Chicago Motorcycle Accident Lawyer

Qualified Chicago Motorcycle Accident Lawyers

Malman Law is Chicago’s most trusted injury attorney. We win 95% of our cases. When you are in a motorcycle accident, you must have someone working for you. Our litigation team has worked on over 20,000 personal injury lawsuits. We have won multi-million dollar claims and have an exceptional track record of success. Whether your case is big or small, your Chicago motorcycle accident lawyer will treat it with the attention, respect, and guidance you deserve. Our team can help you overcome this situation and come out whole again. We fight for you when the insurance company is fighting against you.

Why Trust Malman Law with Your Injury Case in Chicago?

You have many law firms to choose from in Chicago, so why should you speak with Malman Law about a possible case?

  • Our founder, Steven Malman, has been representing injury clients for over 30 years
  • Our firm is a leading and respected authority on Chicago personal injury law
  • We have a special interest in representing vulnerable clients, including seniors who suffer neglect or abuse
  • Our legal team has handled more than 20,000 personal injury cases involving a wide range of accidents and injuries
  • We represent clients with catastrophic injuries and help them move forward with proper financial support

Malman Law is dedicated to protecting the residents of Chicago, both in personal injury practice and community service. We represent victims of many types of motorcycle accidents, including traffic crashes, falls, workplace accidents, nursing home abuse, and medical malpractice. 

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When Should You Hire A Motorcycle Accident Attorney?

The best thing is to hire a Chicago motorcycle accident attorney immediately following an accident. This way, you avoid any potential issues with legal statutes or evidence collection. However, there are some signs to look for that can push you towards hiring a lawyer sooner rather than later. They include:

  • You suffered an injury in a motorcycle accident
  • The accident was the result of someone else’s negligence
  • You are unsure of your legal rights or next steps

If any of these situations apply to you, you must call Malman Law immediately. Some victims will wait to seek legal representation. As a rule of thumb, you should speak to a lawyer sooner rather than later. The state and insurance companies impose strict deadlines. If you try working with the insurance company and realize they are lowballing you, that can be the perfect time to speak to a Chicago motorcycle accident attorney.

Benefits of Hiring a Chicago Motorcycle Accident Lawyer

The most significant benefit of hiring a motorcycle accident lawyer near you is having someone repressing your best interest. Most cases settle out of court, but we are always ready to go one step further. Our team will gather evidence, determine negligence, and more. We are prepared to pursue compensation for our clients from all responsible parties. Some tasks our legal team will manage for you include:

  • Gathering evidence: The basis of your injury claim will depend on the evidence you can present to the court. The most vital element is the police report. Another essential piece of evidence is any photographs of the scene, your injuries, and bike damage. We will also attempt to locate and speak to any relevant witnesses.
  • Assessing medical damages: Extensive medical treatment is common in many motorcycle accidents. When you suffer an injury, you will need medical attention. Our Chicago motorcycle accident lawyer will alleviate some of the burdens of finding the appropriate medical professional to treat your injuries. We will also request medical records to build your case. This can include surgery reports, physical therapy records, ambulance reports, and pharmacy receipts. We may also gather recorded statements from medical staff about your condition.
  • Reviewing property damage: Your injuries are one significant loss, but so is your property. Your motorcycle will be crucial to your claim. We will review the damage as evidence and work to recover the costs for the bike’s value.
  • Assessing lost wages: You might be unable to work or earn a living. Some clients will use their vacation and sick time to recover from the accident. They often believe they cannot be reimbursed for these benefits, but you can. Time off work can help you build a strong claim showing how much your injury affects your daily life. Catastrophic injuries, like brain or spinal injuries, often lead to permanent employment or working capacity loss.

Having a motorcycle accident attorney handling the above processes can significantly help your chances of recovery. This also alleviates some of your worries, as someone else must gather this evidence and file a claim. We will work to position you in the best way possible for fair compensation.

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Malman Law’s founder Attorney Steven Malman has over 30 years of experience handling personal injury, nursing home, medical malpractice, premises liability, construction and workers’ compensation cases.

