Did you get hurt in a motorcycle accident in Columbia? Do you need help figuring out your legal options for pursuing compensation? If so, contact the Columbia personal injury attorneys at OnderLaw, LLC, and our legal team will represent you in your case to hold the at-fault party liable. You shouldn’t have to pay for the expenses you incurred. That should be the responsibility of the careless person that caused your accident. You may also be owed for lost wages, your pain and suffering, and more.
We have an excellent reputation in Columbia and throughout Missouri. We’ve won been recognized for our hard work and successful case results from various legal organizations, such as the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum, the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, and The National Trial Lawyers.
We believe in providing every client with one-on-one attention and guiding them through each step of the process. When you hire us, we’ll remain by your side in the fight for justice.
Schedule your free consultation with a dedicated Columbia motorcycle accident lawyer from OnderLaw, LLC by calling (314) 963-9000 today.
The Dangers of Riding a Motorcycle
Motorcyclists are 27 times more likely to die in a crash than drivers and passengers in a car. That’s because the only protection they have is a helmet. Although helmets can prevent fatalities by almost 37%, they don’t protect other parts of the body. The motorcycle doesn’t have a surrounding metal structure, seatbelt, or airbag to prevent injury during impact.
It’s a dangerous situation for any rider to find themselves in. Additionally, when a motorcycle crash occurs, it’s typically due to the actions of someone driving a car. A small and fragile bike can’t handle the force of a larger and heavier vehicle. Severe injuries and property damage are usually the results of this kind of interaction.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, over 80% of accidents cause injury or death to the bike rider. Most injuries occur when they’re ejected from the motorcycle. Without safety restraints keeping them in place, a collision with a car, or coming to a sudden stop could launch them off the bike. Physical harm can occur when they land on the road or suffer from subsequent impacts if they end up in the path of an oncoming vehicle.
Seeking Compensation After a Motorcycle Accident in Columbia
Missouri follows a fault system when motor vehicle accidents occur. The person who caused the crash becomes financially responsible for the victim’s injuries and the resulting damages. Damages are the losses associated with an accident. The at-fault driver’s auto insurance company usually picks up the bill.
Every driver and bike rider is supposed to carry insurance with minimum liability limits for bodily injury and property damage. They cover the injured party’s expenses and compensation for any suffering they endured. The minimum required limits are $25,000 for bodily injury and $10,000 for property damage.
When you file a liability claim, you could seek compensation for the following damages up to the limits listed on the policy:
- Past and future medical bills
- Past and future lost wages
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional trauma
- Bike repair or replacement costs
- Out of pocket expenses
- Permanent disability
- Loss of consortium
Your Columbia motorcycle accident lawyer can determine what insurance company the liable driver uses and file the claim on your behalf. We’ll collect all the necessary evidence that proves fault and that you deserve compensation for your damages. We can handle every step of the legal procedure and communicate with the insurance adjuster, so you don’t have to.
Insurance companies can be intimidating for people unfamiliar with the claims process. Their ultimate goal is to save money and payout as little money as possible to claimants. They might take advantage of you if you don’t have a lawyer to help. When you retain our services, we’ll ensure fair treatment and work hard to protect your rights. We won’t allow the insurance company to provide a low settlement offer or deny your claim for no good reason. We’ll fight for the maximum compensation you deserve.
Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents
Unfortunately, people traveling in cars don’t pay much attention to motorcyclists. Motorcycles are small and difficult to see on the road, especially when they’re in a driver’s blind spot. Most of the time, the reason people in vehicles cause accidents is due to inattention or distraction.
Other common causes of motorcycle crashes include:
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Failure to yield the right of way
- Failure to check blind spots before merging
- Texting while driving
- Running a red light or stop sign
Environmental factors, such as poor weather conditions, could also contribute to accidents. Sometimes ice, snow, and rain lead to more serious collisions because many people don’t know how to react when their car starts sliding across the pavement. They slam on the brakes and overcorrect the steering, which could result in a multi-vehicle collision.
