Austin Motorcycle Accident Lawyers
Because they are affordable, fuel-efficient and enjoyable to ride, motorcycles are popular among Texans. Their popularity, however, doesn’t make them any safer. Motorcycle fatalities have more than doubled during the past decade, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). In 2010 alone, 429 people were killed in motorcycle crashes in Texas and 5,276 people suffered serious injuries, according to the most recent statistics from the Texas Department of Transportation.
Even the safest motorcyclist can be struck by a car or truck that fails to acknowledge or respect the motorcycle’s rights on the road. When these catastrophic accidents occur, it is crucial that the motorcyclist and his or her family seek qualified legal assistance right away.
At The Bob Richardson Law Firm, our Austin motorcycle accident attorneys have the skill, experience and resources to protect the rights and interests of motorcyclists who have been harmed by the recklessness or negligence of another.
For more than 30 years, we have assisted clients throughout Austin, Waco and the surrounding Texas communities of Round Rock, Georgetown, Killeen, Temple, Cedar Park, Lakeway, Taylor and Belton.
To learn how we can help you with your Texas motorcycle accident case, call us today toll free at 800-880-5100 or use our online form. We can provide you with a free case evaluation and answer your questions. We won’t charge you for our services unless you recover damages.
About Texas Motorcycle Accidents
Motorcycles made up 3 percent of all registered vehicles in the United States in 2009 and accounted for only 0.7 percent of all vehicle miles traveled, according to NHTSA. Per registered vehicle, the fatality rate for motorcyclists in 2009 was six times the fatality rate for passenger car occupants. The injury rate for motorcyclists was 0.8 times the injury rate for passenger car occupants.
Federal data indicate that nearly 75 percent of all motorcycle wrecks involve a collision with another vehicle. When these crashes occur, the motorcyclist is 37 times more likely than the occupants of the passenger car to die, a recent NHTSA study found.
Motorcycle accidents commonly occur because the other driver:
- Fails to see the motorcycle.
- Tries to share a lane or pass the motorcycle.
- Follows the motorcycle too closely.
Because cars and trucks are larger and heavier than motorcycles, the motorcyclist tends to suffer the worst injuries in the crash. Additionally, motorcycle riders lack the protection provided by a roof or side structures. A motorcyclist involved in a wreck may sustain injuries that include:
- Broken bones
- Neck and back injuries
- Traumatic brain injury
- Severe lacerations sometimes called “road rash”
- Internal organ damage
- Post-traumatic stress disorder
At The Bob Richardson Law Firm, we have experience with motorcycle accident claims. We will work tirelessly to make sure that you and your family are fully and fairly compensated for any harm you suffer in a Texas motorcycle accident.
We will thoroughly investigate how your accident occurred, consult with our highly qualified experts and use the latest in technology to present a compelling and persuasive case on your behalf. We won’t back down from insurance companies that often try to shift blame to the motorcyclist and avoid responsibility. We know that most motorcyclists are safe and cautious, and we won’t let insurance companies get away with blaming the victim.
You may be able to recover compensation if you have suffered any of these damages in a motorcycle accident and are able to prove them:
- Medical expenses
- Compensation for disfigurement
- Lost past and future income
- Payment for pain and suffering
- Punitive damages
If your loved one suffered a wrongful death in a Texas motorcycle crash, your family may be entitled to receive compensation for the loss of your family member’s care and companionship, funeral expenses and the mental anguish you have suffered.
Extensive Investigation & Thorough Examination
You may be wondering, “What will my motorcycle accident claim be worth?” When a motorcycle accident occurs, fingers start pointing. The driver of the car or truck that collided with the motorcycle may claim the motorcyclist caused the crash by riding into their path, while the motorcyclist may contend the truck or car failed to see or acknowledge the motorcycle. Fingers may even point to the motorcycle manufacturer for an alleged defect.
At The Bob Richardson Law Firm, we believe that only an extensive investigation can sort out these issues. That’s why we thoroughly examine accident scenes, consult with highly qualified experts and use the latest in technology to develop cases for our clients.
Determining Fault in Texas Motorcycle Accident Cases
In 2009 alone, 449 fatal motorcycle crashes occurred in Texas and 5,445 accidents caused serious injury, the Texas Department of Transportation reports. Each of these motorcycle wrecks involved unique facts and circumstances and varying degrees of fault.
