Riding a motorcycle is often dangerous because other vehicles on the road fail to give motorcycles equal treatment. They may crowd the rider, pass them in the same lane, or otherwise treat them with less respect than other cars on the road. While some accidents may be caused by motorcyclists’ dangerous decisions, such as lane splitting or passing too closely. However, car accident lawsuits and motorcycle accident lawsuits work very similarly. If you understand how a car accident case works, you should have no fear filing a motorcycle accident case.
The personal injury attorneys at The Queenan Law Firm file car accident and motorcycle accident lawsuits on behalf of injured drivers in the Dallas area. If you or a loved one was injured in a motorcycle accident or a car accident, talk to an attorney right away.
Motorcycle Accident Differences
In general, motorcycle accidents are often far more serious for the rider than they are for the driver of a car. Similarly, motorcyclists often suffer more serious injuries than the driver of a car would in the same situation. Without the protective shell of the car, its crumple zones, its seatbelts, its airbags, and even its windows, motorcycle riders can suffer very serious injuries. Because of this, many motorcycle accidents may be worth much more than the average car accident case.
Motorcycle riders face the potential of injuries that could be worth considerably more in court. If you take your case through car insurance, you might be missing the part of the lawsuit that usually has the highest value: damages for pain and suffering. These are awarded on top of the damages for medical bills to compensate you directly for your physical pain and mental suffering. Since more motorcycle cases are more serious, motorcycle injury cases should almost never be handled with the insurance company. Always talk to a lawyer about your motorcycle injuries.
Helmet laws also create confusion that makes motorcycle cases potentially difficult. Texas law requires riders under the age of 21 to wear helmets on a motorcycle. If you are under 21 and are injured on a motorcycle without a helmet, this could be used as evidence that you were partially responsible for your own injuries. The same kind of argument may work against a car driver who was not wearing a seatbelt. The potential damages for brain injuries that a helmetless rider seeks might be reduced because of helmet laws.
In the case of a rider over the age of 21 who was not wearing a helmet, you may still have your damages reduced to a degree. Wearing safety gear is always important on a motorcycle. Not only helmets, but proper gloves, pants, jackets, and even protective padding can save you from serious injuries. However, this does not mean that you are responsible for your own injuries if you did not wear these. You should still be able to recover from a negligent driver who injured you, even if you did not wear safety gear.
Motorcycle and Car Accident Lawsuit Similarities
Many of the other considerations for motorcycle and car accidents are the same. First, the legal insurance requirement for both types of vehicle are the same. Regardless of whether you are riding a motorcycle or driving a car, Texas requires insurance with the following minimum coverage:
- $30,000 in injury coverage, per person;
- $60,000 in injury coverage, per accident; and
- $25,000 in property damage coverage.
These requirements help ensure that, regardless of what kind of vehicles are involved in the accident, insurance companies will be able to reimburse the injured victims.
Even if you have insurance, you do not need to file your case with the insurance company. Insurance is most beneficial to you when you cause an accident, as it can pay for the other person’s injuries. If you are injured, going through an insurance company just leaves damages on the table. Insurance companies do not pay pain and suffering damages, ensuring you miss money you might be entitled to.
Texas law allows injured motorists to take their case to court, even if they have insurance. Some states with “no-fault” rules may make you give up your right to sue in court, but Texas protects that right. This means that whether you were injured in a car or a motorcycle, a lawyer can file a lawsuit to help ensure you do not leave damages uncompensated.
Dallas Motorcycle and Car Accident Attorneys
The Dallas personal injury lawyers at The Queenan Law Firm help injured motorcyclists and drivers get compensation for their injuries. If you were injured in an auto accident and need compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering, talk to an attorney today. Call (817) 476-1797 today for a free consultation on your case.