Baltimore Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
Motorcycle Accident Attorney in Baltimore, MD
Motorcycles are popular in Baltimore and throughout surrounding communities of Maryland, but they are inherently dangerous for several reasons. First, a motorcycle lacks the safety features of most enclosed passenger vehicles. While the driver of a passenger vehicle is protected by a seatbelt, airbags, and a crash-absorbing frame, a motorcyclist has none of this protection.
Legal Representation for Victims of Motorcycle Accidents in Baltimore, MD
Any vehicle accident can be incredibly damaging, but catastrophic and fatal injuries are especially likely when a crash involves a motorcycle. If you or someone you love sustained injuries in a motorcycle accident that someone else caused, it’s essential to find legal representation you can trust. You may have more options for compensation than you initially realize, and your total damages could be worse than you initially expected. Again, legal counsel you can trust is invaluable in this situation.
The Ruben Law Firm offers compassionate and client-focused legal counsel for a wide range of personal injury cases in Baltimore, MD, including those pertaining to motorcycle accidents. We know the unique challenges victims of these incidents face in their recovery efforts and the extreme economic pressure an unexpected injury can cause for any household.
Benefits of Hiring a Baltimore Motorcycle Accident Attorney
You might assume that if fault for your recent motorcycle accident is readily apparent, you will have minimal difficulty holding the defendant accountable. The reality is that civil claims for damages can present unexpected complications that make it harder for the plaintiff to recover. If you attempt to resolve your claim alone, you risk losing valuable opportunities to collect compensation, and you may also make unintentional errors that jeopardize your recovery options.
Working with an experienced Baltimore motorcycle accident lawyer can significantly improve your chances of success with all recovery efforts from a motorcycle accident. When you have an attorney willing to take the time to learn the unique details of your claim and provide fully individualized legal counsel, this is an invaluable asset that can dramatically improve the outcome of your recovery efforts.
The Ruben Law Firm has decades of professional experience handling all kinds of personal injury claims for clients in the Baltimore, MD, area. The Baltimore metropolitan area is one of the busiest urban centers in the eastern United States, and a tremendous amount of traffic moves through the area daily. Unfortunately, this means there is always a high chance of experiencing an accident in the Baltimore area, and you should know your best options for legal recourse if an accident occurs.
When you choose the Ruben Law Firm to represent you after a motorcycle accident, you can rely on us to handle all the procedural aspects of your case so you can focus on your recovery. Motorcycle accidents often cause painful injuries that demand extensive treatment and long recovery times. However, you can rest and recover with reassurance when you have an experienced Baltimore motorcycle accident attorney managing your recovery efforts. The odds of maximizing your final case award are more likely with their counsel.
Most Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents
Motorcycle accidents happen every day throughout Maryland, often resulting in severe injuries. Some motorcycle accidents happen due to unexpected circumstances and no fault of any particular party. Others are the direct results of negligence and intentional misconduct, and if this applies to your recent accident, you must ID the party responsible for the damages. Motorcycle accidents can generate complex auto insurance claims and personal injury cases depending on how and why they happen. Identifying the root cause of your accident will be imperative for resolving your case.
Common causes of reported motorcycle accidents that generate complex legal proceedings in the Baltimore, MD, area include:
- Distracted driving. This is the leading cause of all vehicle accidents throughout the United States each year. Motorcyclists are especially vulnerable to distracted drivers because of their small size compared to most other vehicles.
- Intoxicated driving. Driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol or drugs is illegal and extremely dangerous. Any driver who causes a motorcycle accident because of a DUI faces criminal charges as well as civil liability for the victim’s damages.
- Moving violations. Failure to maintain traffic flow, navigate intersections correctly or intentionally disregard traffic signals can easily result in an accident. Likewise, disrupting traffic can startle other drivers and easily cause a crash.
- Speeding. Any accident that occurs at high speed is likely to result in catastrophic injuries. For example, motorcyclists who crash at high speeds sustain injuries from the primary impact of contact with another vehicle and the secondary impact of hitting the ground.
- Poor visibility. Drivers must use extra care in dangerous driving conditions, such as at night or during inclement weather.
- Intentional misconduct. Unfortunately, some drivers knowingly display a reckless disregard for the safety of others. When reckless driving or other intentional misconduct causes a motorcycle accident, the at-fault driver faces severe penalties.
If you are unsure whether you have grounds for legal recourse, it is vital to consult an experienced Baltimore motorcycle accident attorney as soon as possible. The right legal team can help you quickly assess who bears responsibility for your accident. Determining fault for the incident will be essential for all subsequent recovery efforts, so it is best to consult an attorney you can trust with your case to see the best results.
