New Orleans Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
Attorney John Williams fights for the rights of injured riders
New Orleans is the perfect backdrop for a scenic ride, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that there are many motorcycle enthusiasts who take to the open road here and throughout the Greater Louisiana area. While riding a motorcycle can be an invigorating experience, it does come with risks.
Motorcyclists are among the most vulnerable road users, and all it takes is one negligent driver to cause a serious crash that results in injury or death. As an experienced New Orleans motorcycle accident attorney who fights for injured bikers in Louisiana, John S. Williams has seen first-hand just how devastating motorcycle wrecks can be.
For example, a report by the Insurance Information Institute noted that motorcycle riders were 27 times more likely than the occupants of passenger vehicles to die in a crash per vehicle mile traveled. The reason? Unlike cars, trucks, and SUVs, motorcycles do little to protect riders because they aren’t enclosed and don’t come equipped with safety features, such as seatbelts and airbags.
Motorcycle accident injury statistics
Research by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has shown that motorcycle accidents result in injury or death about 80 percent of the time, compared to accidents involving regular passenger vehicles, which result in injury or death about 20 percent of the time. That means if you’re involved in this type of wreck, you are four times more likely to get injured or die when compared to being in a car accident.
Motorcycle accident injuries are often serious and can have life-altering consequences. You may need surgery and require long-term care. You might not be able to work again or be able to do day-to-day things, such as household chores. At The Law Offices of John S. Williams, LLC, we don’t think you should have to shoulder the financial burden of a motorcycle crash that wasn’t your fault. Attorney John S. Williams is a motorcycle accident lawyer who fights for the rights of injured riders in New Orleans and helps them get the compensation they need and deserve. Let John guide you and aggressively advocate for your best interests. He will fight for what’s right, what’s fair and what’s just.
What should I do after a motorcycle accident?
If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle crash caused by another driver in New Orleans or another part of Louisiana, it’s critical that you take action right away. Otherwise, your health could be at risk. Your injury claim might also encounter legal challenges if you don’t take action right away.
- Call the police right away and tell them you’ve been involved in a motorcycle accident. Call the New Orleans Police Department or simply dial 911 from your location.
- Ask the police to send an ambulance if you or anyone else is seriously injured. If you are not sure, ask for an ambulance. Don’t try to diagnose yourself. Have a medical professional examine you right away.
- If your motorcycle injury is serious, get medical care right away. If necessary, you may be taken to an emergency room, whether it’s University Medical Center New Orleans LCMC Health or another nearby hospital.
- If someone saw your accident, get their full name and phone number. Eyewitness testimony can make your motorcycle accident case stronger.
- If it’s safe to do so, take pictures of your accident. Ideally, take photos before moving your motorcycle and before the other driver moves their car. The more pictures you take, the better.
- Exchange contact information with the other driver. This includes your name, address, driver’s license number and insurance information.
- Once you have exchanged information with the other driver, don’t talk about your accident with the other driver or anyone else. Anything you say – even something as simple as “I’m sorry” – could later be used to reduce or deny your injury claim.
- Get the investigating police officer’s name and badge number. That way, you can contact the police officer later if necessary, such as if you have a question about your official Louisiana accident report.
- Call your insurance company and tell them you have been in an accident caused by another driver, but keep your comments brief.
- If the other driver’s insurance company contacts you, don’t talk to them. Anything you say can be used as evidence to deny your injury claim. If they insist and claim they need more information, tell them to contact your lawyer.
- Call an attorney as soon as possible. The sooner you have a lawyer handling your case and explaining your rights, the better.
Louisiana motorcycle laws
Louisiana has unique rules and regulations when it comes to motorcycles and motorcyclists. Many of these laws can be found in Louisiana Laws Revised Statutes 32:191. These laws include:
- Helmets must be worn by all motorcylists and passengers in Louisiana.
- Motorcyclists must wear eye protection if their motorcycle does not have a windshield.
