While riding a motorcycle is a favorite pastime for many people, motorcyclists are at a greater risk of being injured in a crash. Compared to drivers in motor vehicles, motorcyclists don’t have the same protection that a car offers.
After an Atlanta motorcycle accident, you will need to speak with an accident lawyer about the next steps that you must take and what deadlines you must meet to recover damages.
When you file a personal injury claim in Atlanta, GA, you may have to recover your losses through a motorcycle accident settlement with the help of an Atlanta motorcycle accident attorney. You can get fair compensation with the help form attorneys who will work hard to help you receive a settlement.
How Common Are Motorcycle Accidents in Atlanta, GA?
The discrepancy in size and weight between motorcycles and other automobiles often puts motorcyclists at a much higher risk of injury or fatality. Given the fact that many of these accidents are the result of a defective vehicle part and/or a negligent motorist, legal action should be taken on behalf of the injured rider. Our Atlanta Personal Injury Attorneys are familiar with the toll a motorcycle accident can have on an individual and their family and can Help You navigate life following your accident
We Get Results
With millions of dollars recovered for our clients in the past, our experienced motorcycle accident lawyer in Atlanta can provide the expert legal counsel that you deserve. And if it comes to a motorcycle accident lawsuit, we will walk you through the entire process from start to finish. Get the compensation you deserve; call our law firm today.
Can I Recover Damages After My Georgia Motorcycle Accident?
The motorcycle accident attorneys at Henningsen Injury Attorneys have been serving Atlanta residents for more than 45 years, representing clients in front of all types of insurance companies in settlement negotiations and at trial (if necessary). While you would need to schedule a free consultation with us to review what specific damages you are entitled to, generally, there are two types of title damages that a motorcycle accident victim can claim: punitive damages and compensatory damages.
Punitive damages punish a defendant for negligence, such as driving while intoxicated, or a hit and run. An Atlanta motorcycle accident lawyer can also help you recover compensatory damages.
If you have suffered motorcycle accident injuries, you may be entitled to economic and non-economic damages.
These damages include your tangible financial losses, including but not limited to:
- Lost wages: not only does this include work that you missed immediately after your accident, but it can include future lost earnings if the accident prevents you from returning to your job or has left you permanently disabled
- Medical care: if you have medical bills from the ambulance ride, hospital, or specialists that you had to see, then you can receive compensation for your expenses. After you arrived at the hospital, the physicians treating you most likely conduct a series of scans, including X-rays, MRIs, and CT scans, to assess your injuries. Generally, health insurance companies ask for compensation if they initially paid out your claim and Henningsen Injury Attorneys will determine whether or not they have a legal right to reimbursement.
- Property damage: this includes your damaged bike and any property that was damaged at the accident scene
- Wrongful death damages: surviving family members and individuals named in the deceased’s will can obtain compensation in addition to non-fatal economic damages. This includes funeral bills, burial costs, loss of benefits, loss of earning capacity, and any additional damages incurred by their passing.
Non-economic damages include the pain and suffering experienced due to your Serious Injuries, as well as the psychological trauma that the Accident Caused. Pain and suffering can include emotions such as depression, grief, shame, anxiety, and PTSD. They are estimated with the help of your car accident attorney using a multiplier. The multiplier is based on how badly you were injured and can be any number between one and seven. Using their experience in car accident cases, your attorney will select a number and multiply it by your total economic damages. The cost of your non-economic damages is added to your economic damages to estimate your settlement costs.
Your pain and suffering are important, which is why you must inform your motorcycle accident attorney in Atlanta of the type of emotional distress you experienced. Insurance companies often leave this out of your settlement estimation, severely undercutting how much you are truly owed.
Even though most motorcyclists wear protective clothing, they may slide across the road and get A Road Rash. This is when the skin is rubbed harshly and leaves a red rash behind because of the road’s abrasive surface.
Spinal Cord Damage
You may have suffered from a terrible injury resulting in spinal cord damage because of a harsh impact on the back. For example, you can suffer from pinched nerves, which later results in debilitating pain due to sciatica. Other injuries include slipped or ruptured spinal discs that occur when you hit the ground hard. Some spinal cord injuries are so severe they can cause Paralysis, such as hemiplegia and paraplegia.
