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Motorcycle accidents are often more fatal and dangerous than car accidents since the rider is exposed and they are more susceptible to injuries caused by the impact. Motorcycle accidents are more complicated to resolve, and before you know it, the insurance companies will be on your neck. There’s where a Hickory motorcycle accident lawyer at Harman Law can help.
How Can a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Help with My Compensation Claim?
Normal car accident cases are resolved quickly. This is because the laws surrounding these accidents are clear, and owing to their frequency, most motorists are aware of them. On the flipside, laws surrounding motorcycle accidents are not known by many since the experts who handle such cases are few. If you have been involved in a car accident in the past, it is easy to assume that you will solve your motorcycle accident case in the same way. You expect to provide evidence to the insurance firm, they account for the injuries and damages to the car, and you receive a check.
Things do not always work that way with motorcycle accidents. Insurance companies in Concord, NC, try to save as much money as they can on these accidents since there is a stereotype that motorcycle riders are reckless and get involved in frequent accidents. This way, adjusters try to reduce the insurance company’s financial burden by employing a couple of tactics. These include denying that the injuries suffered came as a result of the motorcycle accident. They might also try to prove that you were at fault for the accident and not the other party.
These are just a few of the tactics, and here is where a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer comes into the equation. Our attorneys have a clear understanding of your legal rights and how much compensation you should get. We can see through some of these tactics employed by the adjusters and will stand up against them to ensure that you get the rightful claim. We will negotiate on your behalf, offer you valuable legal advice, and communicate with the insurance company. All these are useful things that boost your odds of getting a satisfactory resolution.
injuries & wrongful death
Unfortunately, a large number of motorcycle crash victims don’t survive the accident. Their injuries are just too severe. When this happens, you may have a potential wrongful death claim. It really depends on the circumstances.
Some of the injuries suffered in motorcycle crashes include:
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Back injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Neck injuries
- Internal injuries
You may not think you’re injured after your crash. This is why you always need to go to the hospital. You have no idea whether you’re hurt or not. And, you could have injuries that you just can’t see. Your lawyer is also going to need proof of your injuries in order to prove your case. The best way to do this is by using your medical records. Don’t make your lawyer’s job any harder than it already is. Always seek medical attention immediately after your crash.
How Much Does It Cost to Hire a Motorcycle Injury Lawyer?
Most personal injury cases are based on a contingency fee arrangement. This means that, when you win or settle your case, you pay your Huntersville motorcycle accident lawyer a certain percentage of your award.
Most contingency agreements are for anywhere from 25% to 40%, however, most cases involve a 33.3% fee. So, if you settle your case for $100,000, your lawyer will get $33,300. For cases that progress to trial, this percentage may increase to 40%.
The good news is, the motorcycle attorneys at Harman Law offer a free initial consultation. This means it will cost you nothing to retain your injury lawyer. And you only pay if you win or settle your case.
Why Should I Hire a Motorcycle Accident Attorney?
When you get injured in a motorcycle accident, you’re going to need to file a claim against the other driver’s insurance. If you’re lucky, they’ll pay your claim. If this happens, you’ll receive your check within a week or two.
If, however, your claim is denied, you’re going to need to file an appeal. Your claim could be denied for any variety of reasons, including:
- The policy wasn’t valid
- The policy lapsed for non-payment
- The driver wasn’t listed on the policy
- They believe you were at fault
- They don’t think your injuries were legitimate
- You have a history of filing accident claims
If your claim is denied because the policy wasn’t valid, there’s nothing your lawyer can do to help you. No insurance company will pay out on invalid claims. If they did, they’d go bankrupt in no time at all.
This is why you need a motorcycle injury attorney in Huntersville or Lake Norman. They can help file your appeal. They can negotiate with the insurance adjuster to try to get your claim paid.
If the adjuster refuses to pay your claim, your personal injury lawyer will file a lawsuit on your behalf. Even if they have to file suit, however, they will continue to try to negotiate a settlement of your claim.
Nobody wants to go to trial. Trials are expensive and time-consuming. It’s in everyone’s best interest to settle out of court.
Motorcycle Accident Statistics
There are thousands of people killed in motorcycle accidents every year. In fact, over 5,100 people died in motorcycle crashes in America in 2017. And, even though this number is slowly decreasing, it’s still alarmingly high.
