A motorcycle accident can cause devastating injuries that put your life on hold. If someone’s negligence caused your accident, you can explore legal options. When you’re filing a claim, it’s important to have representation at your side. The experienced Cincinnati motorcycle accident lawyers will help you get the compensation you deserve.
Bey & Associates, LLC has experienced lawyers who have successfully handled motorcycle claims in the past. We’re prepared to do everything possible to build your case to give you the best chance of getting favorable results.
After an accident, you may find insurance adjusters are contacting you to try and settle your case early. Their questions may start out as normal, but the information you give them could be used to reduce your compensation. For example, they may ask how you’re feeling, and you may think this is just a pleasantry. Typically, most people answer the question by saying they’re fine or they’re okay and you may do the same. However, the truth is that you’re not okay because of your injuries, but the insurance adjuster may use your answer as an indicator that your injuries aren’t as severe as you claim.
The insurance adjuster may also directly ask you about your injuries before you’ve had time to see a doctor. Without a medical evaluation, you will not know the extent of your injuries. If you start to tell the insurance adjuster about your injuries, you may miss something crucial. Some injuries may not present symptoms until days after the accident. When you’re seeking compensation, the insurance adjuster may say you didn’t mention pain in those areas in the initial conversation and you may not be able to get the full compensation you deserve.
With our lawyers at your side, you don’t have to worry about harassing phone calls from insurance adjusters. We can handle getting the correct information to the insurance company without putting your claim in jeopardy.
Before learning more about how our firm can help you, let’s look into the state’s laws on motorcycles.
Ohio Motorcycle Laws
Motorcyclists in Cincinnati should be aware of the state’s laws. In Ohio, a motorcyclist needs a valid motorcycle license or endorsement. Ohio Code 4511.53 states those under the age of 18, anyone with motorcycle operating endorsement, and novice license holders need to have and wear an approved helmet when riding. Additionally, every motorcycle rider needs to have and use protective eyewear.
While motorcyclists over the age of 18 have the option to not wear a helmet, it’s highly recommended they do. In 2018, there were 144 fatal motorcycle fatalities in Ohio. 47 motorcyclists were wearing helmets and the remaining 97 were not. When a motorcyclist is involved in a wreck, they have little to no protection from the impact. Helmets help absorb shock and can also prevent objects from penetrating the skull.
Ohio motorcyclists can take nearly every precaution to make themselves as safe as possible like wearing protective gear and driving defensively. However, negligent drivers can cause accidents that the motorcyclist can’t avoid.
How Do Motorcycle Accidents Happen?
There are many reasons why a motorcycle accident can happen. On the road, motorcyclists appear as much smaller objects than other cars. When a motorist is looking to change lanes or make a left-hand turn with oncoming traffic, they may look for cars but not notice a motorcyclist. If they don’t see the biker approaching, a wreck could happen.
While head-on collisions can cause the most damage, nearly any contact between a bike and motor vehicle can be enough to make the motorcyclist lose balance. Falling off the bike while traveling at high speeds can cause serious injuries that require immediate medical attention.
All motorcycle accidents, however, can be boiled down to one thing—negligence. When a motorcyclist and driver collide, the crash usually was caused by one or both of the participants being negligent. Whether they were distracted, speeding, or driving recklessly, their negligence caused the collision that led to their injuries, damages, and potentially their death.
Proving a negligent driver was how your motorbike accident happened is the first thing your lawyer will look into when they take your case. Let’s take a more in-depth look at the different types of motorcycle accidents to better understand how they happen.
Different Types of Motorcycle Accidents
The best way to avoid motorcycle accidents is to know the different types of collisions that happen between motorcycles and fixed objects or other vehicles. By looking into what causes motorbike accidents and the types of collisions that can happen while riding, you can be more aware of the potential dangers and be able to identify when you might be in danger of crashing.
These are the most common types of motorcycle accidents that occur:
- Left Turns. When a motorcyclist is driving through an intersection or attempting to pass another vehicle, and a regular sized car makes a left turn in front of them, it can be deadly for the motorcyclist. Left turn collisions are the most common type of motorcycle accidents and usually happen because the motorist does not see the motorcyclist in the intersection until it’s too late.
