will not permit them to get away with it.

However, the rule in motorcycle accidents is the same one in any personal injury case. If someone else was responsible for your accident injuries, they might pay for all your damages. As far as you are concerned, all that matters is that you were reasonably operating your motorcycle.

The same thing is true regardless of the type of motorcycle you own. While buying a safer bike will help you in an accident, your type of bike does not determine whether you can receive financial compensation and how much you get. It is up to your lawyer to stand up for you when the insurance company is trying to blame you for your injuries or unfairly deny your claim.

Motorcycle Accident Victims Have Legal Rights and Options

In any motorcycle accident, you have legal options for obtaining financial compensation. While you can represent yourself in your case, it is almost always a bad idea. Insurance companies will always try their best to pay as little as possible whenever they can.

An experienced motorcycle accident attorney will be familiar with dealing with insurance companies and their tactics. Your lawyer will investigate your crash, gathering the evidence that proves that someone else was responsible. Then, they will advise you about the best way to get the money you deserve. It can involve filing an insurance claim or a lawsuit in court.

Ultimately that decision is yours, but your lawyer will advise you on what they think is the best way to proceed. Either way, they will work tenaciously and aggressively to help you recover total financial compensation for your accident when someone else caused your injuries.

​What Are the Odds of Surviving a Motorcycle Accident?

Average motorcycle accident damages exceed those in other motor vehicle crashes (except for truck accidents) because motorcyclists are likely to directly hit the road or the other car. The severe nature of motorcycle accidents also leads to a higher fatality rate. Nonetheless, most bikers will survive a motorcycle accident, albeit with potentially severe and life-altering injuries.

Suppose you have suffered an injury in a motorcycle accident. In that case, you may be entitled to financial compensation if you can prove that someone else was to blame for your accident injuries. If a crash killed your loved one, your family can receive wrongful death damages if you can prove that another driver was negligent. There are compelling reasons why you need an attorney to fight for you. Most of all, the insurance company wants to pay you less than you deserve.

NHTSA Data Shows a Consistent Fatality Rate in Motorcycle Accidents

​What Are the Odds of Surviving a Motorcycle AccidentEvery year, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration publishes motorcycle crash data. As the government agency responsible for highway traffic, NHTSA compiles data about roadway fatalities and injuries for all vehicle crashes. The agency tracks all motorcycle crashes nationwide based on data that states report.For 2018, NHTSA estimated 111,000 crashes. More than half of these accidents were collisions with cars or other motor vehicles. Motorcyclists suffered injuries beyond just vehicle damage in over 75 percent of crashes.

In 2018, there were just over 5,000 motorcycle accident fatalities. The national fatality rate was just under 5 percent, meaning that the odds of surviving a motorcycle crash are just over 95 percent. There are over 8 million registered motorcycles in the United States.

Only one in every 1,600 motorcyclists will die in a crash. Although biking is perceived to be dangerous, most bikers take necessary safety steps to protect themselves and reduce their own risk of being an accident fatality. Unfortunately, we cannot say the same for passenger vehicle drivers who do not do their part to exercise the necessary care to keep motorcyclists safe.

There are other estimates of motorcycle accident fatalities. One survey found that the number of motorcycle accident fatalities increased by over 10 percent from 2019 to 2020, even though there was less traffic on the road because of the pandemic.

Even though the number of injuries decreased, the rate of injuries increased. This study suggests that the fatality rate for motorcycle accidents is rising. The same survey found that fatalities per million miles are also growing, showing that motorcyclists face escalating dangers from other drivers on the road.

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Arizona Has a Higher Fatality Rate than the National Average

Arizona also compiles data about motorcycle accident injuries and fatalities. The state’s statistics mirrored the national average. Like the NHTSA numbers, the rate of injury in motorcycle crashes was roughly three out of every four crashes. In total, there were just over 2,300 motorcycle accidents statewide. Motorcycle riders suffered fatalities in 161 of these accidents.

Arizona’s fatality rate is slightly higher than the national average

because:

  • The state does not have mandatory helmet laws.
  • The long, straight desert highways allow cars to travel faster, endangering motorcyclists.
  • Motorcyclists are out on the roads year-round because of the weather, and there is less inclement weather to slow them down.

In fact, the number one cause of Arizona motorcycle crashes was speed. The state’s roads are less busy than those in other states, allowing traffic to flow more freely. Considering the risks that other drivers pose, this is not a good thing for motorcyclists.

Arizona Is a Dangerous State for Motorcyclists Based on the Fatality Rate

One study ranks Arizona as the sixth most dangerous state for motorcyclists based on the fatality rate. For every 10,000 motorcyclists in the state, 10.9 will die each year. These numbers were based on 2019 statistics before the pandemic made general roadway conditions more dangerous for motorcyclists. The most dangerous state in the country is Louisiana, with a fatality rate of over 20 for every 10,000 motorcycles.

