If you’ve been in an accident while riding your motorcycle, call a West Texas motorcycle accident lawyer at the Hanna Law Firm and don’t let bias against bikers hurt your claim.
Texans love their sense of freedom and the open road, so it’s no surprise that we’re one of the leading states when it comes to the number of motorcycles on our streets and highways. Unfortunately, we’re also one of the leading states when it comes to the number of motorcycle accidents, with thousands injured and hundreds killed in wrecks every year.
Because bikes offer their riders almost no protection, people on motorcycles are 28 times more likely to die than people in other vehicles when in a crash, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
If you’ve been in a motorcycle accident, you may be entitled to damages. It’s important to have a motorcycle accident attorney to fight for you and protect your rights. Call the Hanna Law Firm at 432-606-2378 or request an appointment through our online form. Initial consultations are free. We have offices in Abilene, Odessa, Sweetwater and Midland.
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A few elements must be in place in order for you to have a legitimate motorcycle accident claim.
In real life, accidents and liability are not always clear cut. The experienced West Texas motorcycle injury lawyers at the Hanna Law Firm are committed to getting justice for every client. We will carefully research your case, figure out who is responsible, and fight to win you the full compensation you need to cover your losses and move on with your life.
We get it: when you are injured and end up in the hospital, those bills start piling up fast. And if you are unable to work, you may not be getting a paycheck, either. So, of course it’s tempting when an insurance representative comes knocking and offers you an easy payout. But while that money may cover some of your initial expenses, those bills may keep on coming. At the Hanna Law Firm, we will calculate not only your past and current expenses, but likely future expenses based on your injuries. The best way to receive full compensation for all your bills and losses is to not accept an initial offer from insurance, but to call our office instead.
For a person on a motorcycle, a wreck is often catastrophic, causing serious, long-term injury. You may be facing a long recovery period, endless medical bills, and no prospects of returning to work and earning a paycheck anytime soon. At the Hanna Law Firm, we will account for this lost income when calculating the damages you should receive after the accident.
If you need time to heal but will likely be able to return to work down the road, we will figure out your total expected lost wages and include those in your claim. If your injuries are so devastating you will not be able to return to work at all, we can seek damages for loss of earning capacity — the money you likely would have earned over your career had the accident not happened. You just can’t trust insurance companies to account for this money when offering you an initial settlement. The lawyers at the Hanna Law Firm are committed to recovering the full value of your losses.
If it’s determined that another party (like the driver of another car) is at least 51% responsible for the accident, you may be entitled to legal damages, or compensation for your losses. If you are deemed to be partly responsible for your injuries or losses, the amount you receive will be reduced by your percentage of responsibility.
Damages are divided into two broad categories: special (or economic) damages and general (or non-economic) damages.
Economic Damages for Injuries in a Motorcycle Accident
Special damages are easier to calculate as they are losses with a concrete dollar amount attached to them. Examples include:
General damages are designed to compensate you for injuries that, while very real, are more subjective when it comes to determining an actual dollar amount. Examples include:
In some cases, you may receive punitive damages as well. These are designed to punish the other party and are applicable only if the accident was determined to be caused by gross negligence or an intentional act.
To learn more about the types of damages that may be applicable in your case, give us a call. Our team will schedule for you a free consultation with our experienced West Texas Motorcycle Accident lawyer at the Hanna Law Firm.
It’s worth noting that when it comes to motorcycle accidents in Texas, whether you were wearing a helmet at the time of the accident may come into play when determining liability. If you were not wearing a helmet and sustained a head injury, the insurance company may argue that you were partly at fault for your injuries — even though helmet use is not required by law for motorcycle riders aged 21 or older.
Don’t try to single-handedly navigate the insurance and legal issues that crop up after an accident. You may think that you will be saving money by handling it alone, but in all likelihood you’ll be leaving a significant sum on the table.
Unfortunately, even though most bikers are careful and conscientious drivers, they tend to be perceived as wild or even unlawful. This bias can affect not only people’s perceptions, but how liability is determined in an accident. Adjusters may assume that because you are a motorcyclist, you are at least partly to blame even if you’re not.
When insurers evaluate any sort of claim, their priority is not to compensate the injured person fully for their losses. Their priority is to save the insurance company money. In fact, after an accident, an insurance company representative may very well approach you with an offer of money. And as you are focusing on your recovery and struggling to pay your bills, you may be tempted to accept this payout. That’s exactly what they want you to do, because by doing so you give up your right to pursue legal action or a larger settlement.
The only way to get a fair shake from the insurance company is to hire a motorcycle injury lawyer to represent your best interests. At the Hanna Law Firm, we will thoroughly research your case to ensure all responsible parties are held accountable. We will use our knowledge and experience to calculate the full scope of your losses related to the accident — past, present, and future. And we will be your advocate — over the negotiating table, in the courtroom, or both. Use our online form or call us at 432-606-2378 to get your free consultation with our motorcycle accident lawyer.
If you’ve lost a loved one in a motorcycle accident and the other party is determined to be 51% or more at fault, you may be able to recover damages in a wrongful death lawsuit. You must be a close family member — a spouse, parent, or child — to bring a wrongful death case. Damages in a wrongful death case may cover:
Motorcycle accidents happen for all sorts of reasons — in some cases the biker is at fault; in some cases another vehicle is at fault; in many cases more than one party bears some measure of responsibility.
Unlike people in cars, bike riders have virtually no protection in an accident. Add high speeds and other vehicles many times a motorcycle’s size, and you have a recipe for devastating injury. Some of the injuries motorcyclists are at high risk for include:
Like all motorists, you as a biker are required to obey all traffic laws, including those specific to motorcyclists. But it’s a good idea to take additional steps to keep you and your passengers safe.
If you’ve been injured or have lost a loved one in a motorcycle accident, call an Abilene motorcycle accident attorney at the Hanna Law Firm as soon as possible. Don’t accept a payout from an insurance company before consulting us. We will thoroughly research your case and fight to get you the maximum amount of money your claim warrants. Call 432-606-2378 or get in touch with us online. We have offices in Abilene, Midland, and Odessa.