How Our Motorcycle Accident Lawyers Help
Motorcycle Accident Case Illustration
Motorcycle accidents happen for any number of reasons but one of the primary reasons is a driver’s negligence. Consider the following case illustration:
Joe rides his motorcycle to and from his job in Springfield, Illinois. It’s an economical way to get to work at a time when money is tight. Joe is extra-vigilant when riding his motorcycle knowing that many drivers simply do not notice the much smaller motorcycles. As Joe is going straight through a green light, an oncoming vehicle suddenly makes a left hand turn in front of Joe causing him to slam into the side of the car.
The impact throws Joe from his motorcycle, over the car that hit him, and into oncoming traffic. Thankfully, nobody else hits him, but Joe is severely injured. He was not wearing his helmet because it was such a nice spring day, and his head struck the pavement when he landed. Joe is rushed to the hospital where he is diagnosed with a traumatic brain injury.
The doctors will not know the extent of Joe’s brain injury until the swelling goes down, but for now, he is in a medically induced coma. Joe is facing months of medical interventions, surgical procedures, visits to specialists, and rehabilitative therapies. His life may never be the same, and he may never be able to return to work.
Unfortunately, this scenario is not all that uncommon when a vehicle hits an unprotected motorcyclist. This is a time when you desperately need an experienced Springfield motorcycle accident lawyer. Should you find yourself severely injured and unable to work, the Noll Law Office stands ready to help. They have a deep understanding of legal issues you will face and will represent your best interests in and out of court.
Illinois Motorcycle Accident Statistics
According to the Illinois Department of Transportation, there were 2,093 Illinois motorcyclists injured in vehicle accidents in 2019 and 138 killed. One hundred of those killed were in urban environments at the time of their crash, while 38 were in rural environments. Across the United States, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found that 5,172 motorcyclists were killed in auto accidents in 2017. Per vehicle mile traveled, motorcyclist fatalities occur nearly 27 times more frequently than for those in passenger vehicles. Helmets save lives—57 percent of motorcyclists killed in 2017 in states without universal helmet laws were not wearing a helmet. (Illinois does not have universal helmet laws for motorcyclists).
What Are the Most Common Causes of Springfield Motorcycle Crashes?
Like any type of auto accident, motorcycle accidents are frequently caused by distracted drivers. People eat, text, talk on the phone and change car controls while they drive. What they should be doing is watching those on the road and concentrating on their own driving. Motorcycle accidents can also be caused by drowsiness, drunk driving, reckless driving, and excessive speeding by others on the roadway.
Perhaps the most common cause of motorcycle accidents is the failure to notice motorcycles in traffic. Considering the small size of a motorcycle, its visibility can be obstructed by other vehicles. Intersections can be especially dangerous as drivers don’t see the motorcyclist or fail to yield the right-of-way. A significant number of accidents occur when a vehicle makes a left-hand turn in front of a motorcyclist while underestimating the rider’s speed.
What Are the Most Common Injuries Following a Motorcycle Accident?
Injuries following a motorcycle accident tend to be severe. While a driver of a car has a steel and glass “cage” surrounding them—the motorcyclist has only a helmet for protection, if worn. In cooler seasons, some motorcyclists may wear “leathers,” to protect their lower body in the event of an accident. When a motorcyclist is thrown from their bike, and their body skids across the pavement, layers of skin can be removed, known as road rash.
While less serious road rash will typically heal in a few weeks—despite being extremely painful—deeper road rash injuries can damage the nerve cells. Road rash wounds can easily become infected; if you notice any of the following, see a doctor immediately:
- Pain that increases with time rather than decreasing
- Fluid drainage
- The area is unusually warm
- There is swelling and increased redness
- The drainage smells bad
- You have body aches, fever, or chills
Road rash must be carefully watched by a medical professional to avoid infection. Septic shock from is a life-threatening condition that can cause dangerously low blood pressure and organ failure. Other serious injuries from motorcycle accidents include traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, neck and back injuries, limb amputations, internal injuries, and death.
What Should I Do Following an Accident?
Receiving medical attention for your injuries is always your priority. The police and an ambulance should be called. Even if you believe you are not that badly hurt, you should always seek medical attention. The surge of adrenaline your body experiences during an accident can often mask symptoms of injury.
Once you are home, you need to contact your own insurance company and inform them of the accident, then contact an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer. The personal injury attorneys at the Noll Law Office are located in Springfield, Illinois. The law firm has extensive experience with motorcycle accidents and are ready to help you through this difficult time.
You can help your attorney build the strongest case possible by providing your attorney with everything you remember about the accident including witnesses, the agency that responded to the accident, photographs of the vehicles, and the defendant’s insurance information (if known). Keep careful track of all your medical expenses and lost wages. The attorneys at the Noll Law Office will use this information to seek a fair settlement on your behalf.
How Do I Choose the Best Motorcycle Accident Lawyer for Me?
If you’ve never needed an attorney, you may be hesitant to choose one. How do you find the best motorcycle accident lawyer for you? It is important that you can communicate with your attorney. You should feel reassured that your attorney is very experienced. Attorneys Daniel and Sarah Noll believe client communication along with significant litigation experience is the key to successful outcomes. They will discuss your goals for your case, then attempt to exceed them while always keeping your best interests in mind.
What is the Motorcycle Accident Injury Claim Process?
The first thing that needs to be done is to obtain a copy of the crash report and attempt to obtain any 911 calls, witness statements, and video footage of the accident before it is destroyed. To properly handle your claim, your treating physicians to determine that you are at maximum medical improvement. Once that is done, the Noll Law Office lawyers will file a claim on your behalf. This claim will include payment of medical expenses (both past and future), lost wages, scarring, as well as pain and suffering and other expenses. Negotiations will take place. Insurance companies rarely want to pay what a claim is worth, so the process can take weeks, even months. If the insurance company simply refuses to pay what your claim is worth, the Noll Law Office will take the case to court and file suit in the county which the accident occurred.
A jury or judge will hear the facts of the case, then decide on what your injuries and other damages are worth. If your case goes to trial, the process could take a year or two. If the jury or judge rules in your favor, you should receive your check within six weeks unless the case is appealed.
How Can Noll Law Office Help?
When you choose the Noll Law Office, you will work with an experienced, local attorney directly throughout the process. The Noll Law Office is committed to being available to you and answering your questions in a comprehensive manner. They are fifth-generation Springfield attorneys who take pride in their deep community roots. They are experienced, knowledgeable motorcycle accident lawyers who provide unparalleled advocacy for their clients. Contact Noll Law Office today.