Motorcycle Accident Attorney in Carbondale
Helping Injured Victims in Motorcycle Crashes Obtain Justice
Motorcycle accidents often have catastrophic outcomes. Riders have little protection from an impact with a car, truck, or other motor vehicle. A motorcycle crash can lead to severe, life-threatening injuries with long recovery times. In the aftermath, victims of motorcycle crashes may face difficult financial challenges in repaying medical bills while forced to stay out of work. Injured victims may even find themselves facing permanent, life-changing disabilities that affect their ability to work or enjoy life the same as before the accident.
If you were injured in a motorcycle crash, you have the right to seek compensation for your injuries. Our experienced Carbondale motorcycle accident attorneys at Munley Law can help you. For over 60 years, we have been helping injured clients throughout Pennsylvania obtain justice in motor vehicle accidents. We have maintained a national reputation for getting large settlements and verdicts for our clients, and we will persevere in your case until you are paid for your losses and pain.
$32 Million Wrongful Death
$26 Million Truck Accident
$17.5 Million Car Accident
$12 Million Product Liability
$9 Million Truck Accident
$8 Million Truck Accident
$8 Million Truck Accident
$7.5 Million Auto Accident
$6.9 Million Garbage Truck Accident
$6.5 Million Traumatic Brain Injury
$5 Million Medical Malpractice
$5 Million Bus Accidents
Why Hire a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer in Carbondale?
Since motorcycle accidents frequently result in severe injuries, claims and lawsuits for motorcycle crashes can be complex and nearly impossible to handle without an attorney. Injuries after a motorcycle crash will come with costly medical bills, loss of income, and both physical and psychological pain and suffering. Involved insurance companies may make a settlement offer to you as an alternative to pursuing a lawsuit, but this offer is likely not sufficient to cover all of your losses.
Injured victims with legal representation are more likely to receive higher compensation than those without representation. When you need to recover compensation for your injuries, a motorcycle accident attorney can:
- Investigate the circumstances of the accident – A seasoned motorcycle crash lawyer can perform a thorough investigation of the accident to determine cause and liability. Your attorney can also bring in experts, accident reconstructionists, and investigators to provide a more informed opinion. Evidence from eyewitnesses, medical records, surveillance photos or videos, and police reports will all work to form a complete picture of who is ultimately responsible for your accident.
- Negotiate with the insurance companies – After calculating the worth of your motorcycle accident claim, your lawyer can begin the negotiation process. A motorcycle crash lawyer knows the tactics that insurance companies will use to reduce or negate an accident claim and will know how to counteract these tactics. Some motorcycle accident cases can settle within just a few weeks or months. However, more complex cases can take longer to resolve.
- Represent your claim in court – If a settlement cannot be reached that sufficiently covers your injuries and losses, your attorney can bring your case to trial. Your motorcycle crash lawyer can use the evidence gathered in the investigation phase to fight for the compensation you are owed in court. At any time before a judge rules on a final decision, your lawyer can negotiate and agree on a settlement with the other parties, reducing the time required for litigation.
Without an attorney in your corner, you may face an uphill battle in your motorcycle crash claim. All other involved parties are incentivized to work against you, including any insurance companies representing the defending party or parties. When you’re already taking time to recover from injuries, fighting a defendant without the experience or resources of a law firm can lead to you getting far less in compensation than what you need.
How Much Are Motorcycle Accident Settlements Worth?
You may be wondering how much you can get in compensation after your motorcycle accident. Your compensation will depend on several factors, and you should always be skeptical of an attorney who promises a specific amount early in the legal process. Attorneys who make promises too early might be unable to keep those promises once they uncover additional information or be unable to create a strong enough argument for the compensation they promise. An experienced motorcycle accident lawyer will know how to thoroughly investigate your claim to calculate your full losses and make a demand based on solid evidence.
Generally, the amount your motorcycle accident case is worth is dependent on the extent of your injuries, your bills for hospital stays or medical treatment, and how long you are forced to miss work. Your motorcycle crash attorney will also consider your pain and suffering endured as a result of the crash as well as costs for future medical treatment or, in extreme cases, your inability to continue in your line of work due to disability. The more your crash-related injuries impact your life, the more your case may be worth.
