Largo is usually a great place to ride a motorcycle. It is centrally located and on the way to the beaches. Normally, it is also very safe for motorcyclists. But, when roads get congested or are full of visitors who are unfamiliar with the area, accidents happen.
At St. Petersburg Personal Injury Attorneys McQuaid & Douglas, we specialize in motorcycle accidents. We have handled countless claims in Largo. We know how to investigate the accident, trustworthy medical providers, and how to maximize each claim. This article is written to provide information if you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident in Largo.
You Must Be Able to Prove Who Caused the Motorcycle Accident
A threshold issue in every motorcycle accident case is being able to prove who caused the accident. If there are witnesses to the crash, then this issue becomes much easier to resolve. I recommend to always get the contact information of every witness to the crash.
But, many accidents do not have witnesses and are based on circumstantial evidence. You do not want to be in the position of a he said/she said as the basis of your claim. Therefore, you must try to argue or convince whomever you speak to that the other driver caused the accident. Unfortunately, there is a stigma that motorcycles drive too fast. You must be cognizant of this belief and shut it down despite what the other driver might say.
Some examples of ways that you can prove fault are simply common sense. If you struck the rear of a car, then it had to be because the car pulled out in front of you. If your motorcycle T-bones a car toward the back, then the car could not have braked, because that would not make sense. If a car saw that you were going to strike its rear, it would have hit the gas and sped up. Little points such as this can make the difference between a claim that goes nowhere and a successful one.
What Are Common Motorcycle Accident Injuries?
A motorcyclist is at a huge risk from a crash because of the lack of protection to the body. Some of the most horrific injuries that I see in any type of personal injury case are usually to motorcyclists. The following is a list of common injuries that can occur:
According to data compiled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, head injuries are the leading cause of fatalities in motorcycle accidents. Concussions and traumatic brain injuries (TBI) are also common head injuries. The assumption is that these injuries would be prevented if the rider wore a helmet, but that is simply not true. Many of my clients who suffer these serious head injuries were wearing helmets. Sadly, head injuries have long lasting consequences. Fortunately, I work with excellent neurologists in the area that specialize in these injuries. I can provide referrals upon request.
Another common, but extremely serious injury to motorcyclists are broken bones. Many of my clients are forced to seek emergency medical treatment at the hospital where they undergo surgery. Besides the pain, suffering and rehab that comes with a broken bone, the hospital bills are normally outrageous. The emergency room physicians also tack on separate bills for their services. Fortunately, we have ways of dealing with those bills in order to maximize the amount of money that our clients receive.
In order to maximize the value of your claim for road rash, you need a lot of pictures. Although the scrapes are painful, they often heal and don’t leave a scar. So, pictures of the healing process are the only way to convey how serious and painful the injury was. These pictures should be taken when the bandages are changed in order to illustrate how badly the skin was affected.
Injuries to the knee during a motorcycle accident occur due to the twisting and torque associated with crashes. Torn ACLs, MCLs, or Meniscus tears are common knee injuries. Most unfortunately result in some form of surgery.
Back and Neck Injuries
While not as noticeable as injuries to the rest of the body, back and neck injuries occur in virtually every motorcycle accident. The course of treatment goes from conservative such as chiropractic or physical therapy, then to injections, then to surgery.
What are the Differences Between Motorcycle and Car Accidents?
The major difference between motorcycle accidents and car accidents is the insurance available. Florida is a no fault state. PIP is available for car accidents and pays lost wages and medical bills up to $10,000. But, there is no PIP for motorcycle accidents. Therefore, you will have to have your medical bills paid by health insurance or by the at-fault driver’s insurance. If the at-fault driver did not carry insurance, then your bills will have to be run through your health insurance or paid out of pocket. Thus, there is a lot of risk to a motorcyclist in the event of an accident.
Another difference is the ability to recover damages. For a car accident, you must suffer a permanent injury before you can make a claim against the other driver’s insurance. But, for a motorcyclist, this permanency requirement does not apply. Therefore, an injured motorcyclist can make claims for all of their injuries, regardless if they were permanent.
Contact a Largo Motorcycle Accident Attorney
We specialize in motorcycle accidents in Largo. We have handled many claims from minor injuries to serious injuries, to death. We have met with clients at their home or in the hospital, often in tragic times. These cases are often challenging because of the emotional toll, the turmoil that they bring to families, and the high bills incurred when a motorcyclist is severely injured. We have been successful in our claims by answering questions, protecting our clients, and maximizing the recovery in the case.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident in Largo, please contact us for a free consultation.