Were you seriously injured in a motorcycle crash in Georgia and have questions about these 6 motorcycle accident tips for you? Call us now.
1) Choosing a Motorcycle Accident Attorney
When people have been injured in a motorcycle accident in Atlanta, they often want to know the best way to choose a lawyer or law firm that can help them with their injury claim. There are some unique issues that arise with motorcycle cases. The primary one is we find that jury pools are not usually overly sympathetic to motorcycle riders. They see motorcycle riders as daredevils and people who often get what’s coming to them because they are taking risks. We know that the laws are not slanted this way and that motorcycle riders have the same rights and protections as anyone else driving on the road, and we’re here to protect those rights. We have handled numerous motorcycle claims and know the ins and outs of dealing with these types of cases.
Another thing that you want to find when you’re looking for a motorcycle injury attorney is someone who knows how the insurance industry works. I spent many years of my career working for insurance companies and defending insurance claims before I realized that I was on the wrong side of these cases and that my passion was helping people who had been injured, not defending people who had caused injuries. Now, I take the knowledge that I gained in defending those cases and put them to work for injured individuals. You always want to make sure that you have an attorney that knows how the other side works, and at the Gunnels Law Firm we provide that.
Another thing to make sure you have in a motorcycle injury attorney is someone who will take a case to trial. Insurance companies keep lists of attorneys they know will try cases, along with a list of attorneys that they know are always going to take the top settlement offer whether it’s fair or not. It’s surprising how many attorneys are afraid to go to court.
At the Gunnels Law Firm, we spend a lot of our time in court trying cases, and we know what motivates juries to give the best possible compensation to our clients. Always make sure that you have an attorney who will take a case all the way to trial if that’s what it takes to get you a fair resolution.
2) Motorcycle Accident Without a Helmet
We were recently asked by a person who had been injured in a motorcycle wreck case whether they could recover damages for their injuries even though they had not been wearing a helmet. The answer is, potentially, yes. Under Georgia law, a person is required to wear a helmet when they are riding a motorcycle. However, the failure to wear a helmet does not automatically extinguish a personal injury claim. In that scenario, your own personal negligence in not wearing a helmet gets weighed against the negligence of the person who caused the accident. It’s important to investigate these claims from the beginning and preserve all necessary evidence to make sure that you can present that claim in the most effective manner.
If you’ve been injured in a motorcycle accident of any sort and you need help working through the claim, please give us a call so we can help you through the process.
3) Motorcycle Passenger Injury Claim
We recently had a potential client contact us and ask whether she was entitled to personal injury damages having been injured due to the negligence of another while riding on a motorcycle as a passenger. The answer is yes. When someone injures you and you are the passenger in any type of motor vehicle, you may have a claim for damages. Even if you are the passenger on a motorcycle, you will have that claim just like you would have if you were a passenger in a car. The issue comes down to who the responsible party may be.
If it is the driver of the vehicle who was negligent, that would be the party you seek a claim against. If the party who caused the accident was a driver of another vehicle, that is the party you pursue a claim against. It’s important at the outset to evaluate these claims and make sure that we know who the liable party is and who the claim needs to be made against.
If you’ve been injured in a motor vehicle accident of any sort in which you were the passenger, including motorcycle claims, please give us a call so we can help you through this process.
4) Differences Between Motorcycle Accident Claims and Car Crash Claims
One question we’re frequently asked is whether motorcycle wreck cases are different than general car wreck cases. The answer is yes and no. Under Georgia law, motorcycle riders are required to follow the same rules of the road as someone driving a car or a truck; this means they also have the same protections as someone driving a car or a truck. However, the perception often is that motorcycle cases are different than car wreck cases since the injuries involved are often more significant. With regard to injuries, a person who’s riding a motorcycle doesn’t have the protections of a motor vehicle. They don’t have airbags. They don’t have anything to block impact. As a result, in many situations, motorcycle injury cases are far more severe than a general car wreck injury.
A very significant issue with motorcycle wreck cases is the public perception of motorcycle riders. I have heard people on my own juries say that they believe motorcycle riders are asking for it, or that motorcycle riders have a death wish. Things of that nature are the general perception of non-motorcycle riders in any given community. It’s important that you contact a lawyer who’s experienced with motorcycle cases and can effectively deal with jurors who may have these perceptions.
If you’ve been injured in a case involving a motorcycle accident and you need assistance in dealing with these issues, please give us a call so we can help you through the process.
5) Motorcycle Accident Claim with Minimal Medical Bills
Clients who have been injured in a motorcycle accident often want to know if there’s a minimum amount of medical expenses they need to have incurred in order to pursue a personal injury case. You really can’t determine if you have a good personal injury case just by the amount of medical expenses. Some personal injury cases are very good, even though they have small medical expenses, and there are some that may have large medical expenses, but aren’t very good cases.
One thing that you have to look into, especially with motorcycle cases, is liability. Motorcycle cases can be difficult because a lot of times fault is placed on the motorcycle rider. If it’s not a good case for assigning the liability to the other driver, it doesn’t really matter how much you have in medical expenses. On the other hand, you can have a case where the medical expenses are very small, but the case is still significant. You may have some stitches that you need, which won’t generate a lot of medical expenses, but when they leave permanent scarring, it can be a very valuable case.
The point is you must look at each case on its own merits and not just base your decision on the amount of medical expense. My advice would be that if you’re in a motorcycle wreck and you’ve sustained some injuries, talk to a personal injury attorney immediately so that you can have some help in getting your case lined up correctly.
6) Motorcycle Accident Settlement Timeline
We’re often asked how long it takes to settle a motorcycle injury case. The answer to that question is it varies greatly from case to case. Sometimes those cases can resolve fairly quickly, and sometimes they may take a long time and require a lawsuit and a trial. Determining factors include the extent of the injuries and how much insurance coverage the at-fault party has.
If you have been injured and the other party has $25,000 worth of insurance coverage, and your medical expenses alone were $50,000, that case is going to resolve very quickly. If you have a case where you have $25,000 in medical expenses and you healed from your injuries, and the other side has $100,000 worth of insurance coverage, there’s going to be a lot more fight over what the value of that case is, and those are going to take a lot longer to work through. With any type of suit like this, you have to look through the facts. If it’s a type of case where a lawsuit needs to be filed, you’re probably looking at six to eighteen months before being able to resolve, but again they are all very fact-intensive.
Were you or a loved one seriously injured in a motorcycle crash in Georgia and have questions about these 6 motorcycle accident tips for you?
Contact the experienced Atlanta motorcycle accident lawyers at The Gunnels Law Firm today to arrange a free consultation and case evaluation.
Let our experience work for you.
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