Fort Lauderdale Motorcycle Accident Attorneys
Representing Injured Motorcyclists in South Florida
While riding a motorcycle can be exhilarating, a motorcycle crash can be frightening. This is especially true because motorcyclists know how vulnerable and exposed they are compared to other motorists on the road. At Meldon Law, we have seen the many ways a motorcycle accident can change someone’s life and the physical, mental, and financial stress a crash can cause. Our Fort Lauderdale motorcycle accident attorneys are proud to represent injured motorcyclists in and around the Fort Lauderdale area and work to protect their rights as accident victims.
If you were in a motorcycle accident and would like to discuss your rights to recovery, please do not hesitate to contact Meldon Law for more information today.
A Motorcycle Accident Can Happen to You
Florida has the second-highest number of registered motorcycles of all the states in the U.S. Florida also consistently has the most motorcycle fatalities in the U.S. According to crash statistics published by the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, the following occurred in a single year in the Sunshine State:
- 10,331 crashes involving a motorcycle
- 8,256 injuries to motorcyclists
- 742 injuries to motorcycle passengers
- 515 motorcyclist fatalities
- 30 motorcycle passenger fatalities
If you ride a motorcycle in Florida, be aware that the possibility of an accident is very real, as an average of 22 motorcyclists sustain injuries each day in our state. Because of the risks of injury, it is important to know what to do after a motorcycle accident to protect your rights.
First, you should always seek medical attention. Many motorcyclists may be in shock and may not feel the effects of injuries right away. The symptoms of other injuries – such as concussions – can develop days after a crash. If you undergo a prompt medical evaluation, you can begin treating your injuries as soon as possible to minimize any complications or losses.
Once your injuries are diagnosed and under treatment, you may begin to feel the financial stress of your accident, including medical bills, lost income if you had to miss work, and more. At this point, you should not delay in contacting an experienced motorcycle accident attorney to discuss your legal options.
Motorcyclists Can Suffer Devastating Injuries and Losses
One reason motorcyclists should definitely learn about their legal rights is that motorcycle accidents can cause devastating injuries. Many motorcyclists face a long recovery from their injuries and some motorcyclists never return to life as they knew it before the accident. The following are only some examples of common motorcycle injuries:
Too many motorcyclists believe that as long as they wear a helmet, they will be at risk for dangerous head trauma or life-changing traumatic brain injuries. However, a motorcycle helmet cannot protect you from head injuries 100 percent of the time. In addition, not all motorcyclists are required to wear helmets by Florida law and some choose not to do so. The risk of head injuries is higher without a helmet, of course, but the risk still exists whether or not you wear a helmet.
The above injuries can result in many different types of losses for motorcyclists. For example:
- Medical bills – Motorcycle injuries can require emergency transport and treatment, hospitalization, surgical procedures, rehabilitative therapy, medical equipment, medications, and more. In addition, many injuries will require treatment long after a legal case is completed and estimated future expenses should always be considered as part of your accident-related losses.
- Lost wages – Serious injuries can require a period of rest for recovery – especially if surgery is necessary. During this time, many patients will likely have to take time off work. Furthermore, some injuries prevent patients from working due to the nature of their jobs. For example, if you lift heavy objects or engage in physical activity for work, a back injury can keep you off the job until you have recovered. In either case, most people do not have enough paid time off to cover the time they need and, therefore, lose a substantial amount of income.
- Other losses – Many losses are intangible and can include physical pain and suffering from injuries, mental trauma from the accident and injuries, permanent impairments, disabilities, or disfigurement, and more. These losses should all be calculated by a skilled personal injury attorney and included in any claim you bring.
Financial Recovery for Motorcycle Crash Victims
Once your damages are properly calculated, your attorney can identify who can be held liable for those losses. Florida law allows motorcyclists to hold negligent parties responsible for the harm they cause in accidents. Some examples of negligence that may lead to a motorcycle crash include:
Negligent parties may include other drivers, motorcycle manufacturers, or even government entities who neglect to perform proper road maintenance. In any situation, you need the right law firm on your side that is ready to fight for the compensation you deserve from all possible parties.
At Meldon Law, we know your focus should be on your healing and recovery, so we handle every aspect of the legal process on your behalf. We can handle insurance claims, personal injury lawsuits, settlement negotiations, and more – whatever it takes to obtain proper compensation for your losses.
Fort Lauderdale Motorcycle Accident FAQ
Motorcycling through Fort Lauderdale is incredible. From white sandy beach routes along 1A to cruising the Overseas Highway down to the Florida Keys, motorcyclists in Fort Lauderdale enjoy some of the most beautiful rides in the country. With nearly perfect weather all year long, that means there is never an off-season for motorcycling. It also means that motorcyclists are on the road every day of the year.
More motorcyclists mean more motorcycle accidents that result in catastrophic injuries. In fact, Florida is the most dangerous state to ride a motorcycle, as reported by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Florida leads the nation in motorcycle crash fatalities with Broward County coming in third in the state for deadly crashes. In recent years, motorcycle fatalities even rose 30 percent.
This is largely because Florida does not require motorcyclists to wear helmets when riding. Only 47 percent of all motorcyclists actually wear helmets while riding. Even worse 15 percent of motorcyclists do not even carry insurance. When they get into a serious motorcycle accident, they often cannot pay their own medical bills. That is because the average cost for a hospitalized motorcyclist accident survivor is $83,676.
