MOTORCYCLE ACCIDENT LAWYERS

Serving Austin, Texas

Motorcyclists are 28 times more likely to die in an accident than people in passenger vehicles. While motorcyclists tend to be viewed as rash and dangerous, nothing can be farther from the truth. In reality, their injuries are often caused by the actions of other drivers.

Compared to other vehicles, motorcycles are small and exposed. As a result, motorcycle accidents tend to be much more severe than car accidents.

After a motorcycle crash, it’s important to work with an experienced legal team who knows how to assess your damages so you can get what you’re owed. If you or a loved one has suffered serious injuries in a motorcycle accident, contact Austin, Texas law firm Shaw Cowart LLP for a complimentary case review. Call our motorcycle accident attorneys at 512-499-8900

Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents

Head-on collisions are the leading cause of motorcycle accidents, followed by cars making left-hand turns in front of motorcycles. Other top causes of motorcycle crashes include:

  • Passing and overtaking
  • Drunk driving
  • Speeding
  • Inclement weather
  • Road hazards

Whether your collision is caused by another driver or an unforeseen circumstance, you may be wondering what to do next. Our experienced motorcycle accident lawyers will help you determine the best course of action to take when seeking reparations for your damages.

Determining Fault in Motorcycle Crashes

Motorcycles are smaller and therefore less visible to other drivers, but that doesn’t absolve drivers who fail to notice and yield the right of way to riders. The driver who caused your accident can be held liable for your injuries if they engaged in negligent behaviors, such as not checking their mirrors or following too closely.

In some cases, another driver may not be the only party to blame. Depending on the cause of your crash, other at-fault parties may include:

  • Motorcycle designer, manufacturer or assembler
  • Safety gear designer, manufacturer or assembler
  • Construction or road crews
tommy Common causes of motorcycle accidents 512x1024 1

We will conduct a thorough investigation of your collision to determine who is ultimately responsible for your injuries.

No-Contact Motorcycle Accidents

Did you know that a crash can happen even if you don’t hit another vehicle? Known as a no-contact accident, these crashes occur when a rider hits the breaks or lays down their bike in order to avoid a collision.

If you were involved in a no-contact motorcycle accident, the other driver can still be held liable for their negligence. Examples of negligent actions include careless, aggressive and reckless behaviors, such as:

  • Changing lanes without signaling
  • Running red lights
  • Tailgating
  • Not checking blind spots
  • Texting and driving
  • Exceeding posted speed limits
motorcycle crashed under fence

Holding a negligent driver at fault in a no-contact accident can prove difficult. If the driver is not aware they caused your injuries, they will likely leave the scene.

Our attorneys can help you prove that another driver’s negligent actions caused you to swerve, fall off of or lay down your bike, resulting in your injuries. They will work with you, any witnesses and law enforcement to locate and prosecute the at-fault driver.

Texas Motorcycle Helmet Laws

All Texas riders under age 21 are required to wear a helmet when operating a motorcycle. Motorcyclists over age 21 can only ride without a helmet if they’ve completed a motorcycle operator training and safety course AND are covered by an applicable health insurance plan.

While you may be exempt from helmet laws, you should never ride without one. Serious head injuries are one of the most common personal injuries associated with motorcycle accidents, and a helmet can reduce your risk of head injury by 69 percent. A helmet also reduces your risk of death by 37 percent.

Holding Motorcycle Helmet

Safety Tips for Motorcyclists

Almost all motorcycle crashes involve riders who are self-taught. Before using your bike, consider investing in professional training.

In Texas, all riders must attend a basic training course before they can receive their motorcycle license. The Texas Department of Public Safety also offers intermediate, advanced and specialized training courses to riders who want to expedite the licensing process and bolster their safety knowledge.

Regardless of your abilities, you should always practice safe and smart riding. While you cannot control the actions of other drivers, you should do everything possible to be in control of your vehicle at all times.

Follow these tips every time you ride:

  • Never share or split lanes: Lane splitting is illegal in Texas.
  • Know your skill level: Ride on roads and during times of day that are safest for you.
  • Avoid driving during inclement weather: Rain, fog and other adverse weather conditions are especially dangerous for motorcyclists. Always check the weather before riding.
  • Wear a helmet and protective clothing: Wear abrasion-resistant gear and bright clothing that’s easily visible to other drivers.

