Houston Motorcycle Accident Attorney
Motorcycle Accidents in Texas
When it comes to serious motor vehicle accidents, especially fatal collisions, motorcyclists are at a disproportionately high risk. Even with motorcycle helmets and protective clothing, many riders suffer catastrophic injuries when they are struck by larger, heavier vehicles. The process of filing an insurance claim or suing the at-fault party for damages can be extremely difficult without the help of a skilled and experienced attorney.
At Vaughan Legal Trial Team, we proudly represent injured motorcyclists and those affected by fatal motorcycle accidents in and around Harris County, as well as throughout the state of Texas. Our Houston motorcycle accident attorneys has more than two decades of legal experience and has recovered over $100 million on behalf of our clients. If you or someone you love was involved in a serious motorcycle accident, reach out to our team today to learn how we can help you fight for the justice and fair compensation you are owed.
What Is the Leading Cause of Motorcycle Accidents?
According to the Texas Department of Transportation (DOT), 482 motorcyclists were killed in traffic accidents statewide in 2020. Additionally, more than 45 percent of motorcycle operators and passengers killed in fatal accidents were not wearing helmets.
Sadly, most motorcycle accidents are entirely preventable. These collisions typically result from negligence—occasionally, the negligence of the motorcycle operator but, more often, the negligence of another motorist on the road.
Some common causes of motorcycle accidents that can be attributed to negligence include:
- Driving too fast for current conditions
- Following too closely/tailgating motorcyclists
- Violating traffic laws
- Making dangerous or illegal turns
- Unsafe lane changes/merging
- Failing to check for motorcyclists in vehicle blind spots
- Opening car doors into the path of oncoming motorcyclists
- Distracted driving, including texting while driving
If you believe someone else was at fault for the accident that led to your injuries or the death of your loved one, you could have a personal injury or wrongful death case. We encourage you to reach out to our Houston motorcycle accident attorney at Vaughan Legal Trial Team today to learn how we can help.
Who Is Responsible for a Motorcycle Accident?
Because Texas follows a traditional fault-based, or “tort,” system when it comes to motor vehicle accidents, the person or party who caused the accident is typically the one responsible for the victim’s damages. In other words, you will need to prove that the other motorist (or another third party, such as the manufacturer of a defective vehicle part or product) was to blame.
Under the state’s modified comparative negligence rule, you can still file an insurance claim or lawsuit against the liable party if you were partially at fault for the accident—as long as your percentage of fault does not exceed the other party’s. In other words, you must be 50 percent or less at fault in order to have a claim.
The insurance adjuster assigned to your claim is the one responsible for determining fault. Often, in an effort to limit payouts, insurance adjusters will assign an unfair percentage of blame to injured accident victims. This is especially true in motorcycle accident cases, as many people (including insurance adjusters) believe motorcyclists to be largely dangerous, risk-taking drivers.
Do You Have to Wear a Motorcycle Helmet in Texas?
In Texas, if you are under the age of 21, you must wear a motorcycle helmet when riding a motorcycle. Passengers under the age of 21 must also wear a helmet. However, riders who are over 21 have to wear a helmet as well, unless they have completed an approved motorcycle training program or have medical insurance of at least $10,000 in coverage. It’s also worth noting that law enforcement cannot stop someone for not wearing a helmet.
If you do meet the requirements to be able to not wear a helmet, it’s a personal choice. However, motorcycle helmets have proven to save the lives of riders who choose to wear them. If you’re involved in a motorcycle accident, you are much more likely to be injured than those in a car accident. Because of this, it’s a good choice to wear proper gear while riding.
At Vaughan Legal Trial Team, we know that this is not true. Our team is prepared to fully investigate the accident and use all available evidence to advocate for the maximum compensation you are owed.