Even though complete statistics are not available for 2021, anecdotal evidence is that the rate of severe motorcycle crashes has increased. The roads have become more dangerous since the start of the pandemic, as drivers have become riskier and more reckless. Motorcyclists end up paying the price because drivers often do not see them until it is too late.

In addition, motorcycle accident fatalities are also rising because more bikes are on the road than ever. Since the beginning of the 21st century, registered motorcycles have nearly doubled as the hobby has gained popularity. In addition, the warmer temperatures associated with climate change mean that people are riding their bikes more often in warmer weather. Arizona has one of the highest proportions of motorcyclists in the country, given the ideal conditions in the state for motorcycles (except for the safety numbers).

Why Motorcyclists Have a Higher Fatality Rate

The rate of fatalities in motorcycle accidents is far higher than in other crashes because other motor vehicles enclose the driver and provide more protection. Motorcycles leave riders out in the open.

Even if they wear a helmet and all necessary safety gear, they still run a high risk of critical injury. Motorcyclists are often thrown from their bikes and onto the hard pavement with practically nothing to cushion the blow. In some cases, they may end up under their bike.

How Motorcyclists Can Increase Their Rate of Survival

Motorcyclists can give themselves a greater chance of surviving a crash by:

  • Wearing all the necessary safety gear, including a helmet (even though Arizona law does not require it – helmets can reduce the chances of dying in a motorcycle accident by nearly 40 percent)
  • Ensuring that their motorcycle is in properly maintained and in working order
  • Wearing clothing that ensures that they are visible to other drivers
  • Remaining vigilant for road hazards
  • Traveling the speed limit and maintaining a safe distance between themselves and other vehicles
  • Driving defensively at all times and allowing extra time to reach the destination

Although you can never control what other drivers do on the road, you can do everything right yourself to decrease your overall chances of being in an accident.

Families Can Recover Wrongful Death Damages When Someone Else Is to Blame

If a motorcyclist has died in a crash, their family can file a wrongful death claim for the damages they suffered when their loved one died. Families who have lost a family member are accident victims as well because they have suffered their own losses. In a wrongful death case, a family has the legal right to full compensation for what they lost.

Wrongful death damages will include:

  • Lost wages for what the deceased family member will have earned had they lived and could work
  • The grief and trauma that family members experience when they lose a loved one to a tragic accident
  • The loss of a loving and close relationship with the deceased
  • The guidance and support that they would have received from their family member

Wrongful death damages can be considerable because of what a family loses when their loved one dies. Through their attorney, a family needs to fight for every dollar to pay them for their losses. Through this, they will get justice and the money they need to compensate for their losses.

Insurance Companies Make Wrongful Death Claims Harder

Even if someone has died in a motorcycle accident, nothing changes for the insurance company. They feel nothing for the family, only caring about their balance sheet.

An insurance company may try several tactics to reduce the amount that they have to pay or avoid compensating a family entirely:

  • Denying that their driver was responsible for the crash
  • Pointing the finger at the deceased motorcyclist and blaming them for their injuries
  • Claiming that the deceased motorcyclist shared the responsibility for the accident, thereby reducing the amount that they owe the family
  • Underestimating the damages to the family by doing things such as calculating lost wages as a lower number or downplaying the role of the deceased in the family’s life

You know better than any insurance adjuster about what you have lost when your loved one has passed away in a motorcycle crash. If the insurance company is trying to pay you less than you deserve, you can demand more money or file a lawsuit in court. A jury does not have the same financial interests as the insurance company, and they will be objective.

Focus on the Wrongful Death Claims Process, Even When it Is Difficult

While it is difficult for a family to focus on the legal process when they are dealing with their grief, they have little choice but to engage if they want financial compensation. An experienced attorney can handle the details of the case, so the family can focus on dealing with their grief and the changed circumstances caused by the motorcycle accident. Families will need to be involved with the case to make critical decisions, but they will do this with the involvement and help of their attorney.

Even Injured Accident Victims Have Lasting Consequences

Many people focus on motorcycle accidents in terms of fatalities. When personal injury lawyers rattle off motorcycle accident statistics, the first thing that they will focus on is the number of people who suffered a fatality in any given year and whether the number of deaths is increasing. Even though the odds are in your favor for surviving a motorcycle accident, it only tells part of the story.

However, focusing on fatalities only tells part of the story. For every person who lost their lives in a motorcycle crash, many suffered severe injuries.

These injuries can include:

  • Broken bones
  • Road rash
  • Crush injuries
  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Internal injuries (including organ damage and soft tissue injuries)

All of these injuries will leave you facing long-term impacts and steep financial costs.

