If you have been seriously injured in a DUI motorcycle accident in New Jersey, the attorneys at Nagel Rice LLP are well-prepared to fight for your right to just compensation. Our reputation for determination and compassion is well-earned. We have spent more than three decades honing our legal skills and during that time have won over a billion dollars in settlements and verdicts.
Contact us now so we can begin working to obtain the resources you need to move forward after your trauma.
Motorcyclists, though aware that in collisions they are at far greater risk of injury than motorists, find it worth the risk to experience the joyful sense of freedom and independence associated with being a biker. Tragically, according to the NHTSA, motorcyclists are five times more likely to be injured and 28 times more likely to die in an accident than occupants of passenger cars.
Not surprisingly, when the driver of the car is under the influence of drugs or alcohol, that risk increases. Despite the heroic efforts of MADD, SADD, and various government agencies to improve DUI statistics, impaired drivers remain the largest contributing factor to motorcycle accidents.
Alcohol/Drugs Make Motorcycle Accidents Far More Likely
New Jersey law makes no distinction between DUI and DWI and, under the same statute, their penalties are the same. Whether the driver that hit you had a blood alcohol level (BAC) of more than 0.08 or was impaired by illegal or prescription drugs, he or she may have suffered from one or more of the following symptoms that made safe driving impossible:
- Impaired vision
- Slow reaction time
- Slow involuntary reflexes
- Delayed ability to track (e.g. judge distance or speed)
- Impaired concentration
- Impaired cognitive function and rationality
- Impaired coordination (eye/hand/foot)
These symptoms may have caused the driver who caused your injury to  fail to see your motorcycle at all  speed or drive recklessly  be unable to maneuver as required by the situation  take too much time to brake or steer away from danger  fall asleep at the wheel.
Any of these reactions endanger everyone on the road.
How Our DUI Motorcycle Accident Attorneys Can Help
As you struggle to recover from your injury, Nagel Rice’s adept legal team will take over all the legal and insurance matters confronting you. Once you contact us, you will experience the relief of having capable professionals take the necessary steps to win your case and provide you with the resources you need to restabilize your life and secure your future. We will:
- Examine police reports, particularly evidence of drug/alcohol testing
- Investigate the accident site and view available surveillance footage
- Examine the medical records regarding your injuries, treatments, and prognosis
- Consult with experts (e.g. medical, automotive) who may testify on your behalf
- Check the defendant’s history for prior DUI accidents or arrests
- Interview witnesses
You can count on us not only to provide you with moral support as well as sharp legal representation. We know how difficult this period of time is for you and that you are likely experiencing financial as well as physical and emotional distress. For this reason, your initial consultation with us will be free and we will not charge you any attorneys’ fees until we recover damages.
The Consequences of DUI Motorcycle Accidents Can Be Dire
Because as a motorcyclist you are not protected by the heavy metal cage of a car, your body is extremely vulnerable to the impact of other vehicles and the road itself. Therefore, you are more likely to have experienced catastrophic injuries — e.g. brain or spinal cord injuries, amputation, internal bleeding, organ damage — than motorists involved in the same accident.
Whether you face surgery, long-term nursing care, or permanent disability, your DUI motorcycle accident injury is likely to alter your life significantly. If you have lost a loved one to wrongful death in such an accident, the cost of your loss is immeasurable. In either case, our DUI motorcycle accident attorneys will stand by you, making your cause our cause.
What damages can I win in a DUI motorcycle accident lawsuit?
Whether you have been the victim of a DUI motorcycle accident or have lost a family member in this terrible way, you are entitled to substantial damages. Our motorcycle accident attorneys will do everything possible to see that you obtain them, seeking compensation for all the following that apply in your case:
- Medical and rehabilitation expenses
- Lost income, present and future
- Property damage
- Pain and suffering
- Permanent disability
- Scarring or other disfigurement
- Long-term nursing care
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Funeral costs, loss of financial/emotional support
In cases like yours, in which the defendant was impaired by alcohol or drugs, that driver’s offense may be deemed especially egregious by the court and you may be awarded punitive damages in addition to compensatory ones.
What happens if I bear partial responsibility for the accident?
In many accidents, both parties are at fault. For example, you may have been speeding at the time you were hit by a motorist making an illegal left turn. Fortunately, New Jersey law recognizes this possibility and works according to the principle of comparative negligence. which means that even if your actions contributed to the accident you may be able to win sizable damages.
Comparative negligence laws vary from state to state. In New Jersey, even if you were partially responsible you may still be entitled to compensation, as long as you were not more than 50 percent at fault. The court will assign each driver a percentage of fault and your percentage will be deducted from your awarded settlement. So, if you are found to be 20 percent to blame and are awarded $1 million dollars in damages, you will actually receive $800,000.
Contact Our Experienced DUI Motorcycle Accident Attorneys Today
At Nagel Rice, we are acutely aware of the disrespect, in addition to the danger, motorcyclists frequently face on the roadways of New Jersey. We are also sensitive to the fact that such a cultural bias may even permeate the courts. Therefore, we consider it our job to level the playing field for you to ensure that you are treated fairly and receive the compensation you need and deserve. Contact us today for a consultation.