Head injuries are among the most common injury sustained in motorcycle accidents. Other motorcycle accident injuries include damage to the feet, legs, forearms, and face.
Yet, if you are in a motorcycle accident, you can suffer more than just physical injuries. The psychological and financial injuries you experience after a motorcycle crash can also create a host of added challenges.
Therefore, you need to know all of the motorcycle accident injuries you sustained so you can seek compensation for the full scope of your losses. A motorcycle accident attorney can help you in this process.
Common Types of Physical Injuries Caused by Motorcycle Accidents
Passenger vehicles provide protective enclosures for occupants, absorbing the force of impact in collisions. Motorcycles do not have this luxury. They receive direct force from other vehicles, objects, and the ground in crashes.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that motorcycle accidents are four times more likely to result in serious injuries when compared to passenger vehicle collisions. They are also 28 times more likely to cause fatalities. Sixty-seven percent of people in motorcycle accidents suffer injuries to more than one part of the body. These injuries include:
Head Injuries and Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBIs)
Head injuries are the most common type of physical motorcycle accident injury.
- Helmets saved more than 1,800 lives in a recent year. Why? They lessened the impact of both head injuries and TBIs.
- More than 180,000 people visited hospitals for injuries arising from motorcycle accidents; many of these conditions involved head trauma.
- The severity of head injuries in motorcycle collisions has prompted the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other authorities to place a heavy emphasis on helmets.
Any head injury can cause significant damage to the brain, including traumatic brain injury (TBI). TBIs affect how the brain functions and can cause disability or even death. A TBI can affect your cognitive function, motor skills, sensory processing, emotional health, and behavior.
Forearm, Wrist, and Shoulder Injuries
Damage to the forearm, wrist, and shoulder is common in motorcycle accidents. It is natural for a rider to try to reduce the impact or stop their fall by extending a hand. Unfortunately, the speed and force associated with a motorcycle accident can cause bone fractures, joint damage, torn ligaments and tendons, soft-tissue damage, and muscle injuries. A motorcyclist could also suffer road rash to their upper extremities.
Foot, Leg, and Lower Extremity Injuries
Injuries to the lower extremities, including the foot, ankle, knee, and other parts of the leg, are common following many motorcycle collisions. As noted, these injuries can include broken bones, soft-tissue damage, and injuries to the joints, ligaments, tendons, and muscles. In extreme cases, victims may lose a limb or digit, causing lifelong complications.
Neck, Back, and Spine Injuries
Injuries to the back, neck, and spinal column can range from pulled muscles to broken vertebrae and damaged nerves. In some cases, spinal injuries may result in full or partial paralysis.
Face and Jaw Injuries
Injuries to the face can be debilitating, especially when structural damage to the bones interferes with the functional use of the mouth, nose, and eyes. Victims of face and jaw injuries may have difficulty seeing, eating, speaking, and performing other daily tasks. In addition, scarring and disfigurement from facial injuries can cause significant psychological harm.
Psychological and Emotional Injuries Following Motorcycle Collisions
When you suffer an injury in a motorcycle accident, the mental and emotional effects can touch every aspect of your life.
Psychological injuries you may experience include:
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Fear of leaving the house, also known as “agoraphobia”
- Frustration, irritability, and anger
- Personality changes
- The inability to enjoy previous work or hobbies
When you suffer from psychological distress following a motorcycle collision, it can affect your daily life. You may have trouble returning to work, driving to the store, or performing other necessary activities. Although they are not easy to see, such injuries can have a profound effect on your quality of life. A motorcycle accident lawyer can quantify these losses and seek financial recovery.
Financial Losses Due to Motorcycle Accident Injuries
It’s easy to overlook a motorcycle accident’s financial strain while you contend with immediate physical and psychological discomfort.
Financial hardships you could suffer after a motorcycle accident include:
- Hospital and medical expenses
- Surgery costs
- Assistive devices and medications
- Unpaid rent and bills
- Lost income
- Loss of business
- Damage to your motorcycle
- In-home remodeling and adjustments for accessibility
When you understand the full range of injuries you can suffer in a motorcycle accident, you are better equipped to pursue compensation for your losses. A motorcycle accident attorney can estimate the full value of your physical, psychological, and financial injuries.
You Could Pursue Compensation for Your Motorcycle Accident Injuries
When you suffer injuries in a motorcycle accident, you have the option to seek compensation through an insurance claim or a personal injury lawsuit. By seeking compensatory damages, you can secure the financial support you need to recover from your injuries.
A personal injury attorney can help you recover:
Economic Damages: Your Direct Financial Losses
Economic damages are the documented expenses you incurred because of your motorcycle accident injury. These expenses may include lost income, medical bills, and any domestic services you needed while you recovered. Save any receipts, bills, and invoices for additional costs associated with your injury as evidence to prove your economic losses.
Non-Economic Damages: Your Non-Monetary Losses
Non-economic damages include losses that do not come with bills, invoices, or other documentation. They may include physical and psychological pain and suffering, emotional anguish, loss of use, loss of enjoyment of life, and loss of companionship. A motorcycle accident lawyer can estimate the value of your non-economic losses.