- Two motorcyclists cannot ride side by side in the same lane.
- Lanesplitting (riding a motorcycle on the line in between two vehicles, usually on a highway) is illegal in Louisiana.
- All motorcycles must have a footrest.
- Motorcycle handlebars must be below or level with the rider’s shoulders when seated.
Many other laws apply to motorcycle accidents in Louisiana. That’s why it’s critical that you have an experienced New Orleans motorcycle accident lawyer on your side who knows the law and understands how the legal system works in Louisiana.
What is the most common cause of motorcycle accidents?
Negligence by other drivers is one of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents, with other motorists failing to yield the right of way resulting in the most crashes. This situation typically occurs when another vehicle is making a left turn and pulls out into the path of a motorcycle, causing a dangerous head-on collision or side impact crash. Other common causes of motorcycle accidents include:
- Texting and driving
- Distracted driving
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Reckless driving
- Inexperienced drivers
- Dooring (opening a vehicle’s door into the path of a motorcycle)
- Defective motorcycle parts
- Hazardous road conditions (potholes, loose gravel, uneven pavement, roadkill, debris)
What are the most common motorcycle accident injuries?
A head or brain injury, such as a concussion, is the most common injury riders sustain in motorcycle accidents, which is one reason why most states have helmet laws in place for motorcyclists. Other common injuries include:
- Spinal cord injuries
- Back injuries
- Neck injuries
- Broken bones
- Severed limbs
- Biker’s arm (nerve damage)
- Scarring and disfigurement
- Road rash
- Soft tissue injuries
If you’re riding a motorcycle and get into a crash with another vehicle, your body is going to absorb most of the force generated by the collision and suffer damage as a result. You may get ejected from your bike and suffer further injury when you hit the road or other objects. You might also get pinned underneath your motorcycle or tangled up in the wreckage.
The cost to treat your injuries can quickly become overwhelming if you try to pay for them out of pocket. Doctor bills, hospital visits, X-rays, MRIs, medication, surgery and treatment are expensive, which is why you should strongly consider talking to an experienced lawyer if you’re not at fault and need help getting compensation.
Do you need a motorcycle accident attorney?
If you were injured or a loved one died in a motorcycle accident caused by someone else, you may want to consult with a lawyer to learn your rights and go over your legal options. An attorney can:
- Investigate your crash and find the facts to support your case
- Collect important pieces of evidence
- Track down eyewitnesses
- Accurately calculate the total cost of your damages (accident-related expenses)
- Deal with the insurance company
- Handle settlement negotiations
- Help you file a lawsuit
- Represent you in court, if necessary
While you’re not legally required to hire a lawyer to represent you after a motorcycle accident, it may be in your best interest to do so. In fact, it’s been shown that those who hire a personal injury attorney to represent them receive more on average in compensation compared to those who don’t. Since most law firms offer a free consultation, you should at least consider speaking to a lawyer if you were hurt in a motorcycle accident that wasn’t your fault.
To learn more, visit our motorcycle accident FAQ page.
Get full compensation with a New Orleans motorcycle accident lawyer
Getting hurt in a motorcycle accident can be a painful and traumatic experience, but for many, trying to recover compensation from the at-fault party is even worse. Insurance companies are notorious for giving injured riders a hard time. They may argue that you are partially to blame, or worse yet, say you caused the accident and deny your claim altogether. If you didn’t do anything to cause your crash, you shouldn’t have to pay the price for someone else’s reckless actions.
John S. Williams is a caring and compassionate motorcycle accident attorney who has the knowledge, experience, and resources to handle every aspect of your claim. Whether it’s through a negotiated settlement or by way of a favorable court verdict, John will stand by your side throughout every step of the process and fight to get you the highest compensation possible. Our law firm serves clients in New Orleans and offers legal representation on a contingency fee basis. That means you pay nothing unless we win. Contact us today to learn more.