Jacksonville Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
There were 8.4 million motorcycles on the road in 2013 across the nation, according to the Insurance Information Institute. Many of those motorcyclists reside in Florida, which is a popular destination for motorcyclists due to the warm, sunny weather and many motorcycle events held in the state. With a high population of those who ride, Florida is also one of the deadliest states for motorcyclists. Motorcyclists are 30 times more likely to die with every mile driven when compared to the occupants of a car. And, according to data compiled by the Governor’s Highway Safety Association, motorcycle crashes and fatalities have been on the rise in 14 of the past 15 years during the time of the study (1997 to 2012). Unfortunately, they have continued to rise in the years since, and Florida is one of the most dangerous states for motorcyclists due to the high number of motorcycle events, the year-round riding weather, Florida’s lax laws on helmet use, and the discerning prevalence of distracted, impatient drivers on increasingly crowded roads.
In the years before Florida repealed its mandatory helmet law, annual motorcycle deaths were well below 200. Immediately after, those numbers spiked up into the middle 200s, and now sit well below 400 every year. In fact, Florida’s rising death toll of motorcyclists is often used outside the state to defeat repeals of helmet laws in other states, according to The Tampa Bay Times. By wearing a helmet, motorcyclists decrease their chance of death in a crash by 40 percent. However, just because a motorcyclists was not wearing a helmet when they were struck by a car does not mean that they were at fault. Contact our experienced Jacksonville motorcycle accident lawyers today.
Negligence in Motorcycle Crashes
Negligence lies on the shoulders of the party that caused the crash. While motorcyclist deaths and serious injuries have been rising over the years in Jacksonville and Florida in general, other road users share much of the blame. Excuses such as not seeing the motorcyclist or claiming that “they came out of nowhere” are not valid reasons for causing a collision. All road users must remain vigilant at all times and aware of their surroundings, which is part of our duty to act with care. All road users must abide by this rule to drive in a way that does not put others at unnecessary risk.
An Example of Negligence in a Jacksonville Motorcycle Accident
Florida may only have a secondary law against texting and driving (meaning that a police officer cannot issue a citation if that is the only law the driver is braking), but a driver who was found to be on their phone at the time of the collision will likely be found negligent in a court of law for careless driving. If you or a loved one was injured in a motorcycle crash that you did not cause, it is very likely that you will be able to be compensated for your injuries by the negligent party. Contact The Pendas Law Firm today to discuss your collision with one the most popular Jacksonville motorcycle accident lawyers at 1-888-573-6327.
What to Do If You Have Been Involved In a Motorcycle Accident in Jacksonville
As with any accident that results in injury or property damage, the primary thing that a victim of a motorcycle crash must do is establish liability. We all owe each other a duty of care out on the road, which means that we must not take unnecessary risks or operate our vehicles in manners that put others at undue risk. If a driver sideswipes a motorcyclist while turning left because they were texting, looking in the backseat for something, or otherwise not paying attention to the road ahead, they have broken their duty of care, in the eyes of Florida law. In fact, vehicles making left turns account for 42 percent of all motorcycle accidents, according to one source. Proving that they operated their vehicle in a such a way can be more difficult, which is why a motorcycle accident lawyer is crucial to any personal injury lawsuit. Placing a value on your injuries and other damages is another difficult aspect of a motorcycle accident claim. Not only are past medical bills taken into account, but future treatments as well as pain and suffering must be factored in as well.
Calculating Pain and Suffering
Pain and suffering falls under two categories: emotional and physical, and if the injuries are severe, pain and suffering compensation can far exceed medical costs. One way to calculate the total pain and suffering is to multiply the cost of your medical injuries by a predetermined multiplier, with a lower multiplier being more minor injuries such as soft tissue (whiplash), broken bones being a three, and serious or lifelong injuries (such as permanent scarring or traumatic brain injuries) being a higher number. However, just because the injuries you have sustained may be horrendous, the actual amount of you settle for or receive in a lawsuit largely depends on the insurance policy or assets of the negligent party. For all of these reasons, tackling a personal injury lawsuit or settlement is incredibly difficult to go alone. The Pendas Law Firm not only has offices in Jacksonville, but Orlando, Fort Myers, Tampa, West Palm Beach, Fort Lauderdale & Miami, as well. We are experienced in dealing with minor to highly traumatic motorcycle injury cases and can guarantee that our aggressive, detail-oriented lawyers will work to award you the highest possible financial outcome that your injuries, pain and suffering, lost wages, and property damage deserve.
Steps to Take Immediately After a Jacksonville Motorcycle Accident
Gathering crash scene details can be a crucial step in proving negligence. However, if you are so seriously injured that you cannot partake in taking photos and talking to witnesses, that is another area that an lawyer will be able to prove their worth. But, if you are able to, after you have called the authorities, take photos of the crash scene and the damage to your motorcycle and the other vehicle. If you are able to, move your motorcycle out of the way of traffic and stay clear of the road to ensure you don’t get hit a second time. Gather witness information and the driver’s insurance information, as well as their full name, address, phone number, email, make and model of car, license plate number (and state), and driver’s license number. If you or a loved one have been injured in a motorcycle collision, contact an experienced Jacksonville motorcycle accident lawyer at The Pendas Law Firm today at 1-888-573-6327.