Tag Archives: motorcycle accident lawyer

What Are The Dangers Of Driving Without Motorcycle Insurance In Florida?

Unlike other states, Florida doesn’t require riders to purchase motorcycle insurance. While It’s true that you aren’t legally required to buy a policy, it still makes sense to be insured. Motorcycle insurance can help cover your damages if you get into an accident and limit your financial liability. Insurance also protects you in other states, should you take your bike on a road trip. 

Is It Required To Have Insurance To Register A Motorcycle In Florida?

The registration process does not require a motorcycle operator to carry insurance to register their motorcycle. However, the driver is still financially responsible if charged in a bike accident.

THERE WAS A TOTAL OF 8,638
MOTORCYCLE CRASHES IN FLORIDA IN 2021. THIS MEANS THAT 0.069% OF THE MOTORCYCLE CRASHES IN FLORIDA IN 2021 RESULTED IN A DEATH.

SO WHY WOULD RIDERS NOT HAVE INSURANCE?

 

Does Florida No-Fault Coverage Apply to Motorcycles?

Florida is a “no-fault” state requiring personal injury protection coverage for your vehicle of four wheels or more. No-fault coverage ensures that all medical bills will be paid regardless of who was at fault in an accident. No-fault laws do not apply to motorcycles.

 

An Alarming Increase In Motorcycle Fatalities

The number of annual motorcycle fatalities observed in Florida has more than doubled over the past twenty years. Although there has been some decline since 2015, when a high of 584 was reached, motorcycle fatalities remain elevated, with an average of 550 per year from 2016-2021. Of additional concern, overall, traffic fatalities have increased by nearly 17% over the past five years, with motorcycle fatalities increasing by 3%.

 

Is Bodily Injury Liability Insurance Required in Florida?

While Florida allows motorcycle riders to drive without insurance, they are not absolved of their financial responsibility should they get into an accident (especially if the motorcycle rider has caused the accident). The state’s minimum liability coverage requirements for other passenger vehicles includes:

$10,000 for one person with bodily injury
$20,000 for two or more people with bodily injury
$10,000 per crash in property damage liability

While bodily injury liability insurance is not required it is recommended that you buy as much coverage as you can afford, since motorcycle accidents cause serious injuries and potentially high medical bills.

 YOU ARE 37 TIMES MORE LIKELY TO DIE IN A MOTORCYCLE ACCIDENT THAN A CAR ACCIDENT – NHTSA.GOV

 

What Happens If You Don’t Have Bodily Injury Liability Insurance At The Time Of An Accident?

If no liability coverage was in effect at the time of the accident, you could face significant penalties, including:

Having your driving privileges suspended
Having your registration and tag suspended
Being required to purchase bodily injury and property damage liability coverage for three years
Having civil judgments against you

 

ACCORDING TO SAFEROADS.ORG, THERE ARE 10 TIMES AS MANY UNHELMETED MOTORCYCLIST FATALITIES IN STATES WITHOUT UNIVERSAL HELMET LAWS (1,777) AS IN STATES WITH UNIVERSAL HELMET LAWS (170).

 

What Are Florida’s Helmet Laws, and Do They Impact Insurance?

While Florida doesn’t mandate motorcycle insurance in most cases, riders must purchase coverage if they choose to ride a motorcycle without a helmet. These riders must have insurance with at least 10/20/10 coverage. You can only legally ride without a helmet if you buy insurance beforehand.

 

MOTORCYCLE HELMETS REDUCE THE RISK OF HEAD INJURY BY 69 PERCENT AND REDUCE THE RISK OF DEATH BY 42 PERCENT.

 

Uninsured/Underinsured (UM) Coverage

Uninsured/underinsured (UM) coverage is vitally important if you ride a motorcycle. Most crashes result in serious injury and if the at-fault party has no bodily injury coverage or coverage with small limits, you will not be compensated for your injuries and losses. As Florida personal injury lawyers, we stress the importance of UM coverage for all drivers, and it is especially important for motorcycle riders. In Florida, bodily injury coverage is not required to drive, and many drivers in our area have not bodily injury coverage. When you buy insurance for your motorcycle, please request UM coverage, and buy as much coverage as you can afford. This coverage is relatively inexpensive and very important. This coverage will also afford protection to any riders who are injured on your motorcycle.

Since motorcycle crashes may often result in catastrophic injuries, please purchase liability and UM coverage. This is important to protect you and your family. A board-certified civil trial lawyer can advise you on coverage and can help you navigate through the complex laws involving motorcycle crashes.

Watch Our YouTube Video On This Topic >

 

Joe Zarzaur is a Board Certified Civil Trial Attorney whose firm is dedicated to promoting community safety since 2007. ZARZAUR LAW’S AREAS OF PRACTICE: Serious Personal Injury, Product Defect, Auto Accidents, Cycling Accidents, Motor Vehicle Accidents, Products Liability, Wrongful Death, Community Safety, Boat and Jet Ski Accidents, Slip and Fall Injuries, and more. Licensed in Alabama and Florida.