STEVE J. MALMAN
Founding Attorney

Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents in Chicago

  • Chicago Motorcycle Accidents Due To Unsafe Lane Changes: Any local driver will tell you that unsafe lane changes are frequent occurrences on Chicago roads. An ill-advised lane change that would merely inconvenience a motorist, however, can cause a high-speed accident for a motorcyclist.
  • Chicago Motorcycle Accidents Due To Opened Car Doors: Few actions are more thoughtless than opening a car door into oncoming traffic. Unfortunately, few actions are more dangerous if you are a motorcyclist. Justice demands compensation if you are injured in this manner — and at Malman Law, justice is our business.
  • Chicago Motorcycle Accidents Due To Speeding: The laws of physics dictate that the faster an object is moving, the more serious the accident will be if a collision occurs. The vulnerable position of a motorcyclist, deprived of the frame protection that a motorist enjoys, virtually guarantees a serious injury.
  • Chicago Motorcycle Accidents Due To Sudden Stops: A motorist is obligated to keep his vehicle under control at all times. Generally speaking, a motorist who stops suddenly is presumed liable for any accident that results. When the other vehicle is a motorcycle, however, the consequences can be particularly serious.
  • Chicago Motorcycle Accidents Due To DUI: A DUI accident often triggers two legal proceedings — a criminal prosecution and a civil claim for damages. Unique legal issues may be raised. Punitive damages may be possible, for example, and under certain circumstances, a third-party alcohol vendor can be joined as a second defendant.

The overwhelming majority of motorcycle accidents are caused by cars

Driver negligence is a real concern for bikers, whose vehicles offer almost no protection from the terrible force of an impact. Motorcycle riders are often injured more gravely because their vehicles do not have the features of four-wheeled vehicles, such as airbags, steel frames, and seat belts. Compare a four-wheeled passenger vehicle (3,000-4,000 pounds) or a semi-truck (up to 80,000 pounds) to a motorcycle (200-300 pounds), and you can see from that perspective as well why motorcyclists are so vulnerable. The bottom line is motorcyclists are 29x more likely to be killed in a crash than people in cars.

Common Injuries from Chicago Motorcycle Accidents

  • Head Injuries From Motorcycle Accidents In Chicago: Even though Illinois is one of the minority of states that do not require motorcyclists to wear helmets, a defendant can still raise the defense of failure to wear a helmet. With a good lawyer, however, this defense will not necessarily succeed. Moreover, a motorcyclist can suffer a head injury even while wearing a helmet.
  • Road Rash From Motorcycle Accidents In Chicago: A motorcyclist is far more likely to suffer a “road rash” injury than a motorist is. Since these injuries can be excruciatingly painful, and since permanent scarring can result, the potential value of a “road rash” claim can be quite high. A lot, however, depends on the skill and dedication of your lawyer.
  • Spinal Cord Injuries for Motorcycle Accidents in Chicago: Just like when actor Christopher Reeve was thrown from his horse and permanently paralyzed from the neck down, the same type thing can happen when being thrown from a motorcycle. Spinal cord injuries are very expensive to treat, with quadriplegia running over one million dollars for the initial hospitalization and about $185,000 each year thereafter. Other complications associated with spinal cord injuries include spasms, loss of fertility, struggling to breathe, loss of touch sensitivity, inability to control the bladder or bowels, sexual dysfunction, and ongoing tingling and stinging sensations.
  • Muscle Damage From Motorcycle Accidents In Chicago: If you suffered muscle damage in a motorcycle accident, you might not realize the full extent of your injuries until some time afterward. Don’t settle for token compensation that barely covers your medical bills — you might be entitled to quite a bit more to cover non-economic damages such as pain and suffering and disability.
  • Biker’s Arm From Motorcycle Accidents In Chicago: A “biker’s arm” injury can occur when you draw up your arms to cushion yourself from the initial impact of a motorcycle accident. Although certain symptoms might not show up immediately after the accident, permanent nerve damage sometimes results. When a biker’s arm injury occurs, you are entitled to considerably more than simple reimbursement for your medical expenses.
  • Leg Injuries From Motorcycle Accidents In Chicago: When you ride a motorcycle, your entire body is exposed. No part of your body is more exposed than your legs, and a collision that might have amounted to a fender-bender for a motorist can result in a catastrophic injury for a motorcyclist.
  • Amputations from Motorcycle Accidents in Chicago. Limbs are easily lost in motorcycle accidents in which riders are pinned between their bike and another vehicle. Loss of an arm or leg results in something known as “phantom pain,” which is uniquely difficult. Furthermore, prosthetic limbs range from $3,000 to $70,000. Often amputees need to have their living spaces modified and drive specialized vehicles as well.

