Getting compensation after a motorcycle accident can mean a world of difference to an injury victim. If your injuries leave you out of work and you faced substantial medical expenses, you should speak with a lawyer right away about your options.
Often, settling your case through insurance just is not enough to get full coverage for your injuries. Instead, you may need to turn to the courts to get full compensation – and our attorneys can help you with your claims.
For a free case review, call Howe Law’s motorcycle accident attorneys today at (844) 876-4357.
Filing an Insurance Claim for a Motorcycle Crash in South Fulton, GA
Most drivers and riders expect that they have to file an insurance claim after a crash. While you might need to report your accident to your insurance company, you could actually be entitled to damages from the at-fault drivers without an insurance claim. Nonetheless, insurance claims are the most popular way to recover compensation, and they might cover your needs in full in some cases. But you should always work with a motorcycle accident lawyer and be aware of the risks of settling your case through a lawsuit.
Third-Party Insurance Claims
Insurance in Georgia works on a fault-based or “tort” system rather than a “no-fault” system. This means that when you are injured, you file a “third-party” insurance claim with the insurance policy for the driver who caused the crash to get your damages and repairs covered. Often, accepting damages through an insurance claim functions as a legal settlement, and you have to waive any further rights to sue as part of accepting an offer. This means that you usually cannot go to court and claim additional damages if you are not happy with the insurance offer.
Instead, the time to negotiate with the insurance company and consider escalating things to a lawsuit is before settlement. Our motorcycle accident lawyers can help you reject the insurance company’s low-dollar settlement offers, negotiate for full coverage, and file the case in court if the insurance company does not cooperate.
Ultimately, an insurance settlement might be enough to cover your injuries if you suffered minor or moderate injuries. However, insurance claims often fail to fully cover extensive injuries, and you should speak with a lawyer about other options for compensation.
Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage
If you were hit by a driver who did not have insurance, you might be able to use your uninsured motorist insurance to get damages. This is an optional policy you can pay for to get first-party benefits from your own insurance policy if you are hit by an uninsured driver. Underinsured motorist policies can also help cover the overages if your injuries cost more than the defendant’s insurance can cover. Our motorcycle accident lawyers can help advise you on what insurance to pick for your motorcycle and what to do after an accident.
Filing a Lawsuit for Injuries in a Motorcycle Accident Case in South Fulton
When you take your case to court in a lawsuit, you could be entitled to any damages resulting from the accident. Often, insurance policies have maximum policy limits, but the court could potentially award damages beyond this cap, and it is up to the defendant and their insurance company to pay what they are ordered to pay. Especially since drivers need to carry only $25,000 in bodily injury coverage to meet the state minimums for insurance, having the option to sue is often important because this might not be enough coverage.
In a lawsuit, fault is determined by the jury (or by the judge if you elect for a “bench trial”). Insurance claims are decided by the insurance company, but a lawsuit gets decided by neutral, objective parties who can award you what you deserve.
In order to win your lawsuit, you will have to prove that the other driver was at fault by showing some traffic violation or other violation of duty that caused the crash. You must also have sufficient evidence and proof to show it is more likely than not that your claim is true. This burden of proof is known as a “preponderance of the evidence” standard.
Most injury cases, including motorcycle accident claims, are ultimately settled without going to trial. Throughout the process, our lawyers will be looking for settlement offers that meet your needs and can potentially mean ending the case earlier without a trial. If the insurance company or the at-fault driver offers a fair settlement, we can review it with you and advise you on how to proceed.
However, one area of damages might be available at trial but not through settlement: punitive damages. Punitive damages can be awarded in cases where the other driver did something that they should have known was dangerous. These additional damages are used to punish the defendant and are not something that is typically agreed to in a settlement.
Common Motorcycle Injuries in South Fulton, GA
Injuries in motorcycle accidents can range from mild injuries like bruises to moderate injuries like broken bones all the way to life-altering injuries like spinal cord injuries and amputation.
Motorcycle riders are vulnerable to injuries like road rash or breaks and sprains in almost any crash, even low-speed accidents. Falling into a skid can leave you with severe abrasions and road rash as well as potentially more serious injuries if your bike pinned your leg, including broken bones or even amputation injuries.
Head injuries are often mitigated or eliminated by helmets, but severe accidents and high-speed crashes can still leave you with concussions, traumatic brain injury, and other injuries. If anything broke or penetrated your visor or helmet, you might also be left with serious puncture wounds.
Talk to our motorcycle accident attorneys immediately, no matter how severe your injuries are. Nearly any injuries can entitle you to compensation from the at-fault driver.
Call Our South Fulton Motorcycle Accident Lawyers Today
For a free review of your injury case, call the motorcycle accident lawyers at Howe Law by dialing (844) 876-4357.