When a motorcycle rider gets into an accident in Alpharetta, the injuries can be severe. Motorcyclists have less protection than other motorists. It’s also much easier for drivers to miss seeing a bike before changing lanes or merging.
After a motorcycle accident caused by an unsafe lane change, our team of Alpharetta lawyers can help. We know how to build personal injury claims for the compensation you deserve. You might be entitled to money for your medical costs, lost income, and emotional damages.
At John Foy & Associates, we have over two decades of experience helping injured motorcyclists and their families. As one of Georgia’s largest injury firms, we are not afraid to fight for your rights. Call us at (404) 400-4000 or contact us online to learn more during a FREE consultation.
How Unsafe Lane Change Motorcycle Accidents Happen
All vehicles have blind spots that prevent drivers from seeing certain areas. Drivers should know to look around at their blind spots before changing lanes. However, smaller vehicles like motorcycles are harder to see.
Car and truck drivers often overlook motorcycle riders, including before changing lanes. If a driver doesn’t check carefully for a biker before merging, they can collide with the motorcycle. There is little time for the motorcyclist to swerve away or avoid a collision. Even if they move away from the first driver, they might be forced into another lane of traffic, causing another serious accident.
Unsafe lane change accidents can happen if a driver:
- Fails to use a blinker before changing lanes
- Swerves in and out of lanes
- Doesn’t check their blind spots before merging
- Moves into a motorcyclist’s lane
- Changes lanes and slows down quickly in front of a biker
Bikers also have a responsibility to ride safely. They must switch lanes carefully, provide enough room between other drivers, and wear reflective gear at night.
Although the driver might try to blame the biker, it’s rarely the other way around. Drivers often cause accidents by failing to notice a motorcyclist or give them enough room.
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Driver Negligence that Causes an Accident
There are many reasons a driver might change lanes unsafely, including:
- Aggressive driving towards a motorcyclist
- Driver fatigue
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Texting while driving or other distracted driving
- Failing to yield before changing lanes
Unfortunately, some drivers have unfair biases against bikers. A driver might see a motorcycle rider as reckless or irresponsible. In some cases, the police will also hold wrong views of bikers, impacting a police report or injury claim.
If you or a loved one were hurt because of an unsafe lane change, you have rights. You might need help from an Alpharetta motorcycle accident lawyer who can protect your rights. A lawyer will protect the driver or their insurance company from taking advantage of your situation. They’ll also help build a strong injury claim to prove what happened and your damages.
At John Foy & Associates, we can help you get started as early as today. Call us at (404) 400-4000 or contact us online to learn more during a FREE consultation.
Proving Fault in an Accident Caused by an Unsafe Lane Change
All drivers in Georgia have a “duty of care” to be safe on the road. If someone fails to uphold their duty, they are responsible for an accident they cause. As the injured party, you must prove that the other driver was negligent.
Negligence is an absence of care, according to the Official Code of Georgia Annotated (OCGA) §51-1-2. Making an unsafe lane change on the road is an example of negligence. When that negligence leads to an accident, the negligent driver is responsible for the damages.
An injured motorcyclist can file a personal injury claim for compensation for their injury costs. The injury claim must prove the following:
- Legal duty: The other driver had a duty of care to drive safely.
- Failed duty: The driver breached their duty of care by making an unsafe lane change.
- Failed duty led to an accident: The driver’s hazardous lane change led to the motorcycle accident.
- Damages: The motorcyclist was injured and has damages because of the accident.
Proving each of these points takes time. You’ll need to gather evidence of the accident, the driver’s negligence, and your damages. Thankfully, you don’t have to do this alone. An experienced lawyer can help you gather evidence and build a case.
Deadline to File an Injury Claim
In Georgia, there is a statute of limitations on how long you have to file a claim. After a motorcycle accident, you typically have two years from the accident date to bring legal action.
Time goes quickly after a tragic accident. It’s best to get started as soon on your case as possible. If you file an insurance claim, the insurance company will probably offer a lowball settlement. You and your lawyer will need time to negotiate for a fair offer or take the case to court.
Recoverable Damages from an Unsafe Lane Change Accident
Any losses from accident injuries are your personal injury damages. If you were not at fault for the accident, you can seek recovery for your damages.
Examples of motorcycle accident damages include:
- The costs of treating your accident injuries
- Prescription medication costs
- Future medical treatment needs
- Physical therapy or rehabilitation
- Lost wages from having to miss work time
- Loss of earning capacity
- Property damage to your motorcycle, including replacement costs
- Pain and suffering damages
Some damages are easier to prove than others. You can show your economic damages through medical bills and other documents. However, pain and suffering damages do not have a set dollar amount.
An experienced lawyer can help you calculate all of your accident damages. From there, a lawyer can determine the type of compensation you deserve. The goal is a full financial recovery for what you’ve lost.
Talk to an Alpharetta Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Today
If you were injured or lost a loved one in a motorcycle accident, don’t wait to get help. Our Alpharetta unsafe lane change lawyers are here for you. We have been helping injured bikers for over 20 years, and we’re not afraid to fight for your rights.
Call us at (404) 400-4000 or contact us online for a FREE, no-risk consultation. You don’t pay us unless we win your case, and there are no upfront costs.