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The process of filing a motorcycle accident claim in Chicago

The claims process has various steps to get you the compensation you require. The first step is speaking to a Chicago motorcycle accident lawyer. Then, we can start addressing your case with the insurance company. The personal injury claim process often looks like this:

  • Free consultation: You will discuss your accident with our Chicago motorcycle accident attorney. We will review preliminary information about your insurance and potential case. You can also ask questions and determine if the firm is right for you.
  • Presenting a demand package: You will undergo your medical treatments while we begin to compile evidence and build your claim. Once you reach maximum medical improvement, we will send the insurance company a demand package detailing your injuries, losses, negligence, and the compensation you request.
  • Communicating with relevant parties: There will be a lot of communication with different parties to gather evidence, negotiate your case, etc. Our team will handle these communications to ensure you are not stressed during this time.
  • Settlement offers: The insurance company may submit a settlement offer early on. Their assessment is usually much lower than your case worth. We will review the offer with you and decide the best route forward.
  • Filing an injury lawsuit: Often, the insurance company will settle out of court. It saves everyone time and money. However, there are times when they refuse to negotiate towards a fair settlement. That means it is time to file an injury lawsuit. This will begin a more involved process to get you the compensation you deserve.

Parties who may be liable for your injury

Various parties can be responsible for your accident and injuries. Typically, it is the at-fault driver who was negligent. However, an investigation will uncover other relevant parties liable for your damages. A typical example would be if the driver were working during the accident. Their employer could be liable for your injuries in some circumstances. A part manufacturer can also be responsible. Some parties who can be liable for your injuries include:

  • At-fault driver
  • Government entity
  • Employer
  • Parts manufacturer

Government agencies are responsible for maintaining the roads. As we know, Chicago is notorious for potholes. Their failure to maintain the streets can lead to an accident, making them responsible for a legal claim

How our Chicago motorcycle accident attorneys prove negligence

Our Chicago motorcycle accident lawyer will fight the insurance company to get you the maximum compensation for your injury claim. The best way to do this is by proving negligence. You must prove the other party was negligent and, therefore, at fault. Negligence is a contentious topic that involves a person failing to exercise reasonable care. These failures then result in harm to another person. The essential elements of negligence in Chicago motorcycle claims include:

  • The at-fault party owed you a duty of care
  • Their actions or lack of action breached that duty
  • The breach then caused the accident
  • You suffered injuries from the accident that was caused by their breach

While it might sound simple, there are many pitfalls you can encounter along the way. Working with a Chicago motorcycle accident lawyer with experience investigating these cases and proving negligence is best. Aside from gathering evidence, we may also employ the assistance of expert witnesses who will provide testimony about your case. Malman Law will use all available resources to get you a fair settlement. Contact us to schedule an initial consultation today.

What Factors Might Affect Your Chicago Motorcycle Accident Claim?

Many different factors can impact the resolution of your motorcycle accident claim. It is best to have someone with experience handling these factors before or when they arise. All cases are unique, but some items will overlap in many instances. Some of the factors that might impact your claim include:

  • Determining fault and liability
  • Third parties or conditions that contributed to the cause of the accident
  • Lost time from work
  • The severity of injuries sustained by either party
  • If the accident resulted in a fatality,
  • The insurance coverage each party has
  • Future medical care assessment
  • Current medical care you are receiving and the costs associated with them
  • Pain and suffering
  • Victim’s family needs and losses when there is a fatality
  • Amount of damages to your vehicle and other property

These are just some factors that can impact your case. There may be others. As you can see, trying to handle these cases alone is ill-advised. Speak to our Chicago motorcycle accident lawyer after an accident.

Safety Tips for Bikers Recommended by Malman Law

Did you know that motorcyclists are 29x more likely to die in a crash than people in cars? Here are a few tips to get back home safe when you’re out on a bike ride.

Use Protective Gear

No, helmets are not required by state law, but they do save lives. Since 2002, more than 25,000 bikers have escaped death by wearing motorcycle helmets, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Furthermore, the most commonly impacted area of the head in a motorcycle crash is the chin (about 20%), so not only should DOT-compliant helmets be worn, but full-face helmets are definitely recommended.

Stay Visible

Slow down and ensure approaching cars make eye contact or otherwise acknowledge you. Always turn your lights on regardless of the time of day, and wear bright colors–even if it’s just a flag or helmet. Statistics show that 3/4 of motorcycle crashes are caused by other drivers not seeing the motorcyclist. Be seen!

Check the Weather Before a Long Ride

In the Windy City, wind can definitely be a safety factor for motorcycles, along with unexpected rain or snow. Especially for longer rides, check the weather and plan accordingly.

Say No to Speeding

Speeding is the cause of 1/3 of fatal motorcycle crashes, reports the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. It’s easy to speed when driving a motorcycle, no doubt about it, but considering a riders’ vulnerability, speeding is far more deadly on two wheels. Slow down. It will also help other drivers to see you better.

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This page has been written, edited, and reviewed by a team of legal writers following our comprehensive editorial guidelines. This page was approved by President and Founder, Steven J. Malman who has more than 20 years of legal experience as a personal injury attorney.