Road defects could also lead to a motorcycle crash. If someone isn’t paying attention and hits a pothole, they could lose control of their car. Construction areas are also dangerous if there aren’t warning signs or traffic cones to direct vehicles around the hazards.
Your Injury Could Affect The Monetary Value of Your Case
Even if your injury is minor, you might be able to recover a small settlement from the at-fault driver’s liability insurance company. Something as simple as a sprain could require some medical attention, which results in bills. You shouldn’t have to pay for any of it. If your injury was more serious, you may be eligible for more compensation. OnderLaw, LLC will assist you with your claim and make sure the insurance company pays you an adequate amount of money to cover your costs.
The most common motorcycle accident injuries that could make you eligible for financial compensation include:
- Crush injuries
- Road rash, lacerations, and wounds
- Traumatic brain injury
- Spinal cord injuries
- Internal bleeding or organ damage
- Broken bones
- Ejection injuries
Some injuries are so severe that they cause physical or mental disability. When that happens, you’ll need ongoing medical treatment and assistance with daily tasks. Those bills add up over time and create a financial burden for the accident victim. Our Columbia motorcycle accident lawyers want to help you receive adequate care and reimbursement of all your damages.
Legal Options When Liability Insurance Isn’t Available
Although liability insurance is a legal requirement in Missouri, some drivers choose not to purchase it or let their policies lapse. You don’t have to worry, though. If you encounter someone who doesn’t have coverage, you can file a claim with your insurance company.
Uninsured/underinsured motorist (UM) is another form of insurance required for all drivers and motorcyclists. It’s available when the at-fault party doesn’t have liability coverage, or their limits aren’t high enough to compensate you for your total damages. When you file a UM claim, you can seek the following:
- Medical bills
- Lost wages
- Pain and suffering
- Bike repair or replacement
- Out of pocket costs
An optional form of insurance is known as MedPay (medical payments). You could use this coverage for the upfront payment of your medical treatment. The available limits are between $1,000 and $10,000. When you file a claim, your doctors will send your bills directly to the insurance company for payment up to the limit listed on your policy.
The Steps Involved After a Motorcycle Accident
If you get hurt in a motorcycle crash, you might not know what to do next. You should follow crucial steps if you want to secure your rights to the maximum available compensation. OnderLaw, LLC could handle the process for you, but there are some things you can do at the accident scene to improve your chance of recovery.
Step 1: Report the accident. You have to call the police if the collision causes an injury, death, or at least $500 in property damage. An officer will show up to investigate the cause and write a traffic crash report detailing their findings.
Step 2: If your injury isn’t severe, and it’s safe to walk around, look at the surrounding area for evidence. Take photos of vehicle damage, debris on the road, skid marks, and other relevant details.
Step 3: If anyone saw the crash occur, talk to them about their version of events. Write down their names and phone numbers, so they can provide a witness statement to the insurance company if necessary.
Step 4: Ask the at-fault driver for their auto insurance details.
Step 5: Seek medical treatment after leaving the accident site. Follow up with providers the doctor refers you to and don’t stop attending appointments until you recover or reach maximum medical improvement.
Step 6: Bring your motorcycle to a repair shop for an estimate of the damage. Keep a copy of the report to submit to the insurance company.
Step 7: Hire a Columbia motorcycle accident lawyer.
Why Choose OnderLaw, LLC?
Motorcycle accident victims come to us because of the results we get for our clients. We never back down from a fight and will work tirelessly until you receive the compensation you deserve. Martindale-Hubbell gave us an AV® Preeminent rating, reflecting our work ethic and achievement in the legal field.
Since opening our firm in 2002, our dedicated Columbia motorcycle accident lawyers have won millions of dollars for injured victims. We advocate for our clients’ rights and aim to seek justice. You can feel confident knowing you’re in excellent hands when you retain us for our services. We’ll stay by your side to provide support and guidance to the very end.