Motorcycle riders face an increased risk of serious injury and even death when traveling in and around Fort Worth, TX. If you’ve been injured in an accident because of driver negligence or misbehavior, Buckingham Barrera Vega Law Firm will fight for your right to compensation.
A Fort Worth motorcycle accident lawyer from our office can provide unrivaled legal advocacy to those who have suffered serious injuries in a motorcycle crash. As a personal injury law firm, our decades of experience representing injury victims in Texas has given us the insight and knowledge required to successfully negotiate full and fair compensation for motorcycle injuries and fatalities.
We work with both motorcycle accident victims and their families to successfully secure compensation for damages such as lost wages, medical bills, property damage, psychological trauma, funeral and burial expenses, and more. If you suffered a severe injury or lost a loved one in what should have been a preventable accident, contact us today to learn more about your legal right to financial recovery.
Do I Need a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer?
The typical car accident claim involving only minor injuries and limited property damage generally does not require the guidance of a personal injury lawyer. However, car accidents between two motor vehicles are much different than collisions involving a car and a motorcycle.
The average Fort Worth motorcycle crash results in much more severe injuries, often leading to long-term health complications and significant financial losses. With so much more on the line, we often recommend that victims work with an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer when trying to recover compensation for their damages.
You may need legal representation for your wrongful death or personal injury claim if:
- Your loved one was killed in the motorcycle wreck.
- The accident put you out of work, and you are no longer receiving a paycheck.
- You suffered serious injuries that will require extensive or lifelong care.
- Your motorcycle was totaled, or other valuable property was damaged, such as your smartphone, watch, or other property you had on your person at the time of the wreck.
We invite injured riders who are on the fence about working with an attorney to schedule a free consultation with our Fort Worth law office. We pride ourselves on the no-cost, obligation-free setting in which we provide these consultations, so don’t wait—contact us today to learn whether filing a personal injury claim is appropriate for your situation.
Common Motorcycle Accident Injuries
Motorcycle accident injuries tend to be much more severe than car accident injuries. This disparity largely comes down to the lack of protections afforded to motorcycle riders. Whereas a car driver or passenger vehicle occupant will have a seat belt, airbag, vehicle frame, and other safety features to protect them in the event of a collision, a motorcycle rider will have little to no protection to prevent them from suffering harm.
In an accident, a motorcyclist might be thrown from their bike, struck by another vehicle after the initial collision, or crushed underneath a larger car. Associated injuries are often catastrophic, meaning that they are especially severe and may result in lifelong health issues.
Anyone who rides a motorcycle in Fort Worth or Tarrant County is at risk for suffering the following injuries in a collision:
- Broken bones
- Road rash (abrasions caused by friction with the roadway or other hard surfaces)
- Head injuries
- Neck injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Broken ribs and chest injuries
- Back injuries
- Internal bleeding and organ damage
- Jaw and dental injuries
Even when wearing safety gear like a helmet, jacket, and gloves, a motorcyclist may still develop a permanent disability related to their accident injuries. Both current and future medical bills for these types of injuries can be financially debilitating and is not a cost you should carry alone if the other driver caused your crash.
Should I Go to the Emergency Room After a Motorcycle Accident?
If you’ve been involved in a motorcycle accident, proceed to the nearest emergency room as soon as possible. The rush of adrenaline that accompanies most vehicle collisions can mask symptoms of serious and even life-threatening injuries. Having a medical professional evaluate your condition as soon as possible after the wreck can not only catch injuries before they have the chance to progress but may even save your life.
Don’t worry about medical expenses or let a fear of bills stand in the way of you getting the medical treatment you need. As personal injury lawyers, it’s our job to seek compensation for these and other damages on your behalf.
Causes of Motorcycle Accidents in Fort Worth
The causes of motorcycle accidents in Fort Worth, TX are as wide and varied as the reasons that people choose to ride motorcycles in the first place. As an injury victim, your first instinct might even be to not care much about what actually caused the crash—all you know is that you are injured, and you need help.
