How a Lawyer For Motorcycle Accidents Can Help You

Michigan insurance regulations and deceiving insurance companies can make recovering financial compensation for injuries related to a motorcycle crash extremely complicated and difficult.  With the system against you, it’s crucial that an injured rider or loved one acting in their behalf retain a lawyer who has experience and a track record of success in motorcycle cases.

The injury attorneys at The Clark Law Office have a long history of handling motorcycle lawsuit claims against insurance companies.  While each and every case is different and damages will vary greatly, our attorneys are fully committed to helping motorcyclists recover compensation including medical bills and property damage.  If you or a loved one has been involved in a motorcycle crash, you might have legal recourse.  To learn more about how our lawyers can help, please fill out our 100% confidential contact form to get started.

$2,750,000 Verdict Against The United States Air Force

We represent people.  Not insurance companies.  Our attorneys have a successful history of handling lawsuits against large insurance companies and, for one rider, a $2,750,000 trial verdict against the US AIR FORCE and the passenger also received a verdict of $800,000.  The highest offer ever given by the US GOVT was a measly $100,000.

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Why Should I Contact a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer?

Accidents with motorcycles are usually caused by the negligence and carelessness of other drivers and not the biker.  However, a lack of a witness is common, and the police report usually accepts the negligent drivers story while the biker is seeking medical treatment.  For this reason and many others, it can be extremely difficult for an injured motorcyclist to recover financial compensation after a crash, especially if you are pursuing the lawsuit without the help of an experienced attorney.  Michigan is a no-fault state, but PIP insurance is not required under the law because it does not have four or more wheels.  Even if the injured rider owns a traditional vehicle with PIP insurance, the coverage is not extended to any accidents that happen on the motorcycle.  Not only will you need to purchase PIP insurance for your car, but you must also purchase PIP for your motorcycle if you want to be properly insured.  If you don’t have insurance for your motorcycle, you will find it nearly impossible to pay for inflated medical bills especially if the injury is severe enough to prevent you from working.

If you have been injured while riding a motorcycle, an experienced attorney will be able to explain ALL the options that you have available for pursuing compensation which include all medical costs and other losses.  If you contact a lawyer right after the crash, they can start to gather all the information including evidence that supports your case.  An attorney will be able to build the strength of your case in many ways including:

  • Gathering scene and police reports from authorities
  • Collect all witness statements
  • Take extensive photographs of the accident scene
  • Take a deeper look into the other drivers’ driving record and history
  • A professional reconstruction of the accident scene
  • Have an expert recreate the actual accident
  • Review and analyze all medical records
  • Contact and consult with industry experts
  • Contact and communicate with insurance companies on your behalf

Why The Clark Law Office?

At The Clark Law Office, our motorcycle accident lawyers are well versed with the laws pertaining to motorcycles, which are considerably different from the laws governing auto accidents.  We also have extensive experience taking on and winning against large insurance agencies and companies.  We have worked with the top accident experts in the state and have established ourselves as one of the best motorcycle accident litigation law firms in Michigan when it comes to obtaining results for our clients, including a $2.75 million dollar TRIAL verdict against the United States Air Force.

What is Defined as a “Motorcycle” in Michigan?

Michigan no-fault law is hard enough to understand.  Unfortunately, the laws for motorcycle accidents in our state are quite different than those for other types of motor vehicles.  We get a lot of questions regarding what is actually considered a “motorcycle” according to Michigan Law.  Section 257.31 of the Michigan Vehicle Code defines a “motorcycle” as a motor vehicle that has a saddle or seat for the use of a rider and is designed to travel on not more than 3 wheels in contact with the ground but this excludes a tractor.

Michigan Motorcycle Accident Statistics

In 2015, there were 257,465 motorcycles that were registered with the State of Michigan.  Of these vehicles, 3,096 were involved in some type of crash.  Out of these 3,096 accidents, there were 2,347 incidents where there was an injury reported and 137 accidents resulted in a death.  The overall number of motorcycle crashes in 2015 increased by 5.5% and the overall number of motorcycle deaths increased by a whopping 29%.

On April 13, 2012, the State of Michigan changed the helmet laws for riding motorcycles to a “partial helmet law.”  This allows drivers to ride a motorcycle without wearing a helmet if you are over 21 years of age and carry additional insurance coverage.  A comprehensive study conducted by the Government Accountability Office showed that “in states without an all-rider helmet law 59% of the motorcyclists killed were not wearing helmets, as opposed to only 8% in states with all-rider helmet laws

What Compensation Can Be Recovered In Your MI Motorcycle Crash?

