San Antonio Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
Nearly every week local news stations report on devastating San Antonio motorcycle crashes. From colliding with vehicles on the Northeast Side to intoxicated pedestrians causing accidents on 610, riders often suffer critical and fatal injuries in motorcycle accidents. Getting ejected from motorcycles after vehicle impacts or being run over by aggressive drivers are only some of the common reasons riders need dedicated legal counsel following traffic accidents.
Insurance companies frequently blame motorcyclists for the crash or the severity of their injuries. In fact, auto insurance adjusters are tasked with reducing their employer’s bottom line by shifting liability, making lowball settlement offers, and persuading accident victims not to contact personal injury lawyers.
Do not let insurance companies convince you to waive your rights. Instead, take advantage of a free case analysis with the experienced San Antonio motorcycle accident attorneys at the Wyatt Law Firm. With over half a billion dollars recovered for our personal injury clients and a no recovery, no fee guarantee, there’s no risk associated with confidentially contacting our motorcycle injury team online or by calling (210) 340-5550.
Most Common Causes of Motorcycle Crash Injuries
The NHTSA reports that, compared to passenger vehicle occupants, motorcycle riders are nearly 30 times more likely to die and four times more likely to suffer serious injuries during traffic crashes. These staggering statistics highlight the catastrophic nature of motorcycle accident injuries in San Antonio.
1. Leading Crash Factors
In Texas, over half of all serious motorcycle fatalities and injuries occur during traffic accidents. The Texas Department of Transportation also reports that every day at least one motorcyclist dies in a Texas traffic accident.
Among the most commonly cited reasons for motorcycle-vehicle collisions include:
- Drunk driving
- Lack of sufficient lighting/ failure to see riders
- Illegal left turns
- Unsafe lane changes
- Road rage
- Failure to yield
- Roadway defects and debris (potholes or oil spills)
- Distraction (texting while driving)
- Driver inexperience
Many drivers mistakenly believe that larger vehicles, such as trucks and minivans, automatically have the right of way. As such, they frequently fail to yield to riders or treat motorcyclists like second-class drivers. Numerous motorcycle safety campaigns focus on reminding drivers to share the road with riders, who have the same rights as drivers in San Antonio.
2. Types of Motorcycle-Vehicle Collisions
Although numerous factors—including driver medical emergencies—can lead to devastating crashes, the following accidents most frequently result in catastrophic motorcyclist injuries:
- Intersection: Studies indicate that nearly one-third of all motorcycle crash deaths occur during intersection collisions. These accidents often result when drivers fail to yield the right of way to motorcyclists. Sometimes this occurs when drivers believe they always have the right to proceed before motorcyclists, but other times it occurs when drivers simply don’t look for smaller vehicles at intersections. These collisions often involve drivers accelerating through stop and yield signs directly into motorcyclists proceeding with the right of way. These T-bone collisions may result in high-speed impacts causing chest crushing injuries, brain trauma, and fatal spinal cord injuries.
- Rear-End (Tailgating): Motorcycles often appear farther away than they are due to their smaller size. As such, passenger vehicle drivers regularly fail to keep an appropriate distance between their vehicles and motorcycles. A safe distance gives drivers time to completely stop their cars to avoid colliding with a fallen or stopped rider. Because riders can stop their motorcycles more quickly than drivers, many passenger vehicle operators don’t react in time and rear-end the rider. This often flips the motorcycle and ejects the motorcyclist.
- Passing (Clipping): Because motorcycles are substantially lighter than passenger vehicles, fast-moving cars traveling too close to motorcyclists may create airstreams throwing riders off balance. They may also clip riders with their side-view mirrors due to impaired depth perception, which frequently results from intoxication. Merging accidents may also occur when drivers want to surpass riders but misjudge their speed and distance.
- Left Turn: Difficulties judging a motorcycle’s distance and speed often leads to serious left-turn crashes when drivers turn in front of the rider. Many drivers do not use turn signals because they don’t see the rider, which prevents motorcyclists from anticipating the turn and slowing down.
- Run Over: If possible, Texas drivers should not travel directly next to motorcycles. Keeping a safe horizontal distance between vehicles may prevent drivers from running over fallen riders, including those struck by other vehicles, suffering from mechanical failures, or forced to execute emergency falls.
