When seriously injured in a motorcycle crash, you need a lawyer on your side who knows what to do. Boulder attorney Chris Jeffress has more than two decades of experience. Early in his legal career he worked for the insurance companies, so he has an insider's perspective on what they do in order to close a claim as quickly and cheaply as possible. For a free claim evaluation, please call us at 303-993-8685.
While working for the insurance companies, Mr. Jeffress realized he empathized with the injured person across the table from him. He decided he wanted to change course and dedicate his career to fighting on behalf of people who had been seriously injured. Please see the sections below to learn more about motorcycle accident claims in Colorado:
- Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents
- Determining if You Have a Claim
- Fault in a Motorcycle Accident
- Catastrophic Motorcycle Accident Injuries
- Motorcycle Accident Compensation
- Motorcycle Laws in Colorado
- How You Can Be a Better Motorist Around Motorcycles
- Your Free Consultation
When you choose Boulder motorcycle accident attorney Chris Jeffress, you will be receiving personalized, one-on-one legal services. Mr. Jeffress is the only lawyer at his law firm and he handles each case personally. You will be communicating with him closely throughout your case. At our boutique practice, you receive a level of attention that is not typically possible at many of the big firms. Mr. Jeffress is driven by providing individualized services to each of his clients.
Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents
There are many reasons a motorcycle accident may occur. Sometimes they don't have anything to do with other motorists, but are caused by bad weather or debris in the road. Motorcycles require skill and experience to handle, and sometimes a bike meets with dangerous conditions that a passenger vehicle can avoid.
In other scenarios, the motorcycle accident is in fact caused by another motorist. While a motorcyclist can cause a crash, oftentimes drivers of passenger vehicles are responsible. Here are some of the most common ways:
- Making a left turn in front of a motorcycle
- Turning in front of a motorcycle
- Crowding a motorcycle in their lane
- Reckless driving
- Distracted driving
- Drunk driving
- Driving aggressively near the motorcyclist
- Following the motorcycle too closely
- Roads in a state of disrepair
- Dangerously designed roads
These things can be linked back to someone else's careless actions or inaction. This carelessness is known as negligence. In the blink of an eye, someone's negligence can have life-altering consequences.
Determining if You Have a Claim
There are a few elements that are typically present in a motorcycle accident claim handled by a lawyer:
- You were involved in a crash
- The crash was caused by someone else
- You were injured
- Your injuries are a direct result of the crash
The grounds for any crash claim is that someone else's carelessness caused an accident. Why should the injured victim have to face insurmountable medical bills without getting compensated to the fullest degree?
Sometimes the insurance company doesn't want to compensate you to the fullest degree. In fact, it's not in their best interest. Like any business, they are focused on profits and keeping outgoing payments as low as possible. They may offer you a low settlement or deny your claim. As an outsider to the insurance industry, you may not be sure if this is a fair offer or not. Chris Jeffress is looking out for your interest and your interest only. Although we cannot guarantee a compensation award, we can guarantee we will not stop fighting for you until the best possible outcome is reached.
We know how insurance adjusters work to close your claim, and we can anticipate their tactics. You deserve every dollar available after getting injured in a crash caused by someone else. Mr. Jeffress used to work for the insurance companies, so he knows exactly what goes on when the insurance company receives a claim. He puts this inside knowledge to work in your claim.
Fault in a Motorcycle Accident
There are many people, corporations and entities that can potentially be at fault for causing a crash. It's not always the most obvious party. Sometimes it's not someone who was at the scene of the crash, but someone involved in the process of building the bike or designing the road. Parties commonly at-fault include:
- Other motorists
- Truck drivers
- Other motorcycle riders
- Manufacturers of faulty motorcycle parts
- Architects of dangerous or defective roads
Because of the many liability factors that may be involved, it's usually a good idea to get a lawyer on your side when you are involved in a serious crash.
Mr. Jeffress works with investigators and motorcycle experts to obtain evidence for your claim. He build a strategic case by doing so, never relying on the police report alone to resolve your claim. He has the skill and experience to bring your claim to trial if necessary, doing whatever it takes to secure the best possible outcome. We also do not stop working for our clients the moment a settlement is reached; we keep working until all the injury bills our client has have been taken care of.
Catastrophic Motorcycle Accident Injuries
Because they offer no protection, motorcycles can easily injure and kill the motorcyclist when a crash occurs. As a motorcyclist, you accept this risk as part of owning and operating a bike, and you do what you can to mitigate the risk. When a crash occurs, the injuries can be life-altering:
The most important thing after these crashes is to get the medical care you need. Your health and safety should be the priority. Mr. Jeffress is familiar with the health care providers in the Boulder area. He can help direct you to getting the care you need. These types of catastrophic injuries can be debilitating, disabling and extremely painful.
The severe nature of these injuries can change the course of your life. You may require special medical equipment like a wheelchair or modifications to your home. You may need a lot of expensive medical care or ongoing physical rehabilitation. These things can really add up in terms of dollars and cents.
Motorcycle Accident Compensation
In a successful motorcycle accident claim, a compensation award may be calculated based on a variety of things, such as:
- Medical bills
- Loss of income
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Loss of enjoyment of life
If the claim does not revolve around an injury but the death of a loved one, then you are probably eligible to pursue a wrongful death claim. When a loved one is killed in a motorcycle accident that was someone else's fault, you may be eligible for compensation. Although no amount of compensation can undo the loss you have experienced, it can help you address the medical expenses, burial expenses and other impacts of your loved one's passing.
Motorcycle Laws in Colorado
There are several laws specific to motorcyclists anywhere in the state of Colorado:
- Obey all the same traffic laws as other motorists
- No helmet required for motorcyclists age 18 and older
- DOT-approved helmet required for motorcycle riders under age 18
- Some type of eye protection is required for all motorcyclists in Colorado, such as a visor on a helmet
- Motorcyclists may not pass another vehicle inside the same lane in Colorado (i.e. no lane splitting)
- Motorcyclists may share a single lane with one other motorcycle
Head injuries are the leading cause of death in motorcycle accidents.1 Even though a helmet is not required for adult riders in our state, you should wear one. As an experienced accident lawyer, Mr. Jeffress has seen first-hand how catastrophic injuries can be when safety equipment is not used. Fortunately, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 64 percent of motorcyclists in the US used a DOT-approved helmet in 2015, which was up 60 percent from the previous year. Based on their 2013 statistics, the NHTSA estimates 1,630 lives were saved that year because of helmet use.
How You Can Be a Better Motorist Around Motorcycles
There are things you can do as a motorist to prevent these accidents:
- Provide at least 3 seconds or more following distance (provide more room in bad weather)
- Provide the motorcycle the full width of the lane
- Don't drive distracted
- Make sure you check for motorcycles when making a turn or changing lanes
Sometimes one of the best things you can do is learn to expect motorcycles on the roads, highways and freeways. We all expect to see cars and trucks. But many crashes between passenger vehicles and motorcycles are caused by a failure to see and recognize the motorcycle. They aren't as common on the roadway, but if you expect and plan for them to be there, you may find you are more aware of their presence.
Your Free Consultation
Have you been injured in a motorcycle accident in Boulder, Colorado, or in any of the surrounding areas such as Longmont or Broomfield? If so, please call Jeffress Law, PC, at 303-993-8685, for a free case evaluation. Experienced attorney Chris Jeffress is ready to fight aggressively for you.