Pittsburgh Motorcycle Accident Lawyers
Show the insurance companies you are serious about compensation
Motorcycles are very popular in Pittsburgh and throughout the state, but motorcyclists are vulnerable on the road and are often injured by negligent drivers. In Pittsburgh, the Hill District, Mt. Washington, and along the Allegheny River in Morningside typically have higher concentrations of fatal motorcycle accidents than other parts of the city. If you or a loved one has been injured, hire an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer who knows how to get results. The Pittsburgh motorcycle accident attorneys at Romanow Law Group are ready to help.
Our law firm has recovered millions of dollars in damages for injured accident victims in Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, and throughout Pennsylvania. We don’t just want to win for you; We want to win big.
Injured motorcycle accident victims and the families of fatal crash victims can contact us for free case consultations to learn more about your options for compensation and justice.
Types of crashes our Pittsburgh motorcycle accident lawyers handle
As a leading Pennsylvania motorcycle accident law firm, Romanow Law Group is well prepared to handle any kind of motorcycle case – no matter how catastrophic or complex. The following are some, but not all, of the types of motorcycle wrecks we take on at Romanow Law Group:
- Rear-end accident.
- Head-on collision.
- T-bone or intersection accident.
- Lowside, highside, and topside accidents.
- Drunk driver.
- Fatal motorcycle accidents.
- Road rage, aggressive driving.
- Distracted drivers.
- Debris in roadway.
- Multi-vehicle pileups.
- Defective parts malfunction.
- Dooring accidents.
In Pennsylvania, winning a motorcycle car accident claim is often an uphill battle. The insurance industry is against injured bikers. The state has long held that motorcycles pose a danger to both their operators and to others on the roadway. Pennsylvania courts have gone so far as to reference motorcycles as being an “instrument of danger” on highways. At the Romanow Law Group, we know the truth: Motorcycles are only dangerous because negligent car drivers act irresponsibly. We stand up for what is right and fight on the side of injured motorcycle accident victims.
What causes motorcycle accidents?
Usually, it’s other drivers in cars, SUVs, trucks, work vans, and tractor-trailers. Other drivers often think motorcycles are little more than an annoyance on the roads. They don’t treat motorcycles as they would another vehicle. Or they simply don’t see motorcycles, and the reason they don’t see them is because they were not paying attention. The result is an accident that can leave motorcyclists seriously hurt.
Drivers who cause motorcycle accidents may have been:
- Texting or distracted by something else.
- Speeding or driving recklessly.
- Operating under the influence of alcohol or drugs (DUI, drunk driving).
- Crashed due to a defective part – like a fractured or misaligned frame, gas leak, or poorly-made tires. In this type of accident, there may be multiple people liable for your injuries including the manufacturer of the defective part.
Our Pittsburgh motorcycle accident attorneys know how to identify all liable parties in a crash and hold them accountable for maximum injury compensation.
What types of injuries are caused in a motorcycle accident?
Due to the open vehicle design, motorcycle accidents often lead to catastrophic injuries.
Motorcyclists aren’t surrounded by a metal frame like car drivers and passengers, nor do they have airbags or seatbelts. They basically only have a helmet and the clothes they are wearing. Because of a lack of protection, a motorcyclist can suffer serious injuries when struck directly by a car or if thrown to the ground by the force of impact. Injuries suffered in a motorcycle accident may include:
- Soft tissue injuries, also known as musculoskeletal injuries.
- Skull fractures or punctures.
- Jaw fracture or dislocation (maxillofacial injuries).
- Thorax or abdominal damage.
- Eye injuries.
- Vertebrae damage such as herniated disc, slipped disc, or chipped disc.
- Broken bones especially to the lower extremities (tibia and fibula).
- Shoulder injuries.
- Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBIs) like concussion or brain hemorrhage.
- Nerve damage known as “Biker’s arm.”
- Road rash.
- Spinal cord injuries.
Recovery from these injuries can take months or longer. The initial hospital stay alone is often more than 2 weeks. Some injured motorcyclists are left with permanent disability.
Injured motorcyclists may require surgery, hospitalization, medication, physical therapy and several follow-up visits with doctors. Medical expenses can become overwhelming very quickly. Our experienced motorcycle accident lawyers fight to get you the treatment and the financial compensation you deserve.
In Pennsylvania, who pays for motorcycle accidents?
Pennsylvania has a unique traffic injury claim system. It’s complicated, but basically, your insurance company pays for the accident. If you have expenses that exceed your policy cap, you may file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver or other parties liable for your damages.
Pennsylvania is a “choice no-fault-state.” Basically, this means two things:
- You decide the type of insurance you want to purchase for your vehicle – full or partial.
- And if you are injured in a crash, you file a claim with your own insurance company regardless of fault.
