When someone is hurt in a motorcycle accident, it can have devastating consequences. Some people even lose their lives in motorcycle crashes. Accident survivors in the Bronx need to understand their rights after a crash. Even though the laws aren't always easy to understand, they seem clearer once someone has had the chance to explain them. That's where a Bronx motorcycle accident lawyer at Dolman Law Group comes into the picture.
Most people who've been in an accident have no idea which steps they should take next. The good news is that an experienced Bronx motorcycle accident lawyer can help answer those questions with your best legal interests in mind. Plus, they can make a lot of aspects of the time after a crash easier. For example, your lawyer can help you talk to insurance companies, collect and document evidence, and manage your medical expenses.
Dolman Law Group: Serving Motorcycle Accident Survivors Throughout the Bronx
The Dolman Law Group offers motorcycle accident survivors a chance to seek legal representation after their crashes. We help individuals impacted by accidents pursue the compensation that they deserve after a crash and are proud to serve as advocates for the Bronx community.
In our experience, clients have questions about a lot more than what we can answer here. The web is a great resource to educate yourself and prepare to speak to an attorney. At the end of the day, only a lawyer who's heard your individual story can help you with your circumstances. You can reach out to our Bronx personal injury lawyers today to find out more about your rights or to schedule a FREE initial consultation.
Motorcycle Accidents Are Dangerous for Motorcyclists
In a perfect world, nobody would get into crashes. We live in a world where these things happen, though, and the truth is that most motorcycle accidents are worse for motorcyclists than for vehicle occupants. Statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration prove this point. The NHTSA has shared that motorcyclists are nearly 30 times more likely to die in an accident than people in passenger cars. Motorcyclist death tolls are on the rise, too.
Motorcycle Accidents: Motorcycles' Size and Weight
- Most motorcycles weigh about 400 pounds
- Typical passenger vehicles weigh about 4,000 pounds
- Large, fully-loaded trucks (like semi-trucks) can weigh up to 80,000 pounds
The numbers couldn't be more clear: if someone in a motorcycle gets into an accident, they're at a significant disadvantage compared to people in cars and trucks. Most motorcycle accidents end very badly for motorcycle drivers and riders. They don't have the same protection (or mass) that other vehicles afford. A motorcycle and a car that hit head-on are almost certain to cause catastrophic injury for the motorcyclist.
Why do Motorcycle Accidents Happen?
Frequent Causes of Motorcycle Accidents
Motorcycle accidents have lots of causes. They can happen for all sorts of reasons. Unfortunately, many motorcycle accidents are traced back to reckless or negligent drivers. Other drivers on the road don't tend to notice motorcyclists as easily as they do other vehicles; plus, some drivers just don't give motorcyclists the space or respect they deserve on the road. Your motorcycle accident lawyer will help you get into the details of how and why a crash happened.
At the beginning of the process, you just need to know the basics about your accident. Who seemed to cause the accident? To whom did the accident happen? Where, when, and (seemingly) why did it occur? Try to explain your accident. Your story might start with: Somebody swerving in front of you while you were on a motorcycle and cutting you off in an intersection
- Someone failing to yield to you when appropriate
- Inexperience on a motorcycle
- Lane splitting
- Cars making left-turns into or in front of you while you are on a motorcycle
All of the above are potential causes of motorcycle accidents.
It Isn't Always Easy to Determine the Cause of a Motorcycle Accident
The cause of a motorcycle accident has a lot to do with how the legal process works afterward. For example: say somebody got into a motorcycle accident. The accident was caused by stormy weather. In court, a jury and judge would need to determine:
- Whether the motorcycle driver was negligent for going out to drive in the weather
- Whether other drivers involved in the crash were negligent for going out to drive in the weather
- Whether other drivers were negligent or reckless and failed to drive safely in the weather
Common Injuries After Motorcycle Accidents
Just about any injury is possible after a motorcycle accident. Some people are thrown from bikes, dragged under vehicles, struck by debris, or even slammed into the road when they're on a motorcycle and get into a crash. It's very normal for people to experience a wide range of injuries following these accidents.
Keep in mind that the extent and severity of injuries vary from incident to incident, too. One person might walk away from a motorcycle accident with two broken bones and a “minor” concussion, while someone else would leave the same crash with numerous complete fractures, several burns, and severe head trauma. Some examples of injuries that people frequently experience because of motorcycle accidents include:
- Broken bones: Fractures may be minor or complete. Some break the skin or involve breaks in multiple places.
