The explosive growth of Peachtree Corners in recent years means more traffic. And more traffic means more accidents, even as the city moves to improve the traffic patterns at some of our area’s busiest intersections. Changing traffic patterns can also cause accidents, until drivers get used to the new system. Heavy traffic can be especially dangerous for motorcycle riders, as a driver in a pickup truck or high profile SUV may not even see you when they go to change lanes, or turn in front of you.
If you or a loved one was injured in a motorcycle accident in Peachtree Corners or Gwinnett County, you may be worried about mounting medical bills, and you may be angry at the same time. A skilled accident law firm can help you file an insurance claim and negotiate an insurance settlement that will ease your mind, and hold the driver who caused your accident responsible.
How Motorcycle Accidents Are Different Than Other Accidents
When you’re in an accident in a passenger car, SUV or truck, you’re protected by the steel frame of the vehicle. In most cases, you are also protected by your seat belt and airbags. But when you’re driving a motorcycle, even if you’re wearing a helmet as required by Georgia’s helmet law, and you’re wearing protective clothing, you can easily suffer serious injuries if you’re involved in an accident. The impact of another vehicle may throw you from your bike, or your bike can get caught up in another vehicle and you could be dragged down the road.
Even if the people in the car or truck don’t suffer a scratch, as a motorcycle driver, you can be seriously injured or even killed in a traffic accident.
Who Is At Fault in Most Motorcycle Accidents?
You guessed it. In most cases, the driver on four wheels is responsible for causing a collision with a motorcycle. Motorcycle drivers are almost always alert for inattentive drivers, and will change lanes to avoid them.
There is actually a study called the Hurt Report, named after a a University of Southern California professor that examined motorcycle accidents and who ultimately caused them. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) initiated the report in the 1970s. While that may seem like a long time ago, the key findings still stand.
Key findings of the Hurt Report include:
- 66% of motorcycle accidents where another vehicle is involved happened when the other driver failed to see the motorcycle and violated the cyclists’ right of way.
- Motorcycle helmets greatly reduce fatalities and brain injuries without causing an increased risk of an accident.
How Do I Get Compensated for My Medical Costs and Who Will Pay to Fix My Bike?
In most motorcycle accidents, you will need to file a claim with the other driver’s insurance company. Before you speak with that insurance company, you would be well advised to speak with an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer. We’ve had years of experience negotiating settlements with insurance companies, and we know all their tricks. Let’s face it — insurance companies are in business to make money, and that means denying claims or paying out as little as possible. Working with a lawyer can help ensure you get a settlement that covers all the bases.
Whatever you do, don’t accept a settlement without talking to a lawyer, and don’t sign away your rights to sue the insurance company in the future.
If the insurance company doesn’t offer a fair settlement, and refuses to negotiate, a motorcycle accident lawyer can file suit on your behalf.
If the other driver is uninsured or underinsured, we may be able to sue the other driver for compensation, or a third party, if a third party was involved. A third party might be the other driver’s employer if the accident happened while they were driving a company truck, or it might be the bar that served alcohol to a driver who was then in a drunk driving accident.
What Compensation Can I Get After a Motorcycle Accident?
If the other driver is found to be at fault, you are entitled to a variety of compensation, including:
Medical expenses include things like:
- Ambulance costs
- Hospital bills
- Doctor’s bills
- Physical therapy costs
- Prescription medication
- Future medical costs as determined by medical experts
- And more
You will be entitled to compensation for lost wages as a result of your accident and subsequent medical care. You may also be entitled to compensation for future lost wages, based on the severity of your injuries and the type of work you do.
You are also entitled to seek damages for the cost of repairing or replacing your motorcycle and any other property including your helmet, clothing or anything you might have been carrying in a tail bag or saddle bags.
It’s important to note that Georgia is a comparative fault state. This idea is also known as comparative negligence. In a nutshell, this means if you are less than 51% responsible for causing an accident, you can collect damages. But if you were partly at fault, your award is cut back by the percentage that you were found to be at fault. For example, say the award was $10,000 in damages. If you were 10% at fault, you would receive $9,000, since 10% of $10,000 is $1,000.
Talk to a Peachtree Corners Motorcycle Accident Lawyer for Free
If you’ve been injured in a motorcycle accident, consulting with a Peachtree Corners motorcycle accident lawyer may be the smartest thing you do after your accident. Our lawyers have helped many motorcycle accident victims over the years. We’d like to put our experience to work for you, and you don’t pay us anything unless we win money for you. Let us give you a FREE case evaluation to help you understand the right next steps for your case.