FAQs for Chicago Motorcycle Accidents

How much would it cost to hire Malman Law for my motorcycle accident case?

We offer free initial consultations so you understand what is in store for your claim and future. We also work on a contingency fee basis. That means we do not charge any upfront fees for our services. We will take a percentage out of your settlement award. You might be wondering what happens if you don’t win your case. Well, if that happens, then you do not pay for anything. So hiring Malman Law costs nothing out of pocket and is risk-free for you.

How to file a motorcycle accident lawsuit in Chicago?

You must speak to a Chicago motorcycle accident lawyer to file a lawsuit. Lawsuits can be a daunting task as it involves many legal processes. When you are looking to file a lawsuit, you will go through the following steps:

  • Request a Free consultation
  • Sending a demand package
  • Negotiations with the insurance company
  • Reviewing settlement offers
  • Filing an injury lawsuit

A lawsuit is typically necessary when the insurance company is unwilling to settle your claim. Most motorcycle claims will settle out of court and may not require a lawsuit. You should prepare for either outcome.

Where do most motorcycle accidents occur in Chicago?

The most common place motorcycle accidents happen is on city roads or streets. There were 1,022 biker injuries and 39 deaths in these locations. Often, motorcycle accident fatalities occur during the weekdays. Nearly 8% of fatal crashes occur on the interstate. The other 92% happen on non-interstate roads. Other statistics of note include:

  • 61% happen in urban areas
  • 39% happen in rural areas
  • 97% of motorcycle deaths occur during slightly cloudy or clear conditions
  • 2% happen during rain, and 1% occur in snow, sleet, or fog

Motorcycle accidents are known to happen in intersections. However, in Chicago, more fatalities occur on non-intersections than intersections. Motorcycle accidents can happen anywhere during any season or street.

How is a motorcycle accident settlement for pain and suffering paid out in IL?

Illinois law allows injury victims to get compensation for intangible losses like pain and suffering. This compensation is reserved for those who experience chronic pain long after medical treatment. Sometimes, these damages are awarded in a trial by a jury. You must have a lawyer calculate these damages. They often involve multiplying your tangible losses. It will be paid with your settlement.

How long will it take to receive compensation for my injuries?

The statute of limitations for motorcycle accidents is two years from the injury date. You will have this time to file a lawsuit. However, that does not determine how long it will take to receive your compensation. The first hurdle is to reach a case resolution. This can take weeks or months, depending on case facts. If you have a complex case, you may go into litigation, which extends your settlement. Litigation can lead to resolving your claim within a year or more. Once you settle, it can take a few weeks to receive your settlement check.

How long does a motorcycle accident lawsuit take in Chicago?

A motorcycle lawsuit can take a few months to over a year. Generally speaking, cases can take six months to a year. Again, this is a generalization, and many factors can shorten or lengthen the process. The earlier you seek legal representation, the better we can prepare your case and get to a settlement. The lawsuit process has many steps, including:

  • Gathering evidence
  • Filing a claim
  • Negotiating with the insurance company
  • Filing motions and discovery
  • Reaching a settlement or preparing for trial

Am I required to carry motorcycle accident insurance in Illinois?

If you ride a motorcycle in Illinois, you must carry accident insurance. The requirements for the insurance include:

  • $15,000 for property damage
  • $20,000 for injuries or death per person per accident
  • $40,000 for injuries or death per accident

If the motorcycle has more than 150 ccs in engine displacement, you must also register your bike in the state.

Are motorcyclists required to wear helmets in Chicago?

No motorcycle riders are legally required to wear a helmet in Chicago. While no legal requirements exist, wearing a helmet is still a good idea. Enough research shows how vital it is to wear a helmet. Helmets are often attributed to saving lives. Nationwide, only 63% of riders wear helmets, and this number seems to continue to decrease.

Who is most often at fault in motorcycle-car crashes in Chicago?

Motorcycle accidents are very complex. You must have an investigation to determine who is responsible for paying your damages. Parties that can be responsible for your Chicago motorcycle crash include:

  • Government entities
  • Other drivers
  • Construction companies
  • Motorcycle part manufacturer
  • Motorcycle manufacturer

The party most often at fault for motorcycle and car crashes is the passenger vehicle driver. The reasons behind this vary but are usually because the person was not paying attention to the rider.

What percentage of motorcycle accidents are the rider’s fault?

Yearly, 70,000 to 80,000 people are injured in motorcycle crashes in the United States. Less than one percent of all traffic collisions involve motorcycles. It is estimated that between 25 and 40% of all motorcycle accidents are the rider’s fault. It is much lower than what most people assume. Other motorists are usually at fault for these collisions.