Experienced Personal Injury Attorneys Representing Victims Of Motorcycle Accidents In Hamburg
Motorcycle accidents are often horrific and life-altering for victims. In the U.S., for example, nearly 80% of these accidents result in injury or death. In New York, motorcycle accidents cause more than 150 deaths per year. Often, these accidents are of no fault of the motorcyclist. In fact, around two-thirds of accidents are caused by other motorists failing to yield the right of way. If you’ve been injured in an accident, you and your family may be entitled to compensation for your injuries and suffering. At Chiacchia & Fleming, LLP, we protect clients from undervalued settlements from insurance companies, work to make sure you receive the maximum compensation for your injuries, and manage the entire legal process, so that you can focus on getting better. If you’ve been injured in a motorcycle accident in Western New York, we want to help.
Steps To Take If You’ve Been In A Motorcycle Crash
In the immediate aftermath of an accident, your health and safety are the most pressing concerns. Seek medical attention immediately. If you’re unable to contact first responders, witnesses or other motorists should contact authorities for you. A few other helpful tips include:
- Move from harm’s way – If you’re able to, you should move to a safe place near the accident scene if you’re in the path of oncoming traffic.
- Call 911 – Even in minor accidents, you should contact police. Do not walk away from an accident without talking with law enforcement, even if you do not notice physical pain or property damage.
- Speak with investigators – Police officers on the scene will collect statements from affected parties. Provide as much detail as you can remember regarding the steps that led up to the accident, but do not admit fault.
- Collect evidence – If you’re able to, take photos and videos from the scene using your cellphone. Additionally, collect names and phone numbers of any witnesses, note the weather and road conditions, and document any physical or property damage. Be sure to ask for the name and insurance information for other motorists involved in the accident.
- Do not admit fault – When talking with law enforcement, other motorists, witnesses at the scene, or insurance companies, do not admit fault. This is important. Any admission of fault can hurt your case.
One of the most important steps you can take after you’ve been in an accident on your motorcycle is to contact a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. Your attorney can file claims on your behalf, manage any settlement negotiations, and serve as your advocate throughout your recovery process.
Common Questions About Motor Vehicle Accidents Involving Motorcycles
If you or someone you love have been injured, or even killed in a motorcycle accident, you probably have a lot of questions. Here, our experienced personal injury attorneys answer some of the most frequently asked questions. At Chiacchia & Fleming, LLP, we offer free consultations and that allows us to address any specific questions you might have about your specific motorcycle crash.
How common are motorcycle crashes in New York?
Motorcycle accidents are common in New York, and often, they result in significant injuries for the motorcyclist. In fact, according to state statistics, motorcycle accidents result in nearly 4,500 emergency room visits each year and almost 150 deaths per year.
What causes motor vehicle accidents involving motorcycles and how often is it the motorcyclist’s fault?
Unfortunately, this type of accident is rarely caused by the motorcyclist. The most common reasons for a motorist-caused accident include:
- Unsafe lane changes, e.g., failing to check a blind spot or signal a lane change
- Opening car doors into oncoming traffic
- Reckless driving and excessive speed
- Driving under the influence
- Following too closely
- Sudden stops
- Driver inexperience
Ultimately, motorists who cause a motorcycle accident may face civil or criminal liability. By hiring an experienced personal injury attorney, your attorney can help determine who was at fault and help protect your rights.
How does hiring a personal injury attorney help me?
A personal injury attorney helps you build a case and manage the legal process in a number of ways. Your attorney may help with:
- Filing legal paperwork
- Investigating the cause of your accident
- Determining who is at fault
- Contacting witnesses and law enforcement
- Working with experts to recreate the accident
- Filing claims on your behalf
- Meeting with the negligent party’s lawyers
- Negotiating with the negligent party’s insurance company
Hiring an experienced personal injury attorney can help you protect your rights, fight for the maximum amount of compensation available to you under the insurance policies and personal injury law and manage your case so that you can focus on recovering from your injuries.
Do I have to talk to the insurance companies?
Unfortunately, victims are often harassed by insurance companies and lawyers of the negligent party. You are not legally required to discuss your case with insurance companies or lawyers for the other parties in the car crash. By retaining your own attorney, you protect your rights and your attorney can deal with the insurance companies and other lawyers. Once you hire an attorney, be sure to forward any correspondence from any insurance companies or other lawyers.
The insurance company is offering me money to settle. Should I accept the deal?
Sometimes, insurance companies will try to bully victims or offer undervalued settlements/compensation for your injuries. Never accept a settlement offer without talking to an experienced personal injury attorney. Your lawyer is your advocate against aggressive behavior, make sure your rights are protected and help you understand all of the terms of any offer to settle your case.
Types Of Compensation For Victims Of Motorcycle Wrecks
Victims of motorcycle accidents face new financial and physical challenges. They may be suffering from horrific pain, disfigurement or emotional distress. Medical fees, lost wages and vehicle repairs create new financial stresses. Victims are entitled to compensation for any and all emotional, physical and financial costs associated with the accident. There are two types of compensation: compensatory and punitive damages.
Compensatory damages cover any out-of-pocket and future costs related to the accident and are provided to make a victim “whole” following an accident. Compensatory damages may help cover:
- Medical bills and physical therapy costs
- Lost wages, future loss of income
- Property damage
- Disability or disfigurement
- Loss of normal life
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
In cases in which gross negligence or malice was a factor, victims may be entitled to punitive damages. This type of compensation acts as a financial punishment for the negligent party, and it is awarded by a jury if your case goes to trial. Your lawyer will help you determine if you are entitled to punitive damages.
Call Today For A Free Case Evaluation
If you’ve been injured in a motorcycle accident, we want to help. Our attorneys are experienced in cases involving motorcycles, and we can help you protect your rights. We want you to earn the maximum amount of compensation for your injuries. We offer free, no-obligation case evaluations. Call us today at 888-655-6122 or send us an email using our online form. We want to help you learn more about your legal options and answer your specific questions.