Motorcycles offer their riders the freedom of the open road. Unfortunately, they also come with substantial safety risks. Unlike other motor vehicles, motorcycles lack any form of protection for their riders in a collision. When motorcyclists are involved in accidents, they often face injuries that are more severe than most automobile accidents.
Motorcyclists face a risk of injury from more than just the impact with another vehicle. A motorcycle accident can lead to injuries when the rider is thrown to the ground or falls into the path of oncoming traffic. In any of these cases, the cost of treating these injuries can be substantial. The good news is that a personal injury claim could result in compensation that will cover these costly medical bills.
If you or someone you love suffered injuries in a motorcycle accident, do not leave your financial recovery to chance. Discuss your legal options with a motorcycle accident lawyer by contacting Ben Crump Law, PLLC at 800-959-1444.
What Should I Do if I Was in a Motorcycle Accident?
The steps you take immediately after a motorcycle accident can impact your odds of physical recovery and your potential injury claim. One of the things you should do if you are in a motorcycle accident is seeking medical treatment. It is not unusual for riders to feel relatively fine even after a severe crash. However, hours after the crash, the pain and stiffness related to these injuries often begin creeping in. This makes it vital to seek medical treatment immediately after a crash. Not only can a delayed diagnosis hamper your recovery, but it can also give the negligent driver an argument that you failed to mitigate your damages after the crash.
If you are well enough to do so, it is also valuable to collect as much evidence as possible from the scene of the accident. This often starts with photographs of the accident scene, your motorcycle, and the other vehicle. Additionally, the moments after a crash are likely your only opportunity to identify any witnesses to the accident. Taking down their contact information is crucial to your injury claim.
Other necessary steps include notifying law enforcement and your insurance company about the crash. You should also avoid discussing your accident with the other driver or their insurance carrier.
What Should I Do at the Scene of a Motorcycle Accident?
It is crucial to remain calm at the scene of a motorcycle accident. The things you say or do at the scene of the crash can alter the course of your personal injury claim. Above all else, it is important to remain calm. It is understandable for your emotions to run following a major accident, but composing yourself can help you make the best decisions during this challenging time.
Once you have composed yourself, you should assess your injuries and if possible the injuries of any other parties in the crash. If you are not in need of emergency medical care, your next step should be to contact law enforcement. When injuries are involved, you are required to remain at the scene until the police arrive.
If you are able, you should also identify any independent witnesses to the accident. While your testimony is important, the word of an independent third party carries more weight in most legal proceedings.
Another important thing you should do at the scene of a motorcycle accident is to ensure you have accurate insurance information for the other driver. While you are required to exchange information, you should avoid any conversation regarding the specifics of the accident.
What Should I Do in the Days Following a Motorcycle Accident?
The steps you take immediately after a motorcycle accident can have a significant impact on your potential personal injury claim. Your actions following the wreck can also shape your physical recovery. Consider the following steps when determining what to do in the days following a motorcycle accident.
- Seek Medical Treatment. Addressing your injuries should be your top priority in the days following the crash. The sooner you seek medical treatment, the sooner you can begin the process of recovering from your injuries.
- Gather Information. There is a limited window to gather important evidence from the scene of the accident. It is vital to take pictures, identify witnesses, and exchange insurance information at the scene.
- Request a Police Report. Law enforcement will respond to an accident that involves bodily injuries. It is vital to obtain a copy of their report to ensure it accurately reflects how the accident occurred.
- Consult with a Lawyer. It is not encouraged to move forward with a personal injury claim without legal counsel. Consult with an attorney as soon as possible following a motorcycle accident.
What Can I Do to Protect My Rights After a Motorcycle Accident?
You have the right to pursue a personal injury claim following a motorcycle accident that occurred through no fault of your own. However, you can miss out on collecting compensation if you fail to protect those rights. The good news is there are several things you can do to protect your rights after a motorcycle accident.
Seeking immediate medical attention after your accident protects not only your legal rights but your physical health. By seeking medical treatment right away, you create the paper trail that documents your efforts to address your injuries. This can help your attorney show that your injuries are real and that you took the necessary steps to address them.
Protecting your rights also starts with making sure you do not discuss your claim. The most important thing is to avoid speaking with the other motorist’s insurance company. The insurance adjusters will record your statement and twist your words to avoid paying out on your claim. Let your attorney deal with the insurance companies.
