If you’ve been injured while riding your motorcycle and you think someone else is at fault, you can file a lawsuit to receive compensation for your losses. Contact a motorcycle accident attorney in New Orleans to begin the filing process.
New Orleans is a great place to ride a motorcycle because the weather is always warm. Motorcycles can pose more safety risks than cars because riders aren’t fully protected when collisions occur. However, there are ways for motorcyclists to practice caution when riding. When motorcycle accidents in New Orleans occur, it isn’t automatically the fault of the motorcycle rider.
Vehicle drivers often cause motorcycle accidents, and other factors can also come into play. If you were injured while riding your motorcycle in New Orleans and you believe someone else was responsible, you can identify who’s at fault and hold them liable. A New Orleans motorcycle accident lawyer from Smiley Law Firm, LLC can support you as you go to court and fight to obtain a settlement.
Although many people assume motorcyclists cause most motorcycle accidents in New Orleans, vehicle drivers are also responsible for many accidents involving motorcycles. A vehicle or truck driver can cause a motorcycle accident if they’re distracted while driving, speeding, driving under the influence, or improperly changing lanes.
Vehicle drivers can also cause accidents with motorcycles if they suddenly stop on the road, fail to yield, or sideswipe a motorcyclist. Other factors that can also cause motorcycle accidents in New Orleans, which include vehicle or motorcycle malfunctions, bad weather, and roadway hazards.
Depending on the type of motorcycle accident and how severe it was, injuries can range from moderate to life-threatening. Because motorcyclists are completely exposed when they wreck their bikes, their injuries are likely to be more significant than a typical car accident injury in New Orleans.
Injuries caused by New Orleans motorcycle accidents may include spinal damage, traumatic brain damage, bone fractures, internal bleeding, and burns. These injuries can result in harsh side effects and an accumulation of large medical expenses.
Spinal damage may lead to a loss of sensory function or paralysis; traumatic brain damage can lead to personality changes and amnesia. Internal bleeding can cause damage to the organs and may cause long-term and fatal injuries if left untreated; burns can result in permanent scarring and disfigurement. Bone fractures may seem minor but can result in severe pain and physical impairment.
The hardest part about filing a New Orleans motorcycle accident lawsuit is convincing the court to abandon the reckless motorcyclist stereotype. Unlike other personal injury lawsuits in which a victim goes into their case trying to prove negligence, as a motorcyclist, you may have to go into a case proving your innocence to some extent.
Unfortunately, the court often assumes motorcyclists to be at fault for motorcycle accidents because motorcycles are inherently dangerous and bikers often ride recklessly. Your motorcycle accident lawyer in New Orleans will support you in court and help eliminate any preconceived notions about your behavior. Your attorney can then prove to the court who’s truly at fault for your accident.
Proving who’s responsible for your New Orleans motorcycle accident will require a thorough investigation of your accident. You must gather evidence such as photographs, video footage, and witness testimonies to validate any arguments you make in court.
If you can show the judge and jury that the liable party was negligent, you can then use medical records to connect this negligence to your injuries. The defendant in your case may be a vehicle driver, but it’s also possible to sue a company or government entity for your accident. For example, if a motorcycle malfunction caused your motorcycle accident, you can then sue the bike manufacturer.
To increase your New Orleans motorcycle accident settlement, you should account for all the losses you’ve suffered because of the accident. These losses may be financial or non-financial in nature.
Financial losses can comprise medical expenses from treating your injuries, lost income from taking time away from work to recover, or property damage. Non-financial losses can comprise ways that the accident has affected your lifestyle, such as scarring and disfigurement, loss of enjoyment of life, emotional distress, pain and suffering, and loss of consortium.
It’s essential to include every loss you’ve experienced if you want to get the most out of your injury claim. Your New Orleans motorcycle accident attorney will discuss your injury with your doctor to ensure all your losses, including future medical expenses, are considered.
Many victims of New Orleans motorcycle accidents may hesitate to file lawsuits because they don’t feel confident about the legal process. If your questions are dissuading you from taking legal action, you should call our firm and schedule a free consultation. We’ve answered some of the most frequently asked questions about motorcycle accident litigation below to get you started.
Yes. New Orleans has a one-year statute of limitations for filing personal injury claims, which includes motorcycle accident lawsuits. You’ll have one year from when your motorcycle accident occurred to file a claim for compensation. If you miss the one-year deadline, the court won’t hear your case and you won’t receive a settlement for your losses.
Louisiana requires all riders to wear a helmet when riding a motorcycle, so if you weren’t wearing a helmet during your collision, it can negatively impact your case. But, just because you weren’t wearing a helmet doesn’t mean you don’t have grounds for a lawsuit. You should discuss the details of your case with an attorney to determine your percentage of fault and the value of your claim.
Louisiana has a pure comparative fault law, which is the most lenient of all the negligence laws nationwide. In states with pure comparative fault laws, any victim can recover compensation from other parties who share fault in an accident, regardless of their percentage of fault. The New Orleans court will assess your percentage of fault and then deduct this percentage from your overall settlement amount.
Motorcycle accidents in New Orleans can result in traumatic injuries. It can be difficult to move forward with a lawsuit while you’re focusing on recovering both physically and emotionally. Having the support of an experienced New Orleans attorney can be crucial to receiving the maximum settlement you deserve.
At Smiley Law Firm, LLC, we work hard to seek justice on behalf of all injured victims in motorcycle accidents. If you’re ready to discuss the details of your case with a New Orleans motorcycle accident lawyer from our team, fill out the contact form below or call 504-894-9653 to schedule a free consultation.