Should I Get a Lawyer for a Motorcycle Accident?
A motorcycle accident may result in severe injuries, harrowing emotional trauma, and significant financial burden. Navigating the insurance claims process or even taking on the negligent party directly can create an additional burden and end poorly. You need an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer to recover enough compensation to cover your damages.
6 Ways a Motorcycle Accident Attorney Can Handle Your Motorcycle Claim on Your Behalf
Attempting to handle your motorcycle claim without the help of a trained legal professional is a fool’s errand. The following are just a few of the complex and maze-like processes that an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer can handle on your behalf:
Establish Liability for the Accident
Fault in motorcycle accident cases directly affects the compensation you may recover. The involvement of multiple parties, unclear traffic regulations, or lack of evidence establishing responsibility can make establishing liability challenging.
A skilled motorcycle accident attorney can establish fault by thoroughly investigating your accident, gathering and analyzing evidence, and holding negligent parties accountable.
Provide an Accurate Assessment of Your Damages
Recent statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) show that 180,000 people seek emergency medical treatment for motorcycle accident injuries yearly. The CDC describes the economic costs of these injuries as significant.
The severity of your injuries and the extent of property damage can significantly influence the compensation you are entitled to. Severe injuries may require extensive medical treatments, rehabilitation, and long-term care, which could lead to substantial expenses.
With their experience and knowledge in personal injury law, a motorcycle accident attorney can accurately assess the extent of your damages. They can ensure you receive fair compensation for your losses, including medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering, and property damage.
Negotiate With Insurance Adjusters
Insurance companies often employ various tactics to minimize the compensation they pay motorcycle accident victims. These tactics can include disputing the severity of your injuries, blaming you or another party, or offering a quick, lowball settlement before you fully understand the extent of your injuries and damages.
An experienced motorcycle accident attorney can help level the playing field by negotiating assertively with insurance adjusters on your behalf. They can counteract the tactics used by insurance companies, ensuring you receive a fair settlement that accurately reflects the true value of your claim.
Provide Legal Experience and Knowledge
Navigating the legal system and understanding the complexities of personal injury law can be challenging without an experienced attorney by your side. Motorcycle accident cases can be particularly complex due to unique traffic regulations that apply to motorcyclists and the severity of the injuries sustained.
Hiring a lawyer with extensive experience in handling motorcycle accident cases can be invaluable. They can have a deep understanding of the nuances of the law, the ability to anticipate potential challenges in your case, and the knowledge of how to build a strong claim that maximizes your chances of obtaining fair compensation.
Meet the Deadline to Take Legal Action
Every state has a deadline for filing motorcycle accident injury claims, called a statute of limitations. Failing to file by this deadline can result in losing your right to seek compensation for your injuries and damages.
Statutes of limitations vary by state. The clock starts ticking on the day of the accident, so o contact an attorney immediately.
A knowledgeable motorcycle accident attorney can file your claim within the appropriate time frame. They can protect your right to pursue compensation and avoid any potential legal issues that may arise from filing a claim too late.
Provide Legal Representation in Court, if Necessary
While most personal injury claims settle out of court, there is always the possibility of a case going to trial if this is necessary to reach a fair settlement. In such instances, having an experienced attorney by your side is invaluable. They can skillfully present your case to the court, utilizing their skill and knowledge of the legal system to maximize your chances of achieving a favorable outcome.
They can present compelling evidence, examine and cross-examine witnesses, and deliver persuasive arguments to the judge and jury. Legal representation can maximize your chances of obtaining a favorable verdict and just compensation for your injuries and damages.
You Can Benefit From a Motorcycle Accident Injury Attorney
Experienced attorneys can have much to offer their clients.
A Knowledge of Motorcycle Accident Laws and Regulations
Hiring a motorcycle accident lawyer can ensure you are working with someone who comprehensively understands the specific laws and regulations governing motorcycle accidents. Their knowledge allows them to navigate your case through the legal system effectively, protect your rights, and pursue the compensation you deserve.
The Skill to Negotiate With Insurance Companies
As mentioned earlier, insurance companies often employ tactics to minimize payouts to injured individuals. A motorcycle accident attorney has the experience and knowledge to counter these tactics and negotiate assertively on your behalf. They understand the value of your claim and can effectively advocate for fair compensation.
The Ability to Gather Evidence and Build a Strong Case
You need a lawyer to gather thorough and compelling evidence to establish liability and prove your injuries and damages.
An experienced lawyer can help collect and analyze vital evidence such as:
- Police reports.
- Medical records.
- Witness statements.
- Accident-scene photographs.
- Opinions from industry experts.
This comprehensive approach to evidence collection can significantly strengthen your case and may increase your chances of obtaining fair compensation.
