Motorcycle wrecks are some of the most devastating types of accidents you can be involved in. When you want to bring the person or persons liable for your injuries to justice, work with an experienced New Orleans motorcycle wreck lawyer to obtain the compensation that’s yours.
Motorcyclists are at an increased risk of injury compared to someone traveling in nearly any other type of vehicle, such as cars or even semi-trucks. This is because bikers aren’t protected by the surrounding steel that your run-of-the-mill automobile affords. It’s no surprise that when a motorcycle crashes, bikers suffer seriously debilitating injuries or even death.
But you don’t have to sit back and deal with the aftermath of your wreck on your own. A New Orleans motorcycle accident lawyer at Braud & Gallagher is ready to represent your claim. With our team by your side, you can focus on recovering while we work to build a powerful case against whoever is responsible for causing your injuries through their negligence.
Liability and Your Bike Crash Injuries
Generally speaking, there are three different entities who could be found liable for your injuries: the other involved driver, the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development (LaDOTD), and automakers or technicians. We examine potential liability of each party below.
- The driver who struck your bike could be culpable if they were not doing their part to drive safely. This typically means that they were either distracted, drowsy, drunk, or driving aggressively. Bikers are already more likely to be injured on the roads, and when another driver isn’t taking the safety of those sharing the roads with them seriously, the likelihood of a wreck is high.
- In some cases, the LaDOTD will be responsible, particularly if there was a large pothole, missing street sign or lamp, unsecured road construction zone, debris in the road, or some other type of roadway hazard. The LaDOTD has a duty to maintain the safety of the roads every New Orleanian travels on, and they can be held accountable if their negligence caused your injuries.
- Automakers and vehicle technicians who perform maintenance on any involved vehicles may have played a part in the cause of your accident if they knowingly installed a faulty or malfunctioning part or if they knew of a recall and didn’t alert consumers in a timely manner so that they could get the necessary repairs.
Your attorney will thoroughly investigate the cause of the accident to determine who should be named as the defendant in your case. We’ll gather all of the supporting evidence we need so that you can obtain maximum compensation for the damages you incurred as a result of your motorcycle injuries.
What You Can Expect from the Insurance Company
You might be surprised to learn that getting the money you deserve isn’t as easy as filing a claim with the insurance company. Keep in mind, insurers work in a for-profit industry, meaning every time they settle a claim, they lose money. As you can imagine, they certainly won’t want to settle a claim worth thousands of dollars.
For motorcyclists, dealing with the insurance company can be even more of a challenge because bikers are often stereotyped as being “heathens of the highways,” if you will. If the insurance company can make it appear as though you were driving recklessly without care for yourself or other drivers, they may be able to reduce the amount they’ll be obligated to settle for.
Fortunately, your lawyer will be prepared to handle any of these strategies and will never allow you to settle for less than your claim is worth. In fact, we’ll bring your case to court if we have to so that the insurance company doesn’t get away with not compensating you for every penny you deserve.
Damages That Should Be Included in Your Claim
Before we can tell you how much you can expect to be awarded for your motorcycle accident, your lawyer will need to quantify your damages. This is when we place a monetary value on every single loss you suffered. There are two different categories of damages: economic and non-economic damages. While economic damages affect you financially, non-economic damages impact your life as a whole.
Damages that are typically considered to be economic damages include your lost wages, the damage to your earning capacity, the costs of repairing or replacing your wrecked bike, and your medical expenses.
Although non-economic damages don’t have anything to do with your financial state, they are often far more impactful in every other aspect of your life. These damages may consist of:
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Loss of companionship and love
- Emotional distress
- Loss of household services
- The effects of disfigurement or scarring
There is also a strong possibility that the judge will award you punitive damages if the at-fault party was intending to cause the accident or if their actions were abhorrent in nature. Making an example of the defendant will hopefully deter future wrongdoers from making the same mistakes as the defendant in your case.
Motorcycle Accident FAQ
We understand that pursuing a civil lawsuit can seem overwhelming. For this reason, we’ve included some of the most commonly asked questions our clients have had in regard to their claims so that you can better prepare yourself. You can also reach out to our firm to discuss your case in greater detail.
What if my passenger caused the crash?
This is a delicate matter that should be treated as such, since your passenger is likely a close friend or family member. However, just because they are close to you doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be responsible for covering your damages. You can be sure that we’ll treat your passenger with the utmost respect, but we’re also prepared to fight for the compensation you’re entitled to.
Will I have to go to court?
You might have to go to court; it depends on whether we can get the insurance company to settle your case for what it’s worth. If the insurer will provide you with a reasonable settlement, then we won’t have to bring your case to court. If the insurance company refuses to comply with our demands, however, then we’ll have no choice but to bring your case to court so that a judge can award you fairly.
Can I file a claim if I wasn’t wearing a helmet?
Yes, you can file a motorbike accident claim if you weren’t wearing a helmet. However, you should expect the defense to argue that you contributed to your injuries by not wearing a helmet and that you didn’t have regard for your own safety. The judge will likely determine that you are partially liable, and your final award will be reduced by the percentage of blame you were found to carry.
For instance, if you were found to be 20 percent at fault, then 20 percent would be deducted from your final award. Your motorcycle crash lawyer will ensure that you aren’t forced to carry any more culpability than is necessary so that you can still get the most out of your claim.
Speak with a New Orleans Motorcycle Accident Attorney
If you need assistance bringing the liable party to justice after you suffered serious injuries in a New Orleans bike crash, get in touch with an experienced New Orleans motorcycle accident lawyer at Braud & Gallagher. You can schedule your free case review today by giving our office a call at 1-800-256-5674 or by completing the online contact form we’ve provided below.