The reason our Indianapolis motorcycle accident lawyers remain a valuable option for injured bikers and their families is simple: RESULTS.
Keller & Keller's commitment to motorcyclist's rights and our focus on one-of-a-kind client service has led to positive results for seriously injured bikers throughout Indiana.
Our experience with motorcycle personal injury cases has taught us that injured bikers seeking fair compensation for their accident have a much more difficult time than other accident victims. The reason for this is primarily attributed to unfair stereotypes that exist. (People often incorrectly assume motorcyclists are more likely to speed, be reckless, and are partly to blame for their accident.)
Without an experienced Indianapolis motorcycle accident lawyer on your side, there's a good chance you will receive much less than what you deserve.
Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents in Indiana
Motorcycle wrecks can happen in the blink of an eye—before the rider ever has a chance to react. Their small size makes them hard to see, their lack of safety features offer their riders little protection, and their two wheels and relatively lightweight make it easy for them to flip or skid. Here are some of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents involving cars or trucks:
- Left turns. One of the most common and deadly causes of wrecks is when a driver fails to see an oncoming motorcycle and performs a left-hand turn in front of the rider. These types of accidents account for up to 42 percent of all car-motorcycle crashes.
- Lane changes. Cars and trucks can strike an unwary rider during a lane change, especially if the lane change is sudden.
- Rear-end accidents. Drivers may not see a motorcyclist stopped at an intersection ahead and strike the rear tire of the motorcycle, throwing the rider into cross traffic.
- Drunk drivers. Intoxicated drivers can barely operate their vehicle and have a hard time seeing or avoiding other cars, let alone a motorcycle.
Indiana Motorcycle Crash Statistics
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) compiles state-by-state reporting for motorcycle accidents. Recent studies found that 2012 marked the highest number (152) of motorcycle fatalities in the state of Indiana over the past 5 years.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, motorcyclists are 35 times more likely to suffer fatal injuries in an accident than someone who is in a car, and 8 times more likely to suffer a traumatic injury.
Indiana's rising stats on motorcycle accidents leads us to believe that there may be an underlying cause for the majority of these collisions and we have found that the accidents are rarely the fault of the motorcyclist.
Frequent Motorcycle Accident Injuries That Occur
Many of our motorcycle accident clients will have one of the following injury types, however, if you don't see your injury type listed, you should still consult with us to discuss your legal options, mounting bills, and potential case strategy:
This injury type refers to broken/fractured bones as well as strained muscles and torn ligaments or tendons.
Refers to a head injury that doesn't have a visible laceration or external wound, including traumatic brain injury (TBI), brain stem injury, subdural hematoma, or in the most serious cases, brain death.
Closed head injuries are prone to misdiagnosis as the symptoms may not occur immediately. In addition, a hospital staff or doctor may not give immediate care if symptoms do not appear immediately. Often this lack of timely care can negatively affect an injured motorcyclists long term outcome.
(Indiana's helmet law doesn't require anyone over the age of 18 to wear a helmet, and this, unfortunately, often plays a role in the type and severity of head injury our client suffers.)
In instances of partial or full paralysis, the cost of physical therapy and other spinal cord medical treatment will be intensive and on-going. Therapy can quickly drain a person's finances if they are not properly represented by an attorney.
Cognitive side-effects such as post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are common among our clients. For clients who experience this side-effect, we make sure to document this in our demand to the insurance company.
What to Do After a Motorcycle Crash in Indianapolis
These five steps can help ensure your legal rights are protected after a motorcycle crash in Indiana.
- Focus on getting well. After an accident, you should prioritize your health and seek proper medical care. Motorcycle wrecks often leave people with serious injuries, including some that may not be visible to the eye, like a TBI or internal bleeding. Seeking medical treatment after a wreck can help ensure no injuries go untreated.
- File all medical bills with your health insurance company. Hospitals will often claim they are unable to file your medical bills with your insurance provider if you were injured in a vehicle accident. Do not let them mislead you. If you have health insurance, insist that all bills are submitted to your provider, who will then cover all procedures covered by your plan.
- Proceed with caution when speaking with insurance adjusters. An adjuster’s job is to pay you as little as possible to settle your injury claim. So, when they call to discuss the collision, be mindful of how you describe your health and the wreck and know that you are not obligated to give a recorded statement. We recommend at least consulting with a motorcycle accident attorney before speaking with an adjuster to ensure your rights are protected.
- Be careful when sharing information on social media. It can be tempting to post details about your motorcycle wreck on social media to let people know how you are doing. Unfortunately, insurance adjusters often try to use this information against you. Sharing updates offline via text or phone call may be a safer route to prevent adjusters from twisting your words to prove you deserve a smaller settlement.
We Can Help. Speak to our Motorcycle Accident Lawyers Today
In addition to injured motorcyclists receiving personal attention from Keller & Keller's attorneys and staff, our experience handling motorcycle accident claims will be critical to your case. This includes our knowledge or motorcycle laws and our ability to secure evidence that effectively builds your case. You're also protected by our Zero Fee Guarantee, which means you pay nothing unless we win your case.
Since 1936, Keller & Keller's Indianapolis motorcycle accident lawyers have represented victims and their families throughout the entire state of Indiana, including the cities of Fort Wayne, Evansville, Anderson, Bloomington, Lafayette, and Elkhart, among many others.
Despite Indiana's texting and driving laws, cell phone use continues to play an increasing role in the number of accidents involving motorcycles. We have seen multiple instances of a biker being seriously injured or killed as a result of texting and driving, especially when the accident involves a younger, less experienced driver.
In instances where our firm suspects cell phone usage may have played a role in the accident, it can be possible for us to request records that will show evidence of the at-fault driver using their cell phone at the time of the collision, whether it be a voice call or texting.
And while cell phone use remains the biggest offender, we believe its the total number of technological devices (GPS units, iPods, tablets, etc.) available to a driver that are likely a large part of the reason we have seen an increase in the number of motorcycle wrongful death and injury cases.
Motorcycle Accident Witnesses
It's not uncommon for motorcycle accident witnesses to be biased in their version of how the accident happened, and when they give their story to the insurance company, an adjuster is more likely to believe the witness account and assume you are partially or fully responsible for the accident.
Some of the most common assumptions a witness can mistakenly make are the overestimation of the speed you were traveling, or they're insisting that you were driving recklessly, possibly weaving in and out of traffic, or performing some other questionable behavior they believe to be true.
One of our first priorities as your motorcycle lawyer is to pin down witnesses and secure a positive version of events that helps build your case.