Motorcycle Accidents are unfortunately a common occurrence. When they occur, certain legal questions regarding which party is at fault, what are the rights of the driver and others, and who is liable may remain. Due to this fact, there is a good portion of the law in the United States that has been formed over time that deals with motorcycle accidents.
Motorcycle accident law actually stretches over several different areas of the law. One of these areas is product liability law. Under product liability law, manufacturers of products can be sued and held liable for products they market and sell that are dangerous and harm customers. They can’t be held liable for every product that inadvertently harms someone. However, if a product is dangerous when it is used for its intended purpose without modification, that product’s manufacturer can certainly be held liable.
This is certainly the case for motorcycles that malfunction due to design flaws or poorly made parts. Such examples from motorcycle accident cases in the past have included faulty brakes, pedals that malfunctioned, and defective shock absorbers. If a person has suffered from an accident that he or she believes was caused by such a failure, that driver should certainly consider contacting a personal injury attorney who specializes in motorcycle accidents.
Another area of the law that covers certain motorcycle accidents is tort law. Under tort law, when an individual does not take proper precautions to prevent his or her actions from causing a serious injury or harm to others, the party that is harmed can sue for compensation in a court of law. Damages that can be awarded as compensation after a motorcycle accident can include funds to compensate for physical injury, lost wages, damaged property, loss of quality of life, and pain and suffering.
Who is the plaintiff and who is the defendant in such a motorcycle accident depends on the circumstances of the accident. If it is believed that another driver brought harm to the motorcycle driver, the motorcycle driver will likely be the plaintiff. If the motorcycle driver brought harm to someone else, he or she will be the defendant.
The outcome of such a lawsuit will be greatly determined by the laws in that jurisdiction. For example, certain jurisdictions have laws called comparative fault laws. Under these laws, the amount of damages the plaintiff can win in such a lawsuit will be reduced by a certain amount if it is believed the plaintiff had some part in causing the accident. Other jurisdictions may also have laws referred to as contributory negligence statutes. These laws instead stop the plaintiff from recovering any damages if it is believed he or she contributed to the accident occurring in any way.
Lawyers that specialize in motorcycle accidents may be needed for other reasons as well. One such example is when a motorcycle driver is attempting to recover compensation from an insurance company through an insurance settlement. During this process, there are many things for a lawyer to do. This can include interviewing witnesses, examining evidence and police reports, and negotiating with the insurance companies.
Like most lawyers, lawyers that specialize in motorcycle accidents can be paid in a number of different ways. This can include a flat fee, an hourly rate, or on a contingency basis. A fee using a contingency basis requires the attorney to either win the case or obtain a settlement before his or her fee is deducted from that amount.