Motorcycle accidents usually result from another driver’s careless or reckless behavior. When an accident victim suffers injuries in a motorcycle crash, they may file a personal injury claim or lawsuit against the negligent driver or their insurance company.
The time it takes to settle a case or resolve a lawsuit in the court system depends upon various factors, including the insurance company and adjuster with whom you are dealing. However, one of the most important steps you can take to streamline your case is to retain a skilled motorcycle accident lawyer to represent you as quickly as possible.
Once you retain a motorcycle accident lawyer in Baraboo for representation, they can enter an appearance on your behalf and begin advocating for your legal interests.
First, a motorcycle crash lawyer can retain an accident reconstructionist to investigate the circumstances surrounding your accident or simply review the police report and any available camera footage.
Your lawyer may then file a claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance carrier in pursuit of a favorable monetary settlement. If the insurance company denies fault for the accident, or if they otherwise fail to make a reasonable settlement offer, your lawyer can pursue litigation in the court system and, if necessary, take your case to a civil jury trial or alternative dispute resolution proceeding.
Your attorney will do everything they possibly can to streamline your case and obtain a favorable monetary result as quickly as possible. Your lawyer will also answer your questions, address your concerns, and work aggressively to maximize your overall economic recovery.
Common Injuries in a Motorcycle Accident
Unlike drivers and passengers in an enclosed motor vehicle who have a protective covering in an accident scenario, motorcyclists have very little protection while riding their bikes.
With the possible exception of a motorcycle helmet to protect their head, a motorcyclist’s body often has little protection from the surrounding environment, including the ground. Therefore, if a motorcyclist falls off their bike in a severe crash, they have the potential to suffer severe and sometimes deadly injuries.
Common injuries that motorcycle accident victims frequently suffer include road rash, traumatic head and brain injuries, permanent cognitive impairments, broken bones, rib fractures, soft tissue muscular contusions, paralysis injuries, spinal cord damage, internal bleeding, internal organ damage, mouth and teeth injuries, and death.
The most important step you can take following a motorcycle accident is to obtain the medical treatment you need and continue your treatment until a medical provider formally discharges you from care.
Seeking continuous treatment for your injuries can help to streamline your case and make the process go more smoothly. Additionally, it increases your chances of obtaining a complete medical recovery, not to mention a favorable monetary settlement offer from the insurance company.
The medical treatment that you require after a motorcycle accident will typically depend upon the severity of your injuries and the types of injuries that you suffered.
For example, if you suffered a traumatic brain injury, such as a severe concussion, you may consult a neurologist or other medical specialist. Similarly, if you sustained a broken bone or soft tissue injury in your motorcycle accident, you will likely consult an orthopedic doctor and possibly a physical therapist.
In addition, depending on your injuries, you might undergo surgery or other medical procedures to make a full recovery.
Besides obtaining the medical treatment you need, always meet with a motorcycle accident attorney in your jurisdiction as soon as possible. Your attorney can streamline your case by beginning the claims-filing process on your behalf.
Specifically, your lawyer can gather police reports, camera footage, witness statements, and medical treatment records to date. Your attorney can then assemble these documents into a settlement demand package, which they will ultimately send to the insurance company adjuster for review.
In general, the sooner you begin your medical treatment and consult a motorcycle accident lawyer for representation, the higher your chances of recovering favorable and timely monetary compensation in your case.
Causes of Motorcycle Crashes
Motorcycle accidents typically result from the negligent behavior of other drivers. Since motorcycles are relatively small vehicles, other motorists must look out for motorcycles and drive cautiously near them.
One common cause of local motorcycle accidents is distracted or inattentive driving. A driver may fail to observe the road if they fiddle with a GPS navigation system while driving, comb their hair, apply makeup, eat and drink, or listen to loud music in their vehicle.
Vehicle passengers may also distract drivers from their primary duty of watching the road.
Finally, a driver may become distracted if they use their cell phone or tablet to make phone calls or send text messages while they are behind the wheel.
All these activities may cause a driver to take their eyes off the road and fail to see an oncoming motorcyclist in the vicinity.
Motorcycle accidents may also occur when other people drive while they are drunk. Most operators of passenger vehicles who are twenty-one years of age or older are legally intoxicated if their blood alcohol concentration reaches a level of 0.08 percent or more. The law severely penalizes drunk driving because of the various dangers it presents.
For example, an intoxicated driver may be unable to focus their attention on the road and may suffer from dizziness and blurred vision. As a result, they may be unable to see a motorcycle in the vicinity.
Additionally, a drunk driver frequently experiences delayed reflexes and reaction time, poor judgment, and impaired muscular coordination. Consequently, a drunk driver may be unable to stop their vehicle before striking a nearby motorcyclist.
