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Questions About Oklahoma Motorcycle Accidents

When people get into motorcycle crashes, there are usually significant injuries.

Granted, some people are very fortunate, and they walk away with only minor scratches and bruises. But without the protection of a vehicle’s frame, there is absolutely nothing to protect riders and their passengers from traumatic injuries.

 At Dodd Henry, we believe in taking an aggressive stance when representing motorcyclists and their passengers.

Insurance companies like to deny claims for strange reasons, and when it comes to motorcycle enthusiasts, those reasons can be even more unpredictable. Likewise, the evidence and rules that apply to these types of crashes demand a different set of skills than a typical auto accident case. If you need help after a crash, give our motorcycle injury attorneys a call today. Here are a few of the most frequently asked questions about getting hurt in a motorcycle crash in Oklahoma.

#1 – I laid the bike down. Am I at fault?

 Not necessarily. Fault, or better stated, liability is dependent on who actually caused the crash. While the act of laying the bike down may have resulted in injuries, the real question is what injuries may have been sustained if the rider did not. To be clear, it’s rarely, if ever, safe to lay down a bike. But if another driver pulls out in front of you going fast, it probably wouldn’t matter what the rider did, because it’s the driver’s fault. If you laid it down due to inexperience or riding too fast, then you may indeed share some liability.

 #2 – I was drinking. Can I still recover compensation?

Actually, yes. But it’s definitely going to be a tough case. Evidence of your intoxication will almost assuredly be used against you to try to prove that you were either partly or entirely to blame. However, if the facts show that your intoxication was irrelevant, and the other driver was wholly at-fault, then it may not be admissible at all. For instance, if you were parked at a red light and someone collides with you while texting, then it really isn’t relevant that you were intoxicated. Still, you should expect the defense to try hard to get it into evidence.

#3 – I wasn’t wearing a helmet. Does that matter?

Most likely, but not in the way you think. Every state gets to decide if it wants to let riders go without a helmet. In Oklahoma, adult riders and passengers do not legally have to wear a helmet. Of course, it’s still a good idea to do so. In a landmark case, Stacy v. Johnson, the Oklahoma Appeals Court decided that evidence of a rider’s choice not to wear a helmet would not be admissible at trial. Much like states that prohibit evidence of not wearing a seatbelt, the defense is generally not allowed to rely on this defense. However, it may come into evidence other ways. For instance, a physician testifying about a traumatic brain injury may need to discuss how the head was impacted and the nature of the trauma. Or a crash report may include this information, and a judge could erroneously allow a jury to see it. Ultimately, there are ways that it could possibly get to a jury, and you can bet some jurors may pick up on it and reduce the award.

Getting Help After a Crash

 After a serious motorcycle injury, call the attorneys of Dodd Henry today. We’ll provide skillful and devoted representation from start to finish, and you never owe a penny unless we are able to help you recover for your injuries.