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Motorcycle Accident Lawyer

We get justice for injured people

Virginia Motorcycle Accident Lawyer

Unlike those riding in passenger cars, motorcyclists have virtually no protection from the devastating effects of a negligent driver. From catastrophic head injuries, to broken bones, to even death – motorcycle wrecks can change the course of you and your family’s lives for the foreseeable future. 

At RVA Personal Injury Lawyers, our motorcycle accident lawyers take this kind of personal injury claim very seriously. We’re here to help accident victims determine fault and seek maximum financial compensation from at fault parties. 

If you’ve been injured in a motor vehicle accident involving a motorcycle due to the negligence of another driver you deserve full and fair compensation for your injuries. A proven attorney who understands the intricacies and nuances involved in these types of claims can help you navigate the ins and outs of dealing with insurers, filing claims, and pursuing maximum damages. 

Continue reading to learn everything you need to know about motorcycle wrecks in VA, including what to do, who to contact, and how to recover damages. 

If you have suffered injuries because of someone else’s negligence, we are here to help. Sharif Gray has won millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements. Call us at (804) 915-1611 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. We will get justice for you.

What Are The Motorcycle Laws in Virginia?

Understanding the motorcycle laws in Virginia is absolutely crucial for all motorcycle riders. Not only are these laws designed to protect riders and other drivers/occupants of passenger vehicles, but when riders comply with them, they can significantly reduce the risk of a motorcycle accident. 

With that in mind, a few important motorcycle laws to consider include:

  • Helmet Requirements: Virginia law requires all motorcycle operators and passengers to wear helmets. This law is incredibly vital for reducing traumatic brain injuries and other serious injuries that commonly happen to those not wearing protective gear on their heads..
  • Eye Protection: In addition, riders must use eye protection unless their bike has a windscreen. This helps to prevent debris and wind from impairing your vision while traveling on two wheels. 
  • Lane Splitting: Lane splitting (i.e., Riding two abreast in a single lane), where a motorcycle driver rides between lanes of slow-moving or stopped traffic, is prohibited in Virginia.
  • Motorcycle License: You can’t just hop on a crotch rocket without training – Which is why motorcycle drives must obtain a valid motorcycle endorsement on your driver’s license in VA. This ensures you have the bare minimum skills and knowledge to operate a motorcycle safely on the roads. 
  • Exhaust Systems: The exhaust systems on motorcycles have to comply with state noise regulations, which helps to minimize noise pollution.
  • Insurance Requirements: Motorcycle operators in Virginia must carry liability insurance. This helps provide a level of legal and financial protection in the event of Virginia motorcycle accidents. 

Understanding these laws not only protects riders and other drivers, but it can also help your Richmond motorcycle accident lawyers seek maximum damages for injuries caused by reckless or negligent drivers on the road. 

Motorcycle Accident Statistics to Keep in Mind

In many cases, motorcycle accidents result in more severe outcomes compared to other motor vehicle traffic accidents due to the highly exposed nature of motorcycle riders. 

With that in mind, Virginia motorcycle accident lawyers use these statistics to further emphasize the inherent risks involved in motorcycle riding, but also to show how vulnerable riders are compared to those operating a passenger vehicle. 

  • Fatalities and Injuries: Motorcycles don’t have the same fortress of metal that other passenger vehicles have, this can lead to a much higher rate of fatalities and severe injuries in accidents.
  • Helmet Use: Over and over again, statistics consistently show that helmet use dramatically reduces the risk of death and serious injury in a motorcycle crash.
  • Age Group Affected: Younger riders, particularly those under 30, are disproportionately involved in motorcycle accidents. In most cases, this is due to their  inexperience and proclivities for  risk-taking behaviors.
  • Time and Location: Most motorcycle accidents occur during weekends and on urban roads (not interstates) where traffic is much denser and more unpredictable.
  • Motorcycle Engine: The data shows that motorcycle engines with a cc that’s higher than 1,400 are much more likely to be involved in accidents than those with less power and speed. 
  • Contributing Factors: Speeding, alcohol use, distracted driving, and other traffic infractions are significant contributing factors in motorcycle accident fatalities in VA. 

