Sarasota, Florida, has the second-highest number of registered motorcycles in the United States. This sounds like a good thing, but unfortunately, Florida has the highest number of fatal motorcycle accidents in the country. While this is a terrifying statistic, it is not always the fault of other drivers that cause motorcycle accidents. Often it is the rider’s own negligence that has caused the accident.
Here, at The Law Place, our Sarasota personal injury lawyers are devoted to ensuring that you get the compensation you deserve if you’ve been in an accident with a motorcycle rider. Simply call us on (941) 444-4444 for a free case review.
What Are the Most Common Causes of a Sarasota Motorcycle Accident?
The most dangerous causes of Sarasota motorcycle accidents are cars turning left. Riders must be very careful when approaching a situation like this because making the wrong decision can cause a serious collision. Accidents usually occur when:
- Riders attempt to carry on straight at an intersection.
- Attempting to pass the car.
- Trying to overtake the vehicle.
Other common causes of a motorcycle accident are:
- Motorcycle lane splitting – This occurs when a motorcyclist attempts to pass traffic by riding in between two cars.
- Use of drugs and alcohol – Driving Under the Influence (DUI) can have catastrophic results in Sarasota, even more so when a motorcyclist is involved.
- Motorcyclists speeding – Exceeding the speed limit in any vehicle is dangerous. When done on a motorcycle, it can end in awful consequences for the rider and anyone else involved.
- High-performance motorbikes – Already, motorbike riders are at more risk the others while on the road, this rick is multiplied by the use of high-performance motorbikes
What Rules Must Sarasota Motorcyclists Abide By?
All road users, whether they be motorbike riders of driving cars, must abide by the guidelines set down by The State of Florida driver’s handbook. The being said, motorcyclists have more stringent rules applied to them due to the higher risk of injury to themselves and others. All drivers must have:
- Have a Motorcycle endorsement or motorcycle license.
- Wear a helmet if under the age of 21.
- Wear Florida Department of Transport (FDOT) approved eye protection.
- Property damage and bodily injury insurance, as per Florida’s financial responsibility law. (PIP or personal injury protection does not cover motorcyclists in Sarasota)
Unfortunately, these laws are not always followed. This can lead to serious personal injury on both sides of the accident. If the rider is found to be in breach of any of these laws, they could be deemed at fault and the cause of the accident. If you think you have been involved In an accident due to a negligent motorcyclist, then contact a Sarasota motorcycle accident lawyer at The Law Firm today and book in your free consultation.
Duty of Care in Sarasota Motorcycle Accidents
All road users have a duty of care to other drivers. Duty of care is a moral or legal obligation to ensure the well being and safety of others. When applied to road users, it becomes quite simple. You are required to use your common sense at all times to ensure your actions are not endangering yourself or others. Easy right? It seems not so much. Accidents occur on a daily basis, and one of the easiest ways to determine who is at fault is to prove that one party has neglected their duty of care. When it comes to motorcyclists, you would think that they would be far more likely to adhere to this duty. That is often not the case.
Although motorcycle riders are expected to follow the same rules as other drivers, and in Sarasota, they are afforded their own lane to do so, they often disregard them. This can often lead to severe personal injury to all parties involved.
When a motorcycle is involved in an accident, the duty of care is the same as other negligence cases. If either party is deemed to have breached the duty of care, the liability is laid at their feet.
What Are the Most Common Damages Claimed for in a Sarasota Motorcycle Accident?
In any personal injury lawsuit, there are many different damages one could claim for. This is no different when a motorcycle accident occurs. At The Law Place, we will offer you a free consultation, in which we will determine what damages you are eligible to claim for. the most common ones are:
- Medical expenses.
- Lost income.
- Lost earning capacity.
- Medical bills.
- Pain and suffering.
- Mental anguish.
- Loss of consortium (the loss of a relationship with a partner).
- Emotional distress.
- Loss of enjoyment of life.
Punitive damages are also an option. They are intended to punish whichever party deemed at fault. They are rarely awarded in Florida due to the difficulty one faces in proving them. Your accident attorneys must prove the other party was being willfully reckless or malicious, to get them included in your claim. Even if you are successful in proving punitive damages, Florida state law caps these claims at $500,000 or three times the number of compensatory damages, whichever is higher.
