Frequently Asked Questions for Motorcycle Accidents
There’s no doubt that motorcycles form one of the most dangerous modes of transport. Even the most skilled motorcyclists sometimes get involved in an accident. If you or someone you love owns and rides a motorcycle, you probably have lots of questions about motorcycle crashes. Below are answers to some of the frequently asked questions about motorcycle accidents.
Motorcycle accidents occur as a result of many different reasons. Some of these include distracted driving, drunk driving, speeding, motorcycle lane splitting, vehicles making left-hand turns, and intersection collisions. If the accident that caused your injuries was due to another person’s negligence or fault, you might be able to recover the full compensation for your injury or loss.
In the event of a motorcycle accident, getting medical attention should be the topmost priority. If you are in a position to move, try to get yourself (and your motorcycle) to the roadside as fast as you can and then proceed to call the police or seek assistance from bystanders.
Assuming that you are not seriously injured and have not been taken to a hospital, you should take photos of your injuries and get the contact information of the other party and any witnesses available. While doing this, it is critical that you avoid admitting fault or apologizing to any person involved in the accident. What you say may eventually end up hurting your claim. It’s always a good idea to contact a capable motorcycle accident attorney to evaluate your case and help you understand your legal rights and options.
Certainly! Motorcycle riders are often exposed to the open road. When an accident happens, some are killed instantly at the scene, while others often suffer acute bruises and scrapes. Serious head injuries, broken bones, and other disabling injuries are also common for motorcycle accident victims.
However, it’s also possible to sustain internal injuries whose symptoms may not show until after a few days or even months following the crash. For that reason, you need to see a medical professional as soon as possible so they can assess your health situation and address any underlying medical condition before it gets out of hand. In addition, seeking medical assistance early enough helps you document your injuries, which may come in handy when filing a claim.
It’s a common misconception that motorcyclists are always careless commuters with total disregard for traffic laws. That’s perhaps one of the reasons why you need to prove that another party was actually responsible for the accident if you want to recoup the right compensation. Therefore, make sure you document the incident. Take videos or photos of the accident scene, write down the other party’s personal information, and keep all medical reports. Not only will these three things help you prove liability but will also ensure that you get the full compensation that you are entitled to.
It depends. As per Florida statute 316.211, no person is allowed to operate or ride a motorcycle without a helmet. However, your failure to wear a helmet doesn’t absolve the at-fault party of responsibility. You may still be able to recover damages even if you were not wearing protective headgear. This is often the case, particularly if the injured part is not your head.
Because Florida uses the pure comparative negligence system, you may still be able to recover damages that are proportionate to your fault. For instance, if the court establishes that you were 20% responsible for not wearing protective headgear and that the other party was 80% to blame, the damages you recover would be reduced by 20 percent.
Every motorcycle accident is unique. Similarly, all motorcycle accident claims are not the same. While victims in one accident may walk away with up to a 7-figure settlement, some will get just a few thousand dollars in compensation. Usually, the damages that an accident victim can recover are determined by the extent of your injury, property damage, and the resulting financial impact such as lost wages as well as pain and suffering. For that reason, you need to hire an experienced motorcycle accident attorney to review your case and help you determine your claim’s value.
Because motorcycles lack the same protection that one enjoys in a vehicle, injuries from a crash can be severe. Therefore, it may take quite some time – several months or even years – to resolve your case. For instance, it will take 5-8 months to settle a motorcycle accident claim, especially if your injuries are not severe and the liable party has been identified. On the contrary, it might take years to wrap everything up if you choose to take your case to trial. After all, litigation is quite a long process.
It is always a good idea not to rush things after a motorcycle accident. The reason behind this is pretty simple. Settling your claim too early could deny you a chance to recover full compensation. For example, if a medical procedure does not go as planned, the doctor may require you to undergo further treatment. These additional complications should not come after your case has been resolved.
While it’s important not to rush things, bear in mind that there’s a limit to how long you can wait before settling your claim. The statute of limitations in Florida requires that you file a personal injury lawsuit in court within four years from the motorcycle crash date. If your case involves wrongful death (95.11(4)(d)), you need to act within two years. After this period, it may become difficult to get the compensation you deserve.
It’s normal to think that you do not need to seek compensation if you have your own health insurance. The reality is that having your health insurance does not deprive you of the right to seek compensation. As long as another person’s negligence caused the accident, you are entitled to recover all damages resulting from your injury. Besides, medical bills are not the only damages you can recover. There are often other losses, such as lost wages and pain & suffering, that come with a motorcycle accident. Most of these losses cannot be covered by your health insurance or any other means.
Absolutely! It’s not unusual for the at-fault party’s insurance carrier to deny liability or even convince you to accept a lower settlement offer than your claim is worth. Considering that you have your injuries to deal with and so much more on your plate, you may not be the best person to engage the insurance company. You will need to hire an experienced motorcycle accident attorney who understands all the tricks insurance companies use to shortchange accident victims. Not only will the right lawyer help you identify the at-fault party, but will also work with you to determine your claim’s value and ensure that you get the maximum compensation. Talk to the Zimmet & Zimmet legal team today to learn how we can help.
Nothing at all! At Zimmet & Zimmet, we understand that dealing with the aftermath of a motorcycle accident can be overwhelming. After mentally accepting what just happened, which takes time, of course, the reality starts to sink in. Medical bills pile up fast, and you soon realize that you are unlikely to afford your financial obligations. Even worse, you may not be eligible to recover damages, particularly if you’re fully to blame for the accident. With that in mind, we offer a free initial consultation to all motorcycle accident victims to help them understand their options and legal rights. If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident, you need to contact our Daytona Beach office as soon as possible to discuss your case.