VA Motorcycle Crash Data 

According to the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), motorcycle collisions in VA cause a disproportionate number of fatalities in comparison to car accident deaths. This data is rather consistent with the reporting from other states. 

However, it’s still a very concerning metric – To say the least. Learn more about recent VA motorcycle crash stats below:

  • There were 2,053 reported  motorcycle collisions in 2022 (1.7% of all crashes)
  • 1,573 of those accidents resulted in injuries 
  • 113 resulted in fatalities (11% of all crashes)
  • Serious injuries suffered by bikers represent 10.7% of all crash-related serious injuries 
  • Nearly 90% of all motorbike fatalities in VA happen on non-interstate roads
  • 4.7% of motorcycle crashes involved alcohol

Source: https://www.dmv.virginia.gov/sites/default/files/documents/crash_facts_22.pdf

Motorcycle Crashes & Strict Contributory Negligence

Virginia is a strict contributory negligence state. That being said, this doctrine has an incredibly significant impact on the outcome of motorcycle accident claims in the state. Here’s why: 

  • No Recovery if Partially At Fault: A motorcycle driver could be barred from recovering any damages if they’re found even slightly at fault for the motorcycle wreck. 
  • Influence on Legal Cases: This law can significantly affect the legal strategy and outcome of a motorcycle accident lawsuit. An experienced attorney is absolutely crucial in navigating these complexities while advocating for the fair compensation of all injured riders.
  • Negotiations with Insurance Companies: Insurance companies often use contributory negligence as a defense strategy to reduce or even deny claims. Working with skilled Richmond motorcycle accident attorneys are essential to counter these tactics and ensure just compensation.

Most Common Causes of Motorcycle Crashes in VA

Identifying the common causes of motorcycle crashes helps to prevent accidents and assess liability in a motorbike crash. Motorcycle accident attorneys have knowledge of and often investigate these potential causes when building a case for fair compensation – Learn more below. 

Distracted Driving

Distracted driving is a leading cause of motorcycle accidents as well as other types of wrecks involving motor vehicles. Modern day distractions like texting, using a GPS app, talking to passengers, or even eating can result in absolutely cataclysmic collisions. 

While educating drivers about the importance of paying full and complete attention to the road and the unique vulnerabilities of motorcycle riders can be helpful, it isn’t always enough. Which is why you need a lawyer for motorcycle accidents that’s willing to hold them and their insurance company liable. 

Speeding

Excessive speed not only reduces reaction time, but it also greatly increases the severity of accidents, making it a common cause of motorcycle wrecks. Speeding motorcycles are a lot less stable and have a higher chance of losing control, particularly on curves or slippery roads. On the other hand, passenger vehicles moving too fast pose a deadly risk to motorcycle riders that can’t be understated. 

Adhering to speed limits and practicing safe riding can significantly decrease the risk of speed-related motorcycle accidents. Further, it can help to absolve you of fault in the event you’re actually involved in a collision with a two wheeled motor vehicle. 

Lane Splitting

Lane splitting happens when a motorcycle moves between lanes of traffic. As you can imagine, it’s a highly controversial and common cause of motorcycle crashes. While it can help motorcyclists easily navigate through traffic, it also increases the risk of accidents due to the close proximity to other vehicles and the reduced space for maneuvering safely. 

Road Hazards

Motorcycle riders face unique dangers from road hazards. These can include but aren’t limited to: 

  • Potholes
  • Uneven road surfaces
  • Debris

All of these seemingly simple issues can lead to deadly accidents for motorcyclists. That’s because they’re much more susceptible to these kinds of hazards than car drivers due to the smaller size and less stability of motorcycles. Awareness and cautious riding in areas with potential road hazards can help prevent accidents, but it isn’t always a guarantee.