Proving Fault for Your Recent Motorcycle Accident in Baltimore, MD
If another party is responsible for causing your recent motorcycle accident, you must prove this with clear and convincing evidence to hold them accountable. Most motorcycle accident claims in Maryland pertain to acts of negligence. The legal term “negligence” applies to any incident in which a party fails to exercise reasonable care, fails to take appropriate reasonable action to avoid injury to others, or fails to address a foreseeable safety risk that could result in injury. Essentially, negligence describes a failure to act with care or a failure to uphold a specific duty of care. Other motorcycle accident claims pertain to acts of intentional misconduct, and these cases tend to be more challenging to resolve.
Your Baltimore motorcycle accident attorney will help you determine the root cause of your recent motorcycle accident and assess the type of proceedings you will likely face in resolving it. Most vehicle accidents require filing an insurance claim, and Maryland enforces a fault-based system for resolving car accident claims for damages.
In some cases, a good attorney can assist their client to gather evidence from the scene of their accident. For example, photos of the accident scene soon after it happened, the initial damage to the vehicles involved, and nearby landmarks can all be invaluable evidence in some motorcycle accident claims. Your lawyer may also seek statements from eyewitnesses who saw your accident.
Some motorcycle accidents happen in strange or unconventional ways, and liability for these incidents may not be immediately discernable. Therefore, you might need to consult an experienced attorney who can coordinate expert witness testimony on your behalf. For example, an accident reconstruction expert could explain the physics at play in your recent motorcycle accident, assisting you in establishing fault.
Filing an Insurance Claim for a Motorcycle Accident in Maryland
If another driver caused your motorcycle accident, you must prove this to proceed with your recovery options. The primary tier of compensation for most motor vehicle accident victims in Maryland is auto insurance. The state requires every driver to maintain coverage that includes:
- $30,000 or more in bodily injury liability coverage.
- $60,000 or more in total accident liability coverage.
- $15,000 or more in property damage liability coverage.
These coverage limits might seem generous, and many drivers can resolve vehicle accidents with insurance. However, motorcycle accidents are especially likely to cause devastating injuries, and the at-fault driver’s insurance may not fully cover all of your damages.
Once you prove responsibility for your motorcycle accident, your attorney can help you file your claim against their auto insurance policy. Every insurance company has a legal responsibility to investigate a claim for legitimacy and handle the claim in good faith. You have a limited time to file your insurance claim after an accident, so it’s best to consult an attorney who can assist you as soon as possible. You will also need to notify your insurance company of the accident under the terms of your policy. If you did not cause the accident, this shouldn’t affect your coverage, but your policy likely requires you to notify the carrier of any accident within a certain time.
The insurance company may require supporting documentation to approve a claim. It’s also possible that the insurance company will offer a lowball settlement, hoping the claimant’s desperation coerces them into accepting less recovery than they legally deserve. Having an experienced Baltimore motorcycle accident attorney draft your demand letter to the insurance company on your behalf significantly reduces the chances of you experiencing any bad faith treatment from the insurer. In addition, if any issues arise regarding your claim, your Baltimore motorcycle accident attorney can assist you in addressing them until you reach a favorable resolution to your insurance claim.
How to File a Personal Injury Claim for a Motorcycle Accident
If you exhaust your compensation options from the at-fault driver’s insurance, you have the right to file a claim against the at-fault driver in pursuit of compensation for your remaining losses. Unfortunately, Maryland’s personal injury statutes are more restrictive than many other states regarding plaintiffs’ rights to compensation. Still, a successful personal injury case may be your best option for recovering from a serious motorcycle accident.
A personal injury case begins with a complaint filed in the Baltimore civil court. First, the plaintiff must ID the defendant they believe to be responsible for their damages and provide a complete and accurate list of those damages. They must then provide evidence and testimony proving the defendant is directly responsible for causing these damages and that they did not occur from another cause.
Once a complaint is filed, the court issues the appropriate forms and paperwork, giving the defendant a chance to respond. The case can go one of two possible ways at this point. If the defendant accepts liability and seeks to settle the claim, the parties can proceed to settlement and resolve the claim privately. On the other hand, if the defendant refuses to accept responsibility, tries to turn the tables and say you contributed to the incident, or disputes damages the plaintiff is seeking, a judge may have to resolve the case in litigation.
Working with an experienced Baltimore motorcycle accident attorney significantly improves your odds of success with all your recovery efforts after a motorcycle accident. When you choose the Ruben Law Firm to represent you, we will carefully review the details of how your accident happened and identify the party or parties responsible for causing it. We will then help you assess what damages you can seek from the party who caused your motorcycle accident.
Claimable Damages in a Motorcycle Accident Case
If you have grounds for a claim against the driver who caused your motorcycle accident, you must list the damages you seek in the claim and prove the defendant is responsible for them. If you have already recovered some compensation from their auto insurance policy, you can include outstanding losses in your personal injury action.
Maryland state law enables the plaintiff in a personal injury claim to seek full repayment of all economic losses sustained due to a defendant’s actions. Economic damages are relatively easy to prove with the right documentation and usually include:
- Medical treatment costs. Motorcycle accidents often cause serious injuries that demand immediate medical attention. The plaintiff can seek recompense for any medical expenses incurred because of the defendant’s negligence or misconduct. Motorcycle accidents can easily cause broken bones, traumatic brain injuries, spinal injuries, and many other injuries that can pose severe medical problems to the victim. Therefore, prompt medical care is essential for the victim of any motorcycle accident, even if their injuries seem mild at first.
