Motorcycle drivers and riders are over 26 times more likely to be injured or killed in the event of an accident than those who are driving or riding a car, van or other enclosed vehicle. Additionally, motorcycle drivers who are in an accident are very likely to sustain either serious injury or several minor injuries. Common injuries include concussion and brain damage, broken joints, spine and/or neck, soft tissue damage and/or facial disfigurement.
Even so, many motorcyclists are killed or injured through no fault of their own. If you have been hurt and/or lost a close relative in a motorcycle accident, you may be able to claim compensation from those who caused in the accident. In some states, you can even claim compensation if you (or your deceased relative who was driving the motorcycle) was only partly to blame for the incident.
Who to Sue
In some accidents only one party is at fault. In other instances, a number of guilty parties share the blame for the incident. You can sue the driver of the other vehicle involved in the accident if he or she was negligent or broke the law in some way. If defective motorcycle parts or design played a role in the accident you can sue the motorcycle manufacturer and/or the company that made the defective motorbike part. You can also sue the state government if the condition of the road was a contributing factor to the accident.
If you are not sure who should be sued in your particular situation, seek legal advice. You should never apologize or take the blame in any way at the scene of the accident or when talking to police and/or insurance agencies shortly afterward.
When to Sue
Every state has a statute of limitations that does not permit affected parties to file a lawsuit after a set amount of time. The length of time is determined by where you live, who you are suing and what form of damage you are claiming compensation for (i.e. personal injury or property damage).
It is also important to realize that the longer you wait, the harder it will be for you to win your case. Witnesses may die or move, evidence may be lost and/or memories may fade, making it hard for you to corroborate your story.
How Lawsuits Work
If the lawyer takes on your case, he or she will gather evidence, take depositions and find witnesses to testify on your behalf. This process can take a long time. Your lawyer may need to file motions to obtain evidence if one or more parties refuse to be cooperative. Finally, a judge must set a trial date and you and your lawyer must choose to either have a trial by jury or trial by bench. In the latter instance, the judge decides the verdict rather than the jury.
In some instances, it is in the best interests of all involved to settle the case outside of court. Settled cases are resolved faster than ones that go through the courts, providing you with quick cash in hand you will likely need to cover medical and other bills. On the other hand, taking your case to court may result in receiving greater compensation than would have been obtained otherwise.
If you or a loved one have been injured in a motorcycle accident, do not hesitate to get in touch with us. You can either call our toll free number or fill in our free case evaluation form. We have a great deal of experience in the field, a track record for producing favorable results for our clients and a dedicated team of legal professionals that can process your case in a speedy, efficient manner.