Houston Motorcycle Accident Attorney
Motorcycle Accidents in Harris County
More and more people are buying motorcycles for transportation and recreation. However, the increased number of motorcycles on the roads has not made things any safer. Drivers still do not always pay attention to motorcyclists when they are sharing the road with them. This can result in very serious accidents, leading to catastrophic injuries and fatalities.
At Payne Law Firm, we have years of experience handling all types of car accident cases, including those involving motorcycle collisions. We understand how devastating these accidents can be, and we know what it takes to effectively advocate for the maximum recovery our clients deserve. Under the leadership of founding attorney, Jason E. Payne, we work to see that justice is served, negligent parties are held accountable, and you obtain the compensation you deserve for the losses and injuries you suffered. Attorney Payne is Board Certified in Personal Injury Trial Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization, an asset that renders him a respected, aggressive, and knowledgeable advocate for you in and out of court.
What Are the Most Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents?
Like most motor vehicle accidents, motorcycle crashes are commonly the result of negligence. Unfortunately, even the most experienced and skilled of motorcyclists cannot predict the behaviors of others on the road and may be unable to avoid the consequences of other drivers’ careless and reckless conduct.
Some of the leading causes of motorcycle accidents include:
- Distracted driving
- Failure to yield the right of way
- Failure to check for motorcycles in blind spots
- Unsafe turns
- Unlawful passing
- Driving while intoxicated/drunk driving
- Failure to stop at red lights, stop signs, etc.
- Opening car doors
- Road rage/aggressive driving
While motorist negligence is one of the most common factors in motorcycle accidents, other elements can play a role in a crash. Examples include poor weather conditions, defective roadways, and faulty vehicle components.
In some cases, the motorcyclist may share some portion of the blame. However, this does not mean that they cannot file a claim and seek compensation for their losses; under Texas’s rule of modified comparative negligence, the injured motorcyclist can still seek recovery as long as they were 50% or less at fault for the crash.
Who Is At Fault In Most Motorcycle Accidents?
A favored tactic of insurance companies is to blame the motorcyclist for the accident. Many insurance companies will push the idea that motorcyclists tend to be more reckless and are therefore responsible for most car vs. motorcycle accidents. However, data has shown that more often than not, motorists are responsible for motorcycle accidents. If your insurance company is refusing to pay for damages because they believe you were at fault for the accident, you don't have to accept their initial decision. Contact an injury lawyer today to have someone investigate your accident who doesn't just have their own bottom line in mind.
Injuries Sustained in Motorcycle Accidents
Due to the fact that motorcyclists are not protected by their vehicles—like drivers of cars, SUVs, trucks, and other vehicles—riders often sustain very serious injuries in collisions with other vehicles.
Some of the most common motorcycle accident-related injuries include:
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), including closed-head injuries, concussions, open-head wounds, and coup-contrecoup injuries
- Spinal cord injuries and paralysis, along with nerve damage
- Road rash, or “heat burns,” which are caused when the skin is rubbed off, such as when a motorcyclist slides on the pavement after a collision
- Broken bones, crushed bones, and neck and back injuries
At Payne Law Firm, our motorcycle accident attorneys in Houston provide dedicated legal representation for those suffering from catastrophic motorcycle accident injuries. We understand the unique challenges you are up against and know how to aggressively advocate for the rights of injured bikers. To date, we have recovered millions of dollars in compensation on behalf of our clients, including numerous million- and multimillion-dollar settlements and verdicts.
What to Do After a Motorcycle Accident
After a motorcycle accident, there are several things you should do (if possible) to protect your rights:
- Seek Appropriate Medical Care: Because many motorcycle accidents result in severe injuries, it is important that you get the right medical treatment as soon as possible. If necessary, call 911. If you are not treated at the scene and/or hospitalized, you should see a doctor or another qualified health care provider right away, even if you believe you are not seriously injured. The shock of the crash can mask the severity of your injuries and without proper treatment, these injuries could lead to significant complications.
- Document the Scene: If you are able to, make sure you document the scene of the accident. Leave your motorcycle where it is unless it is unsafe to do so. Take pictures of the crash, as well as your injuries and any damage to your bike. If there are any witnesses who may have seen what happened, talk to them about what they saw and get their name(s) and contact information. This can be incredibly useful for your future claim.
- Exchange Information: If possible, you should exchange information with the other driver(s) involved at the scene. Get their name(s), contact information, and insurance information. If the other driver fled the scene (known as a “hit and run”), immediately write down everything you can remember about their vehicle, including the make, model, year, color, and license plate. In any case, avoid admitting fault or assigning blame; remember, even if you think you know what happened, there may be outside factors that contributed to or caused the crash.
- Report the Accident: After a motorcycle crash, you should report the accident to the appropriate authorities. By law, you are required to report any accident that results in bodily injury, death, or property damage of $1,000 or more to the police. The best way to do this is to have law enforcement come out to the scene of the accident and file an official report. You should also inform your insurance company about the accident as soon as possible. While every policy is different, most require drivers to report accidents “promptly.”
