Riding a motorcycle brings a freedom that many individuals enjoy, but riding these bikes is a high-risk activity. A motorcycle crash can cause severe and even permanent injuries, and you might not know where to turn for help.

If you were harmed while riding your motorcycle, a skillful injury attorney might be able to help. A Lakewood motorcycle accident lawyer can fight for the compensation you deserve from any party whose negligence was a factor in the crash.

Common Causes of Motorcycle Crashes

Motorcycles have a much lower profile than cars, trucks, or buses, so drivers tend to be more aware of the larger vehicles they share the road with. However, failing to attend to surrounding conditions when driving is negligent and dangerous. Common scenarios in which driver negligence might cause a motorcycle crash include:

  • Driver fails to yield to an oncoming motorcycle
  • Driver opens vehicle door into the path of a motorcycle
  • Driver changes lanes or merges without checking
  • Driver goes through a stop sign or pulls out of a driveway into the path of an oncoming motorcycle

A motorcyclist also might be partially at fault in an accident. When a biker is more than 50 percent responsible for a crash, he or she cannot collect damages. However, as long as plaintiffs are not primarily to blame for the incident, they can collect reduced damages from other parties whose actions contributed to the crash. A dedicated Lakewood attorney can help an injured motorcyclist provide evidence of other parties’ fault in a crash to avoid any unnecessary loss of damages.

Compliance with Motorcycle Law is Necessary

Assessing fault and proving negligence are critical factors in motorcycle wreck claims. However, if more than one party was at fault, each bears proportional responsibility for an injured person’s damages.

Violating the law while on the road is considered negligence per se. It is also evidence of fault in a vehicle accident claim. Therefore, individuals should be careful to comply with all applicable laws when riding their motorcycles.

Obtaining a License

State law mandates that all adult riders have a motorcycle license, which requires either passing a skills test or taking a motorcycle safety course. Riders under age 18 and adults who have held a motorcycle license for less than a year must also carry a “novice” designation on their licenses.

Following Traffic Laws

Ohio Revised Code § 4511.55 allows no more than two motorcycles to ride abreast in a single traffic lane, which means no more than two motorcycles can ride side-by-side in a single lane. However, a single motorcycle is entitled to occupy the entire lane, and a driver who does not respect a biker’s right to occupy a lane is guilty of breaking the law. A knowledgeable Lakewood attorney can determine whether the driver’s actions might support a claim of negligence per se in a motorcyclist’s accident claim.

Compensatory Damages in Lakewood Motorcycle Wrecks

When a plaintiff proves that another party’s negligence was the main reason a crash occurred, the biker can collect damages from the negligent parties. Compensatory damages provide restitution for an individual’s economic losses, such as lost wages, medical expenses, incidental costs, and losses the injury might cause in the future, such as the projected cost of medical care.

Recovered damages might also provide payment in recognition of the injury’s impact on the biker’s life, such as scarring, disability, and physical pain. Ohio caps most damages for these “non-economic” losses at $350,000. However, this cap does not apply if the biker suffered certain specific injuries.

Trust Your Claim to a Lakewood Motorcycle Accident Attorney

If you sustained injuries in a motorcycle collision, you need a professional to advocate on your behalf. An at-fault driver’s insurer might argue that riding a motorcycle has known risks and that you cannot collect damages for engaging in an activity you knew was dangerous. However, a Lakewood motorcycle accident lawyer can fight back against such prejudice and ensure you get a fair settlement.

Do not give up your right to seek compensation for your injuries. Schedule a consultation with Tittle & Perlmuter today.

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