- Long-term health care expenses. When a motorcycle accident causes a permanent disability or any long-term medical condition, the plaintiff can hold the defendant responsible for future medical treatment costs they are likely to incur. An experienced attorney can assist you in calculating these losses by consulting with your medical care team and compiling a detailed breakdown of your future medical prognosis.
- Lost wages. The results of a motorcycle accident could prevent you from returning to work for several days or weeks, depending on the severity of your injuries. The defendant would be liable for any income you lose due to their actions. This would also apply to any accrued paid time off or vacation time you were forced to use after your accident.
- Lost earning capacity. The defendant is responsible for your diminished earning capacity when you have sustained permanent harm from a motorcycle accident that impairs your ability to work and earn income. An experienced attorney will be a vital resource for accurately calculating the income you would have reasonably expected to earn if the accident had not occurred.
- Property damage. The at-fault driver’s auto insurance is likely to cover no more than the actual case value of your vehicle. If your bike’s value exceeds their property damage liability coverage, and if you lost other property in the accident, you could include all outstanding property losses in your personal injury claim.
Once you calculate the full range of immediate and future damages you can include in your personal injury suit, you may be surprised to learn your case is worth much more than you initially expected. However, your recovery may not end with your economic damages. While more restrictive than many other US states, Maryland law enables personal injury plaintiffs to seek compensation for their pain and suffering.
It may sound difficult to quantify abstract losses like pain and suffering in monetary terms, and the limits placed on non-economic damages may seem unfair to those who have sustained life-changing injuries. However, the right attorney can still be invaluable in helping you maximize the pain and suffering compensation you can receive from your claim. In addition, if you have sustained any long-term or permanent harm from your experience, a Baltimore motorcycle accident attorney can help you maximize your case award.
Contributory Negligence in Maryland Civil Cases
Understanding state law when establishing fault in a civil claim is vital. Maryland is one of the few US states to enforce a contributory negligence law. This can seem harsh to some plaintiffs, but the statute prohibits plaintiff recovery of civil damages if they bear partial liability for those damages. If you sue another party for losses sustained in a motorcycle accident, but an investigation reveals you are partially to blame, you lose all right to claim compensation from the defendant. You may also be denied insurance coverage from their policy as well under Maryland’s contributory negligence law.
A motorcycle accident could have caused a serious injury, and you may have woken up in the hospital with no recollection of the events that brought you there. On the other hand, it’s also possible that you may have some idea of how your accident occurred. Whatever your case entails, if liability is unclear, you must consult an experienced Baltimore motorcycle accident attorney to represent you. If you bear any comparative fault, or even if you unintentionally say the wrong thing at the wrong time when speaking with an insurance company, you could jeopardize your entire case.
What to Expect From Your Baltimore Motorcycle Accident Attorney
When you need legal representation after a motorcycle accident, you should know how to evaluate potential attorneys. Experience is crucial, and it’s always best to choose legal counsel familiar with cases like yours. Availability is also crucial. If you hire legal counsel, you need to know they will be available to address any concerns you have as your case unfolds and that they have the flexibility to meet your case’s demands. You must also know the attorney will be responsive to you throughout your case, addressing concerns as they arise and providing you with updates on your recovery efforts.
The Ruben Law Firm has cultivated a strong reputation as a leading choice for personal injury representation in the Baltimore, MD, area. Our firm has successfully represented many past clients in a wide range of complex civil cases, and we know the unique challenges that motorcycle accident claims often present. Our goal is to help each client fully understand their options for legal recourse after experiencing an injury due to another party’s actions and then guide them through their best options for recovery.
Our team will meet with you at your convenience to learn as much as possible about how your accident happened and its effects on your life. We take time to create individualized legal strategies for every client, as no two cases are exactly alike. Since an auto insurance claim is likely to be your first step toward recovering your motorcycle accident damages, you can rely on our firm to handle interactions with insurance company representatives on your behalf until you secure a suitable claim settlement.
Find Legal Counsel You Need for Your Case Now
When insurance cannot fully compensate for the losses caused by another driver’s negligence or intentional misconduct, the Ruben Law Firm can help you file a personal injury claim against them to seek full recovery from your losses. A successful personal injury claim might yield more compensation than you initially expected, and a good attorney will be invaluable for navigating your case as efficiently as possible.
Time is a critical factor after any accident in Maryland. Swift legal action ensures you can preserve vital evidence and that witness testimony will be as reliable as possible. The sooner you connect with an experienced Baltimore motorcycle accident attorney, the sooner you can start maneuvering toward recovery from your damages. Contact the Ruben Law Firm today and schedule a free consultation with a Baltimore motorcycle accident attorney you can trust with your case.