Riding a motorcycle is a great way to see different sites and get around fast, but other drivers are responsible for providing a duty of care. If they don’t, you can sustain greater physical injuries because motorcycles have less protection.
The Fort Myers, FL, motorcycle accident attorneys at our firm can determine the cause of your crash, identify the liable party or parties, and recover the compensation you deserve. We can help you confront insurance company representatives and take your case to trial if necessary.
Did a Negligent Driver Cause My Fort Myers Motorcycle Accident?
Often, motorcycle accidents occur because reckless, careless, or inexperienced drivers make mistakes that cause a collision or crash. Motorists must pay careful attention to traffic when sharing the road with motorcycles because even a slight misjudgment can cause a fatal accident. Some of the most common ways negligent drivers cause motorcycle accidents include:
- Pulling out in front of a motorcycle: This is one of the most dangerous types of motor vehicle collisions. If a driver pulls out in front of a motorcyclist, they will likely have to slam on their brakes or swerve into another lane to avoid hitting the motorcycle rider. This type of accident often results from blind spots.
- Failing to yield right of way: When a motorcycle passes a car traveling in the same direction, the law requires the car to give way to the motorcycle. In other words, the car must slow down or stop completely before entering the bike lane. Failure to yield right of way can lead to a crash where the biker suffers serious wounds.
- Cutting off other cars or motorcycles: Cutting off a motorcycle while driving is just as dangerous as cutting off a car. It’s important to remember that a motorcycle has less stopping distance than a car, which means that a cut-off could end up being more deadly for the motorcyclist.
- Driving under the influence: Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs can put everyone on the road in danger. Even though drunk driving is illegal, many people still get behind the wheel after drinking. Drunk drivers often don’t realize how impaired they are until after they’ve caused a motorcycle accident.
- Driving without due care: Drivers engaging in reckless driving, drowsy driving, or failing to exercise proper caution can cause motorcycle crashes. Careless maneuvers can include speeding, running red lights, failing to use turn signals, ignoring traffic laws, road hazards, or signals.
- Driving too fast while distracted: Speeding is always illegal, but it becomes especially dangerous when a careless driver is distracted by cell phones. Distracted driving is often associated with crashes involving large trucks or buses, which pose a greater risk of causing serious injury or death.
For a free legal consultation with a motorcycle accidents lawyer serving Fort Myers, 800-747-3733
How Does Liability Work After a Motorcycle Accident?
Florida’s no-fault auto insurance statutes do not apply to motorcycles, so you are not bound to file a claim based on your personal injury protection (PIP) policy, even if you only suffered minor injuries in your crash. Instead, you can hold the at-fault driver’s insurance company liable for your damages regardless if you meet the state’s serious injury threshold.
Liability is a legal term that refers to someone’s responsibility for another party’s damages. For example, if someone is liable for your injuries, they must compensate you. This makes liability a critical part of motorcycle accident cases.
Assigning liability is a multi-step process. First, an experienced motorcycle accident attorney will gather any relevant evidence that supports your case, such as a police report. Then, our lawyers can work towards establishing the four elements of negligence: duty of care, breach, causation, and injury.
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What Is the Claims Process Like After a Motorcycle Crash?
Most motorcycle accident cases our legal team handles across South Florida involve negotiating a fair settlement after filing a third-party liability insurance claim. This claim holds the at-fault driver responsible for their negligent behavior by collecting compensation based on their auto liability insurance policy.
We use our network of investigators, accident reconstruction experts, and others to build a strong case to support your claim. Then, we aggressively pursue a settlement with the insurance company to cover your medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other losses. We manage all aspects of this process, allowing you to focus on your recovery.
We only need to occasionally litigate a motorcycle accident case to get a fair settlement. However, if this becomes necessary, we can explain the step-by-step process. We will represent you in court, present your case and our evidence to the judge, and demand the full award you deserve.
What is the Statute of Limitations for a Motorcycle Accident?
The time you have to file a motorcycle accident claim can depend on the details of your accident. But overall, you will have four years from the accident date to file a claim, Florida Statutes § 95.11 (4)(a) states.
To have the opportunity to get the maximum compensation, it’s best to file early, after you receive medical care. By getting medical treatment first, we’ll be able to include your most recent medical record, which can serve to show your damages.
In some situations, you may have factors that can give you more or less time to file. An experienced motorcycle accident lawyer in Fort Myers can tell you how much time you have to file.
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Common Injuries Associated with Motorcycle Accidents
Motorcycles are smaller and lighter than passenger vehicles, so resulting accident injuries can be more severe. Some wounds may require medical treatment or physical therapy to help restore mobility and function. They can range from minor cuts to catastrophic injuries.
