Unsafe Lane Changes

Knowledgeable Motorcycle Accident Attorneys Serving Grand Rapids, Traverse City, and Detroit Residents

Almost every vehicle that a motorcyclist will encounter on the road is better able to withstand a crash than a motorcycle. The passengers and driver of a passenger car have safety belts and airbags to protect them. By contrast, even a motorcyclist who is wearing a helmet and leather gear is relatively unprotected against the force of a collision with a larger vehicle, so he or she must stay alert to every potential threat. Unfortunately, some crashes involving motorcycles occur due to unsafe lane changes by other drivers, which are hard for a motorcyclist to anticipate or avoid.

If you or someone in your family was hurt in a motorcycle accident resulting from another driver’s unsafe lane change, contact the Traverse City motorcycle accident lawyers at Neumann Law Group. Each year for the past several years, award-winning trial attorney Kelly Neumann has regularly secured more than $3 million in personal injury cases on behalf of the firm’s injured clients.

Holding Negligent Drivers Accountable for Accidents Caused by Unsafe Lane Changes

In Michigan, about 50 percent of motorcycle crashes are side-impact collisions, many of which are caused by another driver’s improper lane change. In most cases, the at-fault driver was negligent in making an unsafe lane change. To recover damages, the motorcyclist will need to establish by a preponderance of the evidence that the driver owed a duty of reasonable care to the motorcyclist, the driver breached the duty, causation connected the breach to the crash, and actual damages resulted.

How to Tell if a Driver Was Negligent in Causing a Motorcycle Accident

Drivers have a duty to drive safely while obeying all applicable traffic rules and taking road conditions into account, and there are many activities in which a driver may engage that constitute a breach of this duty. For example, the at-fault driver may not have checked a blind spot, or the driver may not have turned on a turn signal or may have been texting while driving and drifted into the motorcyclist’s lane. If this movement causes a collision, the motorcyclist likely will be able to recover compensation for his or her injuries.

Are Michigan Motorcyclists Required to Purchase No-Fault Insurance?

In Michigan, motorcyclists are not required to purchase no-fault insurance for their motorcycles; however, no-fault benefits will cover certain economic damages. That said, motorcyclists in cases involving unsafe lane changes often suffer a serious impairment of bodily functions, permanent serious disfigurement, or death, all of which are considered “threshold injuries” that permit a lawsuit against an at-fault driver for noneconomic damages.

In some cases, the insurer for the at-fault party (who may also be the insurer responsible for paying a motorcyclist’s PIP benefits) will try to pin the blame on the motorcyclist. Michigan follows the rule of comparative fault. Under this rule, a jury assigns a percentage of responsibility to both the defendant and the plaintiff, and it reduces a plaintiff’s damages in proportion to his or her degree of fault.

What Are Non-Economic Damages?

Noneconomic damages are subjective losses such as mental anguish, pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of consortium. These can vary dramatically depending on which subjective losses a jury believes would reasonably flow from a particular injury. In addition to non-economic damages, successful plaintiffs can also recover for their economic damages, which includes compensation for their past and future medical expenses, lost wages, decrease in earning capacity, and property damage.

Discuss Your Injuries with a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer in Traverse City, Grand Rapids, or Detroit

If you have been hurt due to an unsafe lane change, the Detroit, Grand Rapids, and Traverse City motorcycle accident attorneys at Neumann Law Group can help you manage the process of filing a motorcycle insurance claim and, if necessary, a personal injury case. Neumann Law Group represents accident victims in Petoskey, Warren, Holland, Midland, Muskegon, Saginaw, Wyoming, Kalamazoo, Lansing, Flint, Ann Arbor, and communities throughout the Upper Peninsula, as well as in California and Massachusetts. Contact us at 800-525-6386 or through our online form to set up a free consultation with a motor vehicle accident lawyer. Calling is free, and we will not bill you for our services unless and until we can connect you with the compensation you deserve.

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I was involved in a terrible motor vehicle accident and was able to obtain a large settlement that will take care of me for the rest of my life. I also referred my friend to Neumann Law Group regarding a medical malpractice matter. She has also been overly satisfied with this firm. I highly...

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