Traumatic Brain Injury
One of the most dangerous injuries that can happen to a motorcyclist is A Traumatic Brain Injury. This is especially the case if the driver isn’t wearing a helmet. If your head hits the concrete hard enough, the brain can become swollen, get hematomas, begin hemorrhaging, and even suffer from a concussion. This can result in long-term disabilities and the inability to process information properly. Traumatic brain injury can also cause damage to motor skills.
Wrongful Death Non-Economic Damages
If the accident also caused a wrongful death, then non-economic damages can include the loss of companionship and the loss of valuable services that the individual would have provided for their families and loved ones had they lived. For example, if the deceased used to do dishes, babysitting, laundry, mowing the lawn, and other household chores, your attorney will consider these services a part of the damages. This is because the surviving spouse will have to do those tasks alone or hire someone to perform these services, resulting in undue hardship. Other wrongful death damages include loss of guardianship, mentorship, and more. To find out how much you and other eligible survivors should receive, speak to a motorcycle accident attorney in Atlanta now.
Common Types of Motorcycle Accidents
Also known as lane filtering, lane splitting is legal only in a few states, such as California. However, in Georgia, if a motorcyclist gets into an accident while lane-splitting, they could be held liable for the damages the motorcycle accident caused. Lane splitting is when a motorcycle rider rides between lanes of traffic, whether on a highway or the street.
Advocates argue that it is safe to do when traffic is moving at about 50 mph or less, but currently, there is no legislation in the Peach State or push to legalize lane splitting. Motorcycles are forbidden from overtaking or passing a vehicle in the same lane that it is occupying.
Additionally, no more than two motorcycles may ride side-by-side in a single lane.
No matter how you feel about the practice, it is illegal in Georgia. If you are injured in a motorcycle accident while lane splitting, your motorcycle accident claim could be reduced or denied by the insurance company due to your breaking the law. If you were injured in a motorcycle accident in Georgia while lane splitting, then you should still speak to an Atlanta motorcycle accident lawyer to ensure your rights are protected.
At green lights, some car drivers may not notice when a vehicle is crossing the intersection at the same time they are making a left turn. This often happens because they may not notice a smaller vehicle driving before they decide to turn. Motorcyclists are often struck this way because a driver didn’t see them.
Single Vehicle Motorcycle Accident
A motorcycle accident does not necessarily have to involve another driver, although about three-quarters of motorcycle crashes involve a motor vehicle. With these types of accidents, the motorcycle rider is usually at fault for either being drunk while riding (DUI) or speeding. Like lane splitting, if you are found to be at fault for your accident, then you may be prohibited from seeking damages for your Motorcycle Injury.
Motorcycle in Blindspot
Suppose your motorcycle accident was caused by the driver of a motor vehicle not seeing you before they changed lanes or made a turn that resulted in the collision. In that case, you should speak to an Atlanta motorcycle accident attorney at Henningsen Injury Attorneys today. All vehicles have blind spots, but all drivers should look over their Left And Right Shoulder Before Changing Lanes. This prevents the chance of hitting a motorcyclist. It is still the driver’s fault, as they should check all their mirrors and look over their shoulder before changing lanes.
Drivers that often speed may not give a motorcyclist the chance to avoid crashing into them. They can be flying at such a high speed that they also can cause a motorcyclist to suffer from Catastrophic Injuries.
Illegal Lane Change Accidents
Some car drivers are neglectful in their driving behavior and fail to signal before changing lanes. They can swerve into other lanes unexpectedly, cut off drivers, and make it difficult for other drivers to react to their sudden behavior in time.
Substance Abuse Accidents
When a driver is under the influence of an illicit drug, this greatly impairs their ability to operate a vehicle. The same goes for someone with an alcohol BAC level over 0.08%. If the other driver happens to be under the influence of drugs or alcohol, they can be held liable for the damages they caused.