The best way to protect your legal rights following a motorcycle crash is to engage an injury attorney as soon as possible. Your attorney can advise you on your rights and serve as your advocate when addressing the insurance companies
What Lawyer Deals with Motorcycle Accidents?
There are countless attorneys that offer their services on motorcycle accident claims. That does not mean any attorney can meet your specific needs. When identifying lawyers that deal with motorcycle accidents, it is important to ensure they have experience with handling claims similar to yours.
There are two types of attorneys that could be available to take on your accident claim. The first are general practitioners that dabble in multiple areas of the law. The second are attorneys that dedicate their practice to personal injury claims. Working with an attorney that is focused on personal injury lawsuits is helpful, as their experience and attention are not split across many different areas of the law.
The location of your prospective attorney is also important. The experience an attorney has with a specific court is valuable, so selecting an attorney that regularly practices in your area has its benefits.
Ultimately, the relationship you have with your attorney is important. Make use of the initial consultation to get a feel for their personality. Your injury claim is important, and it is helpful to have legal counsel you both trust and get along with.
When Should You Get a Lawyer for a Motorcycle Accident?
You should get a lawyer for a motorcycle accident any time you are considering a personal injury claim. Even with minor accidents, it is a mistake to pursue a claim for compensation without the guidance of a legal professional.
It is in your best interest to discuss your case with an attorney if the other motorist was injured, as well. Your attorney could not only advise you of your chance for compensation but could also evaluate the case to determine if you might face any liability for the other party’s injuries.
The motorcycle accident lawyers of Ben Crump Law, PLLC are prepared to thoroughly investigate your accident. After a careful review of your case, they can advise you on what to expect from the litigation process and advise you of your chances of financial recovery. Contact Ben Crump Law, PLLC right away by calling 800-959-1444.
Should I Get a Lawyer for a Motorcycle Accident?
If you are considering a personal injury claim, you should always get a lawyer for a motorcycle accident case. Some riders are tempted to handle their personal injury claim on their own following a crash. Unfortunately, this approach has the potential to cost you dearly. Motorcycle accident claims are complex, and pursuing them without the guidance of legal counsel can result in the loss of your opportunity to collect compensation.
When your accident involves another motorist, it is vital that you have an attorney to rely on. After all, the chances are good that the other driver in the crash will also have legal representation. They could have the assistance of a powerful insurance company that intends to avoid paying out on your claim at all costs. An attorney can help ensure you are treated fairly by the other parties.
A lawyer is also valuable even with one-vehicle accidents. Your attorney could assist you with the claims process following your crash as well as investigate whether any other parties are liable for your injuries. This investigation could determine that a parts manufacturer or even a government entity is responsible for your injuries.
Should I Hire a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer for a Minor Accident?
Legal counsel is valuable for anyone that suffered severe injuries in a motorcycle accident. That said, it is typically worth it to hire a motorcycle accident lawyer for a minor accident.
The reality of your motorcycle claim is that your accident might have been more serious than you first thought. The full weight of your injuries might not be apparent for days or even weeks later. What might at first look like a relatively minor claim could rapidly become something bigger. This is especially true if you are seeking more than compensation for minor medical bills or property damage. If your claim involves lost wages, mental anguish, pain and suffering, or any other complex form of damages, it is helpful to work with an attorney.
Another issue that might not develop until later in the claims process involves policy limits. Many liability insurance policies have low maximum limits on the amount the insurance company will pay for a claim. It is possible to reach these limits even in minor accidents.
If you are unsure of your claim’s value, let a motorcycle accident lawyer from Ben Crump Law, PLLC review your claim and advise you of your rights. Call 800-959-1444 for your free case review.
How Much Will It Cost to Hire a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer?
For many victims of motorcycle accidents, the thought of costly legal bills might be too much to bear. Thankfully, most injury attorneys work on a contingency-fee-basis. This means that you will never owe your attorney a fee unless they collect compensation on your behalf.
There are other considerations to keep in mind when investigating how much it will cost to hire a motorcycle accident lawyer. While some attorneys require upfront legal fees, most injury lawyers do not. In fact, the initial consultation for many motorcycle accident lawyers is free.
There are some costs that are unavoidable, no matter which attorney you hire. One example is the cost of filing the lawsuit. Courts charge fees for filing these legal actions and your attorney cannot waive those on your behalf. Often, the client is responsible for paying these fees prior to the filing of the lawsuit.