Recovering Compensation in a Motorcycle Crash
At Munley Law, our team can help you recover losses for:
- Your current and potential future medical bills
- Any rehabilitation or physical therapy you require to recover
- Your lost wages and lost future earning capacity
- Pain and suffering resulting from the accident
- Your mental and emotional anguish, including mental health treatment
- Reduction in the quality and enjoyment of your life
- Wrongful death, in the event your loved one is involved in a fatal accident
We have experience in negotiating with insurance companies and other negligent parties to present a strong argument for the compensation you are owed. When you trust Munley Law with your case, you can rest easy and take the time you need to recover while we do the hard work of communicating with defendants in negotiating a settlement. Our team will keep you updated throughout the negotiation process, and we will not accept any offer without your consent.
The Statistics on Motorcycle Accidents in Pennsylvania
Due to the size and force differences between motorcyclists and drivers of most other motor vehicles, motorcycle accidents can lead to more severe injuries for the motorcycle rider. Motorcyclists also have few protections on the road compared to other motor vehicle operators, and even when riders wear appropriate protective equipment they are still at risk of several types of catastrophic injuries.
In 2020, nearly 5600 motorcyclists in the United States were in fatal traffic accidents. Motorcyclists are 29 times more likely to die in a collision with a motor vehicle than car drivers or passengers. Likewise, motorcyclists face a four times greater risk of injury in these accidents.
The state of Pennsylvania saw nearly 3400 motorcycle accidents, an increase of 14% from last year. Of these accidents, 215 resulted in one or more fatalities.
Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents in Carbondale
All motorists have a duty to drive safely around all other motorists, including motorcycle drivers. Motorcycle drivers themselves are required to obtain special training and a license to operate motorcycles. However, crashes involving motorcycles still happen every day due to negligence.
Some of the leading causes of motorcycle accidents include:
- Failing to leave sufficient room between vehicles – Lane splitting, or riding on a line between lanes, is illegal in Pennsylvania. However, car drivers still need to stay aware of a motorcyclist potentially lane splitting and take precautions.
- Swerving – Cars may suddenly pull in front of motorcycles, and a motorcyclist may instinctively swerve to try and avoid a collision. Proper swerving is not easy for the average motorcycle rider, however, and can lead to a motorcyclist colliding with a car or truck at a high speed or running into another obstacle.
- Cutting off motorcyclists at intersections – Intersections are one of the highest-risk spots on the road for motorcycle accidents for many reasons. A larger motor vehicle may cut off a motorcyclist in an intersection due to carelessness, inability to see the motorcyclist or a belief the motorcyclist is further away from the intersection than reality.
- Left turn accidents – Related to intersection accidents, left turn accidents are common causes of motorcycle crashes. A left-turning car or truck driver may fail to properly check a corner or intersection before they turn left, and end up colliding with a motorcycle traveling straight through. Sometimes left turn accidents can happen when a motorcycle is stopped at a corner and struck by a left-turning vehicle, or when vehicles run through stop signs at intersections.
- Failing to yield the right of way – In Pennsylvania, motorcyclists have the same right of way as any other motorist on the road. Car and truck drivers may be under the mistaken impression that motorcyclists do not have the same right of way as other motorists, and make driving judgments based on this assumption that lead to accidents.
- Tailgating – Tailgating, or the act of a motor vehicle riding too close behind another vehicle, is far more risky when a motorcycle is involved. If a motorcyclist is tailgating a larger vehicle, a sudden stop can cause the motorcyclist to collide directly with the back of the vehicle. If a larger vehicle is tailgating a motorcyclist, sudden lane changes or stops on the part of either driver can cause the motorcyclist to get thrown over their bike from the force of the impact.
Speeding, driving under the influence, and distracted driving are all common contributory factors to motorcycle crashes.
Motorcycle Accidents from Road Defects or Vehicle Malfunctions
A motorcycle accident can also happen without negligence on the part of any party, due to highway defects, environmental hazards, or vehicle malfunctions. Under-maintained motorcycles with defective tires and brakes are at higher risk for accidents.
In the case of road defects causing a motorcycle accident, if a government agency was responsible for maintaining those roads, you may need to file a claim against that agency to recover compensation. In the case of a faulty vehicle, a manufacturer, distributor, or repair company may also be a party at-fault for your accident. Your attorney can help you determine if a product liability claim may be worth pursuing in your accident case.
Injuries Common to Motorcycle Accidents
Since motorcyclists have little to no protection from outside forces, their injuries are likely to be more severe and life-threatening than those of any other involved parties. If a motorcyclist is not wearing a helmet at the time of the accident, they can sustain catastrophic head, skull, and brain injuries. This is why all motorcycle riders under the age of 21 are required to wear a motorcycle helmet in Pennsylvania. However, even if you were wearing a helmet, you may have still sustained serious injuries in your accident.