However, as experienced personal injury and car accident lawyers, we know the importance of correctly identifying the cause of a Fort Worth motorcycle crash. To successfully secure compensation in most personal injury claims, you must be able to prove that the other driver was at fault for your crash and subsequent injuries. As part of this process, your motorcycle accident attorney will investigate your claim to determine what factors contributed to your accident, such as:
- Aggressive or reckless driving
- Driving too fast for conditions
- Failure to yield the right of way
- Drunk or drugged driving
- Distracted driving
- Not checking blind spots for motorcyclists
In a small number of personal injury cases, a motorcycle accident might also be the result of motorcyclist inexperience or risky behavior. Buckingham Barrera Vega Law Firm encourages everyone who plans to ride a motorcycle to take a safety course and to regularly refresh their knowledge of relevant laws and safety tips. As a motorcycle driver, this is one of the most important steps you can take to preserve and protect your safety while sharing the road with other drivers.
Determining Liability for Motorcycle Accidents
Our Fort Worth personal injury attorneys are experts at determining liability for automobile accidents, including those involving motorcycles. If you were hit by a motor vehicle, you need the backing of a knowledgeable and experienced attorney who is prepared to hold the responsible party liable for their actions.
Determining liability requires an acute dedication to investigating a motorcycle accident case. You should only work with a lawyer who is willing to give your claim the time, attention, and commitment it deserves.
Investigating Your Case
At Buckingham Barrera Vega Law Firm, we work closely with Fort Worth accident victims and their families to assign liability. We accomplish this task by:
- Reviewing the police report for important evidence.
- Comparing the at-fault driver’s behavior to local traffic laws to determine if they committed a violation.
- Reviewing footage from dash cams, traffic cameras, and available security footage.
- Speaking with eyewitnesses and documenting their statements.
- Requesting phone records to see if the other driver was distracted at the time of the accident.
- Consulting pictures and videos you took of the accident scene.
To successfully secure compensation from the insurance company, you must prove four elements of liability. These elements are:
- The at-fault party owed you a duty of care.
- The at-fault party breached their duty of care.
- You were injured as a result of their breach.
- You suffered compensable damages as a result of your injuries.
Every driver in Fort Worth owes a duty of care to those they share the road with. This duty of care is to follow all traffic laws, drive safely, and behave in a way that will not cause harm to other drivers, motorcyclists, bicyclists, and pedestrians. A driver that was speeding, texting, or acting aggressively prior to causing your motorcycle accident can be found liable for having breached their duty of care.
Potential Liable Parties
The driver who actually struck your motorcycle may not be the only liable party in your case. When filing a motorcycle accident injury claim, we evaluate all potential liable parties to ensure that our Fort Worth clients never miss out on any possible sources of compensation for their damages.
Additional parties that may have played a role in your accident include:
- Other drivers who were not directly involved in the accident but were driving dangerously or recklessly.
- An employer whose worker struck you while driving a company vehicle or while traveling during work hours in a personal vehicle.
- An auto parts manufacturer who designed, manufactured, or sold a defective part.
Motorcycle accidents are serious, and it is not uncommon for victims to incur lifelong injuries and medical expenses. If you and your personal injury attorney do not correctly identify all liable parties in your case, you will lose out on compensation that is essential for your future.
What Compensation Can I Get for My Motorcycle Accident Injuries?
The amount of compensation you are entitled to after a Fort Worth motorcycle crash will vary depending on a variety of factors, including the extent and severity of your injuries, your expected maximum medical improvement (MMI), and how significantly your life has been impacted.
There is no room for miscalculating the amount of compensation you are owed, so don’t leave your financial recovery up to just anyone. The lawyers at Buckingham Barrera Vega Law Firm who handle motorcycle accidents have the requisite knowledge and experience to correctly value the worth of your claim, and we don’t shy away from demanding full and fair compensation. The following are the types of compensation to which you might be entitled.
Your economic damages are your tangible financial losses that have a concrete value. In general, these are the most straightforward damages to calculate. Do not be fooled into thinking that your economic damages can be quickly tabulated without much effort, though.
Competent motorcycle accident attorneys know that there is a myriad of potential financial losses that must be evaluated and correctly tallied. In addition to your current losses, you will also have future costs that can be challenging to correctly value on your own.
Examples of economic damages that typically show up in Fort Worth motorcycle accident claims include:
- Past, current, and future lost wages if you’re unable to work.
- Reduced earning capacity if you can no longer work in the same scope as you once did.
- Past, current, and future medical expenses, including those for doctor visits, therapy, rehabilitative services, surgery, medications, mobility devices, and more.
- Travel costs to medical appointments, including bus fare and gas purchases.
- Property damage to repair or replace your motorcycle or other valuable items you had on your person at the time of the wreck, such as a smartphone.