When the above motorcycle crash factors cause these devastating traffic accidents, injured San Antonio riders or their families might recover financial damages. Experienced personal injury lawyers could file civil claims for auto negligence, reckless driving (gross negligence), negligent entrustment, or wrongful death.
3. Other Motorcycle Crash Causes & Legal Options
Some motorcycle crashes do not involve another driver’s negligence. However, injured riders might still recover financial damages in some cases. Defective brakes, motorcycle parts, and safety equipment may lead to catastrophic crashes supporting strict product liability claims. Roadway/parking lot debris, poor lighting, and negligently designed highway exits might also cause motorcycle accident injuries and fatalities in San Antonio. These cases may involve public tort liability or related premises liability claims.
At the Wyatt Law Firm, our dedicated motorcycle accident injury lawyers consider every crash factor and might pursue claims against negligent drivers, parts manufacturers, and public entities.
Catastrophic Medical Conditions Associated with Motorcycle Accidents
Rider exposure and resulting ejections frequently result in more severe motorcycle crash injuries. Many San Antonio motorcyclists suffer from both primary and secondary-impact trauma, such as broken femurs from the vehicle impact and brain injuries from the resulting pavement impact. Motorcycles cannot absorb and distribute the crash force as passenger vehicles can. As such, riders’ bodies take the brunt of the vehicle impact.
We’ve helped our clients recover substantial damages for the following severe injuries commonly sustained during motorcycle accidents:
- Moderate to severe traumatic brain injuries (TB”)
- Concussions (mild TBI)
- Skull fractures
- Leg fractures
- Dislocated shoulders
- Friction burns (road rash) and thermal burns
- Herniated discs
- Paralysis (paraplegia and quadriplegia)
- Kidney damage
- Chest contusions
- Punctured lungs
- Broken ribs
- Broken wrists and ankles
- Damage to knee and shoulder tendons
- Facial fractures, burns, and lacerations causing scarring
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
Most of these catastrophic injuries cause various secondary conditions including organ failure, depression, anxiety, pain disorders, insomnia, bedsores, infections, weight gain/loss, and back pain. Treatments also frequently result in medication side effects, surgical pain, and even addictions to prescription opioids.
It’s essential to consider the long-term impact of these catastrophic conditions on your physical and mental wellbeing before accepting insurance settlement offers. Our experienced motorcycle accident team often works with medical, psychological, and rehabilitation experts to develop a holistic understanding of your prognosis and future medical needs. This may include cognitive therapies, family counseling, and pain management services.
Options For Recovering Compensation Following San Antonio Motorcycle Crashes
Every motorcycle accident involves different crash factors, negligent parties, and insurance providers. Experienced injury lawyers in San Antonio can analyze your case and recommend the best options for obtaining and maximizing financial awards. We consider your unique injuries, disabilities, and family situation when discussing your path to recovering accident damages.
1. Insurance Settlements
Most viable motorcycle accident cases settle with liability insurers without the need to sue. This means many injured riders can recover financial damages without filing civil lawsuits against negligent drivers, property owners, or motorcycle manufacturers. Insurance settlements also generally result in quicker, lump-sum awards without risking potential bankruptcy filings. An attorney may help victims of San Antonio motorcycle crashes identify liable insurers and demand policy disclosures.
In Texas, passenger vehicle owners must carry at least $30,000 in liability coverage plus an additional $25,000 in property (motorcycle) damage insurance. Most personal motorcycle insurance policies also include uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage and riders might carry personal injury protection (PIP) insurance.
Commercial (truck and bus) drivers must carry between $750,000 and $5,000,000 under federal guidelines, and accidents involving working drivers, including Uber or Lyft, often involve high-value umbrella liability policies. Likewise, corporations liable for defective products carry specialized coverage. Most motorcycle accident cases involve one or more potential avenues of insurance recovery.
2. Personal Injury Litigation
If insurance does not provide enough coverage to compensate motorcycle accident victims for catastrophic injuries, an attorney might sue negligent parties directly. Insurance companies frequently settle claims after attorneys file lawsuits because it may cost them less. They’re generally responsible for paying the policyholder’s court costs, providing legal representation, and paying judgments up to policy limits.
