Louisiana Motorcycle Accident Attorneys
MOTORCYCLE INJURY FAQs
1. WHAT IF I WASN'T WEARING A HELMET?
In Louisiana, motorcycle riders are required to wear a helmet according to LA Revised Statute § 32:190. If you were in a motorcycle wreck that was caused by someone else and you were not wearing a helmet, it's possible that you will be found partially at fault for your injuries.
Under Louisiana's comparative fault laws, your recovery will be reduced by the amount you are found to be at fault. For example, if it is determined that you are 40% at fault for your injuries, your settlement or award will be reduced by that 40% leaving you able to recover 60% of what the award is.
If the crash caused you head or neck injuries and you weren't wearing a helmet, it's very likely that the injuries will be found to be partially your fault. On the other hand, if it can be proven that your injuries would not have been prevented by wearing a helmet, you may be found less at fault.
2. WHO CAN SUE IN A MOTORCYCLE INJURY CASE?
In Louisiana, the operator of the motorcycle can make a claim for damages if the crash was someone else's fault.
In the unfortunate event that the operator of the motorcycle passes away from his or her injuries, the case becomes a wrongful death case. In Louisiana, the spouse and/or children of the deceased can make a claim on his or her behalf. If there is no spouse or children, the right to make a claim goes to the parents, grandparents, and then siblings of the deceased person, in that order. No other family member can make a wrongful death claim.
3. WHAT IF I WAS A PASSENGER ON A MOTORCYCLE AND WAS INJURED?
If you were a passenger on a motorcycle (or any vehicle for that matter), you have the right to make a claim against the person who was at fault for the injury. This could be the operator of the motorcycle, another driver, or both. If the at-fault person was another driver and that person did not have insurance (or enough insurance), you can make a claim against the operator of the motorcycle.
4. WHAT IF IT WAS PARTIALLY MY FAULT?
If you were injured in a motorcycle crash that you believe was partially your fault, you may still be able to recover compensation for your damages. Louisiana is a comparative fault state which means that you can only receive compensation for the percentage of damages that are not considered your fault. In some other states, if an injured person is found to be at fault for an accident whatsoever, that person cannot receive any compensation. So Louisiana's comparative fault laws are beneficial for plaintiffs.
On that note, having an experienced attorney handle your case for you will be vital for you in getting the most compensation possible. The defense will lean heavily on your portion of fault when trying to reduce the amount you can be compensated.
5. WHAT CAN I BE COMPENSATED FOR AFTER A MOTORCYCLE WRECK?
As in any car crash or injury, the amount you can be compensated depends largely on the amount of insurance available. If the person at fault for the injury has no insurance or has limited insurance, the amount you can receive in compensation will be limited to that amount (although an experienced attorney will look for other avenues of compensation for you).
Generally though, you can make a claim for compensation for the following:
Your medical expenses from the injuries caused by the wreck
Future medical expenses that you may have because of the wreck
Your lost wages if your injury caused you to miss work
Your future lost wages if the wreck has disabled you permanently
Your pain and suffering from the mental and physical trauma caused by the wreck and/or your injuries
6. WHAT IF I WANT TO HANDLE MY CASE MYSELF?
We support people who want to handle their small car wreck claims themselves. In fact, we even wrote a book showing them how it works.
However, motorcycle wrecks often result in catastrophic injuries. Not to mention, the defendants will try to argue that riding a motorcycle is inherently dangerous and you assumed that risk when you decided to ride one. Beyond that, if you weren't wearing a helmet, the defense will try to argue that your injuries are your fault.
All that to say, if you have been in a motorcycle wreck, making a claim for compensation will be an uphill battle for you. It would be well worth it to have an experienced attorney make the arguments for you so that you can be fairly compensated and so that you can focus on recovering physically.