Crashes Usually Injure Motorcyclists

An overwhelming majority of motorcyclists involved in a crash will not walk away unharmed. They will suffer injuries, and many of them will be severe. Motorcycle accident victims often have a long road in front of them, and their injuries can impact them for the rest of their lives.

The amount of their claim can exceed a wrongful death because of the medical expenses involved. Every motorcycle accident is serious, including when the victim survives the crash.

The key is to hire an experienced attorney as soon as possible after an accident. The financial compensation process after a motorcycle accident can take a while. First, you must prove liability for the crash. Then, you must agree on the amount of financial compensation.

Given the large numbers at stake after severe injuries or death in a crash, a difference of opinion can grow between you and the insurance company. These things take time to resolve, as the insurance company is likely to slowly raise their offer as part of their negotiation strategy. Alternatively, they may try to rush you into a settlement. Trying to represent yourself in court or to the insurance company is never a good idea. They are both complex systems that require experience to navigate.

Either way, you need a dedicated and hard-working motorcycle accident attorney to protect your legal rights.

​What Is the Average Payout for a Motorcycle Accident?

One of the first things injured motorcyclists and their families will search for online or ask an attorney is the average payout for a motorcycle accident. The best thing to do is remove that question from your way of thinking. Instead of asking what the average motorcycle accident payout is, you should be wondering, “what can I get for my specific motorcycle accident injuries?”

You can see the difference between those two questions. One focuses on other people and what they recover, while the other centers on your situation. Your experience will dictate the size of your check when you can prove that someone else was responsible for the accident. A determined lawyer can help you maximize that amount.

Motorcycle Accident Victims Suffer More Serious Injuries

​What Is the Average Payout for a Motorcycle AccidentThere is a reason why motorcycle accidents pay higher settlements than other motor vehicle accident cases. Because of the nature of a motorcycle and the lack of protection that bikers have in the event of a crash, injuries tend to be far more severe.

When you can establish that you are legally entitled to financial compensation, you must receive compensation for all the damages that you have suffered. Even though the insurance company tries to tell you otherwise, there are no constraints on your right to damages and a full settlement for your injuries.

Think back to the moment before the motorcycle crash happened. You had your physical health and most likely had a job where you were earning money. You may even have expected a promotion that will have paid you more. Regardless of your life, you were probably living a normal and pain-free life.

Whatever you were before the accident is the baseline for how the defendant must pay you in a settlement. The responsible party has a legal obligation to use the money to restore you to the position that you were at the moment before the accident happened.

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How Your Motorcycle Accident Compensation Is Determined

We can base motorcycle accident damages on several factors, including:

  • The life you had before the accident
  • Your experience since the time of the crash
  • What your life may be like in the future in light of your prognosis

The above is another way of saying that there is no average payout for your motorcycle accident. You are not the same as everyone else who has suffered an injury. Your life before the accident was most certainly different. Motorcycle accident damages are individualized based on your unique characteristics. You may recover and respond to your accident differently than other people. For example, you may have had a pre-existing condition that made you more susceptible to serious injuries.

Making unique arguments about you (other than your actions in the lead-up to the accident) does not help the defendant. In any motorcycle accident case, the rule is to “take your victim as you find them.” It does not matter whether a driver injured a corporate executive or a worker who makes average pay. They should have thought of their risks before they were negligent and injured someone else.

Do Not Worry About the Average Settlement So Much as Your Damages

We can give you average figures about motorcycle crash payouts and tell you that they average in the six figures, but that will not help you much. Knowing about average payouts will distract you from what should be your goal – getting the maximum payout for your circumstances. Your judgment may be clouded by thinking that you are doing better than average when you are short-changing yourself.

An average number of factors in many different people dealing with different circumstances.

For example, you do not know:

  • What other people did for a living before they were hurt
  • The severity of their injuries
  • The coverage limits the responsible driver’s insurance
  • Whether the responsible driver had assets to go after if their policy maximums do not cover the damages
  • The amount of underinsured driver coverage that the injured motorcyclist had
  • How hard they negotiated with the insurance company before agreeing to a settlement
  • Whether the settlement came after they filed a lawsuit and obtained powerful evidence in discovery

You Can Recover the Full Damages for Your Injuries

Just know that you have a legal right to receive compensation for all that you have lost in a motorcycle accident case, and you must fight to enforce that right. There is nothing average about you, your legal rights, and your family’s financial future, and you should not pay attention to what someone else received.

Your motorcycle accident payout should cover both your past and future damages. You can and should receive compensation for the entire experience, and it does not get cut off when you settle a case. The only thing that does cease is your right to get additional compensation, so you must be careful to settle your claim for as much as you can get in damages. Accordingly, you must have some window into your future when you file your claim or lawsuit.