Another cost that can vary from one attorney to another is the expense of expert witnesses. Not every attorney will make use of expert witnesses in a personal injury case. However, the fee agreement between the attorney and the client will spell out which party is responsible for the expert’s cost. This could dramatically increase the cost of a legal proceeding.
How Much Do Lawyers Charge for Motorcycle Accident Claims?
There is no set amount that personal injury lawyers charge for taking on a motorcycle accident claim. In some areas of the law like criminal defense or divorce, attorneys will operate on flat fees to handle a case. For injury claims, most lawyers use the contingency fee model. This model allows the attorney to keep a percentage of any amount they recover on behalf of their client as their fee.
With that in mind, how much a lawyer will charge for your accident claim will depend on the amount of compensation they recover on your behalf. The larger the settlement, the larger the total amount of fees your attorney will collect.
Injury attorneys typically have a set contingency rate they use, but this rate must be agreed upon with the client. Some attorneys use the same contingency rate for every case. Others use different rates depending on the complexity of a case. For example, they might offer a lower rate for a case that settles prior to the filing of a lawsuit. Alternatively, they could increase their rate should the case go to trial.
What Percentage Do Motorcycle Accident Lawyers Take?
In many areas of the law, attorneys require a flat fee or bill their clients hourly. This is typically not the case with personal injury claims. Instead, attorneys taking on these cases generally operate on a contingency basis. This means that the attorney will keep a portion of any compensation they recover on behalf of their client as their fee. If the attorney is unsuccessful, they are not owed a fee.
A contingency fee is a percentage of the total amount of compensation recovered by the attorney. The percentage motorcycle accident lawyers take as their fee depends on the agreement between the attorney and the client. This percentage can be as little as 25 percent and often goes as high as 40 percent of the total recovery. A common contingency fee is 33 percent of any money recovered on the claim.
It should be noted that an attorney could be entitled to more than their fee in some cases. If the attorney paid the costs of filing a lawsuit up-front, the fee agreement might specify the settlement money must first reimburse them for those costs. The specifics of an attorney’s fee agreement should be clarified at the initial consultation.
Can You Sue for a Rear-End Motorcycle Collision?
If another person or entity is responsible for the accident, you can sue for a rear-end motorcycle collision. You are always entitled to file a lawsuit for your injuries, but in many cases, it may not be necessary.
Although it is true that any rear-end motorcycle accident claim could result in litigation, the vast majority of these cases never go to trial. In fact, it is common for insurance companies to attempt a settlement before a lawsuit is ever filed.
Filing a lawsuit does not guarantee a case will result in a trial. Throughout the litigation process, settlement negotiations often continue. It is not unusual for the parties to settle shortly after the discovery phase of the lawsuit is complete. Discovery is the step in a lawsuit where both sides exchange the evidence they intend to use at trial. Often, this disclosure will convince the insurance company that they have little chance of success at trial.
Once you have filed a lawsuit, the case could continue on for months or even years before it is resolved. With the help of your attorney, it could be possible to obtain a fair settlement offer while the case is ongoing.
Can I Sue Someone Personally After a Motorcycle Accident?
You have the right to sue someone personally after a motorcycle accident if that individual was responsible for the crash. In some cases, a direct lawsuit against the other driver will represent your best chance of obtaining the compensation you deserve.
Filing a lawsuit is only one step in the process, however. To successfully recover compensation for your injuries, you must also establish that the other driver was at fault. This requires a showing that the other motorist was negligent in some way and that their negligence led to the collision.
Filing a lawsuit against the other motorist might be an option, but it is not always your best option. In many cases, it is possible to resolve a motorcycle accident claim without ever filing a lawsuit. In fact, filing suit prematurely can hamper your ability to negotiate a fair settlement with the insurance company in some cases.
Your motorcycle accident lawyer can advise you of your right to pursue legal action. More importantly, they can also advise you on whether moving forward with a lawsuit is in your best interest. To learn about your options following a motorcycle crash, call Ben Crump Law, PLLC at 800-959-1444 right away for your initial consultation.
Who Can Be Sued in a Motorcycle Accident Case?
Most of the time, lawsuits resulting from a motorcycle accident target the other driver involved in the crash. However, the other driver is not the only person who can be sued in a motorcycle accident case. Potential defendants following a motorcycle crash include:
- The Other Driver. The vast majority of motorcycle accident injury lawsuits include the other motorist as a defendant. That is understandable, given these collisions typically result from driver negligence.