- Internal injuries: Internal injuries can be very dangerous because they are so difficult to detect. Prompt and thorough medical treatment improves the likelihood of spotting these injuries.
- Spinal cord injuries: We rely on our spinal cords to perform virtually every function in our daily lives. So, when someone's spinal cord is hurt or damaged, it can cause very severe consequences. Many spinal cord injuries cause some form of numbness, pain, or spasms.
- Brain injuries (including traumatic brain injuries): Traumatic brain injuries (known as TBIs) have the potential to create lifelong complications for survivors. Even if someone “only has to suffer” a relatively mild traumatic brain injury, it could still have a devastating impact on their well-being.
- Road rash: Road rash is a very common injury in bikers, motorcyclists, pedestrians, and other people involved in car crashes but not inside of vehicles. Some people in cars are affected by road rash, too, but this only occurs when they are thrown from their vehicles or part of their body drags over the ground through a window.
- Burns: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention state that burn severity can vary based on the type of burn you suffered. Types of burns include first-degree, second-degree, and third-degree burns. First-degree burns involve the top layer of the skin, while second-degree burns involve the first two layers of skin. Third-degree burns penetrate the entire thickness of the skin and destroy the tissue. The treatment for burns can be a long and painful process.
- Bruises: MedlinePlus reports that bruises occur when small blood vessels are crushed but do not break the skin. The blood is trapped under the skin, leaving a mark. Bruises usually take two weeks to fade but can sometimes take up to months to go away.
- Lacerations: Lacerations are skin wounds that can be jagged or torn. These can be common in motorcycle accidents because of the direct contact a motorcyclist could have with the ground.
- Soft tissue injuries: These include any injuries to the muscles, tendons, and ligaments. These can commonly occur during motorcycle crashes caused by the impact with other objects.
- Back injuries: Mayo Clinic states that back injuries occur when there is damage, wear, or trauma to the bones, muscle, and tissues in the back. These types of injuries can be very painful and limit your movement. Treatments vary based on the severity and type of injury.
- Neck injuries: Neck injuries are common in motorcycle accidents because of the vulnerability of the motorcyclist. There are muscles, bones, joints, ligaments, tendons, and nerves in your neck that could be injured. Treatments for neck injuries vary based on the type and severity of the injury.
- Head injuries: A common head injury is a traumatic brain injury (TBI), and this type of injury can affect how the brain works. TBI's are a major cause of death and disability. They are caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head. This is why it is important to wear a helmet while riding a motorcycle to lessen the chance of a severe TBI after a motorcycle accident.
If you have questions about your injuries after a motorcycle accident, contact a medical or legal professional as soon as possible.
Left-Turn Motorcycle Accidents
Left-turn motorcycle accidents are so frequent that they have their own colloquial name. Most crash experts distinguish between left-turn accidents and other accidents because left-turn crashes tend to have some of the same causes.
Many vehicle drivers, for example, do not properly estimate motorcyclists' speed. This leads them to strike motorcyclists as they try to make a left turn. Some drivers don't even see motorcyclists at all, go to turn left, and then suddenly strike them or cut them off.
What to Do After a Motorcycle Accident
It's important to take the proper steps after a motorcycle accident. When you decide to take action to keep yourself and others safe (and to protect your legal rights), it can help make your post-accident experience a lot easier. Always prioritize the physical well-being of anyone in an accident.
Make sure you can stand before you try to walk, and if you can, try to speak to other people in the accident. If your head, neck, or back hurt very badly (or if they prevent you from walking), stay still until help arrives.
The next step you take should be to contact local authorities. You can dial 9-1-1, and the operator will send the appropriate parties. The police will come to survey the scene and complete an accident report. They can also help with disagreements on-scene. If necessary, a fire or first aid response may be sent to help after your accident. After you can make sure everybody is not in immediate danger and you contact 911:
- Collect evidence: You can collect helpful (sometimes critical) evidence and information right after a motorcycle accident occurs. One example includes taking photos and videos of injuries, damage, and any signs of a collision (like tire marks on the road). You should also take down the information of any other drivers involved in your accident. That means you can ask them for their driver's license, insurance, and contact information.
