Motorcycle accidents are often devastating. Even at slow speeds and while wearing protective gear, a motorcyclist has little cushion against the force of a collision with a larger vehicle. If you were injured in a motorcycle accident, you may be able to recover damages from the responsible party. The Seattle motorcycle accident lawyers at Blair & Kim provide aggressive, tenacious representation to riders seeking compensation for their injuries.Motorcycle Accidents
Motorcycles are often ignored or disregarded by drivers of larger vehicles. Sometimes accidents are the result of distracted driving or a driver failing to yield. In other cases, car or truck drivers may operate their vehicles aggressively around motorcyclists when they don’t respect the rights of motorcyclists to share the road with them. If you were injured in a crash, you may be able to recover damages if another driver acted negligently. To prove negligence in court, you’ll need to show it’s more likely than not: (1) another driver was obliged to abide by a standard of reasonable care, (2) deviation from the standard of reasonable care, (3) actual and proximate causation, and (4) damages.
All drivers owe others a duty to use reasonable care while operating a vehicle. In Seattle, a motorcycle accident attorney pursuing a personal injury claim will seek to prove that the driver responsible for the accident failed to use reasonable care. Drivers can breach this duty in many different ways that can result in harm to motorcyclists. They may speed, drive drunk, drive distracted, fail to obey signs and signals, weave, tailgate, fail to yield, or drive aggressively. For example, if you arrive at a four-way stop and have the right of way, but a driver speeds down the hill, ignores a stop sign and crashes into you as you cross the intersection, you will likely be able to establish the other driver’s negligence.Comparative Negligence
Washington follows the rule of pure comparative fault. RCW 4.22.005 provides that contributor fault applies, which means both or all parties involved in an accident may share blame for an accident and can be held accountable. You can recover damages even if you are 80 or 90% at fault for your own injuries. The jury will consider the evidence and arguments, calculate the damages, and determine the percentage of fault attributable to each party. So, for example, if you were speeding and the driver of another car ran a red light, you might both bear responsibility. If the damages were $1 million, and the jury found you were each 50% responsible, you could recover $500,000 from the other driver. A Seattle motorcycle accident attorney can evaluate the facts surrounding your accident.
Under Washington law, motorcycle operators are required to wear helmets and wear eye protection unless the motorcycle is equipped with a windscreen. If you fail to wear this protective gear and you get into an accident that results in injuries to your head or eyes, the defense may argue that you were comparatively negligent for failing to wear the protective gear, and if the court agrees, you will not be able to recover your full losses.Damages
If you can establish that another party was responsible for your injuries, you may be able to recover damages from them. Compensatory damages are intended to return you to the position you would have been in had there been no accident, and include economic losses such as medical bills, lost wages, out-of-pocket expenses, and replacement services. They can also include noneconomic losses such as pain and suffering and emotional distress. When another party causes a motorcycle accident that results in death of the motorcycle rider, the surviving family members may be able to recover damages by bringing a lawsuit for wrongful death. In addition to economic losses, a plaintiff can pursue pain and suffering, loss of consortium, and other intangible losses.Experienced Motorcycle Accident Lawyer in Seattle
Motorcycle accidents can result in serious and catastrophic injuries or even wrongful death. If you were injured in a motorcycle accident caused by another, you should consult with the lawyers at Blair & Kim about your case. We represent persons injured in accidents in Redmond, Bellevue, Kirkland and Seattle, as well as throughout King County. Call us at (206) 622-6562 or contact us through our online form.