Impact of a Motorcycle Accident on a Person's Health

Your health includes your physical, mental, and emotional well-being. Your injuries can manifest in many ways, including as:

  • Brain and head injuries
  • Spinal cord and back injuries
  • Life-threatening or limb-threatening infections that develop from lacerations
  • Burns 
  • Scarring and disfigurement
  • Loss of a leg, arm, hand, or finger
  • Total or partial paralysis
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Emotional trauma
  • Mental anguish
  • Loss of enjoyment of life 
  • Diminished quality of life

There of course can be other ways that a crash can affect the victim’s health. Part of what our attorneys do is a thorough investigation of all of the ways you have been injured: financially, physically, mentally, and in other ways. We can pursue justice and compensation on your behalf once we have a complete understanding of how your life has been changed.

Medical Bills After a Motorcycle Accident

Depending on the severity of your injuries, related medical costs can quickly become very expensive. Costs related to the medical aspects of your injury may include:

  • Ambulance ride
  • Emergency room care
  • Surgery
  • Skin grafts
  • Reconstructive surgery 
  • Continuous follow-up appointments
  • Medications
  • Physical therapy
  • Speech therapy
  • Rehabilitative therapy
  • Talk therapy
  • Assistive/adaptive equipment and devices
  • Modifications to the home
  • Nursing care
  • In-home care

Medical expenses for catastrophic injuries can extend well into the future and can in fact be lifelong.

Building a Motorcycle Crash Case

While each accident victim’s situation is unique, there are some commonalities to what lawyers do to build these cases, including:

  • Obtaining the police report
  • Obtaining witness testimony
  • Gathering photographic evidence of what took place and of your injuries
  • Gathering any video footage and surveillance footage of the crash
  • Reconstructing the accident scene
  • Talking to your doctors and other people involved in your care
  • Reviewing medical records, diagnoses, prescribed treatments, and medical bills
  • Interviewing medical experts, accident experts, and other authorities

The first step is for our attorneys to meet with you in a consultation. We will ask about what took place, and you can ask us any questions you have about pursuing a claim. If a claim moves forward, we will begin building a case strategy immediately, with the goal of recovering the best results for you.

We put all of our experience and resources to work for our clients. When someone else causes a motorcycle accident that injures you, we believe strongly that you deserve justice.

Dealing with Insurance Companies After an Accident

Woman with a broken leg calling on phone about a letter sitting on a couch in the living room at home Receiving calls from insurance adjusters after a motorcycle crash can be overwhelming. While your insurance company owes you certain benefits and should deal with you in good faith, sometimes claimants receive unfair settlements or no settlement at all, even though they’ve been dutifully paying for insurance coverage.

Our attorneys negotiate with insurance companies and other parties so our clients don’t have to. We understand how these insurance companies work to close claims. While those methods aren’t always in bad faith, sometimes they are. In other situations, adjusters simply may not value claims correctly. As an injury victim who doesn’t normally deal with these situations, you’re at a bit of a disadvantage. Rely on an experienced attorney to navigate the situation on your behalf, while also keeping you informed of the progress every step of the way.

Types of Motorcycle Accidents

A motorist makes a left turn in front of an oncoming motorcycle. Motorists must remain vigilant for motorcycles. Sharing the road is an important part of preventing accidents. Unfortunately, careless motorists sometimes turn left in front of a motorcycle, either because they didn’t take the time to see and recognize it, because they misjudged the speed, or for some other reason. Doing so can easily lead to a fatal crash as the turning car impacts the passing motorcycle.

A motorist doesn’t provide the motorcycle the full use of a lane. A motorcycle rider has the same rights to the road as other motorists. Whether out of aggression or carelessness, motorists sometimes don’t let motorcycles use the full lane and crowd them out. This causes a dangerous scenario in which the motorcycle rider may lose control of the bike.

A motorist collides head-on with a motorcycle. Motorcycles are easier for motorists to miss. If a driver thinks the other lane of traffic is clear of all vehicles, and takes the opportunity to look at their phone or take their eyes off the road, they may drift and hit an oncoming motorcycle rider. This is just one way in which a head-on collision may occur.  

These are just a few of the common types of motorcycle accidents. There are many more. Although we want to learn more about the type of accident, the true underpinning of all accident cases is negligence. That is to say, if someone else’s carelessness caused the crash that injured you, then you probably have a case.