Inclement Weather

Rain storms, heavy winds, hail, snow, ice, and other inclement weather conditions can significantly impact a motorcycle operator’s ability to control their bike, resulting in devastating accidents. 

That’s especially true for wet or icy roads, high winds, and reduced visibility in conditions like fog or heavy rain – Which can all pose serious risks to motorcyclists. Wearing the appropriate gear while trying your best to avoid riding in extreme weather conditions can significantly reduce the risk of weather-related motorcycle accidents.

Drunk Driving

Drunk driving is a leading cause of accidents in the U.S. However, when it comes to drunk motorcyclists or passenger vehicle drivers, this infraction can have horrifyingly deadly consequences. If you’ve been involved in a motorcycle wreck with a drunk driver, we’re here to help you seek fair compensation for your injuries. Contact us today for your free consultation with a proven motorcycle accident lawyer in Virginia. 

Common Motorcycle Accident Injuries You Should Know About

Head and Brain Injuries 

Despite the use of  helmets, riders can (and in many cases will) suffer from head injuries and traumatic brain injuries in a crash. While helmets can significantly reduce the risk of fatal head injuries, they don’t necessarily eliminate the possibility of brain trauma, especially in those high-impact crashes. These cerebral injuries sustained by riders can range from concussions to more severe injuries like skull fractures or even brain hemorrhages.

Road Rash 

Road rash is among common motorcycle injuries that are caused by your skin scraping against the road surface, leading to severe skin abrasions. It occurs when a rider is thrown from their motorcycle and slides across the pavement. Road rash can vary in severity. Some of the  more serious cases involve deep wounds that may require intensive surgeries like skin grafts – This can  lead to infections, permanent scarring, and intense emotional trauma. 

Broken Bones 

The impact of a motorcycle accident can quite easily lead to broken bones, particularly in the arms, legs, and ribs. The extreme force of the collision can (and most likely will) cause the rider to be thrown from the bike, resulting in severe fractures. These motorcycle crash induced broken bones can range from simple fractures to more complex ones requiring surgery and potentially long-term rehabilitation.

Spinal Injuries 

Spinal injuries are a serious concern in motorcycle accidents – And for good reason as they carry with them the potential for long-term or permanent disabilities. These injuries can include herniated discs, spinal cord damage, and more. All of which can result in paralysis or other severe mobility issues. The lack of structural protection around the spine on a motorcycle makes riders particularly vulnerable to these types of injuries.

Precautions To Take When Riding Motorcycles

Suppose you’re new to riding a motorcycle. In that case, here are a few tips to help you potentially avoid injuries, future medical expenses, and even liability for accidents you’re involved in. 

  • Wear Helmets: Helmets are absolutely crucial for protection against head injuries. Further, they’re legally required in Virginia. Remember, your headgear must meet DOT standards for maximum protection.
  • Use Protective Gear: Helmets aren’t enough – wearing protective gear like jackets, gloves, pants, and boots can help further prevent or potentially minimize injuries like road rash, burns, and cuts.
  • Obey Traffic Laws: Following all traffic rules (i.e., speed limits, traffic signals, etc.) is very vital for your safety. It also helps you be more predictable for other drivers sharing the road with you. 
  • Stay Visible: This isn’t a legal requirement, but more a practical one. Wearing very bright or reflective clothing and using lights (yes, even during the day), makes it easier for other drivers to see you.
  • Defensive Riding: You’ll need to quickly anticipate potential hazards, maintain a safe distance from other vehicles, and be prepared for the unexpected. Defensive riding can help avoid accidents caused by other drivers’ errors while keeping you out of harm’s way. 
  • Avoid Riding in Bad Weather: The poorer the weather conditions the more dangerous the roads are for riders. If it’s possible, you should absolutely avoid riding in heavy rain, high winds, or icy/snowy conditions.
  • Regular Maintenance: Be sure to keep your motorcycle in tip top condition. Your regular maintenance checks should include brakes, tires, lights, and fluid levels.

