MARYLAND MOTORCYCLE ACCIDENT LAWYERS
Our lawyers handle serious injury only motorcycle accident cases in every county in Maryland. We have recovered millions of dollars for our clients in injury and wrongful death motorcycle accident cases in Maryland.
Many lawyers think that if they have handled car accident cases in the past, they must be qualified to handle a motorcycle accident case. These lawyers are wrong. Motorcycle cases are a very different animal. A motorcycle accident lawyer has his back up against the wall from Day 1, even if the other driver is obviously at fault for the accident. Why? There are usually untrue negative stereotypes surrounding motorcyclists, whether they are the Harley-riding convicts, or reckless crotch-rocket-riding twenty-something or others. Those stereotypes are the reality when beginning to present a motorcycle accident to six people on a Maryland jury, and our job is to convince those six people that, where our client is concerned, nothing could be further from the truth. This is true not just with the question of who is responsible for the accident, but also applies to how much the settlement is or how much the jury awards. Why is this? Insurance adjusters discriminate against motorcyclists on the value of cases and, if you are not careful, jurors will do the same.
The truth is, most of the motorcyclists we encounter in our office are extremely safe and conscientious drivers. On the whole, they are concerned about their own safety—they wear helmets and protective vests, they have usually taken one or more safety courses, and their motor vehicle records are cleaner than the average driver.
The stereotypes are based on the few bad apples that we see on the road. But for every misbehaving motorcyclist that we notice weaving in-and-out of traffic at a high rate of speed, there are ten law-abiding motorcyclists that we don’t pay attention to. And yet, when we hear of an accident between a motorcyclist and a car, we automatically assume the motorcyclist is at fault. Statistically, nothing could be further from the truth.
- Causes: Over two-thirds of fatal motorcycle accidents are caused by the drivers of other vehicles who do not see the motorcyclist in time to avoid a collision (NHTSA).
- Injuries: The data indicates that the medical bills for a motorcyclist in a collision average to about $2 per mile; compared to less than $.20 per mile traveled for other vehicles (NHTSA, Table 6).
- Injuries: The average total cost for a motorcyclists injuries is $211,000; compared to about $17,000 for all other vehicles (NHTSA, Table 6).
- Maryland 2008 Data: 1,800 motorcycle accidents; 1,500 motorcycle injuries; 83 motorcycle deaths.
Motorcyclists are not treated fairly by insurance companies. The key insurance difference is Maryland Personal Injury Protection (PIP). Basically, PIP is insurance coverage on your automobile policy that pays your medical bills or lost wages, usually between $2,500 and $10,000, if you are in an accident (even if the accident is your fault). Insurance companies must offer PIP to the drivers of most other vehicles. However, they are permitted to withhold PIP coverage from motorcyclists based on Maryland Insurance Code § 19-505. This just shows that the Maryland legislature has bought into the negative stereotypes, and they believe the motorcyclists are too high-risk for that insurance.
Another distinction is for Maryland Uninsured/Underinsured motorist coverage. If you are driving someone else’s motorcycle and suffer an accident, uninsured motorist benefits are typically available for you under your own insurance policy in the event of an accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver. But if you own a motorcycle and a car on the same policy (or, most likely, even on different policies although the law is unsettled), the policy limit on your motorcycle is going to be applied to an accident in Maryland on your motorcycle, even if you have higher uninsured benefits on another vehicle. The lesson, as always, is to have high coverage limits (including uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage) on any vehicle that you are driving.
Our Maryland motorcycle accident lawyers have the experience to sort through these complicated issues and stand up to the insurance companies to fight for fair compensation for the victims of motorcycle accidents. We have a history of fighting and winning. If you or someone you know has been injured in a motorcycle accident, call us at 1.800.553.8082 to speak to a Maryland lawyer experienced in handling auto accident claims. Or click here for a free internet consultation.
For More Information
- 2012 Maryland Motorcycle Safety Program
- Maryland Wrongful Death and Survival Lawsuits
- Maryland Motorcycle Accident Statistics
- National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA): Motorcycles
- How much is my motorcycle accident case worth?
Information and Sample for Maryland Motorcycle Accident Lawyers
- Sample Demand Letter in Motorcycle Accident Wrongful Death Claim
- Sample Wrongful Death Motorcycle Accident Complaint
- Sample Motion (to keep out evidence bike was a crotch rocket)
- Sample Depositions
- Going After the At-Fault Driver Who Refuses to Accept Responsibility (sample deposition of Defendant)
- Plaintiff's Deposition in Motorcycle Accident Case
- Deposition of Police Officer in Motorcycle Accident Case (how to get what you need from the police officer to win your case)
- Deposition of defendant whose dog chased plaintiff causing him to wreck his motorcycle and suffer permanent injuries (see the police report)