Statistics by the state’s highway department in Florida have revealed that on average, the state records nine thousand casualties of motorcycle-related accidents every year. In most of these cases, a lot of money is spent on hospital fees related to treatment and recovery.
The serious damage caused by motorcycle accidents cannot be emphasized enough. According to reports by doctors and surgeons, brain trauma is very common in motorcycle-related accidents due to a lack of protective gear.
Compensation laws in Florida for passengers injured in motorcycle accidents are different from cases involving single riders. Usually, victims of motorcycle passenger accidents can demand reparations from more than one party to compensate for the injuries suffered.
What are Florida’s Laws for Motorcycle Passengers?
Riding a motorcycle undoubtedly comes with a number of risks since riders are less protected compared to car passengers. This is further compounded by the fact that some people neglect to wear a helmet to protect themselves in the event of an accident. This puts them at a high risk of serious head injuries and brain trauma.
According to Florida’s laws, adults over the age of 21 are not mandated to wear a helmet if they have insurance policies that cover over ten thousand dollars in injuries. Furthermore, while there is a law that prohibits passengers from riding motorcycles designed for single riders, this has not prevented passengers from being callous about safety. On the contrary, it has only made passengers pickier when it comes to the vehicles they ride.
Nevertheless, Florida law stipulates that children must wear helmets when riding on motorcycles. Given how fragile children are, this law helps to uphold the safety of young kids when traveling on bikes. The state also requires all passenger motorcycles have footrests to prevent the driver from losing balance.
Strangely enough, despite the risks associated with riding a motorcycle while intoxicated, there is no law that prohibits riders from doing so. The problem with this is that it makes it difficult for attorneys to defend them in the event of an accident.
Who Can Be Held Accountable for Motorcycle Passenger Injuries in Florida?
No two motorcycle accidents are the same. As such, the person who is held accountable may vary on a case-by-case basis. However, in most instances, the motorcycle rider is held responsible since they are the ones handling the vehicle. If the accident involves another vehicle such as a car, van, truck, or motorcycle, the driver of that vehicle may also be held liable for the collision. Additionally, the owner of the vehicle may also be held responsible if they are different from the driver. In such cases, the owner is considered reckless for lending their vehicle.
In some cases, the company that manufactured the motorcycle may also be held accountable if their product used defective parts that endangered the lives of passengers. If alcohol contributed to the accident, the establishment or bar that served it may also be considered for liability. Finally, insurance companies can also be sued if they fail to deliver the full extent of their client’s coverage.
How does the Process of Pursuing These Liabilities Work in Florida?
In order to seek coverage from an operator’s insurance plan, you need to prove that the accident was caused by negligence. In cases where there were no other accidents on-site, the compensation claim is made only on the driver of the vehicle. This same policy applies to motorcycles that were perfectly functional and devoid of defects prior to the accident.
To prove negligence, an attorney is required to present evidence that the driver was careless during the ride and that their actions directly caused passengers to suffer injury. Some actions that can be considered negligent include speeding or failing to observe traffic regulations.
If more than one driver is involved in the accident, both of them may be held liable. In cases where it is difficult to pinpoint which driver was in the wrong, the defendants may share responsibility for compensating the injured passengers.
The motorcycle manufacturing company may also be sued if the accident can be attributed to the poor design of the vehicle or defective parts such as brakes, wheels, and chassis.
Given the numerous factors at play, passengers involved in motorcycle-related accidents need professional assistance to help them seek reparations for the injuries suffered. If you are in need of a motorcycle accident attorney, contact us today and let us help you file a compensation claim.