- Pursue medical attention: It's very important to pursue medical attention as soon as you can after an accident. For some people, this is very easy—they may receive emergency transport to a medical facility. Even if you didn't receive transport, though, you should book an appointment with your own doctor for a check-in. He or she can look you over for delayed symptoms and help you determine what's normal and what's not. Even if you already received medical care, you should still go see your doctor to keep them up to date on your condition.
- Consult our legal professionals: Even though this is just a few steps down the list, it's critical. You can and should consult with several legal professionals who may help you after your accident. Get in touch with a motorcycle accident lawyer to find out about your rights and what compensation you may pursue.
Recoverable Damages After a Motorcycle Accident
There's a lot of information out there about what sorts of compensation someone can receive after a motorcycle accident. If you take legal action against the person (or people) responsible for your accident, you may receive compensation to help account for:
- Medical expenses: This includes past, present, and projected medical bills associated with your accident.
- Lost wages: It's very common for people to need to miss time from work after a motorcycle accident. If this is you, you could recover compensation to account for the lost wages.
- Diminished earning capacity: Some motorcycle accidents permanently change people's ability to earn money. Those people can work with a lawyer to pursue damages for diminished earning capacity.
- Pain and suffering: Nobody deserves to live through the physical pain many motorcycle accidents cause. Pain and suffering damages are available for people who have been hurt in motorcycle accidents and suffered physically as a result.
When the Insurance Company Starts Calling After a Motorcycle Accident
Here's the biggest tip anyone can offer when it comes to insurance companies after a motorcycle accident: once they start calling, just say no. Don't accept the settlements they offer you. Don't agree to anything. Even if what they're offering appears to be in your best interest, you can always ask a lawyer about that to find out the truth. It's best not to believe that an insurance adjuster is working on your side.
It's a common tactic: you've been on the phone with the insurance agent forever, but it still feels like they're trying to push you to talk for even longer. It's not your imagination! Insurance agents really do this. The longer you talk, the more likely you are to let intimate details about your accident slip. Insurance companies will use any opportunity (and any piece of information) they can to avoid helping you get the money you deserve after a crash. When those calls start stretching on for too long, it's time to hang up and dial an attorney.
Frequently Asked Questions About Bronx Motorcycle Accidents
We get a lot of questions about motorcycle accidents. Even though we always recommend asking your own lawyer about your concerns, we've put together a brief guide to some of the most commonly asked questions about Bronx motorcycle accidents.
Why Are Motorcyclists at Risk on the Road in the Bronx?
Is it more dangerous to drive a motorcycle than a car? When people are on motorcycles, they face more risk than the people around them in cars. The NHTSA has released data that tells us motorcyclists are 30 times more likely to die in an accident than people in passenger cars—but why?
- Motorcycles have narrow profiles, which makes it easy for them to become hidden or obscured on the road.
- Motorcycles are small—they often appear further away than they are, which can be confusing for drivers.
- Motorcycles often slow without activating their brake lights; it can be difficult to tell when they are going to brake.
- People in cars don't always understand that motorcyclists shift lanes for valid reasons; it's easy to stereotype motorcyclists are reckless and drive less carefully near them.
Do I Have to Call the Police After a Motorcycle Accident?
What do the police do after a motorcycle accident? It's best to get in touch with local police if you or someone else is in a motorcycle accident. Calling the police after a motorcycle or car crash helps you in several ways: it ensures the accident scene is properly investigated and cleaned, it allows you to file an accident report, and the police may speak to witnesses on-scene.
How Are Motorcycle Insurance and Auto Insurance Different?
Are car insurance and motorcycle insurance the same? Motorcycle and car insurance both exist to help protect people and their property while they drive. The two types of insurance share a lot of fundamental building blocks; but, with that said, there are differences between them.
- Car insurance (usually) includes passengers alongside the person who's driving and insured.
- Motorcycle insurance doesn't automatically include passengers; you're more likely to have passengers in a car than on a motorcycle.
- You do have the option to purchase guest passenger liability insurance for passengers on your motorcycle.
- Car insurance PIP levels are usually lower than motorcycle insurance PIP levels.
- People on motorcycles are more likely to get hurt in accidents than people in cars.
- Most motorcycle add-ons (think accessories like backrests) require additional insurance coverage.
What Kind of Bronx Motorcycle Insurance Should I Have?
What's the best kind of motorcycle insurance? Nobody can say for sure—you're best off speaking to an insurance agent and doing your research. There are several kinds of insurance that people can choose from when they select coverage. Some states require motorcyclists to carry certain types of insurance.
