The Las Vegas Review Journal indicated 79 motorcycle fatalities last year, representing a 32% spike. Rear-end collision victims can suffer serious bodily injuries and property damage, and you have the right to sue the at-fault party to get compensated.
The legal process is often complicated, with numerous details to cover. At Pacific West, we take pride in being a client-focused personal injury law firm dedicated to providing quality legal counsel and advocacy. Our legal team can ensure you get the personalized support you need throughout the legal process, from initial consultations to the negotiation stage.
How a Car Accident Lawyer Can Help
The US DOT Federal Highway Administration surveyed various crashes occurring at intersections. Rear-end collisions accounted for 33% of these crashes. These incidents are a major problem for motorists, who sustain costly injuries and property damage.
However, a lawyer can help you with your claim by gathering evidence to corroborate your story. They can investigate the incident in several ways:
A motorcycle accident lawyer can retrieve the collision footage from any local business with a camera aimed at where the accident occurred. That footage could provide valuable data to determine the cause of the collision and undermine the defendant’s version of the story.
It’s recommended that crash victims get witnesses’ identities and contact information. Using that information, an attorney can interview them to obtain statements that can help bolster your claim because witnesses provide independent accounts of the incident – they don’t have personal interests in the lawsuit’s outcome.
“Black Box” Data Recorder
Suppose there are no cameras or witnesses to corroborate your statement. In that case, your lawyer can retrieve data from the car’s “black box” – an event data recorder that stores information regarding airbag deployment, vehicle speed, and braking. This data can confirm your version of events and prove the defendant’s negligence.
For instance, if the motorcyclist who rear-ended you said that you applied brakes abruptly, the information from the black box can prove them wrong, tilting the case to your favor.
Common Rear-End Collision Expenses
Property damage is the most common loss stemming from motorcycle rear-end crashes. A collision dents your car, and you’ll need compensation to cover the repair costs. The extent of damage depends on various factors, including the speed of the vehicles at the time of the accident.
These collisions can also result in bodily injuries, which force you to spend significantly on medical bills. Sometimes, you might require complementary or rehabilitative health programs to reach full recovery, which costs money. Besides, you might also lose finances in lost income and out-of-pocket payments to replace damaged property.
Statute of Limitations on Motorcycle Collision Claims
Accidents are traumatic events, and it’s almost an insult to discover that you have a deadline to file your motorcycle accident claim. A statute of limitation defines the period in which an accident victim can file a claim and get compensation.
According to the Nevada statute of limitations (Nev. Rev. Stat. Annotation §11.010), you have two years from the date you discover the injury to sue the wrongful party for a rear-end collision. Once the period expires, the court considers your claim null and void. It means you can’t pursue compensation.
Nonetheless, there are some situations when the court may suspend the statute of limitations to extend the time. Below are some circumstances that might toll the case:
The Plaintiff Is a Minor
Nevada civil court can suspend the statute of limitations if the accident victim is less than 18 years, except in medical negligence cases. However, the countdown to the deadline begins once they attain legal age.
The Victim Discovered the Injuries at a Later Time
Suppose you were rear-ended and suffered internal injuries that only manifested a while after the expiry of the two-year window. In that case, the court may toll the statute of limitations.
The Defendant Is Out of State
When the defendant is out of state, the lawsuit can’t proceed. Meanwhile, the court can suspend the two-year timeline. However, the statute of limitations becomes active once the at-fault party is back in the state.
Proving Negligence in a Motorcycle Rear-End Collision Claim
Most lawsuits filed against motorcyclists in rear-end collisions proceed under the negligence theory. It means that the claimant must prove negligence on the defendant’s part. Proving negligence focuses on three prongs:
- Breach of duty – Every motorist owes a duty of care to other road users. Hence, you must prove that the defendant breached their duty of care to you.
- Negligence – The defendant’s negligence or failure to act caused the injuries and damages you sustained.
- Injury – As a claimant, you must prove that you suffered injuries due to the accident and are entitled to compensation.
Nevada is one of the states that follow the “contributory/comparative negligence” rules. It limits your recovery amount by distributing liability proportionately based on your contribution to the collision. Generally, if your fault, as the claimant, was greater than the defendant’s, you won’t receive any compensation.
For example, if the court determines that your negligence contributed 51% of the fault, you may not be eligible for a compensatory amount. But if you contributed 20% to causing the accident, you’ll be entitled to 80% of the total settlement fee. The essence of employing the comparative negligence law is to hold each party accountable for their actions that constitute negligence.
Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer and File a Motorcycle Rear-End Collision Claim
Instead of handling the claims process yourself, partner with a professional, seasoned motorcycle accident attorney to maximize your compensatory amount. A lawyer provides legal advice, negotiates with the at-fault party’s insurance company, offers an informed estimation of the settlement value and legal representation (if the case goes to trial), and levels the playing ground for both parties.
If you’ve been involved in a motorcycle rear-end collision, partner with Pacific West Injury Law today. We are an experienced personal injury office with a seasoned legal team that has handled numerous motorcycle accident claims. Contact us to speak to an experienced personal injury attorney.