New York City Motorcycle Accident Lawyers
Experienced Attorneys Fight for the Maximum Compensation Possible
The attorneys at Rubenstein & Rynecki have a thorough understanding of the motorcycle-related issues that typically lead to accidents. Each lawyer at our firm has extensive experience in fighting for maximum awards for motorcycle accident victims.
The Risks to Motorcyclists on New York Streets
In many ways, motorcycles offer a viable alternative to larger vehicles when navigating congested NYC streets. However, traffic congestion also increases the risks of motorcycle accidents. Drivers of cars and other larger vehicles cannot always see motorcycles — and drivers tend to put responsibility for accident avoidance on motorcyclists, even though the rules of the road apply to all vehicles.
Though motorcycle accident fatalities are declining, accident numbers remain quite high. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there were 4,985 accidents in 2018, 5,229 in 2017, and 5,337 in 2016. Even if they wear helmets, motorcyclists do not benefit from the same protection afforded to occupants of other types of vehicles.
Collisions have a greater likelihood of causing serious injuries, including head and brain trauma, broken bones, internal injuries, and debilitating spinal cord damage — particularly when accidents throw riders from their vehicles. Riders who are in serious accidents often need extensive and costly medical treatment and therapy over a long period to achieve full or partial recovery, while others face permanent disability.
How Our Attorneys Can Help
In addition to dealing with extensive injuries, motorcyclists can face adverse public opinion when claiming the negligent acts of others caused an accident. At Rubenstein & Rynecki, we anticipate and seek to counteract negative attitudes on the part of potential jurors. We conduct thorough investigations, using a network of investigative experts when needed to develop compelling evidence for each case. We also rely on medical specialists to accurately compile a list of all past, current, and future anticipated expenses to help our clients pursue the full value of their claims.
Damages Available for a Motorcycle Accident
Because motorcycle injuries can be so severe, an accident victim may need a lifetime of compensation to cover medical and personal care, as well as lost earnings.
Damages recoverable after motorcycle accidents can include:
- Present and future medical bills
- Present and future lost wages
- Expenses for rehabilitation and personal care
- Expenses for home modification to accommodate a disability
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of quality of life
- Loss of enjoyment of life
As your advocates, our highest duty is to recover the maximum amount of compensation available given the facts of your case.
Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents
Motorcycles accidents can be caused by numerous factors. Knowing the warning signs can help you keep an eye out and potentially save you from an accident. Here are some of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents:
- Distracted drivers
- Inexperienced drivers
- Drunk driving
- Vehicles suddenly stopping
- Reckless driving (speeding)
- Poor weather conditions
- Lane changes
- Poorly maintained roads
Do You Have to Wear a Motorcycle Helmet in New York?
Per New York state law, all operators and their passengers on a motorcycle must wear a helmet. The helmet must meet federal DOT requirements as well. Riders also must be wearing proper eye protection, whether that is the face shield on a helmet, goggles, or other approved eyewear. In New York City, if you choose to not wear a helmet and are caught, you can face fines of $100, be sentenced to 30 days in jail, or both.
Most notably, however, if you are involved in a motorcycle accident that isn't your fault and you chose to not wear a helmet, the amount of compensation you receive could be reduced. This is because you could share fault for your injuries by not wearing a helmet.
How New York’s Comparative Negligence Rule Can Limit Your Recovery
Since 1975, New York has operated under the rule of pure comparative negligence. This means that an injured party who shares the blame for an accident can recover damages from an at-fault defendant, but those damages are reduced according to the injured party’s degree of negligence. Even if you are mostly at fault, you can recover some measure of compensation. However, you could be severely injured and be unable to recover the full amount of your losses. For example, if your total economic and noneconomic losses total $400,000, but you are 20% at fault for the crash, you can only collect 80% of your damage amount, or $320,000.
As your counsel, we not only prosecute your case against at-fault parties, but we also defend you against accusations that you were also at fault.
Your Time to Act Is Limited
Under New York law, a lawsuit must be filed within three years of the date a motorcycle accident occurred. While there are exceptions that could extend that period, you should act as quickly as possible. Over time, evidence can be lost, and witnesses’ memories can fade. A delay could seriously compromise your case.
Seek Support from an Experienced Motorcycle Accident Lawyer in New York
If you or a loved one sustained injury in a motorcycle accident, the experienced lawyers at Rubenstein & Rynecki can make a difference to your case. It costs nothing to schedule a free consultation with a lawyer at our firm.
Call (718) 522-1020 or contact us online today for a free consultation — no recovery, no fee.