After an accident, you may have one of the following motorcycle accident injuries:
- Head injury: Head injuries are among the most common injuries suffered in motorcycle accidents. They lead to bleeding inside the skull, brain swelling, and skull fractures. Serious head wounds like traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) can require hospitalization and surgery.
- Spinal cord injury: A spinal cord injury occurs when a person’s spine is damaged or severed. This type of injury can result in paralysis below the level of the injury. If not treated in time, it could result in fatality.
- Neck injury: Neck injuries are typically caused by whiplash, which happens when your neck is violently jerked back and forth. Whiplash can occur when a motorcycle collides with another vehicle or when a motorcycle flips over.
- Shoulder injury: A shoulder injury can occur when a motorcycle hits something like a curb or pole. It can also happen when a motorcycle slams into another vehicle. Road conditions can also play a role in the accident.
- Leg injury: Leg injuries include sprains, fractures, and breaks. They can be caused by hitting a pothole or curb, falling off a motorcycle, or getting hit by a car.
- Fractures and broken bones: Fractures are breaks in the bone. They can result from falls, collisions, or other types of trauma. Broken bones are one of the most severe injuries that can occur in a motorcycle accident.
- Tendon injury: Tendon injuries can occur when a rider gets caught between two objects, such as a motorcycle and a fence. The impact force can tear the tendon, causing pain and loss of movement.
- Ligament injury: Ligaments are bands of tissue that connect bones. When ligaments are torn following an accident, they can cause pain and limit motion. Ligament injuries can be devastating injuries that result in a permanent disability.
- Joint injury: Joint injuries can occur when a joint is forced out of its normal position. This can lead to swelling, bruising, and stiffness.
- Internal bleeding: Internal bleeding can occur when a person suffers a major bodily cut. Blood leaks into the tissues around the wound, causing internal bleeding.
You may be entitled to compensation for your injuries if you have been injured in a motorcycle accident. Our Fort Myers personal injury lawyers will work to get you the money you deserve.
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What Compensatory Damages Can I Recover?
If you’re injured in a motorcycle crash, it’s important to remember that you can recover non-economic losses and economic losses to cover your medical costs. A personal injury attorney will help you understand what type of compensation you can receive. Some of the most common losses that you can recover are:
Past and Future Medical Expenses
Accident-related medical costs are high, and it’s hard to pay them off without help. The good news is that if you get into a Fort Myers motorcycle accident, there is a way to recover money for your damages,
Florida law states that motorcycle accident victims can file a personal injury claim and receive full compensation for past and future medical expenses. In addition, you can also receive compensation for any pain and suffering you experience.
Pain and Suffering
PIP insurance may not be available to all accident victims; therefore, you can contact a Fort Myers motorcycle accident lawyer to file a lawsuit for accident-related pain and suffering. Insurance adjusters may try to deny you this damage, but we’re ready to fight for you to receive the compensatory damages you qualify for.
For a successful claim, a doctor must examine the nature of your injury and the duration and extent of pain produced by accident to obtain these forms of damages.
Motorcycle accidents typically cause injuries that may force the driver to take leave from work. In this case, you can receive compensation for any lost wages you would have obtained if you had not spent time in the hospital and the accident had not happened.
If you were injured in a motorcycle accident and cannot work due, you could be eligible to hold the at-fault driver’s insurance company accountable for lost wages.
You could get compensation if you suffered mental anguish, or emotional distress, following your Fort Myers motorcycle accident. Symptoms of mental anguish may include:
- Embarrassment or humiliation
- Mental anguish
- Emotional distress
- Suicidal thoughts
- Stress and anxiety
Emotional distress is considered non-economic damages and can also include permanent impairments and disabilities caused by the negligent party. Our experienced team can fight for you to recover these damages.
Loss of Consortium
In a wrongful death case, the surviving spouse can claim damages for the loss of services and companionship. This includes loss of support, care, advice, counsel, guidance, affection, love, intimacy, protection, security, and solace.
The law allows you to seek financial compensation for losing your spouse’s companionship if you are married.
If you are the parent of a child under 18, you can recover damages for the loss of parental society, companionship, instruction, guidance, and nurture. You can also sue for losing your child’s services, such as help around the house, babysitting, cooking, cleaning, and shopping.
Contact a Fort Myers Personal Injury Attorney to Discuss Your Options
If you were injured in a motorcycle accident, our Fort Myers, FL, motorcycle accident lawyers can discuss your legal options. The Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine are dedicated to helping victims get the justice they deserve after suffering from the negligence of others. We work on a contingency fee basis, so you don’t have to pay unless we win.
Our team will identify the liable party who caused your accident and help you get fair compensation for your injuries. Contact us today for a free case review and determine if you have a liability claim against a Fort Myers driver.
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