What Damages Can I Seek For a Motorcycle Accident?

Much like other types of personal injury claims, motorcycle drivers can pursue many types of damages to  compensate for the losses and harm suffered by negligent drivers. These include:

  • Medical Expenses: Compensation for any medical treatment that’s related to the accident. This can include but isn’t limited to emergency care, surgeries, hospital stays, medication, and even rehabilitation.
  • Lost Wages: You can be reimbursed for income you’ve lost due to the inability to work following the accident. If your injuries lead to long-term or permanent disability, this can include both past and future lost earnings. 
  • Pain and Suffering: Yes, you can receive compensation for the physical pain and emotional distress that was caused by the accident and subsequent injuries. This can include anxiety, depression, loss of enjoyment of life, and even more. 
  • Property Damage: Repairs or replacement of your motorcycle and any other personal property damaged in the accident can all be reimbursed by at-fault parties and their insurer. 
  • Wrongful Death: Suppose the accident caused by negligence leads to a fatality. In that case, surviving family members can, and should think about seeking damages for loss of companionship, emotional pain, and funeral expenses.

Steps To Take After a Motorcycle Collision 

The steps you take after a motorcycle accident can be “make or break” for your case. If you take the wrong steps, it could result in an inability to recoup damages and potentially even criminal liabilities. While every case is unique, there are a few general steps you can take (regardless of the circumstances) to keep you safe physically, financially, and legally. Learn more below. 

Check For Injuries 

Right after a motorcycle crash, check yourself and others for injuries. It’s important to note that you have a legally binding “duty” to check other drivers/passengers for injuries. Even if you feel absolutely fine, some injuries might not be apparent immediately after the collision – Which isn’t an excuse not to get properly checked out. 

Seek Medical Treatment Immediately 

If there are any injuries, call for medical help right away – Don’t let a second pass. Getting a prompt medical evaluation is crucial, even for seemingly minor injuries, as it can significantly impact your motorcycle accident claim.

Exchange Information 

You might be discombobulated after a collision, but you should still be sure to exchange contact and insurance information with the other parties involved. That includes getting their name, address, phone number, and insurance details. If there are witnesses, don’t forget to collect their contact information as well. Their statements can be incredibly valuable in your motorcycle accident claim.

Gather Evidence 

If it’s safe to do so, take as many clear photos and videos of the accident scene. That can include:

  • Positions of the vehicles
  • Any skid marks
  • Road conditions
  • Damage to all vehicles involved
  • Injuries sustained 

Comprehensively documenting the scene can provide crucial evidence for your motorcycle accident lawyer to use when preparing a solid case. 

Reach Out to Motorcycle Accident Lawyers in VA

If you’ve suffered damages in a collision, it’s in your best interest to contact a Virginia motorcycle accident attorney as soon as possible. That’s because an experienced legal team can guide you step-by-step through the legal process, handle contentious communications with insurance companies, and ensure your rights are protected from beginning to end. 

Call Your Insurance Company

In most cases, your insurance demands that you inform them of a collision within 24-48 hours. While it’s necessary to contact them, in most cases, it’s recommended to reach out to your attorney first. That’s because any statements you make or settlement offers you accept might not be in your best interest – especially if you haven’t talked to your motorcycle accident lawyer about it first. 

Contact The Best Virginia Motorcycle Accident Attorneys Today 

An experienced attorney can make an incredibly significant difference in the overall outcome of your motorcycle accident case. At RVA Personal Injury Lawyers, our motorcycle accident attorneys are highly knowledgeable of Virginia motorcycle laws, personal injury laws, and what to expect when going head-to-head against high-powered insurance companies. 

It’s important to note that the statute of limitations to pursue compensation for most motorcycle accident injuries is typically two years – But, the longer you wait, the more likely the evidence goes missing or stale. Further, any eyewitness testimony could be rendered unreliable after too much time has passed. 

