If you’re a motorcycle enthusiast in Merrillville, Indiana, a ride on the open road may feel freeing and exhilarating. However, when you’ve suffered in a motorcycle accident as the result of another party’s negligence, your life can be instantly and permanently transformed.
The freedom provided by a motorcycle can also leave you vulnerable to significant injury in an accident. You deserve to concentrate on your recovery, but as your medical bills, lost wages, and bike repair costs mount, you may wonder how you can receive just compensation.
How can you file a personal injury claim? Where can you turn for help?
The good news is that the right Merrillville motorcycle accident lawyer can guide you through the legal process, negotiate with reluctant insurance companies, fight for you in court, and ensure you don’t have to walk the path to healing on your own.
How a Merrillville motorcycle accident lawyer can help
Although you can file a personal injury claim without an attorney, it may prove difficult to understand the nuanced laws and proof of liability or negligence on your own. If you’re dealing with severe injuries on top of your trauma, you may be tempted to rush the process and take the first settlement amount you’re offered.
However, receiving just compensation may prove to be a longer wait than you’ve anticipated. It’s vital that you understand the legal process and file all necessary documents to pursue the settlement you’re rightly owed. A Merrillville motorcycle accident lawyer can help in the immediate aftermath of your crash.
Why you should choose Yosha Law motorcycle accident lawyers
At Yosha Law, our team of motorcycle accident lawyers can help you by doing the following:
- Explore the merits of your case and truthfully let you know if a personal injury claim is worth pursuing
- Explain your legal options in easy-to-understand terms
- Gather evidence from the scene of your Merrillville motorcycle accident
- Contact first-responders from your crash and obtain copies of police reports
- Interview and obtain testimony from eyewitnesses
- Retain forensic investigators and expert witnesses on your behalf
- Represent you in all mediation with the insurance companies
- Negotiate with insurance companies and the courts to ensure you seek a fair settlement
- Fight for you in court, if your case cannot be settled
Dealing with insurance companies
If you file a claim with the insurance company and are quickly offered a settlement, chances are the figure isn’t even close to what you’re owed. A Yosha Law motorcycle accident lawyer can handle all insurance company negotiations.
Remember, once you’ve agreed on a settlement, you have no legal recourse to further compensation. An attorney can help to calculate the damages you’re owed, and take future expenditures such as medical bills and loss of work into account.
An insurance company may be reluctant to accept your claim, or look for paperwork loopholes to deny compensation. We understand how to negotiate with insurers, and won’t back down if we feel a lowball offer is on the table.
In a motorcycle accident case circumstances may make liability difficult to prove. Some of the ways our motorcycle accident attorneys in Merrillville can help determine liability include:
- Establishing a duty of care. If a driver clearly crossed the duty of care all vehicle operators are responsible for, they may hold liability in your collision.
- Showing causation. Did a driver’s breach of duty of care directly cause your motorcycle accident and subsequent injuries? This is legally considered causation, and it can help prove your claim.
- Proof of damages. A motorcycle accident lawyer can establish an at-fault party’s duty of care, breach of said duty, prove causation, and present proof of the damages you seek.
What to do after your Merrillville motorcycle accident
In the immediate aftermath of your motorcycle accident, you may just want to get home and recover from the shocking trauma you’ve just experienced. However, it’s vital that you take steps before you can even file a personal injury claim.
Here are the steps you should take immediately after an accident:
- Pull over to the shoulder of the road if it’s safe to do so
- Call law enforcement and wait for first responders to arrive
- Exchange insurance information with the other parties involved
- Do not apologize or admit fault to other drivers, law enforcement, or insurance companies
- File a police report. If the accident is minor, you can take this step online in the days following your accident. You will have to contact the Indiana State Police to obtain a physical copy of an online report
- Use photos or video evidence to document the scene of the accident
- Seek medical attention. Even if you feel your injuries are minor, it’s vital that you receive a credible diagnosis and medical documentation
- Contact a Merrillville motorcycle accident attorney. Schedule a free consultation to explore your claim
- Begin the claims process with your insurance company and the at-fault party’s insurer
Damages you may be entitled to after your accident
Regardless of the severity of your collision, a motorcycle accident lawyer in Merrillville can help advise you on the merits of a personal injury claim. You have nothing to lose by scheduling a free consultation, and it may help you to process through the trauma you’ve endured. Let the Merrillville personal injury lawyers at Yosha Law help you to seek the justice you’re owed.
Even a minor motorcycle accident can result in life-altering injuries. You may be entitled to various damages after your collision. It’s important to understand the legal definition of damages and the different categories they cover.
What are damages?
Legally, damages are considered a type of compensation to cover the losses you’ve incurred that caused you to file your claim. Damages are typically awarded in civil cases such as personal injury or medical malpractice.
A motorcycle accident attorney in Merrillville can help you to list the different types of damages you should include in your claim and calculate the amount of compensation you should seek. If your case goes to court, a judge or jury will use different methods to discern the amount you are owed.
