Who is the Best Motorcycle Accident Lawyer?
Legally Reviewed and Edited by: Terry Cochran
If you have ever ridden a motorcycle, then you know just how thrilling it can be and how free you can feel compared to driving a car. Sadly, that freedom can come at a price. Motorcycles are more at risk of accidents than other vehicles, sometimes due to their susceptibility to bad road conditions, sometimes due to the bad driving of other road users, and sometimes due to their own recklessness.
2018 saw 193 fatalities and over 2,000 injuries from a total of 2,728 motorcycle accidents across Michigan. If you have been a motorcycle accident victim, what rights do you have and how do you find the best motorcycle accident attorney?
Although Michigan is what is known as a no-fault state when it comes to motor vehicle and car accidents, motorcycles are not included in the definition of motor vehicle under state laws. This means that you cannot hold a no-fault insurance policy and you are only legally required to have minimum liability insurance that protects the motorcyclist from any liability for injury or death to someone or for any damage to property as the result of a motorcycle accident. But if another motor vehicle is involved in the accident, then you may be entitled to claim under their no fault policy.
However, if you feel that you do not have enough coverage, then insurance companies offer add-ons to your policy that includes medical coverage. These are available in increments of $5,000.
If you are over the age of 21, Michgan law also allows you to ride your motorcycle without a helmet. The caveat to this is that if you choose to ride without a helmet, the law requires that you have a minimum of $20,000 in medical benefits insurance. Knowing the various laws pertaining to motorcycle use can be of great benefit.
What Should You Do After a Motorcycle Accident?
As with any type of accident, there are some steps you should always try and take after motorcycle crashes. Following these steps can be of great help when submitting accident claims if you have been injured in a motorcycle accident.
- Check to see if anyone needs medical attention. Call 911 if necessary. If the accident and injuries are serious, call the police.
- Collect contact information of all those involved. This includes other people involved in the accident and any witnesses.
- If possible, take photos. Having a photo record of the scene can help with any claim as it may show road conditions or other factors that may have caused the accident.
- Seek legal representation as soon as possible after the accident. Having an experienced lawyer from Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C. representing you can help you deal with any settlement offers and ensure your medical bills are covered.
What Can an Attorney Do for You?
Many people wonder whether they need a lawyer in the aftermath of a motorcycle accident. In some cases, you may not need a lawyer as the insurance company will make a fair offer. But in many cases, there are a number of ways in which an attorney will be able to assist you.
- They can represent you in negotiations with the insurance company or if your case goes to court.
- They can give honest advice on any offers made by the insurance company.
- They can liaise with any healthcare professionals regarding your costs and treatment.
- If wrongful death has occurred as a result of the accident, they can represent the family.
- They can obtain copies of any relevant police reports.
- They can source expert witnesses if required.
- Gather statements and photographic evidence.
How Do You Choose the Best Attorney?
Once you have made the decision to engage a lawyer, how do you decide which one will best represent you? The first step is normally to search online, though here at Cochran, Kroll & Associates, P.C. we often have new clients come to us by personal recommendation.
Our website details the areas of law we practise and specialize in. We also offer a free consultation, which gives you an opportunity to ask more detailed questions such as whether we operate on a contingency fee basis or how much experience in personal injury law we have.
You can also inquire as to how much actual time we have spent in court on motorcycle-related cases and what our success rate is. We may also be able to give you some idea of what you might expect settlement or claim wise. Your initial consultation can also give you some idea of what sort of attorney client relationship you will have.
Frequently Asked Questions
There are some questions that we are asked in many motorcycle accident injury claims:
- Will I have any coverage under Michigan’s no-fault benefits policy? Yes, you can be, but only if another motor vehicle (but not solely motorcycle) was involved and as long as you were not more than 50% to blame.
- I don’t have any insurance. Can I still pursue a claim? Only in some circumstances and the other party has to have been at least 50% liable for the accident. Your attorney can guide you on this.
- How much will my claim be worth? Settlement and claims amounts can vary from case to case. Once your attorney has evaluated your particular circumstances, they can give you an estimate of how much the claim may be worth.
- How much will you charge me for representation? Cochran, Kroll & Associates operates on a contingency fee basis. That means we only receive a fee once we have won the case for you.
Your first concern after a motorcycle accident will always be any injuries received by you or by other people involved in the crash. But your thoughts will soon turn to the financial implications such as medical bills and lost wages. At that point, the services of one of the experienced lawyers from Cochran, Kroll & Associates,P.C. can help navigate the often complicated waters of insurance claims or court appearances.
And when you have suffered an injury in the accident, then we are in the unique position of having a highly-experienced nurse-attorney, Eileen E. Kroll, on our team, who can talk to any involved medical staff and decipher your medical records. To schedule your a free initial consultation with us call 866-MICH-LAW.
Disclaimer : The information provided is general and not for legal advice. The blogs are not intended to provide legal counsel and no attorney-client relationship is created nor intended.