Motorcyclists are some of the most vulnerable drivers on the road because of their exposure to injury. At the same time, however, juries and insurance companies often have a bias against motorcyclists. This makes it difficult to recover damages after an accident, adding another hurdle to your claim. Who your attorney is will make a big difference in how you and your accident are perceived. That’s why you need the Atlanta, Georgia motorcycle accident law firm of Schneider Hammers.
Just like any other driver, a motorcyclist who is the victim of an automobile accident may be entitled to compensation. Getting that compensation, however, may be easier said than done. You and your Atlanta, Georgia motorcycle accident attorney will still need to go through insurance and possibly a trial. Along the way, you could encounter these and other biases:
The motorcyclist must have been negligent. Stereotypes are difficult to overcome, and there are many when it comes to motorcyclists. Many people often assume they are irresponsible or unruly young people or gang members. This equates to presuming the motorcyclist’s liability even before hearing all of the facts.
The motorcyclist must have been speeding. We often think of motorcycles as especially fast and able to dart in and out of traffic. Some people base their perceptions of motorcyclists on previous personal interactions or observations. We’ve all seen motorcyclists race and endanger others, but obviously not all of them do this.
The motorcyclist was too hard to see. It’s true that motorcyclists are often more difficult to see than other vehicles. Unfortunately, jury members and others often use this to excuse clearly negligent automobile driver behavior. Instead of evaluating whether the driver was negligent, far too many are ready to give them a pass.
The motorcyclist is not entitled to fair damages. Regardless of why, some people just don’t like motorcyclists. This prejudice influences insurance adjusters and jury members alike. It is often revealed with low-ball settlement offers or paltry awards of damages.
In reality, most motorcyclists are responsible citizens who diligently observe traffic laws. They just want the fair treatment they deserve from insurance companies and courts. Bias against motorcyclists is an unavoidable reality in our legal system. But having an experienced Atlanta, Georgia motorcycle crash attorney is key to overcoming it.
Your lawyer will work to acquire the evidence needed to prove the at-fault driver was negligent. Some of that evidence may include:
- Photographs and video of the accident scene
- Photographs of the damage done to the motorcycle
- Diagrams of the accident scene with careful measurements of distances
- Medical records documenting the nature and extent of your injuries
- Accident witness statements
- Expert witness statements, including accident reconstructionists
An Atlanta, Georgia motorcycle accident attorney can also help rebut any attempts to impugn your character. This means using character witnesses and statements from family, friends, and others. In doing this, your lawyer will help put a human face to the accident – your human face. This makes it more difficult to justify bias and will help improve your chances of successful recovery.
The jury selection process is a major step in weeding out potential jurors who have a bias against motorcyclists. We understand the process and will use our experience to demand a jury that is fair. Insurance companies often base their low-ball settlement offers on how well they think the defendant would do at trial. Many insurers expect jurors to have stereotypes about motorcyclists and could use this as a reason to offer little. We anticipate all stages of an accident claim and work to eliminate biases where we can.
Schneider Hammers Can Help You Overcome Bias Against Motorcyclists
If you were involved in a motorcycle accident, having an attorney is critical to winning the most compensation. Not only will you have to prove your case, you may need to defeat biases and stereotypes in getting there. Turn to the accident attorneys of Schneider Hammers. We have experience representing motorcycle accident victims and we will fight for you. Reach out to us today to schedule your consultation.