If I received a traffic ticket following a Florida motorcycle accident, do I still have the ability to file a claim for injuries I suffered?
Author: Attorney Jason Macri
Only a small percentage of the public know how to properly ride a motorcycle. Most of the drivers on Florida’s streets have only driven an automobile and have never even been on a motorcycle. All they know about motorcycles is that they are loud, fast and appear to be extremely dangerous. Because of this, most motorcyclists are stigmatized by the public and are referred to as daredevils or even troublemakers. The truth is that riding a motorcycle can be a very liberating and joyful experience that cannot be replicated by an automobile.
It is true, however, that riding a motorcycle in Florida can be a very dangerous proposition. Many of our drivers are very young and inexperienced, or even elderly with diminished senses. It may be more difficult for this type of driver to easily recognize a motorcyclist on the road, which would allow the driver to avoid a collision with the motorcyclist. Many of Florida’s younger drivers use their cell phones to text while driving, which can present a real danger for any other driver on the roadway, especially a motorcyclist.
As a result of the danger presented to many motorcyclists, there are a fairly large amount of accidents involving motorcycles. Unfortunately, these accidents will typically result in great bodily injury for the motorcyclist. Many times the injury is incapacitating and the arriving officer does not have an opportunity to speak with the motorcyclist before they are taken to the hospital. In this case, the officer will only consider the explanation given by the driver of the other vehicle and any potential witnesses. This scenario can result in a citation for the motorcyclist, even if the accident is not their fault.
Though being issued a citation is certainly not helpful for your personal injury case, it does not prevent you from being able to make a claim for your injuries. Your attorney will always have the opportunity to investigate your accident to determine who was truly at fault. Your attorney may even want to hire an accident reconstructionist in an effort to prove the accident was not your fault. Though the officer who has issued your citation may have investigated many accidents in his/her career, the officer is no match for an experienced accident reconstructionist who has been highly educated in the field of engineering and the laws of physics. If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident, seek legal counsel immediately. It may make the difference between potentially being held liable for an accident and being able to be compensated for your injuries.