Erie Motorcycle Accident Lawyers
We are intimately familiar with motorcycle accidents and injuries.
Pennsylvania considers motorcycles to be vehicles, meaning that bikers must follow the rules of the road. However, many times vehicle drivers cause accidents with bikers by failing to watch for motorcycles.
Dealing effectively and efficiently with a motorcycle accident claim, requires careful planning, an in-depth examination of the facts of the case and what insurance policies are involved. To obtain a fair outcome for your case, it is best to discuss your motorcycle accident with an experienced Melaragno, Placidi & Parini motorcycle accident attorneys.
According to the Motorcycle Industry Council, as of 2018, there were 12,231,000 motorcycles registered across the nation, with approximately 378,000 motorcycles registered in Pennsylvania. In 2019, Pennsylvania had 825,898 licensed motorcyclists and of those 13,662 have completed the state's Motorcycle Safety Program. Accidents involving bikers tend to result in severe injuries. Bikers are 35 times more likely to be involved in a fatal crash than occupants of a motor vehicle.
In Pennsylvania in 2018, there were 2,776 motorcycle accidents that resulted in 164 fatalities.
Motorcycle Insurance Coverage After Accident
After a motorcycle accident, bikers must be aware of how their case will differ from a car accident. It is so important to hire an experienced attorney who knows how to handle biker accidents. First, motorcyclists generally do not have access to medical coverage often called PIP or MedPay under their insurance policies. Riders must pursue other avenues to recover compensation for their injuries. According to 75 PA §§ 1711(a) and 1714 insurance agents do not have to offer it to motorcyclists. This usually means that a biker cannot recover compensation for medical expenses from their own insurance company regardless of who is at fault.
Bikers without PIP or MedPay insurance have two options for insurance coverage for their medical expenses. The first option is filing a personal injury lawsuit against the party deemed to be at-fault for the collision. The second option is to use their health insurance to cover their medical expenses. In most instances with health insurance, there would be a deductible to be paid.
When it comes to accidents involving motorcycles, the driver of the bike has full tort coverage which means the biker can pursue damages for pain, suffering, inconvenience, loss of enjoyment of life, disfigurement as well as their lost wages and medical expenses. In fact, Pennsylvania automatically grants a motorcyclist full tort rights. This differs from vehicle insurance which allows motorists to buy limited or full tort coverage insurance.
Retaining full tort rights means a motorcyclist has the right to seek full recovery from at-fault parties, whether the injuries incurred in an accident are serious or not. What that means is that if another party negligently contributed to or caused the accident, motorcyclists have the right to seek compensation for all accident-related damages, non-economic (general damages) and special damages (economic).
Any form of settlement in a motorcycle accident can result in compensation. However, this only applies if someone else caused the accident. If the biker is at-fault, they must pay their own damages and expenses. If the motorcyclist was partially at-fault, there might still be the possibility of recovering a portion of the assessed damages. Therefore, it is important to contact an experienced attorney to investigate the accident.
Since each motorcycle accident case is different, speaking to an experienced motorcycle accident attorney at Melaragno, Placidi & Parini is the best course of action to find out what your legal rights are, how to pursue them and what to expect if you choose to file a personal injury claim.
We are intimately familiar with motorcycle accidents and injuries. As collisions are not the same, our approach to each case is also different. Your Erie personal injury lawyer from Melaragno, Placidi & Parini has your back.
Gene Placidi is a real professional who gets right to his task at hand. In my case and experience he delivered a whole lot better results than I could have possibly imagined. A man of great integrity and professionalism; I sincerely appreciate and respect but truly recommend checking him out whatever your case may be.
– Doug F.
Pennsylvania Helmet Law
One of the most important factors considered after a Pennsylvania motorcycle accident is whether the biker was wearing a helmet. Studies show that riders are 15 percent more likely to suffer a fatal injury without a helmet.
Pennsylvania’s comparative negligence rule states that when a plaintiff gets a settlement or jury award for damages, the degree of fault apportioned to the plaintiff in causing the accident, if any, reduces the total settlement or jury award amount. Additionally, the rule bars recovery for the plaintiff if they were found to be more than 50 percent responsible for the accident, causing their injuries. According to the comparative negligence rule, not wearing a helmet has the potential to reduce the value of a claim.
Dealing effectively and efficiently with a motorcycle accident claim, requires careful planning, an in-depth examination of the facts of the case and what insurance policies are involved.