Riding through Florida’s beautiful landscapes is exhilarating. However, as a motorcycle passenger, you’re vulnerable to the actions of the rider and surrounding motorists. If your trip is cut short by someone else’s negligence, Florida law allows you to seek compensation for your losses. Here, we’ll discuss some important considerations for passengers in motorcycle accidents.
Can Passengers File Claims?
Yes, passengers can file claims for medical bills and other losses. When filing such a claim, it’s important to get as much information as possible. There are numerous ways to file a claim after a motorcycle accident. While some passengers file injury claims, others sue for wrongful death. No matter the circumstances of the case, it’s advisable to retain the services of an experienced accident attorney from Papa Injury Law.
Who’s Responsible for a Passenger’s Injuries?
There are different ways to establish fault after a motorcycle accident. Investigators consider the following factors when determining liability:
- The rider. If the motorcycle’s rider was intoxicated or if only one vehicle was involved, that person may face sole liability.
- The other motorist. If another person behaved negligently, you’d file a claim with their insurer.
- Both parties. If the driver and rider shared responsibility, it’s possible to file a claim against both parties.
After an accident, it’s important to know Florida’s laws on accident liability so you can protect your interests. The state follows the pure comparative negligence doctrine, meaning that compensation claims are adjusted based on a party’s share of responsibility. For instance, if you claim $50,000 in damages but are found to be 20% liable, your award will be reduced by $10,000.
Can Passengers be Held Responsible?
While it’s rare, there are limited circumstances in which passengers can be held responsible for motorcycle accidents. These scenarios include:
- Those where a passenger knew of a rider’s intoxication but still got on the bike
- When a passenger’s reckless behavior distracted the rider
In these and other situations, an insurer may allege that the passenger is liable for his or her own injuries. Here, the insurer or the court may refer to the comparative negligence doctrine to determine if the passenger should receive compensation.
How Can Passengers Work to Prevent Motorcycle Accidents?
As a passenger, you play a crucial role in accident prevention. The most important step is to follow the rider’s guidance while following best practices. Ensure that the bike is equipped for passenger use as required by state law. This includes a permanent passenger seat and footrests. Finally, it’s best to wear proper gear, such as long pants, boots, a jacket, and a helmet.
Hire a Florida Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
In many accident claims against insurers and drivers, it helps to have legal representation. The state has laws that protect motorcycle passengers and drivers who have been injured. Even if you are insured, hiring an attorney will help get your bills paid and file a lawsuit against the other motorist or their insurer. We’re committed to providing the legal guidance and support accident victims deserve. Visit the firm online or call today to schedule a consultation.