- Liability insurance accounts for the costs of damage caused by the motorcycle driver (property damage, injuries, and so on).
- Personal injury protection (or PIP) coverage helps you cover costs if you're hurt in a motorcycle accident. Medical expenses, lost wages, and some other losses can all make you eligible for compensation under PIP coverage.
- Collision insurance may help account for some of the damage caused by collisions between motorcycles and other objects or vehicles.
- Comprehensive insurance covers damages that occur to your vehicle but are not related to driving (ie fire and theft).
- Uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage protects people when they're in accidents with other people who are not (or not adequately) insured.
All of these types of insurance are very common. In fact, even people who drive cars can choose from these insurance varieties. Other forms of insurance coverage are exclusive to motorcyclists:
- Guest passenger liability insurance helps protect people who ride on (but don't drive) motorcycles. It's like PIP for motorcycle passengers.
- Added equipment or accessories coverage can be added to comprehensive coverage; it's a good way to protect bike add-ons in the event of an accident.
- Original equipment manufacturer (or OEM) parts coverage offers coverage that ensures the use of OEM parts during repairs.
- Personal item and carried contents coverage protects valuable items someone may have with them or their bike; if these items are stolen or damaged, they may be covered under personal item insurance.
What If My Bronx Accident Was Caused By a Pothole? Can I Still Sue? Can I Still Pursue Compensation?
Are accidents caused by potholes the government's fault? Probably. If you have been hurt in a motorcycle accident because of a pothole, you may have the right to sue and pursue compensation for damages. These crashes can sometimes be traced to government agencies.
Those agencies are responsible for maintaining safe roadways and creating safe conditions for drivers. When they fail to do so, they may be held liable for accidents. We recommend working with a seasoned motorcycle accident attorney to determine whether a government agency was responsible for your motorcycle accident. If you've been hurt by a pothole or other road conditions, it's very possible.
How Much Money Can I Get for My Bronx Motorcycle Accident Case?
What is a motorcycle accident case worth? Nobody can predict how much money you may be eligible to recover after a motorcycle accident. Many factors influence compensation following a crash. Since every motorcycle accident is unique, even your own lawyer may not tell you exactly how much compensation you'll receive.
The value of your case is affected by a lot of different things. If you receive a case value estimate from an attorney, he or she will have probably considered:
- How and why the accident happened
- Your insurance coverage
- Insurance coverage for anyone else involved in the accident
- Your medical costs
- The time you took off of work or wages you lost due to the accident
- Damage to your motorcycle and other material possessions
- Your prior health and current age at the time of the accident
How Long Will My Bronx Motorcycle Accident Case Take?
What is the average length of a motorcycle accident case? Nobody can tell you for sure. Some cases finish relatively quickly; some take months (or even over a year) to settle. Several factors may affect your case's length, but generally speaking:
- Cases with very high damages take longer
- Cases that involve more severe injuries take longer
- Cases with numerous or unknown responsible parties take longer
What Injuries Make Bronx Motorcycle Accident Cases Take Longer?
Remember: there's never a guarantee when it comes to legal cases. Experience will tell you, though, that some injuries lead to longer cases. Those severe or complex injuries often include:
- Traumatic brain injuries: Some traumatic brain injuries are considered “mild.” Even though these can have a big impact on someone's day-to-day life, it doesn't even begin to take into account what happens after a more severe TBI. Someone who suffers a TBI during a motorcycle accident may need expensive surgeries, extensive treatment, and so on. All of these tend to be associated with longer cases.
- Injuries causing disability or disfigurement
- Spinal cord injuries: A spinal cord injury has the potential to be life-ending. Some spinal cord injuries require long bouts of treatment or expensive care. Treatments are often extensive and may need to be repeated, which only draws out the legal process.
- Some bone fractures: Obviously, no bone fracture is a good bone fracture. If you've broken a bone in a motorcycle accident, you know that the break doesn't need to be “severe” for its impact on your life to be tremendous. With that said: some bone fractures are much more medically demanding than others. If bones break the skin or break in several places, it can easily take them upwards of a year to heal. If expensive treatment or surgery is required, that only adds to the costs and waiting time associated with a legal claim.
This list is far from exhaustive. Experiencing one of these injuries isn't a guarantee you'll deal with a long case, either. Some TBIs may allow for legal work to begin within weeks or months after an accident. The wrong bone fracture, on the other hand, might set someone back months or a year.