- Head-On Collisions. Even though motorcyclists under 18 must wear a helmet, and all other riders are heavily advised to wear a helmet, they cannot always protect a rider in a collision, especially head-on collisions. When a car and motorcyclist collide head-on, it is usually fatal for the motorcyclist.
- Lane Switching. Many drivers of regular sized motor vehicles do not fully check their blind spots before switching lanes. This can get them into accidents with other cars, but since motorcycles are even smaller and harder to see than regular cars, this can cause cars to collide with them even more easily when switching lanes.
- Lane Splitting. Lane splitting is when motorcyclists weave through traffic by driving between the lanes, which is illegal. Lane splitting leads to accidents because the other vehicles cannot anticipate where the motorcyclist is going, and they don’t expect a rider to be in between the lanes of the road.
- Road Conditions. Compared to regular vehicles, motorcycles are more sensitive to road conditions because they only have two wheels and rely on maintaining balance to stay upright. When road conditions are poor from weather or bad roads, then a motorcyclist is in danger of getting into a crash because of the road. When other vehicles hit bumps or lose control from poor road conditions, they might crash into a motorcycle as well.
- Speeding. Even though riding a motorcycle is a freeing feeling and makes it even more exhilarating to go fast, speeding is still very dangerous. When riders and other drivers speed, they have less time to react, and can easily collide with other vehicles or fixed objects in their paths. When motorcyclists travel at higher speeds and get into accidents, the collisions are typically more likely to be fatal for the rider.
- Driving While Impaired. Driving under the influence of alcohol and illicit drugs is not only illegal, but extremely dangerous for everyone on the road. Even using prescription drugs while riding a motorcycle can cause a rider to lose control and get into an accident. It’s important to only ride sober.
Riding a motorbike can be fun and freeing, but when riders and drivers alike are not vigilant, they can collide and get into serious accidents. A Cincinnati motorcycle accident lawyer from Bey & Associates can help you sort through the details of your collision and decide what your next legal moves should be.
Some of the things your attorney will look into to decide how to move forward with your case are your injuries, their severity, and their impact on the rest of your life. Let’s take a look at what makes injuries from motorcycle accidents so severe.
What Makes Motorcycle Injuries So Severe?
Motorcyclists are at risk of sustaining injuries like traumatic brain injuries, broken bones, internal organ damage, road rash, and soft tissue injuries. The injuries can easily become severe and sometimes life-threatening because there’s nothing to absorb the crash impact.
The medical expenses for these injuries can be expensive. You’ll likely need to stay in a hospital and receive professional care. Taking medication and undergoing surgical procedures may be part of the recovery. Additional care may be necessary after you leave the hospital, like going to physical therapy.
Depending on the severity of the injury, you might be dealing with a permanent or partial disability that could affect you for the rest of your life. This will add to your costs of care because you might have to pay for doctor’s visits, treatments, and medical equipment. These permanent injuries could also affect your ability to work and might leave you without a job.
When all these costs add up, you may be dealing with a mountain of medical bills. This can be overwhelming for anyone, but this doesn’t have to be only your responsibility. Our lawyers will fight for your rights so you can get the compensation that will allow you to cover your medical needs, as well as recovery for the other costs of the accident.
While medical bills would be considered economic damages, you’ve probably also dealt with non-economic damages. This covers items like pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life. An accident can not only cause physical injuries, but living with the injury and recovering can be emotionally challenging. Our lawyers will assess the noneconomic losses of your accident and keep that in mind when determining the compensation you deserve.
Get Trusted Legal Expertise
Motorcycle claims may be more complex than you’d expect. Unfortunately, there is a stigma against motorcyclists that stereotypes them as reckless, meaning they’re more likely the cause for the accident. Our Cincinnati attorneys understand this isn’t the case and will launch a full and thorough investigation to get the evidence to show how you weren’t at fault for the accident.
Our firm works with professionals like investigators and accident reconstructionist experts to find out how the accident happened, who was at fault, and how it resulted in your injuries. You can rest assured that we’re protecting your rights.
Schedule a free consultation with our firm today. We’ll go over the merits of your case and discuss your options. You deserve to have dedicated attorneys who will answer your questions, keep you updated on your case, and help you stand up to an insurance company when they’re trying to give you less compensation than you deserve. Bey & Associates, LLC is here for you.