- Home renovation costs if you need to update your home to accommodate a new disability or mobility device.
- Domestic services, including those for cleaning, cooking, and child care, if you are no longer able to perform these tasks on your own.
- Funeral and burial expenses if your loved one was one of Fort Worth’s many fatal motorcycle crash victims.
For most motorcycle accident victims, future medical expenses are the biggest financial losses associated with their injuries. When you choose to work with Buckingham Barrera Vega Law Firm, a Fort Worth motorcycle accident lawyer will carefully review your medical records and consult with medical experts to correctly tally the cost of care you will require for the remainder of your life.
Your non-economic damages encompass your non-financial losses. Motorcycle accidents are traumatizing events, and the many different ways a person’s life might be affected often have no monetary value at all. This does not mean that you do not deserve to be fully compensated for the harm you’ve suffered.
Your Fort Worth motorcycle accident lawyer will correctly identify and value the non-economic damages you’ve suffered, including:
- Physical pain and suffering
- Mental and emotional anguish
- Loss of enjoyment in life
- Loss of companionship and consortium
When filing wrongful death claims for motorcycle fatalities, we will also seek compensation for additional losses like loss of guidance, nurturing, and advice.
As personal injury lawyers, we must advise that punitive damages are only awarded in a relatively small percentage of injury claims involving motorcycle crashes. Unlike economic and non-economic damages, punitive damages are not intended to compensate a victim for the harm they’ve suffered. Instead, they are used as a financial deterrent to engaging in the same or similar behavior in the future.
Punitive damages can only be awarded in addition to compensatory damages and never on their own. These damages will only be awarded in cases of severe misconduct or gross negligence. Your Fort Worth motorcycle accident lawyer will investigate your claim to determine whether punitive damages are appropriate in your case.
Who Pays for My Motorcycle Accident Injuries?
If a motorcycle accident occurred in Fort Worth or greater Tarrant County, you need to know who is responsible for your injuries and who is paying for your damages. What many people are surprised to learn is that their compensation typically does not come directly from the at-fault driver but rather from their auto insurer.
Dealing with the insurance company is one of the reasons why securing maximum compensation for your motor vehicle accident injuries is so difficult. As profit-driven companies that prioritize their bottom lines over helping people, insurance companies regularly pull every trick and tactic at their disposal to limit how much compensation accident victims actually receive.
When filing a Fort Worth motorcycle accident claim to recover compensation for your injuries, keep the following in mind:
- Never accept the first settlement—the insurance company is banking on you not understanding your rights.
- Never agree to give a recorded statement. Your words can be used against you in the future.
- Never speculate on what might have happened or contributed to your accident. Only stick to the facts and decline to answer any questions that you are unsure of.
- Never discuss the extent or type of your injuries. You need only disclose that you are seeking medical treatment, leave the details to your attorney.
Big insurance companies are notorious for misrepresenting injury victims’ words, twisting them around in ways that allow them to lower your compensation or deny their liability altogether. Don’t let the insurance company bully you into accepting anything less than the maximum amount of compensation you are owed. Instead, work with a strong Fort Worth injury lawyer who is prepared to advocate on your behalf.
What Happens When the Other Driver’s Insurance Is Not Enough?
Texas law requires drivers to carry the following minimum liability auto insurance coverage:
- $30,000 per injured person, with a maximum of $60,000 per accident
- $25,000 property damage per accident
Although you are only required to carry the above liability coverage, Texas drivers also have the option to purchase personal injury protection (PIP) coverage, and uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage. If you carry PIP, UM, or UIM coverage and your Fort Worth motorcycle accident damages exceed the coverage amounts carried by the other driver, you may turn to your own insurance company for compensation.
Do not be mistaken; your insurance company is not your friend. Even if your auto insurance policy applies to your claim, the process to recover compensation can be daunting. Your insurer doesn’t want to pay out for accident injuries when they could keep the money and boost their own profits.
The best approach to securing the compensation you are owed is to be assertive and aggressive. A Fort Worth motorcycle accident lawyer from Buckingham Barrera Vega Law Firm is prepared to fight for compensation, covering your lost wages, health care bills, and more.
Texas Motorcycle Helmet Laws
Texas law requires a helmet for motorcycle riding for the following individuals:
- All riders age 20 or younger
- Riders aged 21 and older who have not completed a safety course endorsed by the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) or who do not have medical insurance that covers accident injuries
Those who are required to wear a helmet must select one that meets standards set forth by the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard #218 (FMVSS-218).
