Ocala Motorcycle Accidents
Ocala is the county seat of Marion County, which is located in central Florida. It’s the 49th most populous city in the state. It is known for a number of attractions such as the Appleton Museum of Art, as well as its proximity to Silver Springs State Park and the Ocala National Forest. Big highways that run through Ocala include Highway 441, United States Route 301, United States Highway 27, and Interstate 75. Motorcycle accidents on these roads and others can have devastating consequences. By 2008, the percentage of motorcycle fatalities made up 17.8% of all traffic fatalities in Florida. If you have been injured or a loved one has been killed in a local collision of this nature, the dedicated Ocala motorcycle accident attorneys of the Dean Law Firm may be able to help you assert your legal rights.Ocala Motorcycle Accidents
Motorcycle accidents happen in Ocala for many different reasons. One common reason is the negligence of a driver of a larger vehicle. A driver’s negligence may involve speeding, texting, drunk driving, reckless driving, tailgating, weaving, driving aggressively, unsafe lane changes, or simply being too distracted to see a smaller vehicle. Often helmets save motorcyclists’ lives in the event of an accident. They are considered to be around 37% effective at preventing fatal injuries. However, in many situations catastrophic injuries and death may be inflicted on a motorcyclist even if the driver of the larger vehicle leaves unscathed.Holding Negligent Parties Accountable
To recover compensatory damages from a negligent driver in a lawsuit after a motorcycle accident, you will need to prove the plaintiff: (1) owed you a reasonable duty of care, (2) breached the duty of reasonable care, (3) causation, and (4) damages. A skilled motorcycle accident lawyer serving Ocala can help you pursue your case.
Florida courts follow the doctrine of comparative negligence. That is, your damages can be lowered by an amount equal to your percentage of fault. The jury will look at the evidence and arguments, determine your damages, and attribute a percentage of fault to both you and the defendant or defendants. Your damages will be lowered by an amount proportionate to your degree of fault. It’s important to be aware that if you weren’t wearing a helmet and you suffered traumatic brain injuries or a skull fracture or some other head injury, the jury might conclude that you are partially to blame for your own injuries. Your damages may be lowered accordingly.
Insurers often exploit the doctrine of comparative negligence and deny reasonable settlements to motorcyclists, banking on the bias jurors so often hold against motorcyclists. This is one reason it can be important to retain an experienced Ocala motorcycle accident attorney if you are seeking compensation following a serious collision.Compensatory Damages
Damages you may be able to recover after a motorcycle accident caused by someone else, assuming you establish liability, include both noneconomic and economic losses including pain and suffering, mental anguish, lost wages, replacement services, medical bills, disfigurement, and lost earning capacity. The amount of damages depends on the extent of injuries and may also hinge on your personal characteristics. For example, the way a jury evaluates your facial scar may be different if you are a young woman who works as a model than it would evaluate your facial scar if you are a reclusive elderly man.Wrongful Death in Motorcycle Accidents
If your loved one was killed in a motorcycle accident because of another’s negligence or recklessness, you may be able to recover damages by bringing a wrongful death lawsuit. When someone’s death is caused by another’s negligence, wrongful act, default or breach of contract, a decedent’s estate may bring a civil lawsuit in Florida’s courts asking for a legal remedy for the death and the losses arising out of it. A wrongful death lawsuit is distinct from a criminal prosecution, and liability is expressed in the form of monetary damages. The purpose of the wrongful death lawsuit is to recover for losses arising out of the wrongful death such as funeral and burial expenses, medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and lost services.Consult an Experienced Motorcycle Accident Attorney in Ocala
If you are injured or a loved one was killed in an Ocala motorcycle accident, it is wise to consult experienced legal counsel. The lawyers of the Dean Law Firm, Michael E. Dean and Timothy S. Dean, were born and raised in Ocala and have decades of combined experience representing accident victims. We offer seasoned and tenacious legal representation. Call (352) 387-8700 to set up a free consultation with our attorneys or contact us online.