A Network of Professional Experts and Resources
According to data from the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration, 80 percent of reported motorcycle crashes result in injuries. Motorcycle accident lawyers have a network of medical experts and other professionals who can provide valuable testimony supporting your injury claim.
These industry experts can help substantiate your injuries, explain the need for ongoing treatment, and project future medical expenses. This testimony may be crucial in obtaining fair compensation for your damages.
How Much Does a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Cost?
One significant concern for many individuals involved in motorcycle accidents is the cost of hiring a lawyer. Many personal injury attorneys work on a contingency fee basis. They collect their attorney fees after they successfully obtain compensation for you. The contingency fee is typically a percentage of the recovered amount.
If you do not win a settlement, you may still be responsible for other expenses, such as filing fees, expert witness fees, and court costs. Most motorcycle accident lawyers offer a free consultation, where you can further discuss their payment structure.
A Lower Settlement Amount
If you sustained minor injuries in a motorcycle accident involving straightforward liability, you may feel that self-representation can save you the cost of legal fees and may result in a quicker resolution. Not hiring a lawyer, however, carries the risk of receiving a lower settlement or losing your case entirely due to inexperience and lack of knowledge regarding personal injury law and negotiation tactics.
An Inadequate Assessment of Damages
When pursuing a motorcycle accident claim, seeking compensation for economic and non-economic damages is essential. An adequate assessment can maximize your settlement amount.
Economic damages are those that you can quantify in terms of dollar amounts like:
- Current and future medical expenses.
- Lost income.
- Repair or replacement of your damaged motorcycle.
- The cost of hiring in-home care or assistance.
Not hiring an attorney places you at particular risk of underestimating the cost of your future medical expenses and future lost income.
Noneconomic damages refer to intangible losses such as:
- Pain and suffering.
- Emotional distress.
- Diminished quality of life.
- Loss of consortium for your spouse.
Insurance companies may quickly dismiss these difficult-to-prove noneconomic damages.
Your lawyer can provide a thorough accounting of your economic and non-economic damages. Both types of damages can significantly influence the outcome of your case.
A Faster Resolution That Compromises Your Settlement Amount
Hiring a lawyer can result in a more favorable outcome for your case. You could receive a quicker payment if you choose to handle your claim independently, but your compensation will significantly decrease and could leave you with thousands of dollars in bills you will need to pay.
How to Find a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer to Handle Your Case
Many people consult a lawyer for the first time after a motorcycle accident. “How do I find a lawyer?” is a common question. Below are some ways you can find a lawyer that can meet your needs.
Read Online Reviews and Testimonials
When searching for a motorcycle accident lawyer, begin by researching potential candidates online. Read reviews and testimonials from former clients to understand the attorney’s reputation, success rate, and communication style. No lawyer can guarantee a specific outcome, but a history of favorable results can be indicative of their skill and dedication.
Ask for Referrals From Friends and Family
Another valuable resource for finding a lawyer is personal referrals from friends and family. If someone you know had a positive experience with a motorcycle accident attorney, they could give you a first-hand account of their experience. This referral allows you to gauge whether the lawyer may fit your needs.
Take Advantage of Free Consultations
Many law firms that handle motorcycle injury cases offer free consultations or case reviews. This initial, brief meeting allows you to ask questions and gain knowledge.
Assess the Lawyer’s Experience and Skill
Once you identify potential candidates, schedule an initial consultation with each lawyer. During this meeting, discuss your case and ask questions to assess their experience with motorcycle accident cases.
Inquire about their success rate, case strategy, and any challenges they foresee with your claim. This meeting allows you to evaluate the attorney’s experience, their communication style, and whether they take a genuine interest in your case.
Discuss Fees and Potential Outcomes
During the initial consultation, discuss the lawyer’s fee structure, including contingency fees and any additional expenses that may arise during the case. Ask for an estimate of your potential compensation, but remember that no lawyer can provide a guaranteed outcome. Knowing a possible settlement amount can help you weigh the anticipated costs and potential benefits before you decide to hire an attorney.
Don’t Wait to Consult a Motorcycle Accident Injury Attorney
Consult a personal injury attorney as soon as possible: You don’t want to miss your state’s deadline to file a claim. A consultation with an attorney can provide you with valuable insights into the legal process. You can learn about any potential challenges your case may face and what options you have for moving forward.
After consulting with potential lawyers, trust your instincts when deciding who is to represent you. Choose a lawyer with whom you feel comfortable and confident in their ability to handle your case effectively. While the attorney’s experience and success rate are crucial, your rapport with your personal injury attorney in Phoenix can significantly affect your satisfaction with the legal process and its outcome.