- Their Employer. Under certain circumstances, you can also file suit against the other driver’s employer. To do so, the other driver must be operating under the scope of their employment at the time of the crash. If they are not, you cannot pursue the employer.
- Government Entities. It is not uncommon for government entities to face personal injury lawsuits. The state, county, or local government responsible for maintaining the roadway could be liable for the crash if the road is allowed to deteriorate. This could include crumbling pavement, missing guardrails, or damaged traffic signs.
- Vehicle Manufacturers. Some motorcycle accidents only occur due to mechanical defects in the bike or the other vehicle involved in the crash. When this is the case, you are entitled to pursue legal action against the manufacturer.
Is It Worth Hiring a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer?
Whether or not it is worth hiring a motorcycle accident lawyer is up to you, but the potential benefits that come with reliable legal counsel are not up for debate. Consider the following reasons why your attorney could make the difference between obtaining the compensation you deserve and walking away with nothing for your injuries.
- Calculating the value of your claim. If you have little or no experience with personal injury claims, you may struggle to understand what your claim is worth. The other driver’s insurance company will aggressively push you to settle for less than what you deserve. Your attorney can review your claim and advise you of its true value.
- Filing the lawsuit. There are complex technical requirements that every personal injury claim must meet. These requirements include the deadline to file suit, which is known as the statute of limitations. Your attorney can ensure you meet these requirements.
- Negotiate a settlement. The insurance adjusters tasked with negotiating for the other driver’s carrier likely have extensive experience. An attorney can help ensure the negotiations are fair.
- Advising you. If this is the first time you are involved with a personal injury claim, you likely have a lot of questions about the litigation process. Your attorney can advise you on the legal steps that go into your case and answer any questions you have about the law.
How Long Does a Motorcycle Accident Claim Take to Settle?
It is impossible for an attorney to predict how long your motorcycle accident claim will take to settle. Every claim is different, and factors outside of your control could result in a lengthy claims process. The important thing is to ensure your attorney does everything within their power to keep your claim moving forward. By avoiding unnecessary delays, you are more likely to obtain a fair settlement sooner rather than later.
While it is impossible to predict how long your claim might take to settle, it is helpful to understand the general timeframe these cases frequently follow. In some cases, a settlement will occur within a matter of days. Typically, your attorney will send what is known as a demand letter to the defendant’s attorney or insurance company when they take on your case. In some cases, this letter is enough to spark a successful settlement. In these cases, you could have your settlement check in a matter of weeks.
Other cases can take much longer to resolve. After all, injury cases are settled up to the day of trial in some instances. Given that some lawsuits can drag on for years, it is possible for a settlement to take just as long.
What Is the Average Settlement for a Motorcycle Accident?
There is no easy way to review the average settlement for a motorcycle accident for one reason: these settlements are generally confidential. While some settlement agreements become public information during the course of a trial, parties often resolve motorcycle accident claims before a lawsuit is ever filed.
There are some factors that can guide you on what to expect from a motorcycle accident settlement. For starters, every state has some form of minimum liability insurance coverage requirement for its drivers. A large number of drivers only carry the minimum amount required, which means there is a chance that the insurance company is required to pay on your claim. Your attorney can advise you of the minimum coverage requirements in your state.
Not every motorist carries the minimum amount of coverage. Some drivers have personal assets that are worth more than the value of your claim. If the other driver’s insurance coverage is not enough to pay the full value of your claim, you have the right to seek the remainder directly from the driver.
How Much Should You Settle for After a Motorcycle Accident?
There is no simple answer to the question “how much should you settle for after a motorcycle accident?” Ultimately, the position every person that suffers injuries in a motorcycle accident is different. The most important factor when considering a settlement offer is whether it will meet your financial needs now and in the future.
Many insurance companies are quick to make settlement offers following a motorcycle accident. However, these offers typically pay for little more than the emergency room bills accrued at the time of the crash. This might not seem unreasonable at first, but accepting such a settlement could leave you in a bad financial position.
If you accept a settlement, you can not seek additional compensation in the future. It is important to reach a settlement that covers your past and future medical bills, but it should also address the other types of compensation you are entitled to. This could include your property damage, pain and suffering, or lost wages among other things.
Your attorney can evaluate your case and advise you on what your claim might be worth. Let your lawyer carefully review every settlement offer before agreeing to anything.
How Much Is a Rear-End Motorcycle Accident Worth?