With that in mind, don’t wait until it’s too late to seek the compensation you deserve for injuries caused by negligent drivers. Contact us today to schedule your free initial consultation with top personal injury lawyers in Virginia for motorcycle accident injuries. We’re here to help. 

“We Get Justice For Injured People In Court, and We Love What We Do”

We are not settlement lawyers. Sharif Gray has proven that he can and will get results in court, and the insurance companies know that. If you have suffered injuries because of someone else’s negligence, we can help.

Sharif Gray is committed to trying cases well. Because of that, he does not handle hundreds of cases at a time. He is selective in the cases he takes so he can get justice for the people he represents. In every case, he has three goals:

  1. Hold the responsible corporation or individual fully accountable.
  2. Make the community safer, so others are not also harmed.
  3. Compensation that recognizes the full and fair value of what was taken from your health and quality of life.

We love what we do, and we are proud of the positive impact we have had and will continue to have on the people we represent and the community we live in.

If we can be of help to you, please do not hesitate to call us at (804) 915-1611 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. We will get justice for you.

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    Why Choose RVA Personal Injury Lawyers?

    There are many personal injury lawyers in Virginia, but we believe that we stand out for several reasons:

    Experience

    We have a deep understanding of the legal and insurance systems in Virginia and will use this knowledge to get justice on your behalf.

    Results

    Sharif Gray has a proven track record of success in securing millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements for his clients. We will work tirelessly to get you the compensation you deserve.

    Personalized Attention

    We understand that every case is unique and we take the time to listen to your story and understand your needs and goals. We will work with you to develop a customized legal strategy to get the justice you deserve.

    No Fee Until We Win

    We work on a contingency fee basis, which means that we don’t get paid unless you get paid. You can rest assured that we are working hard to get you the best possible result.

    If you’ve been injured in Virginia at no fault of your own, contact RVA Personal Injury Lawyers for a free consultation.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    For answers specific to your case, please give us a call at (804) 915-1611 or contact us online.

    How long do I have to file a personal injury lawsuit?

    The statute of limitations is two years for most personal injury, medical malpractice, and wrongful death cases in Virginia.

    For most cases, you must file a lawsuit within that time frame. But there are exceptions. Give us a call at (804) 915-1611 to discuss your options.

    What is the amount of a verdict or settlement based on?

    In Virginia, the jury considers the following factors when deciding the amount of a verdict:

    (1) Any bodily injuries sustained and their effect on health according to their degree and probable duration;

    (2) Any physical pain and mental anguish suffered in the past and any that may be reasonably expected to suffer in the future;

    (3) Any disfigurement or deformity and any associated humiliation or embarrassment suffered in the past and any that may be reasonably expected to suffer in the future;

    (4) Any inconvenience caused in the past and any that probably will be caused in the future;

    (5) Any medical expenses incurred in the past and any that may be reasonably expected to occur in the future;

    (6) Any earnings lost because of being unable to work at their calling;

    (7) Any loss of earnings and lessening of earning capacity, or either, that may reasonably be expected to sustain in the future; and

    (8) Any property damage sustained.

    Virginia Model Jury Instruction No. 9.000: General Personal Injury and Property Damage

    Is there a cap on how much compensation I can receive?

    There is no cap on damages in most personal injury cases. But there is a cap on damages in medical malpractice cases. 

    There is also a cap on punitive damages. 

    Your personal injury lawyer should pursue the full and fair value of what was taken from your health and quality of life.

    What makes RVA Personal Injury Lawyers different?

    Sharif Gray has won millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements, and he is known for taking cases to trial.

    We are not settlement lawyers. We are committed to trying cases well. Because of that, we do not handle hundreds of cases at a time. We are selective in the cases we take so we can get justice for the people we represent. 

    How much is our Attorney’s Fee?

    Nothing until we win your case.

    We work on a contingency fee basis, which means that we don’t get paid unless you get paid.

    If we resolve your case before filing a lawsuit, we charge a fee of up to 33.33% of the recovery. After a lawsuit is filed, we may charge a fee of up to 40% of the recovery.