An Atlanta, Georgia motorcycle accident that occurs when the front end of a motorcycle crashes into the front end of another vehicle is called a head-on collision. These can happen when a car veers into the opposite lane of oncoming traffic or if a car goes down a street in the wrong direction.
Lack of Experience
With years of experience, a motorcycle rider learns how to anticipate and handle various challenging road conditions such as bad weather and heavy traffic. The majority of motorcycle accident victims are aged 16 to 24. New riders are also likely to buy the biggest and coolest bike rather than the right bike for their experience level. Inexperienced riders may also not conduct thorough pre-ride inspections such as checking the tires, fluid levels, lights, brakes, etc. Like any other piece of equipment, you have to maintain your motorcycle regularly.
Distracted Driving Accidents
Many drivers are often distracted by their phones or other mobile devices and don’t properly pay attention to the road. For example, they may be texting, watching videos, GPS mapping, sending instant messages, or even sending emails while driving. This puts everyone around them in danger, and they might not
Speeding significantly increases the chances of getting into a motorcycle accident that leads to severe injuries. If you were speeding at the time of your Crash, then you will need to speak with an experienced Atlanta motorcycle accident attorney because your compensation may be decreased in proportion to how much fault you share for the accident. Henningsen Injury Attorneys will evaluate your case and pursue any damage claims you have to the fullest extent.
Common Injuries After A Motorcycle Accident
Riding a motorcycle is more dangerous because cars provide more protection for drivers and passengers. Therefore, the chance of fatalities is high after a motorcycle wreck, and accident injuries can be severe and life-threatening.
Ranging from mild to severe, Road Rash is a friction burn and skin abrasion that occurs when motorcyclists are involved in an accident that throws them off their bike, and their skin scrapes against asphalt, concrete, or another hard surface.
It has been reported that after 62% of motorcycle accidents, there were visible fuel leaks, increasing the risk of fire after a crash as well as Burns. Leaking gas can spark when it comes into contact with exposed wiring, resulting in a fire. If the victim is unconscious after the accident, then they are even more vulnerable to burns. Chemical burns can also irritate the skin and injure the victim.
Internal injuries commonly happen to car accident victims after a harsh impact causes their body to hit objects within the vehicle. In some cases, broken or fractured bones can cause organs to become injured or even ruptured. This can happen when the ribs crack and turn inward, putting the car accident victim at risk of pneumothorax.
Broken bones are a very common and serious medical condition after a motorcycle accident. They can also range in severity from minor fractures that will heal without too much intervention to skull fractures or spinal fractures that could require the victim to wear a brace or attend rehabilitation and therapy for months or years. Typically, motorcycle accidents result in fractures of the arm, shin bone, thigh bone, and pelvis. Treatment for these injuries may require steroid medications, a brace, a cast, or a splint.
Traumatic Brain Injuries
TBI is a major cause of disability and death after a motorcycle wreck. TBI can range from mild to moderate to severe and is caused by head injuries such as a sudden blow to the head, a fall on the head, or an object penetrating the skull.
Wearing a helmet reduces the risk of injury by 69%, which means that the likelihood of developing severe TBI is lower in a motorcyclist wearing a helmet.
Spine injuries can be devastating and result in Catastrophic Injuries. These are severe injuries that place a lot of pressure on motorcycle crash victims and their families. Non-fatal spine injuries are when there has been trauma to the spine’s cervical, thoracic or lumbosacral regions. Researchers know how likely one area is to be injured based on a Study:
- Cervical spine injury, the uppermost region of your spine that includes neck injuries, extending all the way to the shoulders, occurred in 32.5% of motorcycle riders.
- Thoracic spine injuries, which occur in the middle portion of the back, occurred in 17.9% of motorcycle accident victims.
- Lumbosacral spinal injuries, which are in the lower part of the spine connected to the pelvis, affected 37.7% of motorcycle accident victims.
Recovering from a spinal cord injury could take months or even years. Therefore, many follow-up appointments with specialists are required to regain motor function, restore strength and flexibility, and feel sensation again. In addition, a specialist may be needed to help manage chronic pain and to advise on how to return to school or work if they need accommodations.