How Can a Bronx Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Help After a Motorcycle Accident?
A lawyer can help you with every step of the legal process after a motorcycle accident. Read on for more.
Finding the Right Lawyer
Before your attorney can help you, you'll need to find them first. Finding the right motorcycle accident lawyer for your unique case might take some time. Most legal professionals recommend you consult with a few attorneys before you make any decisions.
- You are not legally required to have an attorney to file a lawsuit.
- With that said, most legal professionals (and former plaintiffs) would advise that you partner with a lawyer before a suit.
- It's easier to deal with the legal process when you have someone with legal education and practice on their side.
When you're looking for a motorcycle accident attorney, you'll get to ask lawyers questions about your case. They'll ask you questions, too—they may ask about the circumstances around your accident or your experiences after the accident. You may ask for case value estimations during these consultations as well.
The Investigation and Negotiation Processes
Whichever lawyer you choose to partner with, they'll begin an investigative process once you're working together. Your attorney will investigate what happened before, during, and after your accident. They will help determine a cause for the accident and create detailed documentation to prove what resulted. Investigation encompasses:
- What lead to the accident
- The accident itself
- The results of the accident
By the end of the investigative process, your attorney will have a full picture of why and how your accident happened. They will also clearly demonstrate the losses (and other consequences) you faced as a result of the crash. Your lawyer will help you make demands during negotiations.
Once you begin the negotiation phase of your case, you and your lawyer can make demands for damages. It is very common for cases to settle outside of court during the negotiation phase. Your attorney will likely reach out to the defendant's attorney or insurance company to begin negotiation.
Filing Your Motorcycle Accident Injury Lawsuit
Sometimes, a Bronx motorcycle accident lawsuit is necessary after a motorcycle accident. When negotiation doesn't prove fruitful, litigation may be the next step. If the parties cannot agree on a settlement and proceed to trial, the trial discovery stage of your suit begins.
Both sides in your suit will collect evidence and documentation. Both sides can ask questions of each other. In some cases, legal teams even agree at this phase of a lawsuit. Other cases may require a mediator for settling out of court.
Trial, If Necessary
If mediation does not prove successful for your case, your lawyer may advise you it's best to go to trial. This might raise some concern at first. Remember: if you selected the right lawyer for your case, he or she will offer you support throughout the entirety of your trial. They'll answer your questions and help represent you in the most beneficial way possible.
Why Choose The Dolman Law Group?
At our firm, we advocate for fair compensation. We deliver personal attention to each client to give their case the time and attention it needs. Our firm has extensive financial resources and can take on large corporations. We have also gone up against most of the large insurance carriers.
Our trial attorneys are award-winning and have a reputation for advocating on behalf of our injured clients. If you choose our firm, you can expect the following:
- We offer free case evaluations.
- We do not charge a fee unless you recover money. We offer this to our clients because we are so confident in our abilities to reach a positive outcome.
- You will receive your attorney's personal cell phone number so you can reach them when needed. If we are unable to answer your call, we will get back to you quickly.
We Have Recovered Millions for Our Clients
Since 2009, we have recovered millions for our clients in personal injury cases. This includes:
- $5 million was awarded in a car accident case that resulted in burn injuries.
- $3.85 million was awarded in a truck accident case resulting in a brain injury.
- $1.75 million was awarded in a truck accident case where our client needed shoulder surgery and had a traumatic brain injury.
- $1.58 million was awarded in an auto accident resulting in our client having two herniated discs that were impinging on their spinal cord.
Dolman Law Group: Your Bronx Motorcycle Accident Lawyers
If you or someone you love was hurt in a Bronx motorcycle accident, you deserve legal support. A skilled attorney can help empower you throughout the legal process and may help you recover more damages than you would on your own. Motorcycle accident survivors can take advantage of a free initial consultation with one of our skilled Bronx motorcycle accident associates.
Reach out to us today to find out more about our legal team or to ask about representation. You can also reach us via phone.
Bronx Office Location
3250 Westchester Ave, suite 200A/B
Bronx, NY 10461
“AMAZING and understanding attorneys! Did great on my case and I highly recommend Dolman Law Group Accident Injury Lawyers, PA for anyone that has been injured in an accident!" Rating: 5/5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Koralis R. Jan 2020 Read more reviews on Google!