Motorcyclists Are Protected Under Colorado’s Traffic Laws Too
There’s little that compares to the exhilaration and sense of freedom you feel when riding a motorcycle. When you factor in Colorado’s beautiful backdrop, scenic roadways, popular destinations, and the 300+ days of sunshine, not surprisingly, our state is one of the most coveted places for motorcyclists. Unfortunately, as experienced motorcycle accident lawyers in the Denver metro area, we know our mountain roads and busy streets don’t come without danger, regardless if riders are obeying the law. Most motorcyclists involved in accidents are not the at-fault driver but the victim. Yet, many victims of motorcycle accidents believe they have their backs against the wall when it comes to the law. Motorcycle riders are protected under Colorado law just like any other driver or passenger. And although motorcyclists often have a poor reputation for being reckless traffic law violators, we know this stereotype is usually not justified.
Why Choose Our Motorcycle Accident Lawsuit Attorneys?
The personal injury attorneys at Chalat Hatten & Banker have represented victims in every type of roadway and motor vehicle accident, and with every type of injury or circumstances of wrongful death. In-depth experience, insight, and compassion are required to represent motorcycle accident victims. We know that riding a motorcycle differs from driving a car. Our motorcycle accident lawsuit attorneys understand the implications of those differences when reconstructing a motorcycle accident and presenting the case to the jury. And, like every roadway accident, careful investigation and research are crucial to a successful motorcycle accident claim. As the victim or as the bereaved family, you are likely facing many months of painful physical and emotional recovery. We’d like to be the experienced legal ally on your side, letting you focus on the difficult process of healing and closure. Our Denver motorcycle accident attorneys will help you understand your rights, answer your questions about who’s responsible and how you will pay for medical expenses or loss of income, and whether you have a potential case.
Benefits of Working with Us
- No case is ever the same. We create a tailored, individualized strategy for every case we handle and use innovative trial and legal techniques to achieve the best outcomes for our clients and their families.
- We have over 30 years’ experience successfully representing motorcycle collision victims. Our settlements and verdicts surpass tens of millions of dollars.
- Our lawyers are your point of contact. We believe in hands-on case management and a direct line of communication. We work diligently to ensure our clients understand what we are doing on their behalf, from the start to the very end.
- At our firm, you are never a case number. Your recovery and future are always our priority.
- Cases are taken on a contingency fee basis. You do not have to pay any legal fees unless we secure a settlement on your behalf.
Why Do I Need a Motorcycle Accident Victim Attorney?
Are you wondering if you need a motorcycle accident victim attorney? In severe motorcycle accidents causing significant damages and injuries, the answer is almost always yes. However, you may not need a lawyer to help handle your claim if the damages to your vehicle were minor. Hiring counsel makes it possible for you to focus on recovery while the motorcycle accident attorney takes on the legal matters. We are motorcycle accident attorneys who are not only proficient in the relevant laws, procedural rules, and the medicine that may affect a case, but we’re also undeniably effective at negotiating with insurance companies. This is what we do every day, year-round. Consider these other reasons:
Though insurance companies have a duty to handle each claim honestly and fairly, they are not on your side. As for-profit corporations, insurance companies often offer low settlements or deny valid claims outright. Without an experienced attorney by your side, you are at the mercy of the insurance companies and their settlement tactics.
Approximately 95% of personal injury cases are settled before trial. When you hire a motorcycle accident law firm with a successful history of taking cases to court, this can give you an advantage. Working with an attorney with an excellent reputation in the courtroom and favorable jury verdicts immediately strengthens your negotiating power.
Liability & Medical Knowledge
Motorcycle accident injury claims can be complex. It helps to have motorcycle accident lawyers who are skilled at compiling, preserving, and presenting evidence and proving the other party’s liability for the accident, subsequent injuries, economic damages, and other non-economic losses, such as pain and suffering and emotional stress.
A reputable motorcycle accident lawyer has vast resources, including expert witnesses and accident investigators, to help you recover maximum compensation. Studies show claimants with legal representation typically walk away with about three times as much compensation, after legal fees, compared to those who handle their own legal matters.
How This Works
A careful case review will be performed by your lawyer to assess the strengths and weaknesses of your case. Then the conclusions of this review are presented to you in a thorough, understandable manner.
For more details: Litigation Process.
What Commonly Causes Motorcycle Accidents in Colorado?
