The traffic in South Florida can be dangerous, and this is certainly true when motorcycles are added into the mix of vehicles present on the road. Motorcycle riders tend to experience much more severe injuries than car drivers when there is an impact with a larger vehicle or structure on the roads.
After any accident that involves a motorcycle, it is certainly possible to retain an attorney and receive an amount of compensation that is related to the severity of the injuries caused by the crash.
Fatal motorcycle accident in Palm Beach County
An investigation was underway to gather more information about a motorcycle accident that occurred in Palm Beach County. The victim was a 35 year old male who worked for the local branch of the U.S. Postal Service. Police believe the victim was traveling on Alternate A1A when he was turning onto Barrow Island Road and struck by a Lexus Sedan. The motorcyclist was transported to the nearby Trauma Center in West Palm Beach, but pronounced dead shortly afterward. The driver who struck the motorcyclist was not injured and no traffic citations or criminal charges were given to this driver at the scene.
Crews at the scene were not able to initially determine the victim’s identity or a cause of the accident. A funeral attended by many other local postal workers was held in Jupiter days later. Many of them spoke to the local news about the need for drivers to be careful when around motorcycles on the road.
After an accident
Driving a motorcycle is clearly more dangerous than riding in a car because there is nothing to protect the driver in the event of an accident. Car features such as airbags that are meant to reduce that impact of accidents are not present due to the smaller size and open design of all motorcycles.
After any kind of motor vehicle accident, an injury attorney can file a claim that says the at fault party must pay damages to the victim. These lawsuits are negligence cases which allege that the improper driving or carelessness of the defendant caused an accident that resulted in some kind of injuries to the plaintiff. The investigation conducted by local police and fire departments along with information that is shared between the lawyers during the discovery process will help determine who is at fault, along with the possibility of success for each side. There may also be medical records related to injuries, testimony from witnesses, and evidence from the scene of the accident that factors into the final outcome of the case.
Many cases will end with a settlement agreement if it becomes obvious that the defendant is at least partially at fault. The state’s comparative negligence laws allow fault to be divided between all parties involved, and the plaintiff can still collect even if they are determined to be one of the causes of the accident. However, there is also the possibility of a jury trial and your attorney will prepare the case in a similar manner regardless of the final outcome.
Florida’s wrongful death statute
This accident also resulted in the death of the motorcyclist. When this happens, certain other family members are allowed to file a lawsuit in their place as listed in the state’s wrongful death statute. A lawyer can explain the specifics of this law to you during a consultation or other meeting, but it is helpful to have a general overview of how these kinds of cases work in practice.
Wrongful death cases allow the family to stand in the place of the victim and make a claim for things like hospitalization, medical bills, future lost wages, and funeral expenses. Especially in situations where young victims with high earning potential have died, these amounts can become very large. The insurance company rather than the individual driver at fault will usually pay out these damages.
Under the Florida Statutes, acts such as negligence, intentional torts, or contract breaches allow the estate of the victim to bring a lawsuit on behalf of the deceased person. There are also specific family members who are allowed to file this kind of case. It must be a spouse, parent, child, or relative who was financially dependent on the deceased person. Note that this excludes siblings, cousins, and other more distant relatives without a very specific financial relationship. Florida only allows these lawsuits to be filed within the first two years after the date of the incident that caused the wrongful death, so there is also a shorter statute of limitations than many other areas of the law.
Get help from a local lawyer immediately
To speak to experienced motorcycle accident attorneys in the West Palm Beach area, contact Smith and Vanture. They have a history of success in dealing with all kinds of lawsuits related to accidents and injuries.