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Motorcycle Accident Lawyers Serving Maryland And Virginia

You May Be Entitled to Compensation if You Are Injured

If you or someone you love enjoys riding a motorcycle, you know they have the same right as any other law abiding citizen, to drive on the roads in Maryland or Virginia. Motorcyclists are entitled to the same protection of the laws as any other vehicle operator on the roadway. Nevertheless, there are some factors that make motorcycle collisions more difficult than a regular car accident case and in many cases, it would be prudent for an injured motorcyclist to hire an attorney.

Is the Deck Already Stacked Against You?

To a motorcycle enthusiast, there is simply no greater feeling than riding fast on the open road with the wind at your back. Nevertheless, motorcycles and the individuals who operate them are both viewed by the public at large as unsafe. This perception of motor cycle operators being “rebels without a cause,” is likely due to statistics released from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, which indicate that a motorcyclist is on average, five times more likely to be injured in a roadway accident. If you’ve been injured in a motor cycle accident, the perception of the general public may already be working against you. A recent study stated that over 2,600 motorbike crashes occurred in the state of Maryland in just one year. The same study also stated that approximately 69 of these crashes were deadly for the motorcyclist.

Additional data has shown for example, that in 2010, over 4500 motorcycle accidents resulted in fatalities. Motorcycle accidents have estimated over 12 billion dollars in medical expenses and loss in productivity. The Center for Disease Control did a study in June 2012 which shows that universal helmet laws could save, in addition to lives, money. The study explains how helmet use can drastically reduce the cost of medical expenses when an accident occurs as well as fatalities.The Center for Disease Control also eports that motorcycle accidents have more than doubled between 1999 and 2008.

What most people don’t account for, is that frequently, another driver – whether intoxicated, driving recklessly, or failing to notice the motorcyclist – is the one that causes the fatal crash, and winds up walking away with minimal to no injury.

Additionally, although riding a motorcycle can be a fun and efficient way to travel, motorcycle accidents when they occur, are more likely to result in serious and debilitating personal injuries and even death. For example, although they account for only 2.5 percent of registered vehicles in Maryland, motorcycle accidents involving motorcycle riders account for 15 percent of all traffic fatalities.

Why the Public Perception Matters

Maryland, Virginia and Washington D.C. all employ doctrines frequently referred to as contributory negligence and assumption of risk laws. What these laws do, is they oeprate as a complete defense to negligence claims where a Defendant can show that the motorcycle operator was contributorily negligent in some manner, or otherwise assumed a known risk of injury. Given the public perception of the danger of motorcycle operation and the high likelihood of injury or death in a collision, these defenses presented by the insurance companies are often successful. Accordingly, motorcycle operators who are victims of negligence of third-party drivers will likely need to present their case in the strongest light possible. In some instances, hiring an experienced attorney or legal team will be the wisest course of action.

We can help! Call us today for a free consultation at 1-888-540-2599.

See Our Related Blog Posts

Back to the Basics: Contributory Negligence and Maryland Car Accidents

Motorcycle Personal Injury Laws in Maryland and Virginia

A motorcyclist who is injured in an accident in Maryland or Virginia may be able to recover damages. Often, motorcycle accidents are caused by another vehicle driver not seeing the motorcycle, or by not anticipating the space that a motorcyclist needs to react to their vehicle movements (such as braking or changing lanes). In Maryland and in Virginia, the negligence laws of these states operate to protect motorcycle riders from the careless mistakes of other vehicle operators, just as they would protect any other vehicle operator.

If you or your loved one was injured in a motorcycle collision, you may be entitled to compensation not only for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering, but also for the repair or replacement of your damaged motorcycle. You may also be entitled to compensation for reasonably foreseeable future medical treatment, or other non-economic damages for serious injuries such as;

Maryland Helmet Laws

In 1967, the federal government required each state within the United States to implement a universal helmet regulation. This required each state to enforce laws that would mandate the use of helmets for all motorcycle drivers. In exchange the federal government would allow those states to quality for federal highway funds. As of 1975 all but three states had complied with these regulations. However, in 1976 Congress revoked federal authority to enforce penalties for non-compliance. Therefore, many states began to relax helmet requirements to motorcycle operators. Most states enforced helmet regulations only for young or inexperienced drivers.

Maryland has a law that requires motorcyclists to wear DOT-approved helmets. In addition to helmets, all operators are required to wear protective eye-wear. For more details on Maryland’s helmet law, see the Motor Vehicle Administration’s website here. However, if you have already been in a motorcycle accident and were not wearing a helmet, you are not necessarily negligent.  In 1970 Maryland case, Rogers v. Frush, the Court of Appeals of Maryland ruled that riding a motorcycle without a helmet is does not make a rider contributorily negligent, and does not relieve automobile drivers of their obligation to drive their vehicles in a careful and prudent manner.

In the 1989 case of Doehring v. Wagner, the Maryland Court of Special appeals revisited the issue of contributory negligence and not wearing a motorcycle helmet. In that case, the Court held that riding a motorcycle at high speed without a helmet at night and without headlights was contributory negligence. However, many factors were at play in Doehring aside from the motorcyclist not wearing a helmet. Of course, wearing a motorcycle helmet in Maryland is always strongly encouraged, and motorcyclists could face steep fines for not doing so. Additionally, helmets have been proven to reduce the possibility of head trauma in motorcycle accidents.