Wrongful Death Lawsuits and Survival Actions After a Motorcycle Accident Injury
If you lost a loved one to a motorcycle accident injury, you could seek compensation through a wrongful death claim or lawsuit. Most states allow the spouse, children, or parents of the deceased to file a wrongful death claim against the party responsible for the fatal motorcycle accident.
In some cases, a personal representative or court-designated representative can pursue compensation on behalf of the decedent’s estate in a survival action.
What Is a Survival Action?
A survival action happens on behalf of the deceased individual, so any settlement goes to the decedent’s estate. It could pay outstanding expenses and then get distributed in accordance with their will and local laws. A person from the decedent’s family or a personal representative may initiate this legal action.
What Goes Into Filing a Wrongful Death Lawsuit?
The surviving family members of the decedent may initiate a wrongful death action. Settlements for wrongful death claims go directly to various beneficiaries to cover their losses.
Both survival actions and wrongful death lawsuits address expenses related to the decedent’s injury and death. Losses you could pursue include funeral and burial expenses, final medical bills, loss of income, loss of companionship, and pain and suffering.
The Benefits of Partnering With a Motorcycle Accident Injury Attorney
When you or a loved one suffers injuries in a motorcycle accident, you deserve to work with an attorney who can pursue fair compensation. A motorcycle accident injury lawyer knows the physical, psychological, and financial injuries you face after a motorcycle collision. They can explain your legal rights and handle every aspect of the legal process, including:
Negotiating With Insurance Carriers
Insurance companies aim to reduce their payouts so they can maximize profits. For a claimant like yourself, this can mean lowball offers, unfair denials, and reduced settlement values. When you face months or even years of recovery after a motorcycle accident, a bad settlement can mean years of financial hardship.
A skilled motorcycle accident attorney is familiar with the methods insurance companies use to protect their profits. They also know how to negotiate with stubborn insurance carriers to secure the highest possible settlement value.
When you work with an injury lawyer, you do not have to worry about gathering evidence and arguing with claims adjusters. Your lawyer pursues your motorcycle accident settlement, so you can focus on your recovery.
Handling Legal Correspondence
While you recover from your injuries, you may feel stressed or preoccupied. Insurance companies may use this to push you into accepting a low settlement. Constant phone calls, emails, and letters are designed to overwhelm you, so you will simply accept any offer to make them go away.
With a motorcycle accident injury lawyer on your side, you do not have to handle any of the correspondence from insurance carriers or the other party’s legal counsel. Your attorney can answer calls and voicemails, respond to emails, and address any legal correspondence.
Meeting Legal Deadlines
Some insurance companies have their own deadlines for seeking medical treatment and accepting insurance claims. In addition, every state has a different time frame to file a personal injury lawsuit after a motorcycle collision. When you suffer injuries, you can lose track of time and easily miss important deadlines. An attorney familiar with motorcycle injury cases in your area can keep your case on track. Meeting all the legal deadlines helps to ensure the best possible outcome for your situation.
Advocating for Your Rights in Court
Although many cases settle out of court, a dedicated motorcycle accident injury lawyer can take your case to court from the beginning. To prove your case before a judge or jury, your attorney must gather evidence to prove the other party’s fault.
They must also compile documentation to prove the extent and severity of your physical, psychological, and financial motorcycle accident injuries. With this information, they aim to build a case that seeks maximum compensation. If negotiations out of court fail, they can advocate for you at trial.
What Should I Do After Suffering Motorcycle Accident Injuries?
While an attorney can manage most aspects of your legal claim, the following steps can protect your rights after a motorcycle collision:
Follow Your Doctor’s Orders Exactly
After a motorcycle accident, you should immediately seek medical attention. If emergency services do not immediately transport you to the hospital, visit the emergency room or your primary care physician as soon as possible.
Follow your doctor’s instructions exactly, including attending all follow-up appointments and physical therapy sessions. Not only does following your doctor’s plan help you recover, but it also provides critical medical documentation to support your motorcycle accident injury claim.
Refrain From Talking About Your Case
Although you may feel tempted to discuss the details of your case with your friends and family, such discussions can complicate matters. Remember that anything you say or do can discredit your claim and reduce your settlement. If you are not sure what is safe to discuss, err on the side of caution. Ask your attorney before talking about your case or posting about it on social media.
Document Every Detail
The success of your motorcycle accident case hinges on evidence that proves:
- The other parties were careless, negligent, or reckless.
- Their carelessness, negligence, or recklessness caused your motorcycle accident.
- The other party caused your motorcycle accident and injuries.
- As a result of your injuries, you suffered economic or non-economic losses.
You can help your attorney prove fault and substantiate your injury claim with photos and videos of the accident scene. If you can, get the contact information of witnesses who observed the motorcycle crash.
Finally, keep a journal documenting how your injuries affect your ability to work and perform daily tasks. Be sure to indicate the dates, times, and any details regarding your injuries’ effects.
Consider Hiring a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
You shouldn’t have to handle the legal aftermath of a serious motorcycle accident alone. Augusta law firm can bring knowledge and experience to bear in negotiations and court proceedings. They can secure the maximum possible settlement and protect you against unscrupulous or stubborn insurance companies.