When we investigate a crash, the Texas motorcycle accident attorneys of The Bob Richardson Law Firm will seek to answer the following questions:
- Did the motorcycle rider cause the accident? A motorcyclist’s own errors may cause a crash, such as speeding on roads slickened by rain, snow or ice; making a dangerous turn or pass; or going through a stop sign or traffic light. In some cases, a motorcyclist may trigger his or her own accident by riding while impaired by alcohol or drugs. When this occurs, a motorcycle passenger or the driver of another car may have a valid negligence claim for damages against the motorcyclist.
- Did the other vehicle cause the accident? Although car and truck drivers will frequently try to pin blame for a collision on the motorcyclist, the truth is that the other vehicle is at fault in the majority of motorcycle accidents. Examples of how the other vehicle can cause a wreck include:
- Failing to check mirrors and blind spots and failing to see the motorcycle.
- Trying to share a lane or pass the motorcycle and running it off the road.
- Making a turn or changing lanes ahead of the motorcycle without a turn signal.
- Following the motorcycle too closely.
- Braking suddenly while a motorcycle is traveling behind the vehicle.
- Did the motorcycle cause the accident? In some cases, neither the motorcyclist nor the driver of the other vehicle may be at fault. Instead, the motorcycle itself may be to blame. Common motorcycle defects include soft brakes, tire blowouts, faulty wiring or lights and fuel system leaks that can trigger fires and explosions after a collision occurs.
- Did the roadway cause the accident? Even when a motorcyclist is following every safety rule, they may be harmed by a defect in the road, such as a pothole or uneven pavement. When this occurs, the state, city or county may face liability for the injuries a motorcyclist suffers.
Even if a motorcyclist is partially at fault for the accident, they won’t necessarily be barred from recovery. Texas has adopted a comparative responsibility scheme. This means that your damages in a motorcycle accident may be reduced in proportion to the percentage of your fault. For instance, if your total damages are $50,000, and you are determined to be at 50 percent at fault, your recovery would be limited to $25,000. If you are 51 percent or more at fault, you would be barred from collecting any damages
At The Bob Richardson Law Firm, our Texas motorcycle accident lawyers will work hard to determine what occurred in your accident and to make sure that you and your family are fully and fairly compensated for the harm you have suffered.
Motorcycle accidents can be extremely dangerous, especially when another vehicle is involved. Because motorcycles weigh significantly less than cars or trucks and lack the protection of a roof or sides, a motorcyclist is often severely injured in a crash. If you are not immediately transported away from the accident scene, however, there are important steps you can take that will help to protect your rights and interests:
- Get the other driver’s information: This includes the driver’s name, address, phone number, license number and any insurance information. Don’t make any statements to the driver, and don’t accept fault for the accident. All of the facts are not clear in the chaos that follows a crash.
- Ask eyewitnesses for their contact information: It is quite likely that other drivers, pedestrians or bystanders witnessed the crash, and they may stay at the site after it happened. If possible, gather their contact information as soon as possible. They may be able to provide valuable insight into the cause of the crash.
- Take pictures: Photos of the accident scene could prove very helpful in the investigation of a motorcycle accident. Most cell phones include a camera feature. Use yours to snap shots of the crash site, including photos of damage to the vehicles, your injuries, skid marks, view obstructions and anything else that may have played a role in the accident.
- Find out how to get the police report: The law enforcement officer who responds to the accident call will likely draw up a report about the crash. This may include important details such as contact information for other drivers and witnesses, insurance information and any citations that were issued. Ask the officer for the report number, the officer’s name and how you can get a copy of the final report.
If an insurance adjuster contacts you after the accident, you should decline to make a statement until you have spoken with an experienced Texas motorcycle accident attorney.
The attorneys of The Bob Richardson Law Firm assist Texas motorcycle accident victims and their families in personal injury and wrongful death cases. Drawing on our skill, experience and resources, we represent clients throughout Austin, Waco and surrounding communities. Contact us today to find out how we can help. The initial consultation and claim review are free.
In any Texas motorcycle accident – even one that involves relatively minor injuries – legal issues will arise. In order to make sure your rights and interests are protected, it’s important to contact a skilled, experienced and dedicated Texas motorcycle accident attorney right away.
The lawyers of The Bob Richardson Law Firm, for instance, will make sure that your accident is thoroughly investigated, and we will consult with highly qualified medical, engineering and accident reconstruction experts to determine what caused your accident and the full extent of your physical, emotional and financial injuries and losses.
Although insurance companies will have a team of attorneys at their disposal, they may contact you soon after an accident and tell you that legal representation isn’t needed. They may try to get you to make a statement or agree to a quick, low-value settlement of your claim. Remember: Insurance companies are out to protect their revenue. A Texas motorcycle accident lawyer, on the other hand, will be out to protect you.
