Table of Contents
On a beautiful day in the Garden State, you’ll find motorcyclists enjoying the open road. Maybe it’s a trip along the Jersey Shore or Monmouth County’s back streets. However, the downside to the joys of riding a motorcycle is that it can be dangerous. Because the motorcyclist is unprotected by the shell of a vehicle, as in a car, accidents often involve serious injuries or fatalities.
If another driver’s negligence or recklessness results in severe injuries, a motorcycle crash lawyer at Harrell Law Firm can help you receive the compensation you deserve. Your choice of a motorcycle accident lawyer is an important one. Put your trust in our team of experienced injury attorneys for compassionate, client-focused advocacy that gets results. Contact us for a free consultation. It offers a no-obligation opportunity to ask questions and determine whether you have a valid claim for compensation.
Types and Causes of Motorcycle Accidents
The most frequent types and causes of motorcycle accidents include the following:
- Blind spot collisions–This is the formal term for a driver not seeing a motorcyclist, usually at intersections.
- Dooring–The driver or passenger in a parked car may not see the motorcyclist when opening the door, thus hitting them when they open it.
- Left-hand turns–Motorcycle accidents are common when cars make left-hand turns. The turning vehicle hits a motorcycle either when the bike is going straight through the intersection or trying to overtake the automobile.
- Rear-end collisions–Motorcyclists must keep their distance from vehicles in front of them. A car’s sudden stop could cause the motorcyclist to plow into it if they did not have sufficient room to brake.
- Bad road conditions–Since motorcycles are less stable than other types of motor vehicles, bad road conditions can take a deadly toll. Uneven pavement may not cause problems for cars and trucks but can result in serious motorcycle accidents.
Types of Motorcycle Accident Injuries
Motorcycle accident injuries frequently incur a long period of recovery or permanent disability. Common types of motorcycle accident injuries include:
- Back and neck injuries
- Crushed limbs
- Internal bleeding
- Loss of limbs or digits
- Multiple fractures
- Spinal cord injuries
- Traumatic brain injury
What to Do After a Motorcycle Accident
Many motorcyclists are usually too severely injured after an accident to do anything other than hope someone calls 911. However, if physically able, take photos of the accident scene. Exchange names, insurance, and contact information with the other party. If there are eyewitnesses, get their names and contact information.
Always seek immediate medical treatment after a motorcycle accident, even if you think you are fine. Many injuries are not apparent because the body is flooded with adrenaline. Not going to the emergency room or an urgent medical care facility risks your health and can harm your claim.
When Do You Need a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer?
If you were seriously injured in a motorcycle accident due to another party’s negligence or recklessness, you need the services of a motorcycle accident lawyer. The at-fault party’s insurance company may contact you soon after the accident to offer a settlement. As you recuperate, you may be tempted to take what sounds like a generous offer. However, never accept an insurance settlement before obtaining legal counsel.
Insurance companies make lowball settlement offers, hoping the injured party will quickly agree. That is the business model. They take advantage of the victim’s vulnerability. If that amount is insufficient to cover your ongoing medical and other needs, that is not the insurer’s concern.
A motorcycle accident lawyer at Harrell Law Firm knows what constitutes a reasonable offer given your injuries and prognosis. We will negotiate with insurance companies so that you receive a fair settlement or take the matter to trial.
Does No-fault Insurance Cover Motorcycles in New Jersey?
New Jersey is a no-fault state when it comes to car insurance, but no-fault insurance does not cover motorcycles. If you have Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance under your auto plan, it will not cover medical expenses due to a motorcycle accident. If you have health insurance, it should cover the costs of your initial treatment. If you do not have health insurance, you must pay your medical expenses out of pocket.
New Jersey Helmet Laws and Motorcycle Accidents
Under New Jersey law, all motorcyclists and passengers must wear Department of Transportation-approved helmets. If a motorcyclist crashes and they are not wearing a helmet, that will affect the ability to receive compensation. More importantly, wearing a helmet makes it more likely that you will survive a crash.
What Motorcycle Accident Compensation is Available in New Jersey?
Compensation, or damages, for a motorcycle accident in New Jersey may include:
- Medical expenses, present and future
- Lost wages
- Loss of future income
- Property damage
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of quality of life
Motorcycle accidents often prove fatal. If a motorcyclist dies from their injuries, their family may file a wrongful death lawsuit.
How Motorcycle Accidents are Different From Other Personal Injury Cases
Injuries from motorcycle accidents tend to be worse than those from car accidents. This is because drivers and their passengers have some protection in the form of seat belts and airbags, as well as the fact that the body of the car can shield them to some degree. Motorcyclists do not have any of the above.
Moreover, the effects of these accidents are more likely to prove permanent. The injured motorcyclist may suffer long-term disability and need extensive rehabilitation and physical therapy. In addition, they may no longer be able to work or support their family. Unfortunately, motorcyclists are more likely to succumb to injuries, leaving their families in serious financial circumstances.
Your motorcycle insurance premium should include ample uninsured and underinsured motorcycle coverage. This type of coverage pays you if the driver of the vehicle responsible for your injuries does not have insurance or is underinsured. Although New Jersey requires only a minimum of $15,000 in liability coverage, it is wise to purchase as much coverage as you can afford.
How Harrell Law Firm Can Help
If you’ve been harmed through no fault of your own, you need a motorcycle accident law firm to represent you at this critical time. At Harrell Law Firm, we can investigate your case thoroughly and identify all liable parties. In addition, we collect and review evidence, such as police reports, medical records, and surveillance videos. Medical experts can testify to the extent of your injuries and your ability to work in the future. Economic experts can also testify to your loss of future income based on your prior earnings and expected raises or promotions.
Schedule a free, no-obligation consultation today with a New Jersey motorcycle accident attorney. Because we work on a contingency basis, there are no legal fees unless you receive compensation. We are based in Wall Township near the Howell Township border and represent clients throughout Monmouth County and New Jersey.