They might also settle cases if your lawyer requests summary judgment establishing the negligent driver’s liability for the crash. In rare cases, we may recommend bringing your case before a jury. This often occurs when the insurance company refuses to offer a good-faith settlement, disputes accident liability, or declines to cover certain damages. Juries frequently award verdicts beyond insurance policy limits.
Maximizing The Value of Motorcycle Accident Claims
Understanding your legal right to personal injury damages in Texas often prevents insurance manipulation. Negligent parties are generally responsible for all injuries and medical conditions resulting from the motorcycle crash, including prior conditions that the accident aggravated. They must also cover the indirect impact of your injuries such as lost wages and compensate you for pain and suffering.
Motorcycle accident victims in San Antonio might demand past and future compensation for:
- Surgical and hospital expenses
- Nursing care
- Doctors visits
- Chiropractic and physical therapy costs
- Rehabilitation expenses
- Medical equipment and medications
- Household help, such as cleaning, cooking, and driving services
- Lost income, including wages, commissions, business profits, and vested bonuses
- Lost career advancement opportunities and earning capacity
- Lost enjoyment of life, like previous activities and hobbies
- Physical pain
- Emotional suffering
Families might recover the above damages in fatal motorcycle accident cases in addition to funeral costs, lost inheritance, and loss of companionship damages. Riders suffering from catastrophic injuries resulting in long-term disabilities often need help calculating their future damages. Paula Wyatt and her dedicated motorcycle accident lawyers may hire economic experts to calculate the true value of your injury claims under Texas law. Submitting these expert calculations to insurers helps maximize your claim’s settlement value.
Benefits of Hiring Experienced San Antonio Motorcycle Accident Attorneys
Insurance companies do not want you contacting private counsel because it removes their right to contact you directly. As such, they frequently convince victims that they can handle everything in-house without the need for you to pay expensive attorneys’ fees. This often results in incorrect information about your recovery rights, lowball settlement offers, and outright coverage denials.
Insurance doctors also frequently attribute your injuries to prior accidents or minimize the severity of your trauma. This results in insurance denials that claimants must appeal within a certain timeframe. Adjusters count on injured claimants missing these deadlines.
Retaining a San Antonio personal injury lawyer stops insurance manipulation in its tracks. Adjusters must go through the attorney alone, which prevents them from giving you false information. Legal counsel can also quickly identify common insurance tactics, such as downplaying your injuries, and appeal arbitrary coverage denials. Experienced lawyers also know how to gather essential evidence, obtain necessary medical reports, and sue negligent parties if necessary.
Lastly, most motorcycle accident firms front all litigation and expert witness expenses. They also do not generally get paid unless their clients recover needed compensation after San Antonio motorcycle accidents. Even subtracting the agreed attorney’s fee, which is a percentage of your overall settlement/verdict, represented claimants generally recover 5 to 10 times more damages than claimants without legal counsel.
Contact the Dedicated San Antonio Motorcycle Accident Attorneys at the Wyatt Law Firm
Most motorcycle crashes result in catastrophic trauma that drastically changes your lifestyle. Do not let insurers blame your choice to ride for the crash. There’s little to no risk associated with confidentiality discussing your claims with the experienced personal injury lawyers at the Wyatt Law Firm. Our motorcycle accident team might conduct a free case analysis and provide needed representation without any upfront or out-of-pocket costs.
Discuss your right to demand financial compensation after San Antonio motorcycle crashes today by calling (210) 340-5550 or connecting with us online.
Excellent knowledge from all staff aspects. Paula knows how to work in her clients corner and she brings so much experience and energy to make sure her clients are treated fair. She helped fight with Tricare on my husbands behalf and she will not stop fighting until the client is happy. My husband won his case with her and her staff. I highly recommend if you need someone to listen and go fight for you let this Lady do the work. Gabby is a great asset and kept my husband very informed during the whole process. They deserve more than 5 stars.
Wyatt Law Firm, PLLC
21 Lynn Batts Lane, Suite 10
San Antonio, Texas 78218