It is essential to understand when considering how much a rear-end accident is worth that no two claims are alike. Given the unique nature of every motorcycle crash, it is impossible to estimate the value of a claim with perfect accuracy. This is true for every type of collision, including rear-end accidents. The good news is that your attorney can review your losses and the facts of your claim. With this information, they can provide you with a helpful estimate of what your case might be worth.
The value of your rear-end accident claim starts with your medical bills. These expenses form the basis of your claim for compensation in more than one way. For starters, you are entitled to pursue the full value of your medical bills from the at-fault party. Your medical bills can also play a role in the amount of pain and suffering compensation you are entitled to. In many courts, your pain and suffering recovery will be a multiple of your medical expenses.
You might be entitled to property damage compensation as well. Valuing your property damage claim following a rear-end accident is fairly straightforward. Ultimately, you are likely entitled to the amount of money it will take to repair or replace your motorcycle.
What Damages Can I Collect for a Motorcycle Accident?
The damages you can collect for a motorcycle accident are no different than the compensation available for most personal injury claims. That said, there are many different forms of compensation. In many motorcycle accidents, these amounts are substantial. Consider the following common types of damages in personal injury cases.
- Medical Bills. The cost of medical care is frequently the largest part of a motorcycle accident claim. This can include the cost of emergency room treatment, follow-up visits to the doctor, medical devices, surgeries, and physical therapy.
- Pain and Suffering. Another common form of damages pursued in a motorcycle accident case is for pain and suffering. These damages are subjective, but the law allows for juries to award compensation based on your physical suffering.
- Lost Wages. Any time your injuries cause you to miss at work could result in monetary compensation. These damages cover not only the time you miss immediately after the accident but any future compensation you are likely to miss as well.
- Property Damage. Not all of the damages in a motorcycle accident claim are tied directly to your injuries. You also have the right to seek compensation for the cost of repairing or replacing your damaged motorcycle.
What Is the Most Common Motorcycle Accident Injury?
Many potential injuries could result from a motorcycle accident. While there is extensive research on the severity of motorcycle accidents, there has been little to highlight the most common injury in these crashes. That said, the Association for the Advancement of Automotive Medicine reviewed injury patterns based on the age of the rider. According to their study, older drivers were more likely to suffer internal bleeding and abdominal injuries in a crash. The study went on to show that riders with larger engines were more likely to suffer head injuries than other motorcyclists. Some of the most common motorcycle accident injuries include:
- Road Rash. Road rash is the name for friction burns to the skin of a motorcyclist. These injuries typically occur when a rider falls from a moving bike. The friction caused by exposed skin dragging across the pavement results in road rash injuries.
- Traumatic Brain Injuries. Traumatic brain injuries are also common, especially for riders that do not wear a helmet.
- Abdominal Injuries. Abdominal injuries are common both from riders falling off their bike and from direct impact from other vehicles. These injuries include anything from internal bleeding to broken ribs.
- Spinal Damage. Riders that fall from their bikes and land on their head or neck are at risk of spinal damage. This could result in paralysis in some cases.
Can You Get PTSD from a Motorcycle Accident?
Any traumatic event could result in Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Severe motorcycle accidents are no exception. You can get PTSD from a motorcycle accident even in cases where your injuries are not life-threatening.
PTSD is a form of mental disorder. It can impact any person who suffers a traumatic event, including violence, child abuse, or accidents. This condition is often long-lasting, with some people suffering from PTSD symptoms for years following a traumatic event. Although there is no simple cure for the disorder, it can be managed through the use of counseling and medication.
PTSD is surprisingly common after a motorcycle accident. According to the Association for the Advancement of Automotive Medicine, roughly one in four motorcyclists experience PTSD after a crash. The severity of these symptoms will depend in part on how significant the trauma was.
There are many signs of PTSD following a motorcycle accident. These signs could include:
- Recurring nightmares involving the crash
- Obsessing over the collision
- Fear of riding a motorcycle again
- Memory loss
- Mood changes or depression
- Emotional outbursts
The longer these symptoms persist, the more likely a rider is experiencing PTSD. Recovery from PTSD starts with seeking guidance from a healthcare professional.
How Do People Recover from Motorcycle Accidents?
Recovering from a motorcycle accident injury can be a long, slow process. Given the wide range of potential injuries that can occur in these accidents, there is no simple answer to the question “how do people recover from motorcycle accidents?”