Impact of a Motorcycle Accident on a Person's Health

Your health includes your physical, mental, and emotional well-being. Your injuries can manifest in many ways, including as:

  • Brain and head injuries
  • Spinal cord and back injuries
  • Life-threatening or limb-threatening infections that develop from lacerations
  • Burns 
  • Scarring and disfigurement
  • Loss of a leg, arm, hand, or finger
  • Total or partial paralysis
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Emotional trauma
  • Mental anguish
  • Loss of enjoyment of life 
  • Diminished quality of life

There of course can be other ways that a crash can affect the victim’s health. Part of what our attorneys do is a thorough investigation of all of the ways you have been injured: financially, physically, mentally, and in other ways. We can pursue justice and compensation on your behalf once we have a complete understanding of how your life has been changed.

Medical Bills After a Motorcycle Accident

Depending on the severity of your injuries, related medical costs can quickly become very expensive. Costs related to the medical aspects of your injury may include:

  • Ambulance ride
  • Emergency room care
  • Surgery
  • Skin grafts
  • Reconstructive surgery 
  • Continuous follow-up appointments
  • Medications
  • Physical therapy
  • Speech therapy
  • Rehabilitative therapy
  • Talk therapy
  • Assistive/adaptive equipment and devices
  • Modifications to the home
  • Nursing care
  • In-home care

Medical expenses for catastrophic injuries can extend well into the future and can in fact be lifelong.

Building a Motorcycle Crash Case

Businessman Signing An Official Document

While each accident victim’s situation is unique, there are some commonalities to what lawyers do to build these cases, including:

  • Obtaining the police report
  • Obtaining witness testimony
  • Gathering photographic evidence of what took place and of your injuries
  • Gathering any video footage and surveillance footage of the crash
  • Reconstructing the accident scene
  • Talking to your doctors and other people involved in your care
  • Reviewing medical records, diagnoses, prescribed treatments, and medical bills
  • Interviewing medical experts, accident experts, and other authorities

The first step is for our attorneys to meet with you in a consultation. We will ask about what took place, and you can ask us any questions you have about pursuing a claim. If a claim moves forward, we will begin building a case strategy immediately, with the goal of recovering the best results for you.

We put all of our experience and resources to work for our clients. When someone else causes a motorcycle accident that injures you, we believe strongly that you deserve justice.

Dealing with Insurance Companies After an Accident

Receiving calls from insurance adjusters after a motorcycle crash can be overwhelming. While your insurance company owes you certain benefits and should deal with you in good faith, sometimes claimants receive unfair settlements or no settlement at all, even though they’ve been dutifully paying for insurance coverage.

Our attorneys negotiate with insurance companies and other parties so our clients don’t have to. We understand how these insurance companies work to close claims. While those methods aren’t always in bad faith, sometimes they are. In other situations, adjusters simply may not value claims correctly. As an injury victim who doesn’t normally deal with these situations, you’re at a bit of a disadvantage. Rely on an experienced attorney to navigate the situation on your behalf, while also keeping you informed of the progress every step of the way.

Types of Motorcycle Accidents

A motorist makes a left turn in front of an oncoming motorcycle. Motorists must remain vigilant for motorcycles. Sharing the road is an important part of preventing accidents. Unfortunately, careless motorists sometimes turn left in front of a motorcycle, either because they didn’t take the time to see and recognize it, because they misjudged the speed, or for some other reason. Doing so can easily lead to a fatal crash as the turning car impacts the passing motorcycle.

A motorist doesn’t provide the motorcycle the full use of a lane. A motorcycle rider has the same rights to the road as other motorists. Whether out of aggression or carelessness, motorists sometimes don’t let motorcycles use the full lane and crowd them out. This causes a dangerous scenario in which the motorcycle rider may lose control of the bike.

A motorist collides head-on with a motorcycle. Motorcycles are easier for motorists to miss. If a driver thinks the other lane of traffic is clear of all vehicles, and takes the opportunity to look at their phone or take their eyes off the road, they may drift and hit an oncoming motorcycle rider. This is just one way in which a head-on collision may occur.  

These are just a few of the common types of motorcycle accidents. There are many more. Although we want to learn more about the type of accident, the true underpinning of all accident cases is negligence. That is to say, if someone else’s carelessness caused the crash that injured you, then you probably have a case.

Contact Our Austin Motorcycle Accident Attorneys

Motorcyclists are entitled to the same rights as other drivers. If you or a loved one were severely hurt in a motorcycle accident, you deserve justice. Call 512-499-8900 to schedule your complimentary consultation. Shaw Cowart LLP serves clients in the Austin, Texas, area.

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