Contact The Bob Richardson Law Firm now to find out more about how we can help you with your motorcycle accident case. The consultation is free and comes with no strings attached.
The Bob Richardson Law Firm strongly recommends that you wear a helmet if you are riding a motorcycle. Since 1997, only motorcyclists over the age of 21 have been required to wear a helmet, and a recent Southern Medical Journal study found that motorcycle accident fatalities have increased by 30 percent since that time. However, if you were not wearing a helmet at the time of a motorcycle wreck, it will not prevent you from recovering compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages and pain and suffering.
Texas follows a comparative responsibility rule. This is also commonly called comparative responsibility. Under this rule, the only way you could be barred from recovering anything in your motorcycle crash would be if you were determined to be 51 percent or more at fault. Otherwise, the amount of damages you recover would be reduced in proportion to your degree of fault. For example: If your motorcycle accident results in $100,000 in damages, and you were found to be 25 percent at fault, then your recovery would be limited to $75,000.
comparative responsibility is an issue that arises frequently in Texas motorcycle accident cases. The driver of the other vehicle involved in your wreck may claim that you were driving carelessly. At The Bob Richardson Law Firm, we believe that blame can only be assigned after there has been an exhaustive investigation of an accident. We will work tirelessly to determine fault in your case and make sure that any at-fault parties – and their insurance companies – take responsibility for the harm they’ve caused you.
To learn how we can help you with your motorcycle accident case, contact us today for a free consultation and claim review.
If you were riding on the back of a motorcycle that was involved in a wreck, you have the right to recover for your damages, including medical expenses, lost wages and pain and suffering. Because a passenger rights case can involve complex issues, it is important to contact an experienced Texas motorcycle accident lawyer right away to learn about your legal options.
For instance, if the driver of another vehicle caused the motorcycle crash, you may be able to collect damages from that driver’s liability insurance coverage. If the motorcyclist was at fault for the accident, then you may bring a claim against him or her.
In our experience, we have found that motorcycle passengers are hesitant to file a claim against the person who was at the handlebars of the bike. This is usually because the motorcyclist was a friend. However, keep in mind that you’re seeking compensation from the motorcyclist’s insurance policy, not from your friend. Your friend may have been paying insurance premiums for several years in order to be protected when an accident like this one occurred.
If you were the passenger in a motorcycle accident, contact The Bob Richardson Law Firm now to discuss your legal rights and options in a free consultation.
Although Texas law requires drivers to obtain liability insurance coverage before they put their car on the road, the truth is that there are thousands of uninsured drivers out there. Even those drivers who have liability insurance may carry only the minimum required to register their car, which rarely is enough to cover the full extent of damages in a motorcycle accident case.
That’s why it’s important to purchase Uninsured Motorist / Underinsured Motorist (UM / UIM) coverage. This policy will cover your medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering and repair/replacement loss of your motorcycle when you are involved in a crash with a hit-and-run driver, a driver who has no insurance or a driver who has insurance that won’t adequately cover your damages.
Although you may have been paying premiums for this coverage from your own insurance company, they may try to deny your claim or pay less than what you are entitled to receive. The Texas motorcycle accident lawyers of The Bob Richardson Law Firm, however, will work hard to pursue full and fair compensation for your UM / UIM claim.
If you have a UM / UIM claim stemming from your motorcycle accident, contact us now for a free consultation and claim review.
The facts and circumstances surrounding a motorcycle accident differ from case-to-case, which makes it impossible to provide an answer to the question of how much a claim is worth. Only after a thorough investigation, consultation with experts, negotiation and litigation will a Texas motorcycle accident attorney be able to arrive at the final amount of any personal injury or wrongful death claim arising from a motorcycle crash.
In most motorcycle accident personal injury cases, the victim will be entitled to receive compensation for medical expenses, impairment, disfigurement, lost past and future income and pain and suffering. To recover, you must have suffered these damages and be able to prove them.
In some cases, punitive damages may be available. These damages are aimed at punishing wrongdoers and deterring future similar misconduct by that party and others.
In a wrongful death claim, a motorcycle accident victim’s family will be entitled to funeral expenses, loss of the care and companionship of a loved one and compensation for their own unique pain and suffering.
To learn more about the potential damages available in your motorcycle accident case, contact The Bob Richardson Law Firm today. We can provide you with a free case evaluation, and we won’t charge you for our services unless we recover for you.