While there are different approaches to recovering from motorcycle accident injuries, some steps can improve the recovery process for everyone. First and foremost, it is vital to seek medical treatment immediately after an accident. This step is critical even if you feel your injuries are minor. The sooner your injuries are diagnosed, the sooner you can begin the path toward recovery.
Recovery from a motorcycle accident injury also requires following the medical advice you receive. This means attending physical therapy, taking prescribed medications, and keeping up with future doctor’s appointments. Ultimately, following your doctor’s orders is a key component in a speedy recovery.
Many people recovering from motorcycle accident injuries find the emotional consequences of the crash outweigh the physical injuries. It is just as important to seek help for the mental stress and trauma as it is the physical injuries stemming from a motorcycle accident.
What Is the Most Common Cause of Motorcycle Accidents?
Motorcycle accidents occur for a wide variety of reasons. According to Science Direct, they can result from operator error or severe weather. These accidents also result from poor road conditions or mechanical defects. However, most collisions result from the actions of negligent motorists. Some of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents include:
- Driving While Intoxicated. The use of alcohol or controlled substances is a major cause of motorcycle accidents. When drivers are under the influence of these substances, it can dramatically reduce their reaction time or decision making.
- Aggressive Driving. Some accidents occur due to aggressive motorists. When drivers maneuver between lanes aggressively, they often fail to notice nearby motorcyclists.
- Car Door Collisions. Like with cyclists, motorcycle riders also face the risk of drivers in parked cars opening their doors in the path of their bike.
- Dangerous Road Conditions. Sometimes the road itself is the primary cause of a motorcycle crash. Roadways that are missing traffic signals or are not properly maintained can play a major role in causing a crash.
- Motorcycle Defects. Certain accidents would not occur if it were not for the defective parts within a motorcycle. In these cases, it may be possible to hold the manufacturer accountable for the crash.
At What Speed Do Most Motorcycle Accidents Happen?
Many people are quick to assume that speeding is always a factor in each motorcycle accident. The reality is that these accidents can occur at any speed. Research has shown that most riders are traveling below 30 miles per hour just prior to a collision.
Traveling at high speeds is certainly a factor in these accidents, but not as frequently as many assume. In the end, speeding motorcyclists are much less of a factor in these accidents compared to the negligence of nearby motorists.
No matter the speed you were traveling at, you could be entitled to monetary compensation after a motorcycle accident. The motorcycle accident lawyers of Ben Crump Law, PLLC can review your case and assist you with moving forward with an injury claim. Call 800-959-1444 for your free consultation right away.
How Does Speeding Affect Motorcycle Accidents?
Speeding, like other forms of aggressive driving, can dramatically increase the odds of a motorcycle accident. This is true both of motorcyclists and the drivers they share the road with. Speeding affects motorcycle accidents by reducing the amount of response time other drivers have. This reduced response time can inhibit a driver’s ability to avoid a collision with a motorcycle. Speeding can also increase the likelihood of a motorcycle accident due to the motorist’s potential to lose control of their vehicle. When motorists make mistakes while traveling at high speed, they are more likely to overcorrect and cause a crash.
Speeding can have an effect beyond causing a motorcycle accident. Additionally, traveling at high speeds can also increase the severity of a motorcycle crash. Low-speed accidents are not necessarily low-risk, but high-speed collisions dramatically increase the chance for severe or even fatal injuries.
If you suffered injuries in a motorcycle crash due to a speeding driver, you could be entitled to substantial monetary compensation. Contact Ben Crump Law, PLLC as soon as possible at 800-959-1444 to discuss your claim.
How Does Distracted Driving Cause Motorcycle Accidents?
Distracted driving occurs any time a motorist diverts their attention away from the road. These distractions can involve anything from checking emails to talking with a passenger. Distracted driving causes motorcycle accidents in multiple ways.
There are three types of distracted driving. In many cases, motorists that divert their focus away from the road experience all three types. The first form of distracted driving is known as visual distraction. Any activity that draws motorists’ eyes away from the road could be a visual distraction. The second form is manual distraction. Operating a motor vehicle requires both hands, and using one or both hands for other tasks increases the chances of a crash. The final form is cognitive distraction. This form of distraction occurs when a motorist diverts their decision-making ability away from the vehicle’s operation.
Countless factors can result in distracted driving. Common causes of distracted driving include:
- Checking emails
- Talking with passengers
- Streaming videos
- Reaching for objects
- Adjusting the radio
Will My Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Deal with the Insurance Companies for Me?
