Motorcycles are fast and fun, and they get you where you need to go. Unfortunately, you may share the open road with a careless driver and suffer from that driver’s reckless behavior.
In 2019, over 1,800 Texas motorcyclists suffered serious injury, and 412 motorcyclists died. That same year, 14% of all U.S. traffic fatalities were motorcyclists, while motorcycles were only 3% of registered vehicles.
Who Is Commonly at Fault for Motorcycle Wrecks?
Your motorcycle accident was probably not your fault. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has stated, “When motorcycles and other vehicles collide, it is usually the other (non-motorcycle) driver who violates the motorcyclist’s right-of-way.”
According to the Texas Department of Transportation, motorcycle accidents often occur when another driver turns in front of a motorcyclist. The destructive turn normally results from the turning driver’s poor judgment. Other common accidents occur when drivers change lanes into motorcyclists, hit motorcyclists from behind, or open car doors when motorcyclists are passing.
You likely had no control over the events leading to your motorcycle injury, and you should be compensated for your loss. However, motorcycle accident compensation rarely comes without a fight. If you were injured in Dallas, you can take control of your recovery and fight for compensation by hiring an experienced Dallas motorcycle accident attorney.
What Can a Dallas Motorcycle Wreck Lawyer Help Me Recover?
In the typical motorcycle injury case, you can recover compensatory damages and sometimes punitive damages.
Compensatory damages should cover your medical costs, pain and suffering, wage loss, property damage, and other losses. However, you can only receive damages at trial if you prove that your level of fault was 50% or less. If you are 50% or less at fault, Texas law still reduces your award by your percentage of fault.
These bars to a full recovery can be daunting on top of the stress of a motorcycle accident. A good motorcycle wreck lawyer can alleviate your stress by investigating your case to find all the legal factors that can diminish your fault and maximize your recovery.
Even if the other driver is 100% at fault for your injury, there are other potential limits to your recovery. For example, the driver’s liability insurance might have limits that cannot fully cover your losses. If an at-fault driver does not personally have the money to pay for losses exceeding insurance policy limits, you may be able to find another source of coverage, such as another individual who shares fault for your injury.
A Dallas motorcycle accident lawyer at The Zimmerman Law Firm can help you determine if more than one individual should cover your losses.
Punitive damages—also called exemplary damages in Texas—are meant to punish an at-fault driver for exceptionally poor behavior. To recover punitive damages, you must prove that the other driver acted maliciously, fraudulently, or with gross negligence.
Under Texas Law, you must also prove your entitlement to punitive damages by clear and convincing evidence. The standard of proof is high for punitive damages, and an experienced attorney can help you reach that standard.
Is Trial My Only Option for Recovery?
Trial is not your only option for recovery in a motorcycle accident. Many parties choose settlement as a resolution instead of trial. Your settlement should cover the same losses that would be covered by a trial award. With settlement, an at-fault driver’s insurance company will likely argue for the same bars to recovery available in a trial award.
An experienced motorcycle accident attorney knows how to effectively negotiate against those bars and maximize your settlement.
How Much Time Do I Have to Recover Damages in a Motorcycle Accident?
Under Texas law, you normally have two years to file a claim for accident compensation. If the government is at fault for your injury, you have only six months to file a claim for recovery. These deadlines are crucial, and you may not have much time to fulfill them. The sooner you contact a motorcycle accident attorney in Dallas, the more time they will have to gather evidence and meet claim deadlines while you heal.
Reach Out to The Zimmerman Law Firm for Help with Your Claim
Our motorcycle accident attorneys at The Zimmerman Law Firm. P.C. stand on over 50 years of experience and want to help you.
We value personal service at our firm. Building a great working relationship with you is of the utmost importance to us to best meet your unique needs. Therefore, your first meeting at our firm is with an injury attorney—not a paralegal—and that attorney handles your case through the end.
We are also zealous advocates for your rights, and we thoroughly prepare your case to bring you the best outcome at trial or settlement.