Motorcycle riders who are involved in collisions with other motorists are often in a vulnerable position. Not only can the impact from even a minor collision cause a rider to fall from their bike, but these riders can be thrown into stationary objects, off the side of the road, or even into oncoming traffic.
It is no small wonder that motorcyclists often face serious or even life-threatening injuries from accidents. However, people can often assume that motorcyclists take on some risk when riding and are not entitled to compensation for their injuries. In reality, nothing could be further from the truth. Bikers have the same rights to make insurance claims and file suit in court for the negligence of other drivers as all other motorists.
A Medford motorcycle accident lawyer can represent you. Contact a qualified personal injury attorney who can fight for the compensation that you deserve.
New Jersey Laws Governing Motorcycle Accidents
There is no statute in New Jersey that describes what civil remedies a victim in a motorcycle accident has. Rather, motorcyclists must rely on the common law for relief. The common law is compiled from a series of judge’s decisions that are passed down over the years.
These decisions have identified the legal cause of action of negligence. In short, this theory states that certain people have a legal responsibility to care for the well-being of others. When they violate this duty, they are liable for damages to the injured party. The vast majority of cases involving motorcycle accident injuries rely on this theory.
There are five portions of a negligence theory that a plaintiff must be able to demonstrate in order to win their case:
- Duty – In specific situations, the law creates a responsibility for one person to protect another. A prime example of this is when a person operates a motor vehicle. All drivers are automatically given a legal duty to protect other drivers, passengers, and pedestrians. Because of this, duty is never in dispute in motorcycle accident cases.
- Breach – When the person who has the duty to care for another fails in that duty, a breach of the duty of care is said to have occurred. This can be the result of an action taken, or alternatively, failing to act to prevent harm. Examples of this in motorcycle cases can be speeding, ignoring a stop sign, or not properly checking blind spots before changing lanes. Whether a driver breached their duty of care is the most often contested element of a motorcycle accident case.
- Cause – The plaintiff must be able to demonstrate that their injuries were the result of the accident. Broken bones, sprained ligaments, and concussions are common examples of injuries suffered by bikers.
- Scope – The plaintiff’s injuries must be foreseeable from the fact pattern of the case.
- Damages – The injured person’s harm must be physical, whether this is damage to property or the body. Mental anguish can be added on, but cannot stand alone. All damages must be rooted in physical damages.
Statute of Limitations
One other aspect of New Jersey law to remember is the statute of limitations. In short, this is a filing deadline that all motorcycle accident plaintiffs must meet. As personal injury cases in New Jersey must be filed within the applicable statute of limitations, failure to do so will keep a person from any type of recovery.
As every case is different, the applicable statute of limitations will depend upon the facts of a person’s case, which is why it is important to contact a Medford motorcycle accident lawyer so they can examine their case and analyze the statute of limitations accordingly.
How a Medford Motorcycle Accident Attorney Can Help
People who have been injured while riding their motorcycles often do not know where to turn. Between mounting medical bills, pushy insurance companies, and mountains of paperwork, they quickly become overwhelmed. Insurance representatives are no help, as they can try to convince you that the accident was your fault or that you have limited rights as a biker.
Your lawyer can handle all of the paperwork so that you can focus on your recovery. By examining all of the evidence and submitting strong and precise demand packages, many cases settle without needing to go to court.
Do not take any half-measures, let a Medford motorcycle accident lawyer protect your rights.