Facial Injuries Caused by Motorcycle Accidents

April 27, 2022
Facial Injuries Caused by Motorcycle Accidents

Motorcycle Accident Impact Can Cause Facial Injuries

Motorcycle accidents are particularly dangerous because a motorcyclist has almost no protection to shield themselves from the impact of a larger vehicle. A crash with another vehicle can directly impact the motorist's body parts and lead to severe and permanent injuries. Victims of motorcycle accidents commonly suffer facial injuries because of how sensitive the face can be to impact. Impact to the face, nose, mouth, teeth, jaw, and eyes can lead to disfiguring injuries such as broken bones, abrasions, and lacerations that can permanently affect one's appearance.  Facial injuries require steep medical costs, with facial reconstruction surgery possibly needed to heal structural damage. If a driver caused an accident by operating their vehicle recklessly, you could be entitled to compensation. A motorcycle accident lawyer can help you file a claim to work toward receiving payment for your injuries.  

Florida Law Regarding Helmet Use While Riding a Motorcycle

According to Florida Statute 316.211, a person over the age of 21 is not required to wear a helmet if they have an insurance policy that can cover at least $10,000 worth of damages. If a motorist has purchased a personal injury protection plan (as dictated by Florida's no-fault laws), they can ride their motorcycle without a helmet. Despite the law not making it a requirement, all motorcycle riders should consider wearing a helmet. A helmet is the only equipment that can protect a motorcycle rider. A helmet is essential to mitigating the chance of incurring a facial injury, as the face shield can protect your face from receiving damage from debris. Helmets that forego facial protection that are legal under Florida standards do exist but the use of these is not recommended for obvious reasons. 

A Motorcycle Accident Can Cause a Facial Fracture

A facial fracture occurs when the impact from a motorcycle accident can cause one of the bones in the face to break. Blunt force trauma and penetrating trauma can both cause a facial fracture, as the intense pressure from both can lead to a bone in the face breaking. The symptoms of a facial fracture can differ based on what facial bone broke. The following are the bones that can break during a motorcycle accident and cause a facial fracture:
  • Frontal bone
  • Cheekbones
  • Orbital bones
  • Nasal bones
  • Upper jawbones
  • Mandible
It is vital to seek medical attention if you feel you suffered a facial injury from a motorcycle accident. Although some facial fractures are minor, a complex fracture can result in nerve damage and potentially be life-threatening. 

Facial Lacerations Caused by Motorcycle Accidents

A facial laceration is a cut to the face and can include abrasions or hematomas. Debris impacting the face and road rash can both cause a facial laceration in a motorcycle accident. This soft tissue injury can be minor, only requiring at-home remedies. However, a severe facial laceration can cause non-stop bleeding and require the assistance of a medical professional. The damage of a facial laceration can compound if you do not pursue medical treatment, as it can lead to an infection.

A Broken Jaw Caused by Blunt Force Trauma from a Motorcycle Accident

The impact from a motorcycle accident can lead to an injury to the mandible or the upper jawbone and cause a broken jaw. Blunt force and penetrating trauma can cause a bone to frature and lead to a broken jaw.  The following are some of the symptoms of a broken jaw:
  • Bleeding from the mouth
  • Bruising of the jaw or cheek
  • Difficulty breathing, speaking, chewing, or swallowing
  • Facial numbness
  • Inability to open or close your mouth fully

A Dislocated Jaw Caused by a Motorcycle Accident

A motorcycle accident victim can also suffer a dislocated jaw. A dislocated jaw occurs when the impact from a motorcycle accident forces the lower jawbone to misalign from one of the two temporomandibular joints (TMJs) that connects the mandible to the skull. Blunt force trauma from a motorcycle accident can cause this misalignment. 

The Damages Inflicted by Motorcycle Accident Facial Injuries

In most cases, facial injuries are not life-threatening and can usually heal with adequate medical treatment but the damages these injuries inflict go beyond the usual mortal endangerment typically posed by many motorcycle accident injuries. Facial injuries can cause significant scarring and disfigurement that can affect people's lives in a myriad of ways.  There are of course the economic damages of medical bills and lost wages that come with treatment and recovery of these injuries. You may even rely on your appearance in your work and lose earning potential because of a scar.  These damages can be significant but the less tangible mental anguish that comes with facial disfigurement can in a way be even more severe. Having your appearance changed can have a significant effect on a person's mental health and lead to issues like depression and anxiety that decrease one's quality of life. Relationships can be affected and a person's self-worth in general can be impacted by something like a prominent scar. 

Filing a Motorcycle Accident Claim

Motorcycle drivers are subject to the same no-fault laws as Florida car drivers. They must purchase personal injury protection to cover up to $10,000 worth of damages associated with a motorcycle accident. You can file a motorcycle accident claim against the at-fault driver's insurance company if your damages exceed your insurance policy's limits. A motorcycle accident lawyer can help you assess your options for pursuing compensation. Motorcycle accident injuries can have long, arduous healing processes that make handling a motorcycle injury claim especially difficult. A motorcycle accident lawyer can simplify the process of recovering damages and take over the burden of handling your claim while you focus on recovery. They can collect evidence, interview witnesses, send the demand letter, negotiate the settlement, and represent you in court.

Liability in a Motorcycle Accident Claim

Seeking compensation for a motorcycle accident by filing a claim requires your lawyer to prove the at-fault driver's liability. If they acted negligently when operating their vehicle, they could be liable for the damages they caused. Your lawyer will have to find evidence that proves the defending party's negligence and proves you were obeying traffic laws. Dangerous motorcycle actions, such as lane-splitting, can lead to you being assigned more liability for the damages and reduce your potential compensation. Your lawyer could present video footage, photos, medical records, or ticket or arrest records to prove the at-fault driver's liability. This evidence could lead to the insurance company paying you a settlement for the damages their driver is responsible for.

Contact Dolman Law Group for Help With Your Motorcycle Accident Claim

Dolman Law Group can assist you in filing a motorcycle accident claim. The damages you could receive from a successful motorcycle accident claim include medical expenses, lost wages, lost earning potential, property damage, disability costs, wrongful death, and pain and suffering. Dolman Law Group has lawyers with specific experience with motorcycle accident claims, which means they will be able to use some of their past cases to give you the best possible legal counsel. They will use the techniques that have made Dolman Law one of Florida's most renowned personal injury law firms to put you in the position to potentially receive compensation for your motorcycle accident injuries. Get in touch with Dolman Law Group today for a free consultation. Call 833-55-CRASH or leave us a message on our online contact page.  

Matthew Dolman

Clearwater Personal Injury and Insurance Attorney

This article was written and reviewed by Matthew Dolman. Matt has been a practicing civil trial, personal injury, products liability, and mass tort lawyer since 2004. He has represented over 11,000 injury victims and has served as lead counsel in over 1000 lawsuits. Matt is a lifetime member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum and Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum for resolving individual cases in excess or $1 million and $2 million, respectively. He has also been selected by his colleagues as a Florida Superlawyer and as a member of Florida’s Legal Elite on multiple occasions. Further, Matt has been quoted in the media numerous times and is a sought-after speaker on a variety of legal issues and topics.

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