Harlem Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
Harlem motorcycle accident victims are often entitled to substantial payments for the injuries they faced in their accident. When dangerous car and truck drivers put your life and safety at risk through negligent driving, it is them – not you – who should be responsible for making things right and paying for the medical bills and other damages you experienced.
For help getting coverage for your expenses and damages after a motorcycle crash, call a lawyer right away. Insurance companies often fail to cover your injuries in full through insurance settlements, and they may be reluctant to accept that their driver was at fault in the first place.
For help with your motorcycle accident claim, call the Harlem motorcycle accident lawyers at The Carrion Law Firm today at (718) 841-0083. Our attorneys offer free case evaluations to help you understand your options and what damages you could be entitled to.
How to Get Compensation for a Motorcycle Accident in Harlem
Many motorcyclists might be more familiar with how car accidents work in New York. For cars, all drivers are required to carry no-fault insurance that requires them to file with their own insurance company after a crash and, in fact, blocks an injury lawsuit unless it involves “serious injuries.” Fortunately, motorcycle accident victims might be entitled to sue the at-fault driver directly for damages since these no-fault rules are not extended to motorcyclists.
Our Harlem motorcycle accident attorneys can investigate your case and determine who is at fault, then help you file a lawsuit directly against them. In most cases, the at-fault driver’s insurance company will provide them with a lawyer and cover damages when the court orders them. A lawsuit is often stronger than an insurance claim for a few reasons that can be incredibly helpful to injured victims:
- Courts use a neutral judge and jury to decide facts instead of a biased insurance adjuster.
- Evidence rules help block prejudicial information that might hurt injured motorcyclists.
- Lawsuits are not limited by the terms of an insurance policy.
- Your attorneys’ fees can often be paid out of your court winnings.
- Punitive damages might be available in limited circumstances.
Proving Fault in a Motorcycle Accident Case in Harlem
One of the biggest issues in a motorcycle accident will be the question of who was at fault. Since you cannot get damages through an insurance claim or a lawsuit until the insurance company or court sees evidence of who was at fault, your Harlem motorcycle lawyers’ main job will be proving fault.
Elements to Prove
To win your case, you will ultimately need to prove that the at-fault driver was “negligent.” This means providing sufficient evidence to show that they violated some legal duty that they owed you and that this violation caused your accident. In most cases, this will involve objectively dangerous activities or mistakes, such as failing to check their blind spot or driving erratically around your motorcycle. It will also typically involve some concrete traffic violation, such as speeding, drunk driving, texting while driving, etc.
To prove this negligence, your Harlem motorcycle lawyers will need to present evidence. The core evidence in your case will be your own testimony about what happened and how the other driver was at fault. Photos of the vehicle damage can also help verify what you are saying, as can corroborating testimony from other witnesses. If you have helmet cam footage of your accident, that will be exceptionally helpful because it will show every step of what happened leading up to the crash.
Burden of Proof
In injury cases, the plaintiff has the “burden of proof and production.” This means that it is up to you and your Harlem motorcycle accident lawyer to provide the evidence needed to prove your case. The level of proof you need – the “burden of proof” – is called a “preponderance of the evidence” standard. This means you have to prove it is more likely than not that your claim is true. You do not need to prove that it is absolutely true or that it is true beyond a reasonable doubt; you just need enough proof to tip the jury’s scales in your favor to win.
This burden of proof is somewhat friendly to the victim, especially if you have strong evidence. In fact, most cases ultimately settle because there is overwhelming evidence in the victim’s favor, and the defendant simply will not be able to defeat their claims.
However, one defense that the other driver will typically try to use is the claim that they were not 100% at fault. If the defendant can show the court that you also shared fault in causing the accident or making your injuries worse, then the court will be able to reduce the percentage of damages the defendant has to pay you.
This is especially prevalent in motorcycle accident cases, where victim-blaming is incredibly common. Drivers will often try to say that you made yourself more vulnerable by riding a motorcycle in the first place, but this is a bogus claim because motorcycles are perfectly legal. If you were following safety regulations, these claims should fail.
However, any mistakes you made on the road, such as speeding or driving while distracted, could cut against you when it comes to determining fault. Fortunately, NY law allows victims to be held partially liable without blocking their ability to sue. This will simply reduce your damages by the percentage of blame that the court assigns to you. For instance, if you were found 10% at fault for a case worth $100,000, you will receive $90,000 in damages from the defendant instead of the full value.
Call Our Harlem Motorcycle Lawyers for Help
If you were hurt in a motorcycle accident in Harlem, call our Harlem motorcycle accident attorneys today. At The Carrion Law Firm, we fight to help injury victims get the compensation they need. Call (718) 841-0083 for a free case review.