Lane Splitting in Florida-Is it legal?

September 9, 2022 | Attorney, Matthew Dolman
Lane Splitting in Florida-Is it legal? Although drivers of cars are typically responsible for accidents involving motorcycles, Florida motor vehicle accidents can also be caused by motorcyclists engaging in reckless behavior. Accidents like these may result in serious injuries for all motorists involved, requiring victims to take time off from work and endure lengthy treatments. One example of negligent motorcyclist behavior is a driving habit known as lane splitting. As motorcycle accident lawyers in Florida, Dolman Law Group has handled many serious motorcycle accident claims involving lane splitting. This dangerous practice can cause accidents that have devastating financial, physical, and mental consequences for all parties involved. Our team will relentlessly pursue damages on your behalf in a motorcycle accident lawsuit. We encourage you to reach out to our award-winning team for further insight into your legal options.

Lane Splitting on a Motorcycle in Florida

When a motorcycle operator drives between two lanes of stopped or slower-moving cars in Florida, they are breaking the law. This behavior, known as “lane splitting,” is legal in some states. However, lane splitting is illegal in Florida for motorcyclists. Some motorcyclists engage in lane splitting to circumvent traffic, which can often frustrate drivers of passenger cars and large trucks. However, lane splitting is not only annoying, but also extremely dangerous. Drivers do not expect a motorcyclist to be in between their vehicle and the one adjacent. Motorcyclists may also enter a car's blind spot when engaging in lane splitting. When a driver is unable to see a motorcyclist or anticipate their next move, the chance of a serious collision increases. For example, they may swerve unexpectedly into the motorcyclist, or become distracted and rear-end another vehicle. The motorcyclist themselves may cut off other drivers, swerve into them, or maneuver their bikes in such a way that a motorcycle accident is unavoidable. This can lead to serious injuries and even death.

Is Lane Splitting Safe?

For anyone who does decide to split lanes, in jurisdictions where it is legal, there are a few things you can do to stay safe. First, be exceptionally alert when entering a car's blind spot. Next, make sure to utilize headlights and reflective clothing to increase visibility. Be aware of indications that a car is preparing to change lanes, such as turn signals and whether the car is trending towards one side of its lane. You can indicate that you're coming through by honking if a car gets too close. Never try to split lanes if the traffic is over 30 mph. There is too little time to make a correction in these cases.

Lane Splitting vs. Lane Sharing in Florida

This activity should be distinguished from “lane sharing.” Lane sharing occurs when two motorcycles occupy the same lane, side-by-side. This move is legal in Florida, as it is in most places. Lane sharing is only allowed with two motorcycles. This means three riders cannot ride next to each other in the same lane.

Common Injuries in a Florida Motor Vehicle Accident

As previously mentioned, drivers, passengers, and motorcyclists may all sustain serious injuries in accidents caused by lane splitting. Even though car drivers and passengers are protected by safety features such as airbags, seatbelts, and the frame of the car, that does not always save them from the impact of a collision. The following are a list of common accident injuries for both car and motorcycle accident victims.

Examples of Florida Accident Injuries:

Motorcyclists may sustain additional types of injuries, such as road rash and biker's arm. Make sure you see a healthcare provider as soon as possible for treatment after a crash, even if your injuries seem minor. Not only does this ensure you receive proper care, but it also establishes a record of your injuries that your motorcycle accident attorney can use to prove to the insurance company that your claims are valid.

Understanding Liability in a Florida Motorcycle Accident Claim

If an accident occurs when a motorcycle is lane splitting in Florida, they can potentially be held liable for the collision. In Florida, an accident victim will be compensated to the extent that their negligence did not contribute to an accident. Therefore, if a motorcyclist is solely at fault, then they will generally be unable to recover damages. The caveat to this rule is that if the rider can show that the other driver contributed to the accident. For example, if the driver was texting on their phone, weaving between lanes, or performing other careless maneuvers then they may be found to have contributed to the accident. There are other factors that may be considered by a judge when fault is being established. For example, whether the motorcyclist was riding with care, is an experienced rider, has specialized training such as motorcycle riding safety courses, and whether the other driver did something more dangerous than lane splitting. In order to prove this, the motorcyclist needs to be able to support their version of events. This means that if the accident victim isn't seriously injured, they need to make sure they collect the names and contact information of witnesses. Furthermore, using your cell phone to take pictures will help explain the circumstances. In that case, it's important to pay attention to where the damage occurs, any skid marks on the pavement and the weather conditions. A skilled motorcycle collision attorney can assist you in leveraging evidence to demonstrate liability.

Why Should I Choose Dolman Law Group to Represent Me in a Motorcycle Accident Lawsuit?

Dolman Law Group is a highly-respected personal injury law firm with offices across the state of Florida. Our motorcycle accident attorneys have provided invaluable legal insight to injured clients for over a decade. Our results-driven approach has yielded maximum compensation for our clients, as we don't pressure them to settle for less than what they deserve. Some of our recent results include:
  • 1.4 million dollars for a motorcycle accident client with multiple serious injuries
  • 5 million dollars for a car accident client with burn injuries
  • 1 million dollars for a client who sustained a traumatic brain injury in a motorcycle accident
We take our responsibility to our clients very seriously. If you review testimonials from former Dolman Law Group clients, you will find that we keep in close contact with our clients and devote ourselves to recovering the full value of the damages they have sustained as a result of someone else's negligence. When you have been severely injured in a motorcycle or car accident, you need a personal injury attorney you can trust. Dolman Law Group is prepared to be your voice as you pursue fair compensation.

Contact Dolman Law Group For Help With Your Motorcycle Accident Lawsuit

The safest option is to refrain from any type of lane splitting. However, if you have been injured in an accident caused by a motorcyclist who was lane splitting, you may be entitled to recover your damages.  Your health and financial future should not be compromised because someone else chose to behave recklessly. Dolman Law Group will be relentless advocates for your claim. Not only will we strategically negotiate on your behalf, but we will also escalate your accident injury lawsuit to trial to obtain a fair settlement. Motorcycle accident lawsuits can be complicated. Don't risk losing out on maximum compensation by taking on an insurance company by yourself. We take personal injury seriously because we understand the long-term and debilitating effects of motorcycle crashes. If you have been physically injured as a result of the negligence exhibited by an individual or corporation, call the motorcycle injury lawyers at the Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA for a free consultation and case evaluation. You can reach us at (727) 451-6900 or our website's online contact form. Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA 800 North Belcher Road Clearwater, FL 33765 (727) 451-6900


Matthew Dolman

Personal Injury Lawyer

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 successfully fought for more than 11,000 injured clients and acted as lead counsel in more than 1,000 lawsuits. Always on the cutting edge of personal injury law, Matt is actively engaged in complex legal matters, including Suboxone, AFFF, and Ozempic lawsuits.  Matt is a lifetime member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum and Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum for resolving individual cases in excess of $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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