Our motorcycle accident attorneys have helped crash victims get compensation for:
- Neck, back, and spinal cord injuries – Getting thrown or crushed in an accident can damage your neck, back, and spinal cord, leading to pain, slipped discs, nerve damage, and even partial or full paralysis.
- Concussions and traumatic brain injuries – The force of colliding with another vehicle, pavement, or another obstacle can cause head trauma, with serious results. While helmets are 67% effective in preventing traumatic brain injuries, a strong enough impact can still lead to a concussion or more severe trauma to the skull and brain.
- Sprains, strains, and dislocations – In an accident, your limbs may be stretched beyond their normal or allowable range of motion. Shoulder injuries are especially common in motorcycle accidents, and you may suffer from injuries ranging from a frozen shoulder to a torn rotator cuff.
- Burns and road rash – When you’re thrown from a motorcycle or get dragged along the road, you may experience a burn injury or road rash. These injuries are at high risk for infection and require immediate treatment. Additionally, a collision with a larger vehicle can puncture a motorcycle’s gas tank, and the resulting spill can spark and burn you as an unprotected rider.
- Digit or limb amputations – Fingers, toes, hands, and feet can get caught between metal parts of either vehicle in a crash. The extremity may be immediately severed in the accident or become crushed and shattered beyond saving, requiring amputation through surgery. Though rare, arms and legs can be entirely severed in severe accidents, or likewise become too damaged to save.
Whether you were thrown from your motorcycle or were caught under the other vehicle, you are likely to be severely injured in your motorcycle accident. Even if you do not feel like you were injured, it is important to seek medical attention after your accident as soon as possible. Head trauma and other internal injuries might not show themselves in obvious ways for days or even weeks after an accident. Working with a medical professional ensures you get the care you need for your injuries and helps document your injuries in the immediate aftermath of the accident.
How Long Do I Have to File My Motorcycle Accident Claim in Pennsylvania?
In the state of Pennsylvania, most personal injury cases have a two-year statute of limitations. This means you as an injured person have two years from the date of your accident to file a claim for damages. If you or your loved one was a minor at the time of the accident, the statute of limitations is instead two years from the date the victim turns 18.
If you miss filing under the statute of limitations, you will lose the right to obtain any compensation for your injuries. However, even if you are well within the two-year time frame, you should call an attorney as soon as possible after your accident. Involving an attorney early in the process can best protect your right to compensation. Your motorcycle accident attorney can get to work preserving vital evidence to support your claim.
What if I Am Partially at Fault for My Motorcycle Accident?
Pennsylvania awards damages in car and motorcycle accident cases under the modified comparative negligence rule. This means if you were found to be partially at fault for your motorcycle accident, your awarded damages will be reduced by the percentage of fault you share. However, if you are found to be 51% or more at fault for the accident, you will not be able to recover any damages at all.
It is in the best interests of other involved parties to try and find some fault on your part for the crash. If the defendant party or parties are successful in finding fault on your part, you could see reductions in your final compensation, or even be prevented from recovering at all. Having an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer on your side will help you prove where the majority of liability lies in your case, protecting your right to recover damages.
Let Munley Law Handle Your Carbondale Motorcycle Accident Case
If you were in a motorcycle accident, do not hesitate to reach out to Munley Law right away, even if you are unsure if you have a case. An experienced lawyer for motorcycle accidents can go over the details of your accident and determine if you have a case worth pursuing. When you hire an attorney soon after your accident, they can also work quickly to preserve evidence and get witness statements before memories fade. Preserving the key facts of the case is crucial to building a strong compensation claim.
Our Carbondale motorcycle attorneys understand the drastic impact an accident can have on you, your life, and your livelihood. We are committed to helping the people of Carbondale and throughout Pennsylvania get the justice and compensation they deserve to recover. We always keep your best interests in mind when considering settlement offers and litigation, and we are not afraid to pursue a case through trial.
Munley Law can help you maximize your recovery. We can put our six decades of legal experience to work for you in your fight to hold the right people accountable. Call our Carbondale law office a call today or reach out to us online to get started on your case. We offer free consultations, and you won’t way unless we recover money for you.
Munley Law Carbondale Personal Injury Attorneys
41 N Main St,
Carbondale, PA 18407