Here are some of the individualized factors in motorcycle accident cases that will determine how much you can receive in a payout:

  • Your age
  • The psychological effects of your injuries
  • What you do for a living
  • Your hobbies and life before the accident

Motorcycle Accident Damages

Your economic damages will dictate your entire motorcycle accident payment. The insurance company will use them as a guide for their entire settlement offer, even for the non-economic parts of your case.

There three primary elements of economic damage include:

  • Lost wages
  • Medical bills
  • Property damage

Medical bills are a difficult part of your case. Your health insurance company wants to be paid back for the medical expenses they have already covered for your care. They have the right to be paid back first before you can even receive any money yourself. In addition, they will not be responsible for paying your future medical costs relating to your injury. Therefore, you must have a diagnosis and an understanding of what your future medical care needs are.

Medical Costs and Lost Wages Are Not Average

When you think about motorcycle accident payouts in terms of an average, you do not know what other people had left after paying for their medical costs. Many people in this average number may have settled their case for too little and, after expenses, had any money for themselves. In that case, there is nothing left for them to do since they had already signed a release agreement when they settled the case.

Lost wages are another thing that we cannot think of as average. Your motorcycle accident damages are tailored to your situation, no matter what you made before the accident.

You have a legal right to receive compensation for what you will have earned had you had the ability to work uninterrupted. It does not matter what you did for a living before you were hurt. Of course, if you were a highly-paid worker, you may come up against policy maximums and can’t obtain every penny you would have earned had the accident not injured you.

Lost Income Depends on Your Career

What is also not average about lost income is your career. If your career ends because of your injuries, you must recover compensation for what you would have done. Many claimants make the mistake of settling based on their current income instead of fighting to receive the increased earnings and bonuses they would have received.

Workers do not remain in the same professional situation forever. Insurance companies often get one past unsuspecting claimants (those without attorneys) by underestimating one’s future earnings.

Pain and Suffering Depends on Your Injuries and Experience

Pain and suffering is one of the most misunderstood elements of motorcycle accident compensation. Many people do not understand how much they can and should receive for the experience of their accident injuries. Often, this is the largest element of your motorcycle accident compensation.

When you have suffered from the following injuries, it goes without saying that you live with the effects of the accident for a long time:

If accident effects stay with you for any time, you have the right to payment for what you endured, beyond your medical bills. Serious motorcycle injuries will impact your life for a long time, perhaps even permanently. Many people are never the same again after a motorcycle accident.

Elements of Your Pain and Suffering

If you are living with the following due to an accident caused by someone else, you have a legal right to receive compensation for it:

  • Physical pain
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Embarrassment
  • Disfigurement
  • Loss of enjoyment of life

Again, there is nothing average about your own experience. You may have been affected differently than someone else because of the accident. Before the crash, you may have lived a full life that you will struggle to regain. No two people deal with accident injuries in the same way. One method that insurance companies use to reduce your payout is making you average when you are anything but.

An Experienced Attorney Can Help You Maximize Compensation

The best way to increase your chances of obtaining more compensation is to hire an experienced attorney. The number one problem that people who try to represent themselves face is that they do not know how much their claim is worth. Without knowing the value of your claim, you have no idea what to work toward.

You may accept less than you deserve because you do not know what is possible. This situation is what the insurance company wants because it is how they make their money.

When it comes to financial compensation, a motorcycle accident lawyer will do the following for you:

  • Study your claim and work with relevant experts to establish how much you deserve in damages
  • Devise a negotiating strategy if you intend to file a claim with the insurance company
  • Present your claim to an insurance company, explaining your damages figures and the money to which you are entitled
  • Assess any settlement offer that you receive and advise you whether to accept the offer
  • Make a counteroffer to the insurance company when their settlement offer is too low
  • Take your case to court and explain your position to a jury if that is what is necessary

Stand up Against the Insurance Companies When They Try to Cut Your Compensation

Your best chance of improving your legal position is when you stand up for yourself and do not allow the insurance company to arbitrarily reduce the amount of your settlement because they want to save money. Go over each line element of the settlement offer with a fine-tooth comb to ensure that it pays you what you deserve, and say no if the offer does not sufficiently compensate you for your injuries.

You must consider your situation instead of using someone else’s. You only get one chance to settle a motorcycle accident claim, and you do not want to waste it. Otherwise, you can find yourself short of money in the future when you need it.

The insurance company may happily write a check, knowing it is paltry and for far less than you deserve. An experienced lawyer will consider your future needs. Then, they will work to get you as much as you can for your injuries, either through a settlement agreement or a motorcycle accident lawsuit—so hire an experienced motorcycle accident attorney today.