The effects of a motorcycle collision can last a lifetime. Even while wearing a helmet, motorcyclists often sustain catastrophic injuries, preventing them from living the life they once did. To make matters worse, many riders are wrongfully blamed for the accidents caused by others.
If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident, you need an experienced motorcycle accident attorney on your side. An attorney who understands what’s at stake and will advocate aggressively to protect your rights. Let the qualified motorcycle accident lawyers at Slater & Zurz utilize their 100 years of collective legal experience to pursue justice on your behalf.
Motorcycle Accident Injuries
On average, motorcyclists are 28 times more likely than motorists to be severely injured or die in an accident. Even when a motorcyclist is wearing a helmet, they are highly vulnerable to sustaining severe injuries in the event of a crash. Injuries commonly seen in a motorcycle accident include:
- Spinal cord injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Neck injuries
- Broken or dislocated bones
- Facial fractures
- Lacerations and road rash
- Soft tissue injuries
- Internal bleeding
- Internal organ damage
How Motorists Cause Motorcycle Accidents
It is estimated that in over 60% of all motorcycle crashes involving an automobile, the driver is at fault. Motorists commonly cause collisions in a variety of ways, including:
- Failing to obey traffic laws – When drivers speed, fail to stop at red lights, or otherwise fail to comply with Ohio’s traffic laws, they are putting motorcyclists at risk, and the likelihood of a motorcycle accident increases drastically.
- Failing to yield to motorcycles – In many cases, other drivers cut off motorcyclists or fail to yield them the right-of-way. Failing to yield is a common cause of motorcycle collisions and is often due to the inexperience of the driver or the driver’s intentional actions.
- Reckless driving – Other motorists cause collisions when they simply drive recklessly or aggressively. Reckless motorists often tailgate riders, cut motorcycles off, or speed.
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol – When motorists are under the influence of drugs or alcohol, their perception, judgment, and reaction times are impaired, significantly increasing the likelihood of an accident.
- Distracted driving – Operating a motor vehicle while distracted poses a high risk to motorcyclists. Distracted driving, such as texting, eating, or using a navigation system while driving can all lead to collisions.
Damages in a Motorcycle Accident Claim
Being involved in a collision while on your motorcycle can leave you with devastating injuries and substantial financial loss. If a motorist or dangerous road conditions caused the accident, you have the right to pursue compensation for your losses. Damages in an Ohio motorcycle accident case include the following:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Property damage (the cost to repair or replace your motorcycle)
- Costs for rehabilitation
- Lost wages and earning potential
- Mental anguish
- Physical pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment
- Loss of consortium
Our dedicated motorcycle accident lawyers will assess all possible damages that apply to your specific case and fight diligently for maximum recovery.
Ohio’s Motorcycle Safety Laws
As a motorcyclist, it is essential to understand the Ohio’s laws that affect your ability to ride your bike. Whether you have been riding a motorcycle for years or are riding for the first time, reviewing the following laws will help you stay safe while riding and ensure you don’t receive a costly traffic ticket.
The Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV) states that you must have a valid motorcycle license or endorsement to lawfully operate a motorcycle in Ohio. If you already have a valid driver’s license, you may obtain an endorsement which covers motorcycles and motorized bikes. If you do not already have a driver’s license, you will need to get a motorcycle license.
To legally operate a motorcycle in the state of Ohio, you will need to have the following minimum insurance coverage:
- $25,000 – Bodily injury coverage per person
- $50,000 – Bodily injury coverage per accident
- $25,000 – Property damage liability coverage
The Rules of the Road
In Ohio, motorcyclists must follow the same rules of the road that drivers do. For example, riders must yield the right of way, not exceed the speed limit, and stop at a red light. However, motorcyclists have some additional rules. A good example is that it is unlawful for a motorcyclist to “lane split.” Lane splitting occurs when a motorcyclist rides between two lanes of stopped or slow-moving traffic that are going in the same direction.
To legally ride a motorcycle in Ohio, the bike must be equipped with certain items. The motorcycle must have the following equipment:
- Handlebars that do not rise above the rider’s shoulders when seated
- A minimum of one and no more than two headlights with high and low beams
- A rearview mirror, horn, and muffler
- One red taillight and brake light
- Turn signals if the motorcycle was built after January 1, 1968
Motorcyclists and their passengers are not required to wear a helmet in Ohio if they are over the age of 18. However, it has been found that not wearing a helmet increases your chances of severe injury. So, it is always best to wear a helmet while riding a motorcycle.
Most motorcycle accidents are severe. But following these motorcycle safety rules and regulations will help minimize your risk of serious injury and keep you compliant with Ohio state law.
The Statute of Limitations for Filing an Ohio Motorcycle Accident Claim
A statute of limitations is a law that sets the maximum amount of time a party has to file a claim or lawsuit. In Ohio, the statute of limitations for filing a motorcycle accident claim is two years. If you sustained losses that stem from a motorcycle collision, you would need to file a suit within two years of the date the accident occurred. Failing to file within this time frame will likely take away your ability to pursue compensation for your losses. Therefore, we recommend acting promptly after your accident. Beginning the motorcycle claims process early will ensure your ability to take legal action and increases your chances of getting the result you need and the compensation you deserve.
No Recovery, No Fee. Call Slater & Zurz at 888.534.4850.
Schedule a Free Consultation with a Motorcycle Accident Attorney in Canton
When you sustain serious injuries in a motorcycle crash, it is best to consult with a lawyer right away. Our experienced personal injury lawyers are ready to fight for your rights and pursue full compensation for your injuries. We will begin carefully investigating the details of your accident to uncover the facts and determine liability. Our skilled attorneys will handle all communication and negotiation with the insurance companies so you can focus on getting better. In addition, we offer our services on a contingency fee basis. This means we only get paid when we recover damages on your behalf. There are no retainers or other up-front fees.