The surviving loved ones of a family member who was killed in an Atlanta, Georgia motorcycle accident can file a wrongful death claim to recover damages for medical bills, lost wages, and the pain and suffering that the victim experienced before their untimely death.
If the motorcycle accident and resulting wrongful death was caused by the negligence of a motor vehicle driver, truck driver, etc., then Henningsen Injury Attorneys can help you obtain the compensation that you are entitled to receive.
What Can I Do If I Got Into A Motorcycle Accident And Was Offered A Small Settlement?
Before you accept a settlement from any other party, speak to your Motorcycle Accident Injury Attorney first. They can help you obtain fair compensation and not a small amount offered by the other party’s insurance company. Your attorney will estimate your economic and non-economic damages. Often insurance companies leave out pain and suffering, even though this makes up the most of your settlement. Call Henningsen Injury Attorneys P.C. today for a free consultation.
Atlanta Motorcycle Accident Lawyer: What If I’m Partially At Fault?
Depending on your situation, your actions could have contributed to your motorcycle accident. This can be the case if you were speeding, weaving through traffic, ignoring traffic signals, or engaging in other irresponsible behavior. According to the law of comparative negligence, you can still receive compensation. However, in the state of Georgia, this only applies if you contributed to less than 50% of the accident. If you were at fault for more than 50% of the motorcycle accident, then you can’t seek compensation from the other party. If you are unsure about whether your actions contributed to the collision, let your attorney determine this for you after an initial consultation.
Is Wearing a Helmet Required in Georgia?
Motorcyclists are required to wear a helmet in accordance with Georgia state law. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend wearing a Helmet, citing that they saved 1,859 lives in 2016. They also report that if every motorcyclist wore a helmet in 2016, 802 more lives would have been saved.
What Should I Do After a Motorcycle Accident in Atlanta?
If you can, you should immediately dial 911 and tell them there has been an accident. Take pictures of the accident scene, including the condition of your bike and the severity of your injuries. You will need to exchange information with the other driver involved, including:
- Email address
- Phone number
- Car insurance information
Why Hire Henningsen Injury Attorneys P.C.
Several problems and concerns can arise if you do not hire an Atlanta, Georgia, personal injury lawyer for your motorcycle accident claim. First, the average person does not know what they should or should not say to the insurance company, who will likely call you after your motorcycle crash to get a statement. When they realize that you are representing yourself and do not have expert legal counsel guiding you, they will try to persuade you to accept a lower compensation amount.
Henningsen Injury Attorneys recommend that you do not sign anything that the insurance company tells you to sign, nor should you let them record you.
Call Henningsen Injury Attorneys today to schedule your free case evaluation. We will discuss your options and rights with you and answer your questions about the legal process. This is a risk-free consultation, and you are under no obligation to retain someone from Henningsen Injury Attorneys as your Atlanta personal injury attorney after your meeting.
However, upon hiring Henningsen Injury Attorneys to represent you, we immediately work on your case by investigating the accident to determine what caused it. We will gather evidence from you, such as the medical bills you have received. We have years of standing up to the insurance companies and cutting through complex legal jargon and paperwork for our Atlanta clients.
Attorney Todd Henningsen handles all types of motorcycle accident claims and is available to provide counsel 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. He works on a contingency fee basis, so you do not pay upfront. You only pay once he has successfully received a settlement on your behalf. He also works closely with clients, making hospital and home visits when needed. If you have been injured in any type of motorcycle accident, you might need to take legal action.
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A motorcycle accident lawyer in Atlanta can help you seek maximum compensation while protecting your rights. They’ll assist with investigating the crash, collecting and preserving evidence, proving liability, negotiating a fair settlement, filing paperwork, and can even represent you in court if necessary.
In your search for the most suitable Atlanta motorcycle accident lawyer, do consider the following:
- Knowledge: Your motorcycle accident lawyer should be well-versed with Personal Injury law and local laws in your state;
- Reputation: Hear from those who have had successful outcomes; read past Client Reviews on third-party sites like Google Business and Yelp;
- Compassion: Find A Lawyer who shows genuine concern for your situation.