Many Boulder residents enjoy riding motorcycles. However, motorcycles have substantially less protection than a passenger car—and collisions between the two types of vehicles can lead to catastrophic injuries. If you are in a motorcycle accident in Boulder, you may be eligible for an insurance claim or lawsuit, and the Boulder motorcycle accident attorneys at Purvis Thomson, LLP can help.
Although you may be able to prove these elements and the driver’s liability, motorcyclists are often subject to unfair scrutiny during the course of an insurance investigation or lawsuit. There are many stereotypes surrounding motorcyclists and their adherence to traffic rules, and the investigator may automatically assume that you were at fault. To combat these stereotypes and to firmly establish your right to compensation, you need an attorney who specializes in Boulder motorcycle accidents on your side.
A motorcycle accident lawyer can provide several benefits to your case, including the following:
There may be various types of compensation available to motorcycle accident victims in Boulder if their claim is successful. At Purvis Thomson, LLP, we have decades of experience handling complex claims and are regularly able to recover both economic and non-economic damages on behalf of our clients:
Economic damages are also referred to as special damages, and these revolve around relatively calculable expenses motorcycle accident victims will incur as a result of the incident. By calculable, we mean that a motorcycle crash victim will have receipts, invoices, and bills they receive after the incident occurs that help adequately add up their losses. Some of the most common economic damages associated with Boulder motorcycle accidents include:
Non-economic damages are also referred to as general damages, but these revolve around more immeasurable losses that motorcycle accident victims will likely endure. These types of losses typically do not have receipts or bills that your attorney can directly add up, but there are specific ways a Boulder catastrophic injury lawyer can calculate a motorcycle accident victim’s:
There is no set amount of compensation paid to motorcycle accident victims if their claim is successful. Rather, there are various factors that could affect a settlement or jury verdict amount. Some of these factors include the severity of the injury, some accidents resulting in debilitating injuries or wrongful death, as well as how long it takes a person to recover. Any long-lasting disability could also influence the settlement the victim sustains, as well as whether or not there was shared fault for the incident. Insurance policy limitations and the overall assets of the at-fault party could also influence a settlement or jury verdict.
If you have any questions about how much to expect for your motorcycle accident settlement in Boulder, we encourage you to talk to your attorney. Your lawyer will not likely be able to give you an exact dollar figure you can expect, but they may be able to give you an estimate. The overall goal of a motorcycle accident claim is to help a victim recover the compensation needed to make them “whole,” which means as close to the state of health they were in before the incident occurred.
Colorado is a fault insurance state, meaning that drivers who cause accidents are financially liable for their victims’ damages. These victims may include other drivers, their passengers, pedestrians, and motorcyclists. If you are in an accident with a negligent driver, you can file an insurance claim or lawsuit against him or her with the help of a Boulder car accident attorney to collect the compensation you deserve.
During the insurance process, you will need to provide evidence that proves the other driver’s liability. An insurance representative will investigate your collision and determine who is responsible. In a personal injury lawsuit, you will need to supply sufficient proof that establishes four key elements.
Motorcycle accidents can happen due to many factors. In some cases, dangerous weather or road conditions cause a collision. In others, a motorcycle may have a defective part that contributes to the accident. However, some of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents are negligent or reckless driving behaviors, such as the following.
Motorcycle accidents often lead to injuries much more severe than accidents involving only passenger vehicles. Motorcycle drivers and their passengers have very little protection from the force of a vehicle slamming into them, and there is often more than one impact – one with the ground along with the impact caused by the vehicle.
Some of the most common injuries associated with motorcycle accidents in Boulder include the following:
There are certainly other types of traumatic injuries that can occur as a result of a motorcycle incident. Additionally, we need to remain cognizant of the fact that these incidents can lead to significant “unseen” trauma for a victim. For example, motorcycle crash victims in Boulder could suffer from periods of stress, anxiety, sleeplessness, and fear for quite some time after the incident, even after their injuries heal. It is not uncommon for motorcycle crash victims to suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
When examining the totality of the injuries and the incident, your attorney will look at the traumatic effects as well as these unseen traumas you may have endured. You deserve compensation for the visible and the not-as-visible suffering you go through. The goal of recovering both economic and non-economic damages is to cover all of the injuries and suffering a motorcycle accident victim faces.
Before operating a motorcycle in Boulder, Colorado, there are various laws related to the operation of these vehicles that residents and visitors need to be aware of.
We strongly encourage all motorcyclists in the state of Colorado to wear a DOT-approved motorcycle helmet. Helmets save lives and prevent individuals from sustaining significant head or brain injuries. However, the state of Colorado only mandates helmets for riders who are under the age of 18. Motorcycle riders 18 and over are not required to wear helmets in this state. Again, safety is paramount. Motorcyclists should all wear helmets and eye protection in order to remain safe on the roadway.
DUI laws apply to motorcyclists just like they apply to every other motorist on the roadway. In the state of Colorado, it is illegal to operate a motorcycle while impaired by alcohol or drugs. The level of intoxication that qualifies as a DUI is .08% blood alcohol content, but we do want to point out that individuals experience the effects of alcohol before their body reaches that level. Any motorcyclist who plans to partake in alcohol should have already planned another ride home. Operating a motorcycle while impaired by alcohol or drugs significantly increases the chance that a major accident will occur.
Colorado motorcyclists need to have a motorcycle endorsement on their driver’s license. In this state, there are two options for obtaining a motorcycle license:
Under Colorado law, individuals under the age of 18 are required to have a motorcycle instruction permit for at least 12 months before adding a motorcycle endorsement to their driver’s license. Any person under the age of 16 can only operate a motorcycle when under the direct supervision of a Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF) instructor at all times.
The time limit for filing a motorcycle accident claim in Colorado may seem confusing if you look up the personal injury statute of limitations for this state. Typically, the personal injury statute of limitations is two years from the date an injury occurs, but in Colorado, incidents involving motor vehicles have a three-year statute of limitations.
This means that motorcycle accident victims in Colorado have a three-year window with which to file a lawsuit against the alleged negligent party. If they fail to file a lawsuit within this time frame, they will lose the ability to recover any compensation for their losses.
In addition to the statute of limitations put in place under the law for civil claims, please be aware that any insurance carrier involved in the case will also have its own reporting deadlines. It is important to report a motorcycle accident to the insurance carriers involved promptly to avoid any claim delay or denials. You do not have to go into much detail with the insurance carrier with your initial claim, but they do need to know about it.
If you have any questions about your particular case and the deadlines involved, we encourage you to reach out to your attorney as soon as possible. Your attorney can examine the facts of your case and then get the claim filed on time and properly on your behalf.
If you are injured in a Boulder motorcycle accident, you deserve justice—and the attorneys at Purvis Thomson, LLP can help. We will fight for your right to maximum compensation during each stage of your case. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation and learn more about your legal options.
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