Motorcycle Accidents Attorney in Wichita, Kansas
Traffic accidents of any kind have a high probability of causing injuries ranging from minor scrapes and bruises to significant, life-altering trauma. Motorcycle accidents, however, have a much higher risk of serious injury due to the nature of the vehicles involved.
If you or someone you love was injured in a motorcycle accident, you have the right to take legal action to seek the financial compensation you deserve. At Hess Law LLC, I take the time to get to know my clients and their unique situations in order to provide them with personalized service and strong legal advocacy. Contact me today to schedule a consultation. I proudly serve individuals and families in Wichita and throughout Sedgwick County, Kansas.
Steps To Take If You Were in a Motorcycle Accident
Immediately after being in a motorcycle accident, there are specific things you need to do to both ensure the safety of everyone involved and make sure your bases are covered if legal action is taken later on.
Seek Medical Attention
Before doing anything else, be sure to seek proper medical attention to assess your physical condition as soon as possible after the accident. The earlier you are examined by professional medical personnel, the better chance you have of recovering from serious but not-yet-evident injuries that may have occurred in the accident.
Gather as much documentation and evidence as you can from the accident scene. Any type of official account, such as police reports, witness testimony, and statements from all parties involved in the accident can be valuable when going through the legal process to seek compensation for your injuries.
Notify Your Insurance Provider
Like navigating the legal process, filing an insurance claim can be complicated and time-consuming. Getting the ball rolling quickly is always a wise option. Contact your insurance provider and make sure the insurers of the other parties in the accident are notified and aware of both the accident and the potential for legal action.
Hire a Personal Injury Attorney
In addition to seeking professional help for your physical well-being, finding a professional to assist you on the legal front is imperative. An experienced personal injury attorney can help you assess the accident, determine if you have grounds to take legal action to seek compensation, explain the options available to you, and lead you through each step of the legal process. Having skilled legal representation in your corner can give you peace of mind that you are in the best possible position from a legal standpoint.
Kansas Laws Regarding Motorcycles
Traffic laws vary from one state to another. Knowing how the state of Kansas governs the operation of motorcycles is important for any rider.
Riding between lanes of traffic—even if the other vehicles are stopped—is prohibited in Kansas. Motorcycles, like other vehicles on the road, are legally entitled to an entire lane while on the roadway, though two motorcycles are allowed to ride side-by-side in a single lane.
The state of Kansas requires all passengers under the age of 18 to wear a DOT-approved helmet when riding a motorcycle. All riders 18 years of age or older must wear eye protection but are not required to wear a helmet.
In order to legally carry a passenger on a motorcycle in Kansas, the motorcycle must be equipped with proper seating for a passenger, as well as footrests for the passenger. There is no age requirement for motorcycle passengers.
In order for a motorcycle to be street-legal in Kansas, it must be equipped with:
A rear-view mirror on each side
A functioning horn
Functioning turn signals
Front and rear brakes
Functioning headlights, tail lights, and brake lights
Determining Fault in Kansas
Eligibility to pursue compensation—and the amount to which you could be entitled to receive — is dependent on determining who was at fault for the accident. Placing the blame on another party largely comes down to two factors: proving the party was negligent and determining the percentage of fault.
As with most legal matters involving negligence, it must be proven that the responsible party owed you a duty of care, the party breached that duty of care, and this breach directly resulted in the accident and your injuries.
The state of Kansas adheres to a “modified comparative fault” system, meaning each party involved in an accident can share a portion of the fault. In order to be eligible to pursue compensation, you must be 50% or less at fault for the accident. Whatever amount of compensation is awarded in a personal injury lawsuit will be reduced by your percentage of fault. For example, if you were found to be 20% at fault for the accident, you would only be eligible to receive 80% of the total amount awarded. Keep in mind that you must be 50% or less at fault to recover any damages at all.
Motorcycle Accidents Attorney in Wichita, Kansas
The aftermath following a motorcycle accident can be uncertain and frightening. To pursue the financial compensation you need to help with your injuries, you need an experienced personal injury attorney by your side. If you are located in Wichita or anywhere in Sedgwick County, Kansas, contact me at Hess Law LLC today to schedule a consultation to discuss your case.