If you’ve been the victim of an accident, it’s important that you don’t make any rash decisions. Put yourself in the best possible position to receive the justice you deserve. It is also important to consult with a Board Certified Trial lawyer who has the knowledge and experience to help you. We know accidents can be stressful and want to make the process as easy as possible for you. Call Zarzaur Law, P.A. today at (855) Hire-Joe for a free legal consultation or visit www.zarzaurlaw.com.

Sources:

https://www.nhtsa.gov/road-safety/motorcycle-safety

https://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/motorcycle-accidents-common-causes-30330.html

https://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/motorcycle-accidents-road-hazards-30331.html

https://zarzaurlaw.com/motorcycle-accident/

https://zarzaurlaw.com/what-is-um-coverage-and-why-is-it-important/

https://zarzaurlaw.com/auto-accident/

https://www.moneygeek.com/insurance/motorcycle/do-you-need-motorcycle-insurance-in-florida/

https://ridesmartflorida.com/crashes-over-time/

Car Accident And Injury Caused By A Careless Driver Without A Vehicle Collision: Do You Have A Case?

Many times, car wreck victims are injured and even killed by careless drivers who never actually make contact with their vehicle.


The question then comes from these victims or their families: is there a legal case against the other driver even when there is no actual contact between the vehicles?

The short answer is “Yes, you may still have a case.”


Forced Off The Road By A Careless Driver

Often, careless “phantom” drivers force other drivers to suddenly change direction or force victims off the road. These sudden changes often result in the victim’s car being forced into opposing traffic or even a fixed object like an embankment or bridge pillar. This type of collision can be quite violent and can easily cause significant injury or death.

“Phantom Drivers” are all too real and all too dangerous. The problem is that a phantom driver leaves behind very little evidence, leaving you in a position where you have to prove someone else was at fault for your accident. 

Evidentiary Proof

The evidentiary proof is extremely important in these cases since, most of the time, the at-fault driver may not even remain at the scene. Usually, these at-fault drivers cause the victim to change their direction of travel, which results in a collision with another car or structure. The driver causing the chain of events will typically stop and observe, and then when they realize there was no impact with their vehicle, but they also appreciate the severity of the event, they will leave the scene.

They feel justified in leaving since there is no impact. The lack of impact, however, doesn’t lessen their responsibility for causing the event. It only makes it harder to prove the case. This is where an experienced Florida car wreck lawyer and a car wreck law firm come into play.

Law firms with vast car wreck case experience will have immediate access to resources like investigators and crash scene evidence investigation tools that make the identification of “phantom” careless drivers much more likely.

Motorcycle Accidents

Motorcycles are commonly involved in these types of accidents since they are smaller in size and much more likely to go unnoticed. Motorcycle drivers are forced in these situations to “lay down” their bikes, which can cause serious injuries or death as they skid with their bikes across pavement and, many times, can collide with fixed objects or other traffic.


In 2021, there were 8,575,569 registered on-road motorcycles in the United States, approximately double the number (4,320,807) in 2002. (IIHS, 2021)


If you or a loved one was injured or killed by a vehicle that did not make contact with any vehicle but was the cause of the accident, please feel free to contact our firm at zarzaurlaw.com or 855Hirejoe.

WATCH OUR YOUTUBE VIDEO  >


Learn More About What To Do If You Are In An Accident From Our Car Wreck Checklist >


Joe Zarzaur is a Board Certified Civil Trial Attorney whose firm is dedicated to promoting community safety since 2007. ZARZAUR LAW’S AREAS OF PRACTICE: Serious Personal Injury, Product Defect, Auto Accidents, Cycling Accidents, Motor Vehicle Accidents, Products Liability, Wrongful Death, Community Safety, Boat and Jet Ski Accidents, Slip and Fall Injuries, and more. Licensed in Alabama and Florida.

It is also important to consult with a Board Certified Trial lawyer who has the knowledge and experience to help you. We know accidents can be stressful and want to make the process as easy as possible for you. Call Zarzaur Law, P.A. today at (855) Hire-Joe for a free legal consultation or visit www.zarzaurlaw.com.

 

Sources:

https://www.iii.org/fact-statistic/facts-statistics-highway-safety

https://driving-tests.org/driving-statistics/

Why Should You Have Insurance if You Ride a Motorcycle in Florida?

Does Florida law require a motorcyclist to have insurance? Surprisingly the answer is no. The Florida “No-Fault Law” does not apply to motorcyclists, even though they may be injured or cause injury or property damage in a crash.

The NHTSA reports that 13 cars out of every 100,000 are involved in a fatal accident, but motorcycles have a fatality rate of 72 per 100,000. Motorcyclists are also at a greater risk of a fatal accident per mile traveled.

According to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), you are 37 times more likely to die in a motorcycle accident than a car accident – and nine times more likely to become injured while riding a motorcycle than while driving a car.