No Fault Benefits

Motorcyclists in the State of Michigan are not required to purchase a no-fault policy like other vehicles.  However, riders may be entitled to no-fault benefits if in an accident.  The catch is that the accident must be with a car or truck that fits the definition of a “motor vehicle”.  Usually this happens when there is a collision between a “motorcycle” and a “motor vehicle.”  There are exceptions to this general rule, but a motor vehicle must be a significant factor in causing the injuries in order to collect 1st party benefits.  The reason you may be able to collect 1st party benefits is the fact that the “motor vehicle” insurance company is paying for these benefits by law.  If you are in a crash that DOES NOT involve a “motor vehicle”, you WILL NOT be eligible to receive PIP benefits unless you purchased additional PIP benefits which is extremely rare unfortunately.

3rd Party Benefits

If you have suffered injuries from a motorcycle accident, you may be eligible for additional compensation beyond Michigan No-Fault benefits.  You are allowed to bring a liability claim (3rd party lawsuit) against a driver who is at fault and caused an accident because of negligence.  This type of compensation is broken down into noneconomic damages and excess economic damages.  Noneconomic damages are also known as “pain and suffering damages” and you must pass a certain injury threshold and it’s must be proved the other driver was indeed.  In order to meet this “injury threshold”, you must establish that you have one or more of the following: serious impairment of a body function, a permanent serious disfigurement, or a death as a result of his/her injuries.  Excess economic damages are typically for an injured motorcyclist that has exceeding or will exceed the imposed cap on lost wages benefits which is 85% of your gross income for 3 years.  A wrongful death lawsuit can also be pursued if the injured motorcyclist is killed during or after the accident from injuries sustained.  A family member or loved one can bring this type of suit against the at-fault driver.

Questions After Your Michigan Motorcycle Accident

You most likely have lots questions and concerns regarding your motorcycle accident regarding different injuries, financial settlements & compensation, and more.  Here is a list of common questions that we receive:

  • What legal rights do I have as a victim of a motorcycle accident?
  • Will I be entitled to Michigan no-fault benefits?
  • If I am eligible to receive no-fault benefits, whose insurance pays?
  • What about paying my medical bills and other expenses?
  • If I am unable to work, will I recover lost wages from my job?
  • Can I also receive pain and suffering compensation?
  • Should I talk to my insurance adjuster without an attorney?
  • Can’t I just settle the case myself without the need for an attorney?
  • Is the insurance adjuster on my side or should I be concerned?
  • How can I get the highest dollar value for my motorcycle accident case?

When you call The Clark Law Office, you will be speaking directly to the attorney who will be handling your case.  We don’t pass your case off to an inexperienced attorney like many large firms do.  We will patiently answer any questions or concerns that you have.  Motorcycle laws in Michigan are complex and we will carefully explain them to you and inform you of your best options and a strategy going forward.

Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents

There are several reasons as to why motorcycle accidents occur.  Most frequently it is the negligence of another driver and not the fault of the motorcyclist.  Here are some negligent acts that can result in a motorcycle accident.

  • Failing to travel at a safe speed
  • Swerving right in front of your motorcycle
  • Cutting off a motorcycle at an intersection
  • Failure to yield
  • Failure to travel at a safe distance between vehicles
  • Failure to see a motorcyclist when changing lanes
  • Other drivers driving under the influence
  • Simply not paying attention to the road (texting etc.)

Common Accident Injuries

Unlike other motor vehicles, motorcycles offer very little protection from other cars and the road.  Because of this, motorcycle accident injuries tend to be more serious and life-threatening.  Some of the common injuries resulting from a crash include:

  • Broken bones
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Neck injuries such as whiplash
  • Permanent disfigurement
  • Paralysis
  • Loss of extremity
  • Death

No Fee Guarantee For All Motorcycle Accident Cases

If you have been injured or lost a loved one from a motorcycle accident, you may be eligible for financial compensation.    Our experienced motorcycle accident attorneys will investigate your case and help you with all your accident insurance claims.  We can help you get the maximum possible settlement for your motorcycle injury case.  We charge no fees for all motorcycle lawsuits unless you win.  If we can’t get you a settlement or verdict, you owe us absolutely nothing.  Contact us today by calling (517) 347-6900 or fill out our confidential contact form to get your case started.