How is Fault Determined in a Motorcycle Accident?

October 19, 2020

If you or somebody you love owns a motorcycle or operates one on a regular basis, then you already understand that these vehicles are riskier to use than traditional passenger cars. When motorcycle accidents occur, there is often an unfortunate bias against the motorcyclist by insurance carriers and other parties involved. That is why it is crucial that any motorcycle accident victim work diligently to prove liability if another party was at fault for the crash. Here, our Phoenix motorcycle accident lawyers want to discuss how liability is determined in the aftermath of a motorcycle accident.

Determining Fault after an Arizona Motorcycle Crash

According to the Arizona Department of Transportation, we can see that there were 2,676 total motorcycle crashes across the state during the latest reporting year. Out of these incidents, 170 people were killed and 2,235 or injured.

While a motorcycle crash is much more likely to result in severe injuries or fatalities, proving liability in the aftermath of these incidents is done much the same way as other vehicle crashes. Liability can fall on to any party involved in the incident, including:

  • Passenger vehicle drivers
  • The motorcycle driver
  • Government entities responsible for roadway maintenance
  • The manufacturer of the motorcycle

If you are a motorcyclist that has been involved in a crash, you can take steps to help prove liability. If you are able to safely do so at the scene of the crash, you should gather as much evidence as possible. This includes:

  • Using a smartphone or other device to take photographs of any damages to vehicles, traffic slow, injuries, debris, etc.
  • Getting the names and contact information of any eyewitnesses to the crash.
  • Ensuring that law enforcement officials come to the scene of the crash to conduct their investigation.

By using the evidence gathered at the scene of the crash along with the accident report completed by law enforcement, insurance carriers will work to determine liability for the incident.

Comparative Negligence in an Arizona Motorcycle Accident

In Arizona, even a person that is partially responsible for their injuries can recover compensation. The state operates under a “pure comparative negligence” system. This means that an injured party is allowed to recover compensation even if they are up to 99% at fault for the incident. However, the total amount of compensation an injury victim receives will be reduced based on their percentage of fault.

For example, if a jury determines that an injured motorcyclist should be awarded $100,000 in compensation for their losses, but also determines that the motorcyclist was 20% responsible for the incident, then the motorcyclist will receive $80,000 in compensation.

Contact a Skilled Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Immediately

If you or somebody you love has been injured in a motorcycle crash caused by the actions of another party in Arizona, contact the team at Torgenson Law for help with your case today. Our qualified and experienced attorneys will work diligently to ensure your claim is fully investigated and that you secure maximum compensation for your losses. When you need an Arizona motorcycle accident lawyer, you can contact us for a free consultation of your case by clicking here or calling (602) 759-0012.