If you suffered an injury in a motorcycle accident, could you pay that much in medical expenses alone? Most motorcyclists cannot without suffering serious financial strain and even bankruptcy.
Seek legal assistance immediately after a motorcycle crash. Even if you carry insurance, you may find that you do not have enough to offset the costs of the accident. As such, you need a lawyer on your side that can fight aggressively for your rights to compensation. Motorcyclists with legal representation are more likely to secure significantly more compensation after an accident.
If you suffered an injury in a motorcycle accident in Fort Lauderdale, you may have many questions running through your mind.
Here are just a few of the most frequently asked questions regarding motorcycle accidents in Fort Lauderdale.
- How can I help my motorcycle accident case?
- How can I collect money after a motorcycle accident?
- Who is to blame after a motorcycle accident?
- What types of damages can I collect?
- How much money can I get for my accident?
- What if I am uninsured?
- What is the statute of limitations in Florida?
Motorcycle accident survivors often feel helpless. They may suffer from debilitating injuries and many cannot return to work.
Yet, they may not realize that there are still things they can do to help their case, including:
- Contact a motorcycle accident attorney
- Avoid speaking to insurance adjusters
- Do not sign any settlements
- Keep all medical receipts and expenses
- Document your recovery and setbacks
- Attend all doctor appointments, follow-ups, and therapy sessions
- Follow the treatment plan
- Avoid posting about the accident on social media
How can I collect money after a Fort Lauderdale motorcycle accident?
Florida is a no-fault state, and accident survivors must seek compensation first from their own insurance policy. Drivers in Florida must carry Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance. This insurance pays for the first $10,000 of medical expenses after an accident without the need to prove liability. Even if you caused your accident, you can still collect this money.
Yet, injured motorcyclists often discover that collecting this money is not easy. They may run into complications and battles collecting from their own insurance policies. As a result, many turn to a motorcycle accident lawyer to help them collect money from PIP policies.
Once you deplete your PIP policy, you can seek compensation by filing a motorcycle accident lawsuit against the negligent party. Your motorcycle accident lawyer can help you explore all your legal options after an accident.
Who is to blame after a Fort Lauderdale motorcycle accident?
In the majority of cases, the other driver is typically responsible for the motorcycle accident. Drivers may turn left into oncoming motorcyclists, rear-end motorcyclists at stoplights, or change lanes into motorcyclists on the road. A study that analyzed 10 years of Florida crash data found that car drivers cause 60 percent of all motorcycle accidents.
To determine who is to blame, your Fort Lauderdale motorcycle accident lawyer will need to investigate the accident closely. In some cases, multiple parties share the blame for the accident. As such, it is necessary to investigate all angles of the crash to find all negligent parties. Your attorney can then build a case to collect maximum compensation from those parties and their insurers.
What types of damages can I collect in a Fort Lauderdale motorcycle accident?
In Florida, injured motorcycle survivors can seek both economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages include medical expenses, lost wages, and loss of future earnings. Non-economic damages include pain and suffering, as well as the loss of enjoyment in life and emotional distress. Your attorney can help you recover all the compensation you deserve after a serious motorcycle accident.
How much money can I get for my Fort Lauderdale motorcycle accident?
Every motorcycle accident is different, and every motorcyclist suffers different injuries.
Some factors will contribute to your award or settlement value, including:
- Cause of the accident
- Severity of your injuries and damages
- Long-term complications or disabilities
- Impact your injuries have on your career and future
- Lost wages you incurred
- Medical expenses you incurred
Your attorney will need to evaluate your accident closely and work with medical experts to determine how your injuries will impact your life and future. Any settlement or award should take into account all damages suffered, both now and in the future.
What if I am uninsured?
If you did not purchase motorcycle accident insurance, you may face significant challenges when trying to collect compensation. After an accident, you deserve help, especially if another driver is to blame for the crash. However, you should not attempt to seek compensation on your own. It is best to have an experienced motorcycle accident attorney represent you through this process. You will need a significant amount of evidence to prove liability in court. A law firm with significant experience and resources can give you an advantage.
What is the statute of limitations for a Fort Lauderdale motorcycle accident claim?
In Florida, you only have four years from the date of the motorcycle accident to file a claim. If you miss this deadline, you cannot seek future compensation for your injuries. That means that even if you suffer complications, setbacks, or long-term disabilities, you typically cannot seek to collect money for those injuries once the statute of limitations passes.
Yet even if you believe you missed the deadline, you may still have time. This law contains exceptions, so you may still seek compensation, so have an experienced attorney on your side from the start. Your attorney can help you determine what legal options you should pursue after a motorcycle accident.
Contact a Fort Lauderdale Motorcycle Accident Lawyer to Discuss Your Rights
After a motorcycle accident, you may not know where to turn. Please know that the legal team at Meldon Law is here to help. We regularly meet with motorcycle accident victims to evaluate their rights and have helped clients recover for all of their relevant losses. We provide representation you can trust and will keep you updated on all developments in your case. Consultations are always free with no obligation, so please call 800-373-8000 or contact us online today for more information.