- Contact a Personal Injury Attorney: Because Texas is an at-fault state, you will likely need to bring a claim against the motorist or other person/entity that caused the accident. This can be difficult, and the insurance company is likely to dispute your claim. They may try to underpay you for your losses or deny your claim altogether, arguing that you were at fault for the accident or that the insured is otherwise not responsible. When you work with an experienced attorney, you increase your chances of maximizing your recovery and eliminate the stress of having to deal with the insurance company on your own.
Since 2004, Payne Law Firm has been representing injured motorcyclists throughout Texas. Our motorcycle accident lawyers in Houston understand the unique nuances inherent in these types of cases and know how to fight back against common biases against motorcyclists. We have successfully taken on many major insurance carriers and fought for our clients in court. Our team is ready to help you get back on your feet after a serious accident or the devastating loss of a loved one.
Texas Motorcycle Accident Statistics
Texas has been identified as one of the top states for motorcycle accident fatalities, with numbers reaching a new high as recently as 2020 according to the Texas DOT.
- It is estimated that at least one motorcyclist is killed every day on Texas roads
- Statewide, motorcyclists account for 12% of all traffic fatalities
- In 2020 there were over 7,400 motorcycle crashes in Texas alone
- In the same year over 1,800 motorcyclists were seriously injured in Texas
- In 2020 there were 482 motorcyclists
How Much Is a Motorcycle Accident Case Worth?
Similar to other personal injury cases, a motorcycle accident lawsuit should fight to obtain compensation for things such as medical expenses, lost income, lost earning capacity, pain and suffering, etc. For every case that amount may be different. For example, if you suffer a minor concussion and are only kept out of work for a few days, your settlement will be significantly less than if you suffered a TBI and were unable to return to work at all. An injury attorney from our firm can help you determine the actual value of your case and fight to ensure you receive fair compensation from the other driver.
How Long Do Motorcycle Lawsuits Take?
Every motorcycle accident claim is different, so it could take anywhere from a few months to over a year to settle your claim. If the insurance company is willing to negotiate and offer a fair settlement, it's likely that your claim will be resolved outside of court and therefore be resolved more quickly. However, if the insurance company is unwilling to pay for your injuries or tries to lowball you, there's a high likelihood that your case will need to go to trial in order to obtain a fair settlement. Cases that go to trial can take a year or more to reach a settlement.
Contact Us Today to Schedule a Free Consultation
It is essential that you have an attorney on your side who can help you understand all of the many facets of your case. When you choose Payne Law Firm, you choose a team that will fight for you, even if that means taking your case to court. Throughout the process, you can rely on us to provide consistent case updates and honest communication regarding your best options.
We offer free initial consultations and contingency fees. This means that you do not owe any out-of-pocket expenses when you hire our firm. Instead, we only collect attorney fees if/when we win your case, and these fees are paid via a percentage of your total recovery.
“Payne Law Firm was invaluable in helping my family navigate the most difficult situation we had ever experienced. Mr. Payne and his entire staff were professional, responsive, and empathetic throughout the entire process.” - Fatimar J.
“My experience with "Payne Law Firm" was extraordinary! They were efficient, professional, and persistent. I have and will continue to recommend “Payne Law Firm” because you are treated like family!” - Sheori S.
“My experience at Payne Law Firm was very pleasant. I had no worries at all. He was there for everything I needed help with.” - Gloria J.
“I have used Payne Law Firm services on several different occasions and have always been pleased with the outcomes.” - Leonard J.
“Payne Law Firm calmed my fears and assisted with easing my pain, by always being available to answer my questions, calming my fears, explaining the law to me in layman’s terms, while offering comfort and support.” - Joyre T.
Despite wearing a helmet and other protective gear, motorcycle riders can suffer injuries or be killed in even minor-seeming accidents. These situations are extremely emotional and stressful for the surviving family members and loved ones. We believe that you deserve justice.
While we understand that nothing can bring your loved one back, our firm works to lighten the load on your shoulders by seeking compensation for your loss. This can help you recover financially so you can focus on grieving, healing, and moving forward.
At Payne Law Firm, our attorneys can help you understand your options when it comes to filing a wrongful death lawsuit after a motorcycle accident. We provide compassionate, client-focused counsel and personal attention from start to finish. Our team is ready to represent you and your family, seeking justice on behalf of your loved one.
Client-FocusedWe will help you every step of the way, providing answers to your questions and continuing to update you on the status of your case.
A History of SuccessWe have helped over a thousand injured individuals and families get the compensation they deserved.
Battle-TestedWe not only understand the complexities of insurance companies but know how to fight them.
Full TransparencyOur team knows the importance of your case and is committed to doing what is best for you.