Motorcycle accidents may also happen when a driver violates common traffic laws that apply to all motorists. For example, a driver may fail to yield the right-of-way to a motorcyclist by running a red light or stop sign. Similarly, a driver may speed around a motorcycle, cut off a motorcycle in traffic, or fail to use a mirror when a motorcycle is nearby.
Finally, some motorcycle accidents happen when other drivers exhibit road rage or drive recklessly and carelessly.
Common types of road rage that may cause a motorcycle accident include aggressively tailgating a motorcyclist, passing a motorcyclist in heavy traffic without using the appropriate turn signal, and cutting off a motorcycle in traffic in an attempt to move ahead.
Unfortunately, all these activities may catch a motorcyclist off guard, leading to a severe accident.
Upon suffering injuries in a motorcycle crash, involve a knowledgeable motorcycle accident lawyer in your case as soon as you possibly can. Your attorney can immediately begin investigating your accident circumstances, determining your legal options, and reviewing those options with you.
Moreover, a lawyer can start gathering documents on your behalf and begin the claims-filing process for you.
When Is Litigation Necessary Following a Motorcycle Accident?
Before filing a motorcycle accident lawsuit against a negligent driver, it is common for motorcycle accident lawyers to first pursue a claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company. After all, the insurance company will supply the necessary monetary coverage to compensate the injured accident victim.
When filing a claim on your behalf, your motorcycle accident attorney can gather certain documents that will enable you to satisfy your legal burden of proof in the case.
Those documents may include police reports, available video footage of the accident, property damage photographs, photographs of your physical injuries, lost-wage documentation if you missed time from work after your accident, medical bills, and medical treatment records.
Along with this documentation, your lawyer may send a settlement demand letter seeking a specific amount of monetary compensation for your losses.
In most situations, the insurance company adjuster assigned to your case will review the submitted documents and make a determination about whether to accept or deny liability for the accident.
If the insurance company denies fault for the accident, then your lawyer can go ahead and file a lawsuit in the court system on your behalf.
Otherwise, your attorney can start negotiating for a fair monetary settlement offer. These negotiations can take several weeks or several months, depending upon the complexity of the case and the amount of time it takes you to finish your medical treatment.
If the insurance company refuses to make you a fair monetary settlement offer despite all of your evidence, your lawyer may file a personal injury lawsuit in the court system on your behalf.
Factors That Affect the Time It Takes to Litigate a Motorcycle Accident Case
The amount of time it takes to litigate a motorcycle accident case through the court system depends upon a variety of factors.
Those factors may include:
- The nature and complexity of the case
- The amount of time it takes the motorcycle accident victim to finish their medical treatment
- The amount of time it takes to recover certain documents in the case, such as police reports, medical treatment records, and medical bills
- The availability of experts and their willingness to provide testimony in the personal injury lawsuit
- The specific insurance company adjuster with whom you are dealing and their willingness to resolve the case in an efficient manner
- The specific jurisdiction where the case is pending
- The court where the case is pending and the amount of time available on their calendar to schedule a jury trial or other proceeding.
While some courts will schedule a jury trial sooner, other courts cannot schedule a jury trial for much longer due to availability.
Additionally, if the insurance company is willing to resolve the case sooner rather than later, it may reach a settlement long before trial. Your attorney will do everything they can to litigate your case through the court system as efficiently as possible and help you achieve a result that makes you feel whole again.
Recoverable Motorcycle Accident Monetary Damages
Victims of motorcycle crashes can pursue and recover various types of monetary damages depending upon their injuries and the accident circumstances.
For example, accident victims may seek compensation for related medical expenses, lost earnings, permanent disability or disfigurement, long-term or lifetime care costs, loss of spousal consortium, mental distress, inconvenience, pain and suffering, lost quality of life, or loss of use of a body part.
Call an Experienced Motorcycle Accident Lawyer in Your Area Today
After suffering injuries in a motorcycle crash that involves a negligent driver, retain an experienced attorney who can handle every step of the case for you, including litigation.
Pursuant to the statute of limitations, motorcycle crash victims must file a personal injury lawsuit within three years, beginning on the date of their accident
If they fail to meet that deadline, the court will prevent them from recovering any monetary compensation for their accident-related losses. Therefore, time is of the essence in your case.
Once you retain a personal injury lawyer to handle your case, they can represent you from beginning to end.
First, your attorney can attempt to reach a favorable settlement offer with the insurance company adjuster. However, if that does not happen, your lawyer can pursue litigation in the court system and bring your case to an efficient resolution.