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South Texas
Houston Motorcycle Accident Lawyer

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The Gutierrez Law Firm can help injury victims involved in motorcycle accidents across Houston and nearby areas. Our team of skilled Houston personal injury lawyers is prepared to offer guidance and support throughout the legal process. Contact us today for a free consultation to talk about your potential case.

Why Would You Need a Lawyer?

Houston is a great area for motorcycle riders, but this comes with risk. So, whether you need our lawyers after a motorcycle accident depends on how bad your injuries are. For a minor accident, you probably don’t need to worry about legal action.

Usually, though, motorcycle accidents result in serious injuries. If you’re really hurt, you’ll probably need more help. While you aren’t required to have a lawyer, our team can help you through the process and support your recovery in the following ways:

  • Investigate your accident thoroughly, finding out who might be responsible and where potential financial support could come from.
  • Collect and study evidence to back up your claim.
  • Handle all legal communications to avoid saying anything that could hurt your case.
  • Negotiate with insurance companies to get a fair settlement offer.
  • Get ready for court if you don’t get a fair offer.
  • Help you find the right doctors and experts to help you get better.

After a motorcycle accident, things can be really tough, both physically and mentally. That’s where we can help the most, taking the burden of  legal responsibilities off of you and your family. With this question answered, the next step is to figure out who is responsible.

Liability in a Motorcycle Accident

Given that there are so many potential pitfalls with riding a motorcycle, it’s not surprising that liability–or legal responsibility–in these accidents can sometimes get confusing. The main point in determining who’s at fault is proving negligence, showing that someone else’s actions caused the accident that hurt you. In motorcycle accidents, negligence usually involves four things:

  • Someone had a duty to keep you safe and avoid hurting you.
  • They breached this duty
  • This breach caused the accident.
  • The accident caused your injuries and other problems.

Once this is established, liability becomes a bit clearer. In the vast majority of motorcycle accidents, liability is going to be spread among the following (depending on the circumstances):

  • Drivers of vehicles
  • Passengers or people walking
  • Other motorcycle or bicycle riders
  • Government agencies
  • Companies that made vehicle parts
  • Construction firms
  • Employers, if the driver was using a work vehicle

You might also be partly responsible for the accident if you were speeding or doing risky things like lane splitting. Under Texas’ comparative negligence statute, if you’re more than 50% at fault, you can’t even bring a claim for damages. As such, it’s extremely important to follow traffic laws and protect yourself as best you can.

Protecting Your Motorcycle Accident Claim

It’s clear that nobody plans to get into a motorcycle accident in Houston, but unfortunately, they happen more often than we’d like. It’s worth remembering that no matter how thrilling riding a motorcycle is, it comes with inherent risks. Couple that with comparative negligence, and it becomes extremely important to take measures to protect your claim. Here’s how you can do that:

  • Get to safety and report the accident – Move your motorcycle to the side of the road out of traffic if you can. Then, call the police to report the accident so they can respond to the scene.
  • Get evidence – Collect evidence that supports your case, such as photos of the accident scene, vehicle damage, witness statements, and any relevant documents.
  • Get medical care – Getting medical care is crucial to connect your injuries and the accident. Get on site care from EMS and further care at an urgent care or ER.
  • Follow traffic laws – Make sure to follow all traffic laws while riding your motorcycle, including speed limits and signals.
  • Maintain records – Keep copies of important documents like medical records, bills, and repair estimates related to the accident.
  • Handle insurance matters cautiously – Exercise caution when communicating with insurance companies. Consult with our lawyers before providing detailed statements.
  • Cooperate with investigations – At the same time, you need to fully cooperate with both police and insurance investigations, providing accurate and truthful information. Keep it simple.

Remember, the specifics of your case and the evidence available play a crucial role in determining fault–but also in how your claim will play out. This depends on the circumstances, but will be especially tied to your damages.

Injuries and Damages in a Motorcycle Accident

As you can probably tell, a motorcycle accident is going to cause you and your family a lot of damage, whether it be physical injuries or other losses. Your particular injuries and damages are going to be unique to your accident, but you can expect to deal with the following:

  • Concussions and traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
  • Spinal cord damage, which can cause paralysis
  • Damage to your internal organs such as the liver, spleen, or kidneys due to blunt force trauma
  • Broken bones, especially to your arms, legs, wrists, and collarbones
  • Dislocated joints
  • Burns
  • Cuts, fractures, and dental injuries from facial impact with the ground or objects
  • Damage to your muscles, ligaments, and tendons
  • Cuts and bruises caused by contact with the road surface
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, and depression.

Legal damages

The other side of the coin is your actual legal damages. This simply refers to the losses you suffer because of your injuries, whether it be medical bills, missed work, or an overall reduced quality of life. These are all common in typical motorcycle accidents, but filing a claim can allow you to recover:

  • Medical treatment expenses
  • Costs related to physical therapy
  • Lost wages due to time off work
  • Support for pain and suffering
  • Damages for loss of enjoyment of life
  • Financial consideration for permanent injuries
  • Funeral or burial costs if the accident is fatal

In certain situations, punitive damages may also be awarded if the at-fault party was exceptionally reckless or negligent. Also, there’s the statute of limitations you’ll need to deal with. This is the deadline to file your claim, currently set at two years from the date of the accident.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long do I have to file a claim after a motorcycle accident in Houston?

In Texas, you typically have two years from the accident date to file a claim. Acting quickly is vital to meet this deadline.

Can I still file a lawsuit if I’m partially at fault?

Yes, you can still file a claim even if you’re partially at fault. Texas follows a modified comparative negligence rule, meaning your damages may be reduced based on your degree of fault.

Do I have to wear a helmet when riding a motorcycle in Houston?

If you’re over 21, you don’t have to wear a helmet if you’ve finished an official motorcycle safety course recognized by the state, or if you can show you have insurance that pays for medical expenses in case of a motorcycle accident,

Houston Motorcycle Accident Victims Can Rely on the Gutierrez Law Firm

Facing a motorcycle accident is challenging enough on its own, but when you also try to deal with the legal process, it can quickly become overwhelming. This is why you can rely on our team of Houston motorcycle accident lawyers at the Gutierrez Law Firm. We’ll explain your options and what the path forward looks like. To learn more about your options and how we can help you, contact us today for a free consultation.