Buckingham Barrera Vega Law Firm strongly recommends that everyone wear a helmet while riding a motorcycle, not just those that are required to by law. A snugly-fitted helmet is one of the most effective ways to lower the risk of injuries and deaths in Fort Worth motorcycle crashes.
If you remain unconvinced of the benefits of wearing a motorcycle helmet, consider the following statistics collected by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):
- Wearing a motorcycle helmet is 37% effective at preventing deaths among riders
- Wearing a motorcycle helmet is 41% effective at preventing deaths among passengers
- Wearing a motorcycle helmet is 69% effective at reducing head injury risks in motorcycle accidents
- Wearing a motorcycle helmet would save $1.5 billion of economic losses every year
In addition to lowering the risk of injury or death, wearing a motorcycle helmet will also keep the wind off your face, improve visibility, and limit hearing loss associated with riding a motorcycle. It is also recommended to wear:
- Long pants
- An abrasion-resistant jacket
- Nonslip footwear
- Eye protection (if you do not have a full-face helmet)
Frequently Asked Motorcycle Accident Questions
The period of time following a motorcycle collision can be extremely confusing and overwhelming. You shouldn’t have to deal with this time of life on your own, which is why the Fort Worth motorcycle accident lawyers of Buckingham Barrera Vega Law Firm are pleased to offer a free consultation to injury victims and their families.
As a courtesy, we have also provided answers to some of the most frequently asked motorcycle accident questions.
Can I Still File a Motorcycle Accident Claim if I Played a Role in the Crash?
Do not give up hope if your actions played a small role in your accident or injuries. Under Texas’ modified comparative negligence law, you may still pursue compensation so long as you are not more than 50% at fault. Anyone who is 51% or more at fault is barred from recovering compensation. If your percentage of fault is 50% or less, your settlement will be proportionately reduced by the same percentage.
If the auto insurer is trying to artificially inflate your percentage of fault, contact the Fort Worth motorcycle accident lawyers of Buckingham Barrera Vega Law Firm as soon as possible to avoid losing out on vital compensation.
How Much Does It Cost To Hire Motorcycle Accident Lawyers?
The cost of hiring legal representation should not be a barrier that prevents injury victims from seeking the compensation they are rightfully owed. For this reason, our Fort Worth motorcycle accident lawyers take most injury cases on a contingency fee basis. This means that we are able to offer our services without any upfront payment.
Instead, we only get paid if and when we win your case. Our attorney fees are paid as a small percentage of your final award.
How Long Do I Have To File My Motorcycle Accident Claim?
Fort Worth motorcycle riders are only afforded two years from the day of their accident to file a civil claim. This is a relatively short period of time to meet with an attorney, collect evidence, build a case, and file your claim. This time limit is referred to as the statute of limitations.
There is a different statute of limitations for accident claims involving government entities. If you intend to file a claim against the state of Texas, you have only six months to file a Notice of Claim for Damages. The statute of limitations for a “notice of claim” is often significantly shorter for local municipalities, so consult with your accident attorney if you intend to file a claim against the city of Fort Worth.
Texas Motorcycle Accident Statistics
Texas is a particularly dangerous state for motorcycle riders. During the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, when there was significantly less traffic on our roads, TxDOT data shows that motorcycle crash fatalities rose 17%.
According to additional TxDOT data, motorcycle accidents in 2021 caused:
- 521 deaths
- 2,319 major injuries
- 3,013 minor injuries
While riding around Fort Worth on the back of a motorcycle can be an economical and fulfilling experience, there is no denying that it is dangerous. However, we know that most Fort Worth motorcycle accidents are the result of negligent or reckless behavior by other drivers. If you’re one of the thousands who have been wrongfully injured, there is no time to wait. Speak with a motorcycle accident lawyer today about your legal options.
Speak With a Fort Worth Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Today
Fort Worth roads should be safe environments in which our residents, commuters, and visitors can travel without fear of injury or death. Unfortunately, for many motorcyclists, their reality is the opposite of this.
Anyone who has been injured through no fault of their own while riding a motorcycle should reach out to a Fort Worth motorcycle accident lawyer as soon as possible. For an opportunity to speak one-on-one with an actual attorney at no cost to you, contact us today to schedule a free case evaluation. Do not delay—get in touch before your right to file a claim expires.