Read Some of Our Recent Client Reviews!

02:32 04 Aug 18
The lawyer who was initially handling my case parted ways with the company and I was assigned a new lawyer. This new lawyer was amazing! Christina Franetovich made me feel secure by double checking all the facts and notes in my case so that I was not worried during this transition. I was on disability from an a different accident while she was finalizing my case, and I had called and hounded her about the time frame of my settlement very frequently to the point that I felt guilty for calling so much. Christina was very sympathetic to my situation and assured me that she would do everything in her power to make sure the situation would be resolved quickly. She actually finalized my case before the time frame she had given me, was always very courteous and knowledgable on the phone, and I feel extremely lucky that she ended up handling my case because the previous lawyer was not as amazing with customer service as Christina. She also has a way of making you feel comfortable and builds incredible rapport quickly. I am going to highly recommend her to my friends and family. Thank you Christina!!!
Andrea Barajas
Andrea Barajas
15:13 16 May 18
My husband and I were in a car accident in August 2017. We contacted Bob Katz team for legal representation in our case. Kristen A. Turner was our paralegal and she was excellent. It took 9 months for us to receive our settlement and Kristen kept us updated throughout this entire process. She was very kind and patient as I happened to have several questions. She always answered my questions promptly and thoroughly. I would highly recommend this firm and Kristen if you are in need of legal assistance.
Richard Hose
Richard Hose
02:26 27 Jun 18
On Feb 23, 2017 I was in a bad accident on the JFX. I had been rear end by another driver. Almost immediately I felt pressured by the other drivers insurance. Everything from wanting a recorded statement; to failing to acknowledge responsibility. No one would answer my questions, nor would anyone take responsibility. I was frustrated and overwhelmed with everyone from the towing company, to the repair shop, to the insurance company nightmare I just entered. I reached out to Attorney Robert Katz and I was assured they were here to help. He provided with some much needed information, and told me not to worry, Sarah his Paralegal would be in touch to help get things moving. Sarah reached out as expected and explained their process and walked me through what my expectations would be. She as well assured me they were here to help me navigate the obstacles. What Sarah really did was so much more than help. She took the stress and burden off my shoulders and assumed ownership for handling everything on my behalf. I knew what to expect, and I received regular updates throughout the entire process. Honestly, I received so much more than I anticipated. Some of the most frustrating items to chase after are medical records and hospital charges. While I was trying to recall events and timelines, she had already obtained my records and information. She made this process so painless. I truly cannot say enough about the exceptional service she provided. Many thanks for all your help. Sincerely, Richard Hose
Claudette Pope
Claudette Pope
13:18 30 Aug 18
I was referred to Gordon & feindblatt in 2014 when my family was in an accident, Mr. Katz personally consulted with me by phone and he was very polite and professional, Mr. Carpuso, one of the litigation attorneys even came out to our home and went over our case with us, he made sure all of our needs was addressed and before he left our home that day I felt like we were old friends. that case was settled and I was very pleased, I have used this law firm twice since then and the results are always the same, I have nothing but great experiences with Gordon & Feindblatt the staff are courteous and professional and they get the job done but the one in particular that really stood out for me is Rebecca Slattery, she is truly a gem, she is so compassionate, she walked me through the entire process, she even checked up on me from time to time just to see how I was feeling and I really appreciated her kindness. I will use this law firm again and again for any future legal issue that may arise and I would highly recommend Gordon & Fiendblatt to friends, family and co-workers.
15:24 09 Feb 18
My experience here was great. My lawyer Rebecca was so professional and I love her personality. She handled my case well and kept me updated and made the process easy and always made me feel comfortable to call whenever I needed to know anything.
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Location: Tysons

Chris Shin
Chris Shin
18:23 20 Jun 18
They were very polite, professional. and informed current status of the case time to time. Great Job !!!
Jonathan Roane
Jonathan Roane
22:51 17 Nov 17
If you ever need any assistance with an accident or injury-related claim this is the firm you need hands down. These are the most professional and caring people I have ever met in my life. Two people you should contact are Rebecca Slattery who was actually my paralegal and also Allan Serrano. You will be in good hands.
Israel Thompson
Israel Thompson
00:52 06 Dec 17
Attorney MR Bob Katz outstanding Human being, went beyond and above to help me during my accident, he showed me tremendous kindness and support.Thank you so much will highly recommend him to anyone who needs help with their auto accident
Marta Kritselis
Marta Kritselis
16:19 01 Sep 17
Rebecca Slattery the paralegal She took care my case and she was very helpful throughout the whole process. I highly recommend to my family and friend the services of Attorney Bob Kats and there team .
Myong Kim
Myong Kim
22:04 31 Mar 17
I am grateful to Bob and Justin Katz and their team for working hard to get me the most money. They were very professional and easy to work with in Korean. I will recommend them to friends and family any chance I have.
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