As summer approaches, the Pacific Northwest’s winter will give way to more pleasant weather that will see Seattle residents getting outside more often, and partaking in activities that are curtailed in the colder and wetter months. One of these is riding motorcycles along the highways and byways of Washington, taking in both the lively urban activity and the pastoral rural beauty. Unfortunately, along with more motorcycles on the road comes the heightened danger of motorcycle accidents.
As most people understand, accidents that occur between motorcycles and larger vehicles can result in great damage and serious injury to both bike and rider. The size and weight disparity between cars and motorcycles, coupled with the relative lack of protection for bikers, results in motorcycle accidents with long hospital stays, major rehabilitation, and possible long-term or permanent disability for the rider of the motorcycle. When these accidents are caused by the carelessness of another driver, a victim may need compensation to help defray the numerous costs he or she is likely to incur.
In many cases, the way this compensation is pursued is through a claim based in negligence. Negligence, in this context, is a legal concept that is made up of several elements. Basically, to prevail in a negligence claim, a party has to show a court that the other party had a legal duty to the victim, that this duty was breached, an injury occurred, and that the injury was both a directly and foreseeably caused by the breach of duty.
While this may seem simple enough, there can often be real questions of both law and fact with regard to these elements. The element of causation can be especially complex at times, with a concept of ‘proximate’ cause being hotly contested. While we may revisit these elements in more detail later, Seattle residents who have been injured in a motorcycle accident with a negligent driver may wish to consider calling an experienced injury lawyer.