Frequently Asked Questions
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Motorcycle Accidents

  1. Who can sue for a motorcycle accident injury and death case?
  2. Who can be held responsible for injuries or death to motorcycle operators and passengers?
  3. Is an investigation of my motorcycle accident case important?
  4. Is insurance coverage an important issue?
  5. Is it important to retain experts on the issue of liability and damages?
  6. How long do I have after my accident to file my motorcycle injury case?
  7. I did not carry insurance on my motorcycle. Can I still sue the driver who hit me?
  8. Is there a difference between uninsured motorist coverage and underinsured motorist coverage?
  9. An unidentified car cut me off, and caused my cycle to veer off the road. Do I have a case through my uninsured motorist policy?
  10. What if I was partially at fault for causing the accident?
  11. Is it important to retain an attorney for my motorcycle accident case?
  12. I was in a traffic accident when a car turned left in front of me while I was riding my motorcycle. Who is at fault?
  13. Will my health insurance coverage or paid sick leave from work limit my recovery for my motorcycle accident?
  14. I ride a motorcycle recreationally, usually only on weekends. Do I have to wear a helmet?
  15. I was injured in a motorcycle accident, but I wasn't wearing a helmet. Can I still recover damages from the other driver?
  16. How do I know if a motorcycle helmet is acceptable under my state's helmet law?
  17. I ride a motorcycle and I don't understand how the state can legally tell me I have to wear a helmet. Is that really something they can do?
  18. Must I tell the police if I am involved in a traffic accident?
  19. If I get into an accident on my motorcycle, should I get a lawyer to help me?

Questions & Answers

Who can sue for a motorcycle accident injury and death case?
Answer:
Either the motorcycle operator or passenger may bring a claim. In Minnesota certain thresholds must be met before a claim can be filed. This means that there must be $4,000 in medical expense, 60 days of disability, a permanent disfigurement, or a permanent injury. It is only necessary to meet one of these thresholds.

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Who can be held responsible for injuries or death to motorcycle operators and passengers?
Answer:
Anyone who was at fault in contributing to causing a crash. In motorcycle cases involving injury, typically it is the driver of a car or truck that is found to be at fault. If a motorcycle operator is at fault, he can be responsible for the injuries caused to his passenger

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Is an investigation of my motorcycle accident case important?
Answer:
A prompt investigation is essential. This is because the insurance company will always attempt to prove that the motorcyclist was to some extent at fault in order to diminish the value of the motorcyclist’s claim.

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Is insurance coverage an important issue?
Answer:
Insurance is very important because without insurance coverage there is rarely a source of money to go after to collect on an injured party’s claim.

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Is it important to retain experts on the issue of liability and damages?
Answer:
Expert witnesses become important in motorcycle cases. They can express opinions as to speed of the vehicles involved, and actions, which either driver could have taken to avoid the collision.

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How long do I have after my accident to file my motorcycle injury case?
Answer:
In Minnesota an injury case must be in suit within six years of the occurrence of the crash. If the crash resulted in a death, the case must be in suit within three years of the crash.

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I did not carry insurance on my motorcycle. Can I still sue the driver who hit me?
Answer:
Lack of insurance on your motorcycle does not prevent you from filing a claim against the driver who was at fault that caused your injury.

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Is there a difference between uninsured motorist coverage and underinsured motorist coverage?
Answer:
Uninsured motorist coverage is coverage on your policy, which pays you for your injuries when someone who has no coverage injures you. Underinsured motorist coverage pays you for your injuries when the at-fault driver has insurance coverage, but the liability limit is not high enough to fully compensate you for all you have suffered.

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An unidentified car cut me off, and caused my cycle to veer off the road. Do I have a case through my uninsured motorist policy?
Answer:
Yes. If an unidentified vehicle causes a crash, or if a hit and run vehicle causes a crash, you can file a claim under your own uninsured motorist policy for your injuries.

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What if I was partially at fault for causing the accident?
Answer:
If you were at fault to some extent in causing an accident, the amount of money you recover will be reduced by your percentage of fault. For example, if you were 20% at fault and your damages were $100,000, you would receive only $80,000.

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Is it important to retain an attorney for my motorcycle accident case?
Answer:
It is important to have an attorney in a motorcycle injury case in order to make sure that you are treated fairly by the insurance company. An attorney can take responsibility for a complete investigation of the crash and also can make sure that the injuries you suffer are adequately documented so as to insure that you will receive adequate compensation.

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I was in a traffic accident when a car turned left in front of me while I was riding my motorcycle. Who is at fault?
Answer:
Typically a left-hand turning vehicle is found to be at fault since the law requires that a motorist planning on making a left hand turn must yield to all oncoming traffic. In some cases a motorcyclist could be found partially at fault even though he has the right of way if he was speeding or not maintaining an adequate look out.

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Will my health insurance coverage or paid sick leave from work limit my recovery for my motorcycle accident?
Answer:
No. These are separate coverages that you are entitled to receive even though you are filing a liability claim for your injuries against the insurance company or the at-fault motorist.

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I ride a motorcycle recreationally, usually only on weekends. Do I have to wear a helmet?
Answer:
Motorcycle helmet laws vary from state to state. To wear a helmet or not wear one is a personal choice. If you are traveling out state, make sure to investigate the laws of the states you are traveling through so you will know you can be in compliance.

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I was injured in a motorcycle accident, but I wasn't wearing a helmet. Can I still recover damages from the other driver?
Answer:
The fact that you were injured while not wearing a helmet does not affect your rights to file a claim against an at-fault driver.

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How do I know if a motorcycle helmet is acceptable under my state's helmet law?
Answer:
All DOT approved helmets will have a label on them indicating this approval.

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I ride a motorcycle and I don't understand how the state can legally tell me I have to wear a helmet. Is that really something they can do?
Answer:
State’s pass laws that they feel are in the public interest. There is obviously a big dispute as to whether wearing a helmet is or is not something which should be required since each state arrives at its own requirements.

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Must I tell the police if I am involved in a traffic accident?
Answer:
You are required to report an accident to the police if it involves injury or property damage in excess of $500.

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If I get into an accident on my motorcycle, should I get a lawyer to help me?
Answer:
It is important to have an attorney in a motorcycle injury case in order to make sure that you are treated fairly by the insurance company. An attorney can take responsibility for a complete investigation of the crash and also can make sure that the injuries you suffer are adequately documented so as to insure that you will receive adequate compensation.

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