Sometimes motorcyclists in East Tennessee carry passengers. If you rode as a passenger on a motorcycle and got into an accident that caused injuries, you may be able to recover compensation from either the driver of the motorcycle or the driver of another vehicle that was involved in the accident. If a defective motorcycle component caused a crash, passengers may also be able to recover compensation from a manufacturer. You should make sure to retain Knoxville motorcycle accident attorney Mark Hartsoe before speaking to the insurance adjustor for an at-fault party.Seeking Compensation for Passenger Injuries
Motorcycles may get into accidents for many different reasons, including driver errors like taking a turn too fast. If a motorcycle on which you were riding as a passenger is involved in a single-vehicle accident, your strongest claim may be against the driver of the motorcycle. In most cases, you will need to establish negligence. This means that you will need to show that the driver of the motorcycle failed to operate the motorcycle safely, the failure to operate it safely was the cause of the crash and your injuries, and you incurred damages, such as medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
In some cases, a motorcycle accident is the fault of the driver of another vehicle, such as a car or truck. Since motorcycles are smaller than passenger cars, a driver of a larger vehicle may not see them. Drivers may also be distracted and fail to be alert to the possibility of a motorcycle on the road. As a passenger on a motorcycle, you may also bring a lawsuit against another driver whose negligence or misconduct may have caused you to suffer injuries.
As a passenger, it is often a good idea to file a lawsuit against both the operator of the motorcycle and the driver of the other vehicle, unless it is obvious who was at fault. If the passenger is a member of the driver’s household, there will be an exclusion from insurance coverage, which must be considered. In many cases, the operator of the motorcycle and the other driver will point fingers at each other and disclaim responsibility. Often, further discovery or expert accident reconstruction testimony may resolve conflicts in the evidence to show who was at fault. The jury may evaluate all of the evidence and assign a percentage of responsibility to each party alleged to be at fault. In Tennessee, when more than one defendant is found to be at fault, each defendant is only responsible for an amount of damages equal to their own share of the fault for the accident.
Sometimes a motorcycle crashes due to a mechanical or product defect. For example, if the brakes unexpectedly fail, it would be worth consulting experts about whether there was an actionable defect in the vehicle that caused the accident. You may be able to recover compensation from the manufacturer under a theory of strict liability, which requires you to establish that there was a defect and that the defect caused your injuries.Explore Your Options with Knoxville Attorney Mark Hartsoe after a Motorcycle Accident
If you suffered injuries as a passenger, you should consult experienced Knoxville motorcycle accident lawyer Mark Hartsoe. Call the Hartsoe Law Firm at (865) 524-5657 or complete our online form for a free consultation. Hartsoe helps people who need a motor vehicle collision attorney throughout East Tennessee, including in Knox, Blount, Anderson, Campbell, Claiborne, Cocke, Cumberland, Fentress, Grainger, Greene, Hamblen, Hamilton, and Jefferson Counties.