As Colorado motorcycle collision attorneys, we understand the many challenges and dangers motorcyclists face on the road. We have also seen just how serious a motorcycle accident can be. Whenever a motorcyclist hits the road, they are statistically in more danger than a typical motorist. Common causes of motorcycle wrecks include:
- Left turns
- Lane splitting
- Dangerous roadways
- Drunk driving
- Speeding/time to stop
- Defective equipment
What Are Common Injuries From Motorcycle Accidents?
Motorcycles lack any structural protection and have fewer high-tech safety features than cars. Because of this, motorcyclists are far more likely to suffer severe or fatal injuries when involved in a collision. On average, motorcyclists are 27 times more likely than passenger car occupants to die in a crash per vehicle mile traveled and are over five times as likely to be injured. Riders may suffer from these injuries after a motorcycle crash:
- Traumatic brain injury
- Spinal cord injury
- Road rash
- Broken bones
- Back injury
- Neck injury
- Loss of limb
- Soft tissue injury
- Blunt force trauma
- Internal injuries
Your Guide to Understanding Colorado Motorcycle Laws
Motorcycle drivers must not only obey all the same traffic laws as other motor vehicles on the roadways (e.g., signaling before making a turn, yielding to the right of way, coming to a complete stop), but they also must abide by a specific set of motorcycle laws to operate their vehicle in Colorado. As outlined by the Colorado Department of Transportation, the minimum safety standards for motorcycles include:
Helmets – Colorado law allows motorcyclists to decide for themselves whether or not to wear a helmet. To legally not wear a helmet, a motorcycle rider must be at least 18 years old.
Eye Protection – Some form of eye protection, like a visor on a helmet or goggles or eyeglasses with lenses made from safety glass or plastic, is legally required for all riders-drivers and passengers in Colorado.
Footrests – Motorcycles must be equipped with footrests for passengers; passengers must utilize them.
Riding Position – Passengers cannot ride in front of the driver; they must ride on the seat behind the driver or to the side.
Passing or Overtaking – Passing or overtaking a vehicle in the same lane is illegal in Colorado; lane sharing and lane splitting with cars are also illegal. However, motorcycles can share a lane or “co-ride” with one other motorcycle.
Clinging – Motorcyclists cannot attach their motorcycle to another vehicle, i.e., grab onto another motorcycle or vehicle (i.e., towing).
Our experience and knowledge extend to insurance questions and details. This includes primary auto coverage, under-insured and uninsured policies, stacking, excess and umbrella coverage, permissive driving coverage, family car doctrine, and bad-faith and excess claims. If you have a motorcycle accident with complications in insurance coverage, we have the experience to assist you.
Establishing Fault in a Colorado Motorcycle Accident
Like all motor vehicle accidents, negligence must be proven for a motorcyclist to recover damages from the at-fault party. The motorcycle accident lawyer must prove the following to establish a basis for a personal injury lawsuit:
- A legal duty was owed to the injured person
- The at-fault party breached that duty
- The injured person suffered damages
- The breach of duty caused the injuries
Seeking Maximum Compensation in Motorcycle Accident Cases
Motorcycle accidents usually result in life-changing injuries. We have represented victims who were airlifted and hospitalized for Level 1 care. Therefore, we understand the implications of complex, multiple and high-trauma injuries, related surgical procedures, and rehabilitation. Our experience has involved every Level One hospital and pediatric facility in Colorado. We have a solid reputation for ethical and informed relationships with the medical staff in these hospitals and with the rehabilitation community, including Craig, Spalding, and other rehab/TBI/SCI institutions. The nature of the severe injuries suffered when a rider or motorcycle passenger crashes often means expensive treatment and rehabilitation are needed over a long-term period. Other expenses which arise include future medical expenses. This is often coupled with losing income if the victim was employed. In addition, it is common for other family members to lose time away from work. The injured victim may seek compensation from the negligent party for all expenses.
The personal injury attorneys at Chalat Hatten & Banker understand that a motorcycle crash can turn your life upside-down. For over 30 years, we’ve protected the rights of victims and will fight to do the same for you. While past results are never a guarantee of future results, we do recommend viewing our motorcycle accident case reviews to see what types of settlements we have achieved. Contact our Denver motorcycle accident attorneys to discuss your rights during your free initial consultation.
What Sets Us Apart
- Offer a 100% free, comprehensive initial consultation;
- Explain your rights and help you understand Colorado motorcycle laws;
- Answer any questions about your case;
- Fully investigate the motorcycle accident;
- Carefully assemble all relevant evidence;
- Provide legal resources and experience to build a strong claim;
- Consult with experts;
- Assess and pursue the full extent of your damages;
- Negotiate with the insurance company;
- If necessary, represent you in court