Biker JusticeBiker Justice Biker Justice


Experts Answer Your Motorcycle Law Questions

The Most Commonly Asked Motorcycle Law Questions from Riders Like You.

What do I do if I got into an accident because of mechanical failure?

Is a Motorcycle Passenger Entitled to Compensation from Accidents?

I have a custom bike that was involved in an accident and the insurance company does not want to pay. What do I do?

How long does an insurance company have to settle a claim?

What should I do if my insurance asks me for a statement?

Can I get compensation for damage resulting from Road Conditions?

I was in an accident, but it wasn’t that bad. Do I still need to see a doctor?

What are the most important questions that people ask after an accident?

What is a No-Fault claim anyway?

If I was in an accident but wasn’t seriously hurt, why can’t I sue the other driver?

How does filing a claim after a motorcycle accident work?

How are motorcycle accidents different from other kinds of accidents?

Why do I need an attorney for a motorcycle accident? Can’t I do it myself?

What do I need if I want to take my kid with me on my motorcycle in Texas?

How can I get my medical bills paid after a motorcycle accident?

Proving that a manufacturer or repair business is responsible for an accident is very difficult.

The repair business or manufacturer will be attempting to prove that you were responsible for the accident through negligent driving, or that you had not properly maintained your motorcycle since it’s last time being repaired.

Following the accident, if you are capable of doing so, you will want to take several photographs as evidence, including:

  • The vehicles involved. This could be just your motorcycle or another vehicle if a collision was caused by mechanical failure.
  • The specific parts you believe to be responsible for the accident.
  • The surrounding road conditions.
  • Your injuries from the accident.

You should also call the police as soon as possible after an accident as well as seeking out any witnesses to the event, making sure to get their names and contact information.’

- Mark J Shuman - Chicago Motorcycle Accident Attorney.

⏶ Back to Top

The short answer to this question is yes, in most cases. In most circumstances, a passenger will be able to receive full compensation as they are not at fault for an accident. 

However, to ensure their safety as well as the maximum compensation in the case of any accidents that occur, there are some factors to take into account that may be considered negligent if overlooked

  • Failure to wear a helmet can be seen by a jury as negligence, even if they are not legally required.
  • If the passenger knowingly got onto a motorcycle when the driver was under the influence of alcohol or other substances
  • For a passenger to ride on a motorcycle, it must have a permanently attached passenger seat and footrests or a sidecar.

As long as your passenger has taken these reasonable steps to ensure their safety, they are unlikely to be found negligent or at fault in the case of an accident.

There are no passenger age requirements in the State of Idaho, but discretion is advised. You may wish to reconsider if your passenger is unable to safely reach the footrests or to hold on securely to ensure their balance.

- Bruce Skaug - Idaho Motorcycle Accident Attorney.

⏶ Back to Top

Let's face it - No one falls in love with a stock motorcycle.  Everyone wants to make changes to personalize the motorcycle to his or her preferences. However, insurance companies simply don't understand the customization process with a motorcycle and its owner. If you try to handle this on your own, remember that the insurance company is simply going to try to pay you the Kelly Bluebook Value of your property damage.

While this may be okay for a stock motorcycle, we all know the hundreds and sometimes thousands of dollars we put into our customized motorcycles. The Lovely Law Firm has experience in representing bikers and we understand all that goes into a custom bike. We come to the table with years of experience, specially designed resources and trusted experts that we know we can count on. All of this gives us the knowledge to make sure you’re fairly compensated for your custom bike. We can negotiate on your behalf to be sure you get a fair property settlement for your customizations. If the insurance company won't play ball, we simply file a lawsuit and hold their feet to the fire in the courthouse.

- Justin M. Lovely, South Carolina Motorcycle Accident Attorney

⏶ Back to Top

In Colorado, you may have as little as 180 days to file a claim against an at-fault driver’s insurance. Insurance companies are fully aware of these “time to claim” restrictions. 

Even if you are still hospitalized or otherwise recovering, Insurance companies may begin applying pressure to reach a settlement. Be patient, consult an experienced attorney and know your rights, your recovery could take some time, and you do not want to settle before you know the full costs and requirements that you will have resulting from your accident.

In the State of Colorado, insurance companies are required to accept or deny a claim made against them within 40 days after receiving proof of the claim. If the claim is accepted, payment must be made within 30 days from the date settlement was reached.

- Dianne Sawaya, Top Colorado Motorcycle Accident Attorney

⏶ Back to Top

After an accident, insurance providers will usually attempt to contact you for a recorded statement, often even when you are still in the hospital. You are under no obligation to answer their questions, and it is inadvisable to do so without representation.

