Motorcycle Accident Accounting in Tampa, FL
When a car or truck collides with a motorcycle, it is often the cyclist who takes the brunt of the impact. This is just common sense. A motorcycle is no match for a motor vehicle that weighs several tons. In addition, many of these accidents are the direct result of the car or truck driver's negligence in failing to share the road with motorcycles.
Under the law, a person injured in a motorcycle accident has the right to seek compensation in court. A qualified Tampa motorcycle accident lawyer can help you in preparing and presenting your case. But in many situations, it is possible to negotiate a settlement with the negligent motorist or their insurance company. Having a skilled attorney can still help you secure a more favorable outcome.
What Are the Most Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents?
Not all motorcycle accidents are due to motorist negligence. There may be other responsible factors. An attorney can review the specific facts of your accident and help you determine all of the parties that may have legal liability.
Some of the more common causes of motorcycle accidents include:
- a motorist suddenly pulling in front of a motorcycle or improperly merging into the cyclist's lane;
- a motorist following a motorcycle too closely from behind, i.e., tailgating;
- poor road conditions caused by improper maintenance or known hazards that have not been repaired by the city or private property owner; and
- defectively designed or manufactured parts on the motorcycle itself, which lead to a failure of the bike.
In order to prove negligence in a motorcycle accident lawsuit, the injured victim must show the defendant violated some legal duty of care, such as the examples cited above. Furthermore, this violation directly led to the accident and the victim's injuries. The defense may also try and argue the motorcyclist's actions–such as failing to wear a helmet–also contributed to their injuries. This is known as alleging comparative fault. If the jury agrees the motorcyclist is partially responsible, a judge will reduce any final award of damages accordingly.
What If My Accident Was Caused by a Defective Motorcycle?
If an accident is the result of a defect in the motorcycle, rather than driver negligence, you may have a product liability claim against the bike's manufacturer. Under the law, any business that designs, manufactures, or sells a defective product–or even a defective part contained within a product–can be held legally responsible for any customers who are injured. And unlike personal injury claims against drivers, product liability may not require proof of negligence. Rather, some states impose strict liability when it comes to manufacturing and design defects. As such, it is important to contact a skilled attorney to learn more about your rights to compensation.
Speak with a Personal Injury Lawyer Right Away
As with any personal injury claim, a successful plaintiff in a motorcycle accident lawsuit can ask for economic and non-economic damages. This compensation covers both the victim's out-of-pocket losses, such as medical bills and lost wages, as well as more intangible losses, including their pain and suffering. Of course, every accident claim is unique and the amount of compensation will depend on a number of factors. To learn more about this process, contact the Tampa motorcycle accident lawyers at the Law Firm today to schedule a consultation.