Even though this is a “no-fault” state, fault still matters a lot in a Pennsylvania crash. Fault determines who can be held accountable for damages and helps determine victim compensation through the application of the “modified comparative fault rule.” Under this rule, fault is divided among all those involved in a crash – sometimes this includes the victim, too. Compensation is then reduced by a victim’s percentage contribution to the crash. For example, if a biker’s action contributed 10 percent to causing a crash, their payout would be reduced by 10 percent.
What should my motorcycle accident settlement cover?
Whether you settle your claim or go to court, an injured Pittsburgh motorcycle accident victim is often entitled to compensation for:
- Past, present, and future crash-related medical expenses.
- Occupational, massage, and physical therapy.
- Lost wages.
- Property damage.
- Replacement services for tasks you cannot complete due to the crash like cooking, cleaning, yardwork, etc.
- Emotional pain.
- Disability mobility equipment for your home and vehicle.
- Pain and suffering.
Depending on the severity of your injury, you may also be eligible for compensation for:
- Diminished earning potential.
- Loss of enjoyment.
- Disabilities that reduce mobility or control of body functions.
- Brain damage.
- In-home or otherwise ongoing medical and enrichment services.
In fatal motorcycle accidents, the victim’s close family and beneficiaries may be entitled to compensation for:
- Crash-related medical expenses incurred before the death.
- Crash-related pain and suffering experienced by the victim before they died.
- Loss of consortium, guidance, or companionship.
- Loss of contribution to household (physically and financially).
- Loss of future earnings.
- Mental anguish.
- Funeral expenses.
After you file a claim for damages, you must prove your case to an insurance adjuster who has the sole job of rejecting and reducing claims. They know that the more they can blame you for the crash, the less they must pay.
With a Romanow Law Group lawyer, you have winning knowledge on your side. You have the upper hand to demand maximum compensation for the health and comfort you were robbed of in the crash.
What factors determine the size of a Pittsburgh motorcycle accident settlement?
The only way to really find out how much your claim is worth is to contact a lawyer. The Romanow Law Group provides case estimates during the free evaluation we offer to potential clients.
In general, there are a handful of factors considered in calculating an injury claim settlement:
- Fault. Your lawyer can negotiate aggressively with the insurance company about your level of contribution.
- Injury type and severity. The more life-altering and painful the injury is, usually, the more money an injured biker can collect. That’s why a biker with a nerve-damaging spine injury will likely receive a larger settlement than a rider with a fractured arm bone.
- Availability of insurance and assets. There are exceptions, but in general you can only collect compensation from the insurance company up to the maximum coverage purchased.
- Your pre-crash earnings and activities. For compensation of things like lost wages and loss of household contributions, the conditions prior to the crash are important.
- Your lawyer’s skill. Motorcycle accidents are expensive, painful, and have long-term ramifications. You must collect the maximum compensation or risk paying for crash-related expenses out-of-pocket. Therefore, you need an aggressive, experienced lawyer who can investigate, collect evidence, and build a strong case for compensation. They must calculate a settlement package that places the highest value on your health and comfort. They must aggressively negotiate for results and have the guts to sue if the insurance company won’t make you a substantial offer.
What is the average settlement for a motorcycle accident in Pennsylvania?
Each accident, each injury, and each victim are different. A specific motorcycle accident victim in the Greater Pittsburgh area may be entitled to much more or much less money than the average amount of accident compensation.
Motorcycle accidents, by nature, tend to be extremely violent and cause serious injuries that require expensive medical treatment. Depending on the type and severity of the injury, compensation could be in the tens of thousands of dollars to hundreds of thousands of dollars range. Some cases result in multi-million-dollar verdicts and settlements. The Romanow Law Group has recovered millions of dollars in damages for injured motorcycle accident victims and the families of fatal wreck victims. Contact us for a free case estimate on your crash.
Is anti-biker bias real?
Yes. Proving fault in cases that involve motorcycles can be exceptionally complex without the help of an attorney who has experience handling these types of claims. Keep in mind that many injured motorcycle riders must overcome anti-biker bias in the insurance industry, which considers just riding a motorcycle an “inherent risk.” Without the right evidence, your claim could come down to your word vs. the word of a negligent driver who is happy to rely on unfair stereotypes if it will get them out of trouble.
Our Pittsburgh motorcycle accident attorneys break down wrongly held assumptions with facts that speak to the nuances of motorcycle ridership. We know that 2 out of 3 times, motorcycle accidents happen when a negligent driver violates a motorcycle’s right of way. We can argue the finer points of federal and state motorcycle law and educate adjusters on salient and technical bike specs like power-to-weight ratios, how ABS affects vehicle control, model manufacturer crash impact requirements, and more.
Pennsylvania and Allegheny County motorcycle accident statistics
To raise awareness about risks to motorcyclists’ safety, we are sharing crash data for crashes in Pittsburgh and across the state. This knowledge can help drivers and bikers avoid accidents.