While your insurer may seem like they are interested in your wellbeing, their questions are often intended to get you to say something that will help them to reduce your compensation or get you to drop your claim.

This is why it is important to contact a professional motorcycle accident attorney as soon as possible after your accident. Rather than answering your insurance provider’s questions while in a vulnerable position, it is best to refer them to your attorney, who will be better able to protect you during these situations.

- Christopher J. Klotz, Top Florida Motorcycle Accident Attorney

⏶ Back to Top

Have you experienced damage to you or your motorcycle because of road conditions like pot-holes, broken pavement, undulating asphalt that should have been level, grated pavement without signs indicating the danger to motorcyclists? You aren’t alone!

The Oklahoma Department of Transportation, states that it is up to the public to report required road repairs when they spot them - the City of Tulsa and the State of Oklahoma both put the onus on the driving public to notify them and allow them to have adequate time to make the repairs, adequate time meaning 36 hours. They will attend quicker if damage has been done and is reported, but the standard for adequate time is 36 hours.

When asked, Leon Kragel, with the City of Tulsa, said, "We've got to be aware of the hazard before there can be a claim for it. What we try to do is address all hazards immediately, so if there is a claim that comes through, we do our research, go back and see if it's something we've been notified of before."

In 2019, the city of Tulsa had 13 pothole claims, and the state had 12 for all of northeast Oklahoma, all of which were denied. So it is unlikely but you feel you have damage that deserves to be covered consult an experienced local lawyer that can have those conversations on your behalf!

- Tom Edwards, Oklahoma Motorcycle Accident Attorney

⏶ Back to Top

Yes, absolutely. Even if you do not think you were injured, or that your injuries were light, it is important to see a doctor to make sure that you did not suffer more severe injuries than you originally thought.

The time following an accident is one where your body will be filled with adrenaline. In that state, you might not be able to tell if you’re injured or not, and hidden injuries may get worse in the time between you receiving them, noticing, and getting treatment. Sometimes even severe injuries may not show symptoms until it’s too late. Your health is too important to take that risk.

Additionally, from a legal perspective, receiving immediate medical attention is important because it establishes the time of your injuries to be the same as that of the accident. If you only seek medical attention later, any claims you may make for damages because of your injuries may be dismissed or reduced because you will be unable to prove that they came from the accident, rather than an event either before or after the accident occurred.

- Samuel P. Moeller, Top Arizona Motorcycle Accident Attorney

Arizona has Incredible Scenery: Riding around Arizona from Phoenix - watch out for lush forests, cactus laden deserts, alpine mountain scenery and a collection of pristine lakes, rivers and reservoirs. Favorite destinations for motorcycle rides are Sedona, Flagstaff, Tucson, Phoenix and, of course, the Grand Canyon.

⏶ Back to Top

There are a lot of questions that people ask after they've been involved an accident. If they’ve been injured then they're wanting to make sure that they will get the medical treatment that they need, and that they will have money to pay for any medical bills.

That's the most important thing after an accident, addressing your injuries and making sure that that you get the medical treatment that you need so that you can heal as soon as possible. We want to get you back to your normal activities as soon as possible.

So, the most common question at first is usually about the medical treatment, and who’s going to pay the medical. Then, if they're off work, who is going to compensate them for the time that they're not able to work.

Do they ask about your fee?

Yeah, that's a question that's always asked. The ‘how much will I owe you’ question weights heavily on people's minds.

That's when we explain that we work on a contingency fee basis. So, that means that we don't get paid unless there's a recovery in the case. The person injured is never charged for our services.

People who are injured and their families are looking for reassurance and some stability. We do our best to offer them both.

- Mark Petro - Alabama Motorcycle Accident Attorney

⏶ Back to Top

A No-Fault claim is a type of claim to your insurance that allows you to recover from injuries related to the maintenance or use of a motor vehicle, regardless of your fault or innocence. No-Fault insurance is NOT legally mandatory for motorcyclists, so it may not be included in your default insurance.  Should you have No-Fault insurance, it allows you to receive payment up to $20,000 for necessary medical expenses resulting from your accident and $20,000 in payment for wage loss or replacement.

- Thomas Gunther, Top Minnesota Motorcycle Accident Attorney

⏶ Back to Top

Minnesota law has something called a ‘Tort Threshold’ for the purposes of automotive accident claims. This is to make sure that only cases with serious injuries end up in the legal system and can make it difficult to file a claim in the case of a minor accident. In those situations, your next best option is direct negotiation with the other party’s insurance through a Motorcycle Accident Attorney.