 YOU ARE 37 TIMES MORE LIKELY TO DIE IN A MOTORCYCLE ACCIDENT THAN A CAR ACCIDENT – NHTSA.GOV


10 most Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents

Unsafe Lane Changes

A driver risks colliding with a motorcyclist when he or she fails to check his or her blind spot or signal when changing lanes.

Car Doors

Some motorcycle accidents occur when a driver opens the door of their parked vehicle in the path of an oncoming motorcycle.

Speeding

A leading cause of all types of auto accidents, speeding reduces a vehicle’s chance of seeing and reacting to other drivers in time to prevent a collision. The higher the speed, the greater the impact and the more severe the potential injuries.

Driving Under the Influence

Drivers who cause accidents because they were driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs may face both civil and criminal liability.

Lane Splitting

Lane splitting occurs when a motorcycle drives between two lanes of stopped or slowly moving cars, usually in traffic jams. Lane splitting is a common cause of motorcycle accidents due to several factors:

  • the close proximity of the cars to the motorcycle
  • the reduced space the motorcycle has to maneuver, and
  • the fact that the cars don’t anticipate that any vehicle or motorcycle will be passing them in slowed or stopped traffic.

Sudden Stops

Rear-end collisions resulting from following too closely or an abrupt stop can result in serious injury or death to a motorcyclist.

Inexperienced Drivers

Inexperienced drivers (new drivers/teens) are likely to make unsafe moves or overcorrections on the road that could compromise the safety of other motorists.

Left Turn Accidents

The single most dangerous situation for motorcyclists occurs when cars are making left-hand turns. These collisions account for 42% of all accidents involving a motorcycle and car. Usually, the turning car strikes the motorcycle when the motorcycle is:

  • going straight through an intersection
  • passing the car, or
  • trying to overtake the car.

Dangerous Road Conditions

Due to the smaller size and less stable nature of the motorcycle, potholes, dead animals, slick pavement conditions, uneven heights between lanes, and other irregularities or unexpected objects in the road pose a serious safety threat to motorcycles. (To learn more about common road hazards and tips for avoiding them, see Nolo’s article Motorcycle Accidents: Road Hazards.)

Motorcycle Defects

The manufacturer of a poorly designed or manufactured motorcycle part can be held liable for any injuries or deaths arising from the use of the defective part.

What Types of Coverage Should You Have?

At a minimum, you should purchase bodily injury and property damage liability coverage. If you do not have health insurance or have such insurance with a large deductible, purchase med pay coverage for motorcycle injuries.

Bodily Injury and Property Damage Coverage

Bodily injury and property damage coverage protect you in case the crash is your fault and others are injured or property damage is inflicted. If the crash is your fault, you will be held to be financially responsible and this coverage will protect you financially. Med pay will help pay your medical bills even if you are at fault for the crash. If you ride with passengers, bodily injury coverage may help protect you if they are injured in a crash that is your fault.

Uninsured/Underinsured (UM) coverage

Uninsured/underinsured (UM) coverage is vitally important if you ride a motorcycle. Most crashes result in serious injury and if the at-fault party has no bodily injury coverage or coverage with small limits, you will not be compensated for your injuries and losses. As Florida personal injury lawyers, we stress the importance of UM coverage for all drivers, and it is especially important for motorcycle riders. In Florida, bodily injury coverage is not required to drive, and many drivers in our area have not bodily injury coverage. When you buy insurance for your motorcycle, please request UM coverage, and buy as much coverage as you can afford. This coverage is relatively inexpensive and very important. This coverage will also afford protection to any riders who are injured on your motorcycle.

Since motorcycle crashes may often result in catastrophic injuries, please purchase liability and UM coverage. This is important to protect you and your family. A board-certified civil trial lawyer can advise you on coverage and can help you navigate through the complex laws involving motorcycle crashes.

Joe Zarzaur is a Board Certified Civil Trial Attorney whose firm is dedicated to promoting community safety since 2007. ZARZAUR LAW’S AREAS OF PRACTICE: Serious Personal Injury, Product Defect, Auto Accidents, Cycling Accidents, Motor Vehicle Accidents, Products Liability, Wrongful Death, Community Safety, Boat and Jet Ski Accidents, Slip and Fall Injuries, and more. Licensed in Alabama and Florida.

If you’ve been the victim of an accident, it’s important that you don’t make any rash decisions. Put yourself in the best possible position to receive the justice you deserve. It is also important to consult with a Board Certified Trial lawyer who has the knowledge and experience to help you. We know accidents can be stressful and want to make the process as easy as possible for you. Call Zarzaur Law, P.A. today at (855) Hire-Joe for a free legal consultation or visit www.zarzaurlaw.com.

Sources:

https://www.nhtsa.gov/road-safety/motorcycle-safety

https://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/motorcycle-accidents-common-causes-30330.html

https://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/motorcycle-accidents-road-hazards-30331.html

https://zarzaurlaw.com/motorcycle-accident/

https://zarzaurlaw.com/what-is-um-coverage-and-why-is-it-important/

https://zarzaurlaw.com/auto-accident/