Due to their lack of protection, a crash involving a motorcycle often results in severe and even life-threatening injuries. Unfortunately, Florida has one of the highest crash fatality rates in the nation, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
If you were injured in a motorbike collision, a Pinellas County motorcycle accident lawyer might be able to help. A compassionate attorney could listen to your unique circumstances and work tirelessly to build a case to hold the negligent drivers responsible.
Common Causes of Motorcycle Collisions
Many motorcycle collisions are the result of another motorist’s negligent actions. Often, this is because a driver violates a motorcyclist’s right-of-way, or otherwise disregards their presence on the road. Similarly, a driver might fail to see a biker for a variety of reasons, such as when they are distracted, or because motorcycles are smaller than other vehicles on the road.
When a driver of an automobile overlooks a motorcycle, it might cause them to take a number of actions that increase the likelihood of a crash. These include:
- Making a turn in front of the motorcyclist
- Changing lanes in the path of the motorcyclist
- Striking the motorcycle from behind in an intersection
- Failing to yield
Depending on the circumstances of a collision, an injured motorcyclist might be able to pursue a claim against an at-fault motorist. However, before taking legal action, it is important to understand how negligence is determined in Pinellas County.
Establishing Negligence in a Motorcycle Injury Case
When a driver engages in unsafe behavior and causes a collision with a motorcyclist, a biker might seek to pursue legal action based on negligence. However, for a successful claim, an injured plaintiff must:
- Duty—the defendant owed the plaintiff a duty of care, specifically, to operate their motor vehicle safely
- Breach—the defendant breached their duty through their actions or inaction
- Cause—the defendant’s breach caused an accident
- Damages—this accident caused the plaintiff to suffer injuries and subsequent losses
In certain cases, a motorcyclist’s own actions might have contributed to a wreck. In Florida, under the state’s comparative fault law, an injured plaintiff who is partially at fault is not barred from recovering compensation.
However, the amount of damages awarded to a partially-liable claimant would be reduced proportionately based on their percentage of fault. Due to these nuances, a Pinellas County motorcycle accident lawyer could help to asses if a potential plaintiff was partially at fault, then work to determine the amount of compensation they might be owed.
Damages to Recover in Pinellas County
In a claim, there are numerous types of damages that an injured motorcyclist might request compensation for. For example, these might include medical bills—for inpatient stays, prescriptions, doctors visits, tests, and other costs incurred following an accident—as well as lost wages due to missed time at work and a decreased earning capacity.
Furthermore, a claim might also request recovery for pain and suffering, emotional distress, and other associated mental and physical anguish. Lastly, punitive damages might be awarded to penalize the defendant for, particularly reckless behavior.
Let a Pinellas County Motorcycle Accident Attorney Help
If you were injured in a motorbike collision, you might be traumatized and overwhelmed. However, if the negligent actions of another person, business, or entity caused your injuries, you might be able to pursue compensation with the help of a Pinellas County motorcycle accident lawyer.
Instead of navigating the legal system alone, reach out to a compassionate attorney to find how to best proceed. To discuss your case further, call today.