In order to meet the Tort Threshold and be able to sue the other driver, one of the following criteria must first be met:

  • $4,000 or more in medical expenses
  • You must have suffered a permanent injury or permanent disfigurement
  • Suffered from a disability that significantly impacted your home or work life for at least 60 days, confirmed by your doctor.
  • One or more of the victims died as a result of the accident.

- Thomas Gunther, Top Minnesota Motorcycle Accident Attorney

⏶ Back to Top

While in some cases after an accident the other party or your insurance company refuses to take responsibility or negotiates in bad faith and you will have to file litigation, many motorcycle accident claims are settled out of court. The process of negotiating a claim is a back, and forth that can be broken down into three primary steps.

  • After an investigation of the accident, your attorney helps you to file a claim with the other party’s insurance, laying out the details of the accident, the other party’s fault, and the damages you’ve suffered - including but not entirely limited to your injuries and lost income.
  • The insurance company reviews your claim and either makes an offer or refuses to pay.
  • Your Attorney either negotiates with the insurance company to ensure that you receive a proper offer of compensation if their original offer is too low.

It is usually only when the other party refuses to negotiate in good faith or attempts to delay invalidating your claim that your case will go to court. In those cases, an experienced Motorcycle Accident Attorney is essential to fight to ensure that the court is convinced to give you the compensation you deserve for your injuries.

Harry Brown, Top Georgia Motorcycle Accident Attorney

⏶ Back to Top

Probably the most notable, and obvious, difference is that a motorcycle doesn’t offer the same protection that other vehicles might. A fender bender can lead to an outright crash that cripples a motorcyclist, where it might just leave a dent in a car. Road hazards are also more dangerous for motorcyclists. A pothole or unexpectedly bumpy stretch of road can cause a motorcycle wipeout where more sizable vehicles

- Mark Petro - Top Alabama Motorcycle Attorney

⏶ Back to Top

Motorcycle accident cases are often very complex, and there can sometimes be attempts to utilize some of the bad stereotypes around bikers against you in order to discredit your claim. They might claim that as a motorcyclist, you must have been reckless, or that you ‘assumed the risk’ by deciding to ride your motorcycle and are responsible for your injuries simply by choosing to ride. 

That is clearly false, and any experienced Motorcycle Accident Attorney knows it. Without the knowledge and experience that a Motorcycle Accident Attorney brings, it can be very difficult to fight against this and ensure that you get the compensation you deserve for your injuries.

A Motorcycle Accident Attorney will also be able to conduct an investigation into the accident to find evidence of the fault of the other party, help you to organize the details of your claim, and negotiate with insurance companies to make sure that you get fair compensation and aren’t pressured into taking a lowball offer that won’t cover your expenses from the accident. Most Accident Attorneys will not receive payment unless they win, so if a Motorcycle Accident Attorney agrees to help with your case, you can rely on them to be confident that they will be able to help you get the full compensation you deserve.

-  Glen F. Larson, Top Texas Motorcycle Accident Attorney

⏶ Back to Top

Malorie Bullock, a young college student, lost her life during a motorcycle accident in 2010 while riding as a passenger despite wearing a helmet, she was thrown from the bike when it swerved to avoid another car.

As a response to this tragic event, the state of Texas implemented Malorie’s Law (HB 3838) in January 2015. The law now requires that all motorcycles carrying more than one person must have footrests and handholds for passengers. A handhold can be a leather strap, a luggage rack, or another fixed grip. This applies not only to child passengers, but to all passengers. The idea behind this law is to make riding safer for all riders and passengers.

Texas is one of only a handful of states that have imposed a minimum age on motorcycle riders. In the state, no child under the age of five is allowed to ride as a passenger. However, a child under the age of five can ride in a sidecar at any time or as a regular passenger in an emergency situation.

Additionally, a child aged 5 or over must be sitting on a permanently fixed seat or otherwise firmly attached seat. And any rider under the age of 21 is required to wear a motorcycle helmet at all times.

- Greg Herrman, Top Texas Motorcycle Accident Attorney

⏶ Back to Top

As far as medical bills are concerned, first I ask my clients, "Do you have PIP, which is personal injury protection?" When you buy auto insurance, you can buy insurance that pays no fault up to a certain amount. So, whether it's $5,000, $10,000 or even up to $30,000, it’s dedicated money for your own medical care or the medical care of your passenger.

And the great thing about it is, unlike health insurance, there's no co-pay, there's no deductible. If they don't have PIP, I ask them just to check their health insurance at your employment or someplace else.

If not, then we talk about looking for doctors who might work on a lien. I'll write to the doctor and say, "I've got a good case. Could you treat this client of mine as a patient? And you'll get paid when we settle the case." Because medically, that's the most important thing. To get the person healthy is more important than getting the money. Both are important, but health comes first.

⏶ Back to Top