Colorado Motorcycle Accident Lawyer | Motorcycle Injury Attorney Motorcycle riders are well aware of the risks they take just by being on Colorado roadways. Inattentive vehicle drivers, large vehicles, and driver errors such as failure to yield can be a threat to motorcyclists during travel. If you or one of your family members have suffered injuries from a motorcycle accident, you may be able to seek compensation. A payout could cover your medical expenses, property damage to your bike, lost salary or wages, and much more. To seek compensation, you must first file a personal injury claim, also commonly called a motorcycle accident claim. The claims process can be daunting, but with help from a skilled lawyer, it doesn’t have to be. Find out how motorcycle accident claims work, different factors that affect your claim, types of losses you can claim, and how to get started on a claim with help from a Colorado car accident lawyer. How Motorcycle Accident Claims Work in Colorado Personal injury claims help motorcycle accident victims seek compensation for their injuries. The typical first step in injury claims is to contact a personal injury lawyer. During a thorough case investigation, a lawyer will perform a number of tasks, such as: Communicating with the insurance companies Assessing the extent of personal injury and vehicle damages Poring over your insurance policy and the police report Gathering evidence to build your case, such as photos of the accident scene Examining your medical records Consulting Colorado law for motorcycle accidents to see which apply to your claim If your lawyer believes you have a case, they can advise you on whether you should move forward with filing a claim. Your car accident lawyer can then file your claim on your behalf. After this begins the negotiations process, which an experienced lawyer will handle with ease, responding to the other lawyer and insurance adjuster in turn until you reach a settlement offer for fair compensation. What Causes Motorcycle Accidents? A range of things can lead to motorcycle crashes in the state of Colorado, which often lead to devastating injuries or fatalities for bikers. Common causes of motorcycle accidents include the following. Driver Error Driver error is one of the most common causes of all motor vehicle accidents, including those involving motorcycles, and especially those which also involve passenger vehicles. Some common driver errors that can lead to motorcycle crashes include: Failure to yield the right of way Failing to check blind spots Failure to yield during a left turn Opening parked car doors without checking for traffic Speeding Distracted driving, such as texting while driving or talking on your cell phone Aggressive driving, such as tailgating or sideswiping Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol (driver impairment) Faulty Road Design Poor road design or lack of road maintenance could also lead to an injured motorcyclist. Potholes, construction issues, and other road issues can cause any motor vehicle to spin out of control and lead to a crash. In this case, there may not be an at fault driver. Instead, the liable (responsible) party could be the organization responsible for maintaining the road. Poor Weather Conditions Slippery road conditions are especially dangerous for motorcyclists. Wet roads, high winds, winter weather, and other bad weather create hazardous driving conditions. Motorcycle Design Error In some cases, there may have been an error during the design or manufacture of the motorcycle. If your bike has faulty brakes or another defective motor vehicle part, the company that manufactured your motorcycle could be held liable for your injuries. How Negligence Affects Colorado Motorcycle Accident Cases Negligence affects all personal injury cases in Colorado. That is, negligence must be proven in order for you to claim damages for your injuries. Colorado operates on a principle of comparative negligence, which means your settlement amount will be reduced based on your level of negligence in the accident, if any. The driver of a passenger vehicle may have been negligent toward you if they didn’t look twice to check for vehicles before turning left, resulting in a collision. A roadway crew may have been negligent if they didn’t repair a road defect in a timely manner, and a motorcycle manufacturer could be negligent if they failed to catch a design issue before building the bike. Negligence can occur in a multitude of ways, but you must be able to prove negligence was present, led to the accident, and directly resulted in your injuries. This is a task that’s best spearheaded by an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer. If you’re wondering whether negligence led to your motorcycle accident, reach out to Florin|Roebig law firm now for a free case evaluation. Who Is Liable in Colorado Motorcycle Accidents? Although most motorcycle collisions are caused by drivers, there are some cases where other factors are at play, leading to more than one liable party. To understand who can be held liable for your injuries, you have to first understand what fault and liability mean. Difference Between Fault and Liability Fault refers to who caused the motorcycle accident, while liability refers to who can be held legally responsible for damages caused by the accident. At fault motorists may not always be liable. For example, a driver in a passenger vehicle may have lost control of their vehicle due to wet roads and crashed into your motorcycle. In this case, they would be at fault, but may not be liable for your injuries if their lawyer could prove they would not have crashed on dry roads. Potential Liable Parties A liable party must also have been negligent, or breached a duty of care to other motorists in some way. Liable parties may include the passenger vehicle driver, the motorcycle manufacturer or distributor, or the Colorado state or county road maintenance organization. Losses to List in a Colorado Motorcycle