Economic damages, also known as special damages, are quantifiable and have a set monetary value. Some examples of economic damages include:
- Medical bills (including all doctor’s appointments, hospital stays, prescriptions, surgeries, and treatments)
- Lost wages (including bonuses, tips, and paid time off)
- Repairs or replacement (if you need to repair or completely replace your motorcycle due to your collision, these awarded damages will cover your expenses)
Non-economic damages, also known as general damages, refer to the non-quantifiable, priceless losses you’ve suffered as a result of your motorcycle accident, including emotional trauma.
Non-economic damages can include:
- Disfigurement or scarring: If your accident has left you with appearance-altering injuries, you might be awarded non-economic damages
- Pain and suffering: These damages cover any emotional, mental, and physical pain you’ve endured
- Loss of quality of life: If your accident leaves you without the ability to enjoy life in the manner to which you’re accustomed and you can tangibly prove this, you could receive compensation.
Wrongful death claims after a fatal motorcycle accident in Merrillville
Unfortunately, a loved one could tragically lose their life in a motorcycle accident. If this occurs, you may have a legal personal injury claim under pain and suffering and loss of life. If you lost a loved one in an accident caused by the negligent actions of another driver, you could get justice and monetary compensation for loss of life.
At Yosha Law, we understand that a loss of life can bring an intense period of grieving, and we are here to help you secure the financial support that will help you heal. You could recover the costs of your loss, such as funeral expenses, and pursue damages for the emotional challenges of losing your loved one.
Money may not bring your loved one back, but it can help relieve the financial stress you are going through and offer some comfort in your readjustment period. A Merrillville motorcycle accident lawyer can explain your unique legal options and potential to recover damages.
How much compensation you can get after a motorcycle accident in Indiana
Although we can’t guarantee the outcome of your motorcycle accident claim in Indiana, we’ve helped countless motorcyclists find just compensation. Let’s take a look at some of the compensatory damages we’ve helped our clients receive:
- $3 million for a motorcyclist who hit construction equipment that was left on the road
- $5 million for a passenger who suffered a traumatic brain injury when the driver’s speeding led to a crash
- $4.4 million for a client who suffered a traumatic brain injury after a trucker experienced brake failure
A brief history of our firm
Yosha Law is renowned for personal injury law practice—both in Indiana and across the country. We are not afraid to go up against major corporations and other large defendants in the pursuit of justice.
Here are some facts about our firm:
- Our founder, Buddy Yosha, has won numerous personal injury verdicts in jury trials. In fact, he has won more personal injury cases than any lawyer in Indiana history. Among multiple legal and community accolades, Buddy was named the President of the Indiana Trial Lawyers Association in 1990.
- We’re passionate about fighting for the underdog and we understand how to battle giant insurance companies.
- In 2020, Buddy, his son Brandon, and the Yosha team secured a $20 million victory for victims in a case against a Fortune 500 company.
Merrillville motorcycle accident FAQs
How often do motorcycle accidents happen in Indiana?
In 2020, over 82,000 people were injured in motorcycle accidents, and the fatality rate for motorcyclists involved in accidents was 38 times greater than their passenger vehicle counterparts.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) also reported that every year, motorcyclists represent more victims of traffic accidents than any other group. In Indiana, over 130 motorcyclists lost their lives in an accident in 2021.
What are common motorcycle accident injuries you can file a lawsuit for?
Protective padding, eye wear, and helmets may help you avoid serious injury in a motorcycle accident. Unfortunately, significant injury can still occur.
Here are some of the most common injuries after a motorbike accident:
- Broken bones
- Loss of limb
- Road rash
- Spinal cord injuries
- Torn ligaments
- Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBIs)
What are common causes of motorcycle accidents in Merrillville?
Some of the most common causes of Merrillville motorcycle accidents that we see in the cases we represent include:
- Careless driving
- Excessive speed
- Following too closely
- Inclement weather
- Lack of attention
- Poorly lit roads
- Reckless driving
How Indiana motorcycle accident laws can impact your case
If you’re operating a motorcycle on Indiana roads, it’s vital that you understand the rules and regulations that allow you to ride safely. If you’re involved in a motorcycle accident in Merrillville, it’s also important that you understand the state laws pertaining to any future personal injury claim you might file.
Helmet laws in Indiana
In Indiana, motorcycle riders under the age of 18 must wear a helmet and don eye protection. Although this law doesn’t apply to adults, certified helmets and eye protection can greatly enhance your safety while riding a motorcycle.
Comparative fault laws in Indiana
Indiana is considered a comparative fault state (also known as comparative negligence). This means that if you hold at least 50% liability in your motorcycle accident, you no longer have a valid claim to compensation.
If you hold over 0% liability but less than 50%, a judge or jury may decrease the amount of your compensation to reflect your amount of responsibility for your accident.
Indiana statute of limitations
Indiana code § 34-11-2-4 the statute of limitations on personal injury claims is two years from the date of your accident. If you wait for longer than two years to file your claim, your case may no longer hold legal merit. A Merrillville motorcycle accident lawyer can help you file your case within the legal time window.
Contact a motorcycle accident lawyer in Merrillville
At Yosha Law, we understand that the pain and suffering you’ve endured can be traumatic. Our Merrillville motorcycle accident lawyers know that each case is different, and each victim may experience varying levels of negative life impact.
We feel like each client is a part of our family, and we will fight for your justice as if you are one of our own loved ones. You don’t have to struggle through your road to recovery on your own —we’re here to stand in your corner.