One of the primary benefits of hiring legal counsel for your personal injury claim is that they can serve as your advocate. This means that your motorcycle accident lawyer can deal with the insurance companies for you.
This type of advocacy is more than just a convenience. The other party’s insurance company will go to great lengths to avoid responsibility for your injury claim. These insurers use a variety of tactics to get injured motorcyclists to put their own claims in jeopardy.
One of these tactics involves aggressively pursuing settlement before you hire legal counsel. These early offers might cover your emergency room bills, but they are usually inadequate compared to the actual value of your claim. An attorney can ensure you do not accept an unfair settlement offer.
Insurance adjusters also frequently record statements from injured riders in an attempt to use their own words against them. With an attorney speaking on your behalf, you do not have to worry about the insurance company taking your words out of context.
Do You Have to Go to Court for a Motorcycle Accident?
There is always the possibility that you will have to go to court for a motorcycle accident. This is especially true if you are pursuing a personal injury claim against the other party involved in the crash. While testifying at trial is a possibility, the good news is that most injury claims are resolved before a trial ever becomes necessary. If you are able to settle your case with the other side, there will be no need to make additional court appearances.
If you are represented by legal counsel, the trial is likely the only time you will need to appear in court personally. The same is not true if you were to represent yourself in an injury case. Many injury claims require many hearings over time. Although your attorney can usually appear on your behalf, you will be required to make those appearances yourself if you act as your own legal counsel.
Appearing on your behalf at court is only one of the benefits that comes with hiring a motorcycle accident lawyer. To learn more about how the right legal counsel could help with your claim, contact Ben Crump Law, PLLC at 800-959-1444 today.
What Happens if the At-Fault Party Doesn’t Have Insurance?
Liability insurance policies are responsible for paying the vast majority of injury claims that result from motorcycle accidents. What happens if the at-fault party does not have insurance? Thankfully, you might have more than one legal option at your disposal.
Generally speaking, the best option for when the at-fault party lacks insurance is filing an uninsured motorist (UIM) claim with your own insurance company. UIM policies exist to cover your losses when the at-fault driver in a crash is uninsured. These policies also kick in when the other driver has insurance, but the amount of your damages goes above and beyond their policy limits.
UIM coverage can be a lifesaver for many, but not every driver has this type of policy. Not every state requires UIM coverage, and many drivers do not opt-in. If your insurance policy does not provide for UIM coverage, filing a claim with your own insurance company will not be an option.
Outside of UIM coverage, your other option is to file a lawsuit directly against the at-fault party. While your claim might be successful, the odds are good the defendant lacks the assets to cover the amount of damages you are entitled to.
How Long Do I Have to File a Lawsuit After a Motorcycle Accident?
The amount of time to bring a motorcycle accident lawsuit is not limitless. Like with all lawsuits, motorcycle accident claims are governed by the statute of limitations. The statute of limitations is a deadline set by state law. Every jurisdiction has a statute of limitations, but the time limit on filing suit varies from one state to another.
The statute of limitations can vary significantly from one state to another. Some jurisdictions require a plaintiff to file suit within one year. Others give injury victims as many as five years to move forward with their personal injury claim. How long you have to file a lawsuit after a motorcycle accident depends entirely on the laws of the state where the crash occurred. It is vital to discuss the statute of limitations with your attorney before moving forward with your injury claim.
There are also certain circumstances where you will have even less time to bring a claim. If your injury claim targets a government entity, many states require that you notify that entity of your claim within a matter of months after the injury occurs. This gives you a narrow window to initiate legal action.
The consequences of filing suit after the statute expires are steep. The court is likely to grant the defendant’s motion to dismiss your case forever, even if the underlying facts are on your side.
Contact Ben Crump Law, PLLC Following Your Motorcycle Accident
If you suffered injuries in a motorcycle accident, it may not be immediately clear to you what to do next. These accidents can be disorienting, particularly for anyone that has never dealt with a personal injury claim before.
A motorcycle accident lawyer can assist you through every step of the injury claim process. Your attorney can evaluate your claim and advocate on your behalf to the insurance companies. If they are unable to obtain a fair settlement offer, they can pursue a lawsuit and try your case before a jury.
The attorneys of Ben Crump Law, PLLC handle motorcycle accident claims. To get started with your injury claim, call 800-959-1444 as soon as possible.