Have you or someone you love sustained injuries in a motorcycle accident caused by another motorist? If so, you have legal rights. However, pursuing a motorcycle accident claim can be a complicated process.
It would be best if you had a skilled legal advocate on your side who could protect your rights throughout the claims process.
A Louisville motorcycle accident lawyer at Gerling Law Injury Attorneys can help you fight for the maximum compensation possible.
Riding a motorcycle comes with a certain amount of risk due to the lack of safety protection compared to larger vehicles.
Combine that with hazardous road conditions and unsafe drivers, and it’s no surprise that there are so many injury accidents across the state every year.
Insurance companies often have a bias against motorcyclists, which is why it’s a good idea to hire experienced motorcycle accident attorneys in Louisville, Kentucky.
Ways Motorcycle Accident Claims Differ from Other Accident Types
Motorcycle accident injury claims differ from other collision claims, such as auto accidents or truck accidents. One of the main reasons is due to a difference in damages. While auto accidents can also be catastrophic, motorcycle accidents are more likely to result in serious injuries, even if the property damage is relatively minimal.
Severe injuries typically equate to high medical expenses and loss of earnings claims. Insurance companies will mount the most vigorous defense possible when you are talking about claims worth six- or seven figures.
Just like insurance companies often have a bias against motorcycle riders, juries are no different. Some jury members may have the same preconceived notions about motorcyclists if your case goes to trial. Even some police officers are biased against motorcycle riders and may unfairly name you as the responsible party.
This situation happens more often when the motorcycle rider is immediately transported to the hospital and unable to tell the responding officer their version of the facts. Even if the police report names you as the responsible party, it doesn’t mean you will automatically be found liable.
Motorcycle accident cases require a different defense strategy. That is why you need the best motorcycle accident lawyers in Louisville. The insurance adjuster for the other driver might suggest you are responsible for your injuries due to an assumption of risk or not wearing a helmet, even though Kentucky doesn’t have a universal helmet law.
Kentucky Helmet Laws
Kentucky’s motorcycle helmet law says that only specific riders must wear a helmet when riding a motorcycle. All motorcycle operators and riders under 21 years old must wear a Department of Transportation (DOT) approved helmet.
In addition, riders who have only an instruction permit or have had their motorcycle license for under a year must also wear a helmet. Suppose you are involved in an accident and were not wearing a helmet. In that case, the insurance company may argue they are not responsible for any injuries related to a lack of helmet protection.
A motorcycle accident attorney in Louisville understands how to argue against this assertion when negotiating with the other driver’s insurance company.
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Proving Negligence in Kentucky
Kentucky is a pure comparative negligence state according to Kentucky Revised Statutes section 411.182. A pure comparative negligence state means that you can still collect a portion of your damages, even if you are primarily responsible for the accident. Your own percentage of fault will reduce your settlement or jury award. For example, if your case goes to trial and the jury claims you were 20% at fault, you will receive 80% of the awarded damages. If you are 70% at fault, you will receive 30% of your damages.
Insurance companies will look for any possible means to reduce their overall exposure and payout. That means they will try to place as much liability against you as practical. The more at fault you are, the less they will say your case is worth. You need a skilled Louisville motorcycle accident attorney to build the most robust case possible. Without legal representation, you could receive far less than you deserve.
When Insurance Companies Don't Act in Good Faith
Insurance companies have obligations to their policyholders and injured victims who bring claims. Should an insurance company act in bad faith, you could have grounds for legal action against the insurance company too. Examples include:
- Wrongfully denying your claim,
- Failing to promptly or thoroughly investigate your claim,
- Delaying a payment unreasonably, or
- Refusing to settle a claim.
The Louisville motorcycle accident attorneys at Gerling Law are strong negotiators. We are well-versed in these insurance company tactics to avoid paying claims. Should the defendants be unwilling to extend a fair offer or negotiate in good faith, we will file a lawsuit on your behalf.
Potential Damages in a Kentucky Motorcycle Accident
Understandably, prospective clients want to know what types of compensation they could potentially receive in a motorcycle accident injury claim. Every case is different, but some of the most common types of recoverable damages include:
- Medical expenses to date,
- Future expected medical costs,
- Loss of earnings to date,
- Future loss of earning capacity,
- Property damage,
- Physical pain and suffering,
- Emotional distress,
- Mental anguish, and
- Loss of consortium.
In some limited situations, you might be eligible to pursue punitive damages. The law limits punitive damages to cases where the at-fault party’s actions were especially egregious. In a motorcycle accident claim, that might be a scenario where the other driver was under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of the collision.
You must present evidence to support any demand for compensation. Documents such as medical records, the police report, and your employment records all play an essential role in your accident claim.
How a Louisville Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Can Help
When you retain the Louisville motorcycle injury lawyers at Gerling Law, we will be there for you every step of the way. Your attorney will be responsible for conducting an independent investigation, gathering all evidence, interviewing witnesses, and handling all communication with the other parties’ insurance companies. Once you have legal representation, you won’t need to speak with the defendant’s insurance company or negotiate your own settlement.
Contact Gerling Law Today
If you are searching online for motorcycle accident lawyers in Louisville, let Gerling Law assist you. We understand the complex nature of motorcycle injury claims. We have years of experience helping injured motorcycle riders just like you get the compensation they deserve. You need a skilled Louisville motorcycle accident lawyer who can prepare the strongest case and is not afraid to take your case to trial should the defendant not be willing to negotiate in good faith.
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