If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident, you will have many questions about what to do next. We don’t believe one of those questions should be whether you can afford legal help.
At The Bob Richardson Law Firm, our primary goal is to make sure that injured and disabled Texans receive the benefits and other compensation they rightfully deserve if they have been in a motorcycle crash. Just because you lack available funds, it shouldn’t keep you from seeking justice. That’s why we handle most of our cases on a contingency fee basis. This means that you won’t have to pay for our legal services unless we recover for you.
Contact Our Texas Motorcycle Accident Insurance Attorneys Today
Texas has a two-year statute of limitations for personal injury and wrongful death cases. Depending on the parties involved in your motorcycle accident, the deadline for taking action may arrive even sooner. That’s why it’s important to contact a skilled and experienced Texas motorcycle accident attorney immediately after you’ve been involved in a wreck.
If you or a family member has been injured in a motorcycle accident in Austin, Waco or the surrounding Texas communities of Round Rock, Georgetown, Killeen, Temple, Cedar Park, Lakeway, Taylor or Belton, call us today toll-free at 800-880-5100 or use our online form to learn more about how we can help you. We can provide you with a free case evaluation and answer your questions. We won’t charge you for our services unless we recover for you. Meetings with attorneys by appointment only.
Let Us Deal with the Insurance Company Issues
A motorcycle accident can be a traumatic experience. Your motorcycle may be destroyed, and you or a family member may be severely injured or disabled as a result of the crash. The accident may keep you from working and leave you wondering how you will pay for your hospital bills, food, housing and other daily living expenses. The last thing you need to worry about is dealing with insurance companies.
Texas Motorcycle Accident Insurance Involves Complex Issues
In any Texas motorcycle accident, complex insurance issues will arise. That’s why it’s important to work with a skilled and seasoned motorcycle accident lawyer who understands the interplay between different insurance policies and who will protect you against insurance companies that are more concerned about their revenue than your physical, emotional and financial health.
At The Bob Richardson Law Firm, our Texas motorcycle accident attorneys have experience representing clients in insurance issues involving:
- Liability coverage: Under Texas law, every vehicle driver – of car and motorcycle alike – is required to carry liability coverage that will pay for property damage and bodily injury they cause in an accident. So, if you are struck by a negligent motorist, their liability policy should cover the cost of your motorcycle repair or replacement, medical bills, funeral costs, lost wages, pain and suffering and, if warranted, punitive damages.
The current minimum liability policy limits are $30,000 for bodily injury (one person), $60,000 (two or more persons) and $25,000 (property damage). Most motorcycle accident issues involve the at-fault motorist’s insurance company denying or delaying payment of a claim that was triggered by their own insured’s negligence.
- Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage: This is coverage you may have purchased from your own insurer, and it can cover your losses regardless of who caused your motorcycle accident. PIP covers your medical expenses and most of the wages you may lose while trying to recover from a crash.
Texas insurance companies are not required to offer this coverage to motorcyclists. However, many motorcycle owners will purchase this coverage to protect them in accidents that do not involve another vehicle, such as a wipeout on a slick road.
Even though you have been paying your premiums for this coverage, your insurance company may deny your valid claim, challenge the amount of medical expenses you claim or contest whether your accident has kept you from working.
- Uninsured Motorist/Underinsured Motorist (UM/UIM) coverage: This covers your medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering and repair/replacement loss of your motorcycle when you are involved in a crash with a hit-and-run driver, a driver who has no insurance or a driver who has insurance that won’t adequately cover your damages.
Numerous drivers on Texas roads lack insurance or carry only the minimum amount needed to get their vehicle registered. Even a minor motorcycle accident can result in damages that exceed most drivers’ liability coverage limits. That’s why UM/UIM coverage is important for motorcycle riders.
As with PIP coverage, a Texas insurance company is not required to offer motorcycle owners UM/UIM coverage. Also, your insurance company may challenge your claim.
We Don’t Back Down From Insurance Companies
Most insurance companies will have an army of attorneys at their disposal to review and contest your claim. However, they will often tell motorcycle accident victims that they don’t need legal representation, and they will try to persuade you to settle quickly and for a dollar amount that may not sufficiently cover your losses.
At The Bob Richardson Law Firm, we know how insurance companies operate, and we know how to navigate the complicated issues involved with insurance policies. We won’t let insurance companies take advantage of your situation, and we will work hard to make sure you are fully compensated for the harm you or a loved one has suffered.