Of these fatalities, 28% of riders were drunk at the time of the accident. Still more were the victims of drunk drivers. Because there is nothing that protects the rider other than a plastic helmet, the odds of them getting seriously injured is quite high.
A North Carolina motorcycle accident lawyer is quite familiar with these statistics. They will fight hard to get you and your family the compensation you deserve.
What are the Most Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents?
Motorcycle riders make mistakes like everybody else. If you’re the kind of person who enjoys riding their bike, you need to be very careful. More people die in motorcycle crashes (per accident) than almost any other type of accident.
Some of the more common causes of motorcycle crashes include:
failure to yield right of way
Part of the reason this happens is that car drivers simply don’t look out for riders the way they should. They complain that motorcycle riders go too fast and weave in and out of traffic. However, they simply don’t keep an eye out for them.
People drive distracted all the time. Either they’re texting or talking on their phone. Some drivers get caught up looking at their handheld devices and don’t pay attention to the road ahead of them. If you take your eyes off the road for just 2-3 seconds, it’s like driving across a football field with your eyes closed. Clearly, this is going to cause accidents.
Motorcyclists have to be really careful in bad weather. A little rain or snow can make the roads very slick. Motorcycles don’t have a lot of traction in bad weather. You combine this with the everyday risks on the road and motorcyclists are at great danger of getting hurt.
If a motorcycle has a tire blowout or a brake issue, they’re very liable to crash into another vehicle. The results of this kind of accident can be disastrous.
How is Liability Determined in a Motorcycle Accident?
Most motorcycle accidents are caused by negligence. In order to prove that the other driver was negligent, your Huntersville or Lake Norman motorcycle accident lawyer needs to show the four following factors:
The other driver had a duty of care
In any sort of accident, the driver has a duty to obey all traffic rules. When it comes to a motorcycle accident, you have another duty – the duty to look out for other drivers. One of the most common excuses for a motorcycle crash is that the other driver “didn’t see them.”
They breached this duty
If the other driver wasn’t careful enough or just didn’t look out for you, they’ve breached their duty of care.
You were injured – If you go to the hospital, it’s easy to prove your injuries. The problem is, a lot of riders refuse medical treatment at the scene. This is a big mistake. If you don’t go to the hospital, your lawyer will have no way to prove you were hurt.
Your injuries were caused by the other driver – You do have to prove that your injuries were caused by the accident.
The scary thing about North Carolina is that it’s a contributory negligence state. This means that if you’re found to be even 1% at fault, the insurance company can deny your claim. It also means your lawsuit can be dismissed. This is why it’s important that you have an experienced motorcycle injury lawyer by your side.
Can Family Members File a Wrongful Death Claim on Behalf of a Loved One Killed in a Motorcycle Wreck?
Unfortunately, a lot of motorcycle accident victims don’t survive their injuries. Because there is nothing to protect them other than a plastic helmet, many motorcycle riders die after their accidents. If this happens to your loved one, you may have a claim for wrongful death.
Wrongful death just means that someone was negligent and your loved one died as a result. You have to prove the same things as in any other negligence case, however, the accident must cause your loved one’s death.
A valid claim for wrongful death in North Carolina entitled your family to the following types of damages:
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Any lost future earnings of the decedent
- Any medical expenses caused by the crash
- Loss of support
- Pain and suffering of the victim prior to their death
- Loss of benefits such as life insurance and health insurance
Not everyone can file for wrongful death. In order to file a wrongful death claim in North Carolina, you must meet the following criteria:
- You must be the personal representative of the decedent’s estate
Most other states allow any immediate family member to sue for wrongful death. This isn’t the case in North Carolina.
pay nothing until your case is settled!
If you’ve been injured in a motorcycle accident, you need to contact an experienced North Carolina motorcycle injury lawyer. At Harman Law, our attorneys have decades of combined experience handling cases just like yours.
If you’re lucky, your insurance claim will be approved and you’ll get paid right away. However, insurance companies aren’t in the business of paying claims. They could deny your claim. If this happens, you’re going to need to file an appeal. You’re much better off having a skilled lawyer handle this for you.