Stephen Schultz | July 20, 2022 | Motorcycle Accidents
You probably need a lawyer if you’ve been hurt in a motorcycle accident. Because of a lack of frame protection, motorcycle accidents tend to be more severe than automobile accidents. Unfortunately, personal injury and wrongful death cases are not at all uncommon after a motorcycle collision.
After a motorcycle crash, you likely need medical treatment and legal help. However, you need a personal injury lawyer who is experienced in handling motorcycle accident claims.
What Can a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Do for You?
An experienced motorcycle accident lawyer can help you in many different ways, including those described below.
You can investigate your case yourself by gathering the names of witnesses and photographing the accident scene. The odds are, however, that your lawyer will have a better idea of what to look for than you will.
A motorcycle accident lawyer will be well-versed in the applicable law and evidence needed to prove your case and get the best outcome.
Help You Arrange a Medical Lien
If your medical bills are high enough, the insurance policy might not cover them. Since Missouri is an “at-fault” auto insurance state, you can file a third-party claim against the at-fault party’s auto liability insurance policy.
However, you cannot guarantee whether you will win your claim or how much money you will receive. Nevertheless, a skilled lawyer might be able to negotiate a medical lien where your healthcare provider offers you treatment but retains a legal right to take the cost of treatment out of whatever settlement or verdict you recover.
Negotiate Your Claim for You
The insurance company (the most likely opposing party you will face) will send a professional negotiator (insurance adjuster) to the negotiating table to attack your claim in various ways.
The following are some of the most common:
- Missouri’s motorcycle helmet law has recently been relaxed such that riders 26 and above are not required to wear them. However, an insurance company might lower its offer because you failed to wear a motorcycle helmet.
- The opposing party could use Missouri’s pure comparative fault laws to assert that you were partly to blame for your own injuries (for lane-splitting, for example) and that your damages should be reduced.
- Missouri’s mandatory auto liability insurance requirements for most motorists are $25,000 for bodily injury per person, $50,000 for bodily injury per accident, and $25,000 for property damage. If the at-fault driver carries only minimum insurance, your lawyer may need to find a second defendant if your damages exceed the policy limits (such as the at-fault driver’s employer if they were on duty at the time of the accident).
Most insurance companies don’t want to go to court. A good motorcycle accident lawyer can help you exploit this fact for your benefit.
Draft a Settlement Agreement
If you come to a settlement, you need to formalize it in a written settlement agreement. Your lawyer should either draft or carefully review the agreement because it is this agreement that can force the opposing party to pay.
Conduct Pretrial Discovery (If Necessary)
If the opposing party gets stubborn, you can file a personal injury lawsuit. You will need a lawyer to help you with this. Filing a lawsuit doesn’t necessarily mean giving up on settling—you can always withdraw your case in response to a settlement offer.
Filing a lawsuit, however, means you can cross-examine witnesses, send the opposing party questions they must answer under oath, and various other effective evidence-gathering techniques. This alone might be enough to stimulate a settlement.
Represent You at Trial
If you are like most people with motorcycle accident claims, your case will never make it to trial. If it does, however, you will need an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer to represent you in open court.
Call a Lawyer Today If You’ve Been Injured in a Motorcycle Accident
If you suffer injuries in a motorcycle accident, there are many ways a lawyer can help you. With the right motorcycle accident attorney, you will likely walk away with more money than you otherwise would have, even after deducting legal fees and expenses.
If you’ve been injured in a motorcycle accident, please contact Schultz & Myers Personal Injury Lawyers at the nearest location to schedule a free consultation today:
Ladue, MO Law Office
9807 S 40 Dr, St. Louis, MO 63124
Creve Coeur, MO Law Office
999 Executive Pkwy Dr #205, Creve Coeur, MO 63141