Mintz Law Firm
Motorcycle Accident Attorney in Arvada, CO
Many motorcycle accidents result in severe injuries and property damage, especially because motorcyclists lack the protection of an enclosed vehicle. However, it’s often difficult for riders to recover fair compensation after an accident. People tend to assume people who ride motorcycles are inherently reckless, seeking out risky situations on purpose. This assumption is used against injured motorcyclists when they seek to recover compensation through a personal injury claim. This unfair treatment is one of the many reasons that motorcyclists need to have a skilled and experienced Arvada motorcycle accident attorney at their disposal.
At Mintz Law Firm, our legal team is committed to protecting the rights of injured accident victims. Our Arvada motorcycle accident lawyers know motorcyclists face an uphill battle during personal injury claims, so our Arvada motorcycle accident attorneys work tirelessly to ensure our clients recover fair compensation regardless of an insurance company's biases. Mintz Law Firm helps each and every one of our clients receive fair restitution for their medical needs, lost income, and any other damages associated with their accident.
Can Not Wearing a Helmet Negatively Affect a Motorcycle Accident Claim?
Colorado operates under a modified comparative negligence system. This system encompasses situations in which the accident victim contributed to the accident. Under this system, the victim (in this case, the motorcyclists) can still recover compensation, but it will be reduced by the percentage of fault assigned to them. Furthermore, if the rider is deemed to be more than 50% responsible for the accident, they will be denied compensation.
Insurance companies are meant to aid accident victims in recovering from a serious accident. However, insurance companies rarely want to pay compensation regardless of the impact on the victim. To avoid paying claims or to payout as little as possible, insurance companies employ various tactics, such as pointing blame away from their insurer. If a rider wasn’t wearing a helmet at the time of the accident, the insurance company might try to use this against them.
While insurance companies can try to use the fact that a rider wasn’t wearing a helmet against them, Colorado’s laws state that modified comparative negligence rules don’t apply to motorcycle accident victims that weren’t wearing a helmet at the time of the accident. Adult riders are not required to wear helmets; therefore, the act of not wearing one cannot be considered a negligent act. Furthermore, the court also ruled that adult motorcycle riders can’t be expected to predict the negligence of others that may cause a crash, and thus, they can’t be expected to wear a helmet to protect against this harm.
Is a Motorcyclist Always At-Fault for a Lane-Splitting Accident?
Lane splitting is the cause of many accidents, as motorcyclists and cars are usually in close proximity. Drivers often don’t expect riders to pass them, and they’re also not looking out for motorcycles. This means they frequently are caught off guard, potentially causing the accident. Additionally, during high traffic times, the space for the motorcyclist to pass through is reduced.
While lane-splitting accidents are not always the fault of the rider, it can be extremely challenging to recover fair compensation. Insurance companies often deem the act of lane-splitting reckless, which could be determined to be negligence.
Motorcyclists can recover compensation if they prove the accident was the result of the driver’s negligence. They will need to prove that the driver did something more dangerous or reckless than the act of lane splitting, such as switching lanes abruptly or drifting between lanes.
Proving Negligence in an Arvada Motorcycle Accident Claim
Motorcyclists can recover compensation for an accident caused by a negligent driver by filing an insurance claim and establishing the driver as negligent. Negligence is proven by establishing these four elements.
Duty of Care
The first step to recovering compensation means proving that the at-fault party owed the victim a duty of care. Any individual on the roadway automatically owes a duty of reasonable care to others around them. A driver’s duty of care involves operating their vehicle safely and in a manner that proactively does not bring harm to others around them.
Breach of Duty
After establishing that the defendant owed a duty of care at the time of the accident, the next step is to prove the defendant violated their duty of care towards the plaintiff. There are various ways in which a motorist may breach their duty of care, including speeding, sudden lane changes, operating a vehicle while impaired by alcohol or drugs, and failing to yield right away.
Once the defendant’s breach of duty is proven, the next step is to create a legal link, called causation, between the defendant’s breach, the plaintiff’s injuries, and any other accident-related losses. Generally, this means proving that it is more likely than not that the breach of duty was the reason for the victim’s damages. Essentially, the victim would not have suffered any harm if not for the defendant’s breach.
The final element of negligence that needs to be proven is that the plaintiff sustained monetary losses as a result of the injury suffered because of the defendant’s breach of duty. Damages available in personal injury claims cover medical expenses, loss of income, pain and suffering, property damage, and more, depending on the victim’s losses.
Work With an Experienced Arvada Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
Motorcycle accident claims can be challenging, which is why it’s best for victims to secure assistance from a seasoned Arvada motorcycle accident lawyer. A Arvada motorcycle accident attorney can handle every aspect of the case, from the investigation to handling all communication and taking your case to trial if necessary.
The dedicated legal team at Mintz Law Firm knows the tricks employed by insurance companies to keep their profits. Our Arvada motorcycle accident lawyers refuse to let insurance companies take advantage of our clients. We go the extra mile to pursue the compensation our clients deserve and are owed. Learn more about how our motorcycle accident attorneys in Arvada may be able to help you secure fair compensation by completing our online contact form or calling (303) 462-2999 to schedule a consultation.