Personal Injury Claim Any losses you incur due to a motorcycle crash in Colorado may be listed on your injury claim. Losses are legally known as ‘damages’, and are generally broken into two categories: economic damages and non-economic damages. Economic damages include all the accident-related expenses which have a definite value, such as medical bills or other costs for medical treatment and lost wages. Non-economic damages include those losses which are harder to assign a monetary value, such as loss of companionship due to unexpected loss of a loved one. If you are seeking compensation for a loved one who died in a motorcycle accident, the damages may be called ‘wrongful death’ damages. Your lawyer can help you determine all the losses you experienced from the accident to list on your claim in order to seek maximum compensation. Common Motorcycle Accident Injuries Motorcycle accidents often lead to serious injuries, many of which are life-threatening. Some of the more common severe injuries in motorcycle accident injuries are: Road rash Broken bones Head injuries Traumatic brain injuries (TBI) Spinal cord injuries, like paralysis Scarring and disfigurement Loss of limbs Fatalities Types of Motorcycle Accidents That Occur in Colorado As with other motor vehicle accidents, motorcycle crashes may happen in a number of ways. How a crash occurs can affect who is at fault, liability, and the extent of injuries for accident victims. Some types of motorcycle accidents include: Accidents caused by motor vehicles turning left: The car’s driver may fail to yield, fail to see your motorcycle, or misjudge your speed of travel. Motorcycle accidents involving alcohol impairment: Impairment can affect either the motorcyclist or other motorist and may be devastating for accident victims. Motorcycle accidents caused by switching lanes: If a biker is riding in a vehicle’s blind spots, the driver may not see you. Lane splitting is another common reason for these accidents. Head-on collisions: This could occur between two motorcycles, a motorcycle and a passenger vehicle, or a motorcycle and commercial vehicle. Colorado Motorcycle Accident Rates According to the Colorado State Patrol, motorcycle accident rates in the state peaked in 2017 with 125 crash fatalities, then decreased in 2018 to 103 fatalities (the most recent year for data). Other important facts about vehicle accidents involving motorcycles in Colorado: 94 of the 103 motorists who lost their lives in motorcycle crashes in Colorado were male. More than half of the riders who were fatally injured were not wearing helmets. Less than half of the motorcycle accidents that occurred involved only the motorcycle and not another vehicle. More than half of the motorcycle operators involved in fatal crashes were under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Colorado motorcycle crash rates are similar to those for the United States as a whole. There were more than 5,200 motorcycle crash fatalities in the U.S. in 2017, decreasing to below 5,000 fatalities in 2018, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). What to Do After A Colorado Motorcycle Crash If you have just been in a motorcycle accident in Colorado, take the following steps to ensure your safety (and that of others) and to protect your legal rights. Contact 9-1-1. Even if you aren’t sure if someone is injured yet, it’s a good idea to get authorities on their way, as emergency services can take time to arrive on scene. Leave your protective gear on. This is important for two reasons. First, you may have adrenaline going from the crash, which could mask your injuries, and removing your gear could worsen injuries. Second, it can help your case to have proof that you took protective measures. Help any injured parties. After you have contacted emergency services, help any injured parties as best you can until professional help arrives. Get yourself and any other accident victims to a safe spot and out of the road if possible. Seek medical care. Even for minor injuries, it’s important to seek medical treatment. Medical records from this initial visit could become crucial evidence to your case. Gather information from the accident scene. This can include pictures from the scene, your bike, and any injuries, as well as contact information, vehicle information, and personal information such as driver’s license number and insurance policy numbers from other motorists involved. Reach out to a qualified personal injury attorney. Even if you aren’t sure whether you want to file a claim, talking to a lawyer can help ensure you don’t say or do anything that could hurt your chances of compensation. The Best Colorado Motorcycle Accident Lawyers Near You When you’re ready to fight for maximum compensation after a motorcycle accident in Denver or another area of Colorado, you need competent legal representation. At the law offices of Florin|Roebig, we can offer the expertise your case needs. Since the beginning of our law firm more than three decades ago, our average contested jury verdict is more than $1 million. And we have secured more than $1 billion in total case awards to date. Named to both the Elite Trial Lawyers list and the “Best Law Firms in America” list by US News and World Report, our case experience precedes us. The highly qualified personal injury team at Florin|Roebig includes: Wil H. Florin, B.C.S. Tommy D. Roebig, B.C.S. Chase P. Florin, B.C.S. Parker Y. Florin, LL.M. Taylor D. Roebig John J. Hart Lawrence J. Najem, O.C. Nollys R. Solarte, O.C. Andrew M. Leone, O.C. Connect With the Experienced Motorcycle Accident Attorneys at Florin|Roebig A motorcycle accident in Colorado can leave you or your loved one with life-altering injuries. You should not have to pay for medical bills or live with the pain of injuries caused by someone else’s negligence. Let us help you today. Reach out to the Florin|Roebig legal team to get in touch with a Colorado motorcycle accident lawyer with years of experience in personal injury cases.