- Motorcycles make up about 3 percent of vehicles on US roadways but are involved in 14 percent of fatal accidents.
- The most dangerous time of the year for motorcycle deaths is between the months of June and September.
- On average, Pennsylvania is among the top four states reporting the most motorcycle deaths each year. The only states with more motorcycle accident deaths are Florida, California, and Texas.
- Motorcycle accidents are more likely to occur on urban roadways compared to rural ones.
- About 1 out of every 3 motorcycle accidents happen at an intersection. The most common factors in these crashes are speeding, running a red light, or failing to yield the right of way when turning.
- For years, Pennsylvania’s fatal motorcycle accident rate has been around 44.3- 49.6 deaths per 100,000 registered motorcycles. However, deaths spiked during the COVID pandemic to 60.75 deaths per 100,000 registered motorcycles.
- On average, Allegheny County reports the second most motorcycle deaths each year. (Philadelphia County typically reports the most.) The fatality rate is about 1 fatal motorcycle accident per 100,000 people each year.
Greater Pittsburgh area motorcycle crash hotspots
Motorcycle accidents can happen anywhere, but some locations experienced more wrecks than others. In the Greater Pittsburgh Area, fatal motorcycle accidents have occurred at these roadways and intersections:
- Saw Mill Run Blvd (Route 51) at Lewis St.
- Crane Ave.
- S 18th St Ext at St Michaels Cemetery.
- Bigelow Blvd at Herron Ave.
- Milwaukee St at Bryn Mawr Rd.
- I-376/US-22, aka the Penn Lincoln Pkwy near the:
- 2nd Ave ramp.
- Poplar St ramp.
- Yellow Belt near the I-79 exchange.
What do I do after a Pittsburgh motorcycle accident?
If your health and safety allow you to get up after a crash:
- Call 911 from a safe location at the crash site. Unless you are going to get emergency medical attention, wait there until law enforcement arrives.
- Take photos and video of the scene, injuries, property damage, vehicle position, road conditions, and evidence like tire marks and broken glass.
- Get the other driver’s information: Name, driver’s license, and insurance provider.
- When the police arrive, do not go into detail about how the accident happened or the extent of your injuries. Stick to the basic facts. It is too early to make statements on these events and conditions.
- Do not talk to the driver, their insurance provider, or anyone else about the crash without a lawyer present. Insurance adjusters will use any excuse to undervalue your claim. Don’t give them one.
- Seek immediate medical attention. If you are not transported to the hospital by ambulance, go to an emergency or urgent care medical facility for a thorough medical examination ASAP. In and around Pittsburgh, emergency medical care is available at places like UPMC Mercy Trauma and Burn Center and AHN Brentwood Neighborhood Hospital, among others.
- Contact the Romanow Law Group. Our Pittsburgh motorcycle accident lawyers will get to work building you a solid case for maximum compensation while you focus on healing.
Does Pennsylvania have a helmet law? Can I still get money if I wasn’t wearing a helmet?
Let’s make one thing clear: In general, injured motorcycle accident victims have a right to collect compensation for their damages regardless of whether they were wearing helmets. We are in favor of riders using protective equipment that reduces fatal and serious bike wrecks. Research has established that helmets save lives, so it is a good idea to always wear one on a motorcycle. But whether you were wearing a helmet or not, it’s still the other driver’s responsibility to share the road.
However, most Pennsylvania bikers have a legal right to choose whether to wear a helmet and the lawyers at our Pittsburgh-based law firm respect that. Pennsylvania law says that motorcycle riders must wear helmets if they are under age 21, have less than 2 years of riding experience, or have not taken a riding safety course. When insurance companies try to get out of paying claims over helmet issues, we fight to protect your rights and freedom.
How can a lawyer help me after a motorcycle accident?
Insurance companies still have this idea that people who ride motorcycles are reckless and irresponsible. The way they think about it, if you were hurt on your motorcycle, the accident must have been your fault somehow. They will use many tactics to try to limit your compensation and pay you less.
At Romanow Law Group, we put hard work into your case and are ready to fight for you all the way to court. We gather evidence, review documentation, interview witnesses and consult experts, as needed, to build a strong case for compensation that insurance companies can’t ignore. We aggressively fight back against insurance-company attempts to blame you for what happened.
Many lawyers are happy to handle your motorcycle accident case and settle it as quickly as possible. The problem is, this leaves you with less money than you should be getting. Our firm fights to get you maximum compensation. We use our experience, knowledge, resources and hard work to get you more.
Serious motorcycle accidents deserve serious representation. If you were injured in a Pittsburgh motorcycle accident, put The Romanow Difference to work for you. Call 1-844-GET-MORE or contact us online to schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced motorcycle accident lawyers.