Florida Statute of limitations for these personal injury claims is four years. That being said, if these accidents result in fatalities, the statutes are reduced to two years.
How Do Sarasota Accident Attorneys Determine Fault in a Motorcycle Accident?
Determining fault in a motorcycle accident is similar to any other road traffic or car accident. A party is deemed at fault in a motorcycle accident if they have done something wrong that directly leads to an accident. This is called negligence.
Negligence covers things like speeding, incorrect safety equipment, speeding, and many more. If a party involved in an accident is deemed negligent, then the fault often rests with them. Anything that shows the driver has breached their duty of care or the party has not exhibited the proper skill required in the situation; this can also come under negligence.
Proving a motorcycle rider has been negligent is not the only step involved. Accident lawyers must also prove that this negligence caused an accident. A negligent driver who did not cause an accident cannot be held responsible or deemed at fault.
Finally, you must prove the damages you have suffered. When putting through a claim, you can include any damages you have suffered, but if you cannot prove them, then you are unlikely to receive a payout. Providing your accident lawyers with medical bills, pay stubs, bank statements, and other records will help massively in trying to prove damages. Statements from witnesses, family members, and expert witnesses can prove vital to the success of your claim going forward.
What Can Sarasota Accident Attorneys at The Law Place Do for You?
At The Law Place, we strive to offer you the best legal advice we can for any given case. Our team has over 75 years of experience collectively. We set ourselves apart from other law firms because all of our accident lawyers work together so you can benefit from all of this experience. Contact us now for a free consultation, in which we will determine if you have a case. We will offer you some no-obligation advice so you can make an informed decision on whether you wish to continue with us if that is not the case, that is fine. Upon deciding to use one of our motorcycle accident lawyers, you will be invited for an in-depth free case review. In which, we will explain our fee structure, and going forward, we will handle any and all correspondence with other lawyers and insurance companies. This will allow you the much-needed rest required to recover from your motorcycle accident.
When insurance companies get wind that you are planning to make a claim, they will waste no time in contacting you. They will attempt to settle the case quickly, offering you a settlement much lower than the one you may be entitled to. They will also attempt to get you to waive your rights to continue fighting the case. When you are contacted by insurance companies, we advise that you keep the conversation short and stick to the facts. Avoid talking with them about any injury you may have suffered as you may not know the full extend of them yet. Do not agree to anything without consulting an injury lawyer; they will ensure that you are not taken advantage of by an insurance company.
In many claims, a motorcycle negligence accident case in Sarasota Florida will end in settlement. Research has shown that you are 90% more likely to result in compensation if you have the proper representation depending on the case at hand. These payouts tend to be 60% higher for those who have an accident lawyer on hand than those who go it alone, but this varies case to case.
How Do I Deal with A Sarasota Florida Insurance company?
When dealing with an insurance company, you must be very careful what you say. They will have a dedicated team of claim adjusters and an accident lawyer on hand to devalue your case or even dismiss it entirely. Following your motorcycle accident, we advise that you call a motorcycle accident lawyer before talking to your insurance company. You are required, by law, to notify them you have been involved in a collision. The amount of time you have to do this will be stipulated in your contract, usually 24 hours.
How Much Does a Sarasota Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Cost in Florida?
At The Law Place, all of our motorcycle accident lawyers work on a contingency basis. This means that you will not be charged anything upfront. We will conduct a free case review before we proceed to ensure that your case is valid. Following this, we will be beside you every step of the way, even if your case goes to court.
All contingency work is monitored by the State Bar Associations, who set the guidelines for how motorcycle accident lawyers can charge in Sarasota. We abide by these rules stringently. All fees will be explained to you in your free consultation.
Speak to One of Our Motorcycle accident Lawyers, at The Law Place, Today
Have you been in a motorcycle accident that was not your fault? Are you worried about the dreaded call to your insurance company? Then call The Law Place today for your free case review on (941) 444-4444.