A motorcycle ride in the Bluegrass State can be the highlight of the day for many riders. Lexington offers many great city streets and surrounding farm lanes to travel. Those trips can be relaxing to a point, but every motorcyclist knows to stay cautious when around other drivers.
In an accident, drivers can always claim they didn’t see the motorcycle beside them or coming from the other direction. That may be true, but generally, a bit more attention could’ve prevented a collision.
Lane Splitting Accidents in Kentucky
These close encounters can be more likely in instances where a biker engages in lane-splitting with other vehicles. Lane splitting is when a motorcyclist drives between two lanes of traffic. It’s also been called lane sharing and lane filtering. A rider is usually trying to get between and pass slowly moving or stopped cars. The decision to lane split often occurs in traffic jams when riders feel they can easily get around slower vehicles and resume their trip.
Lane splitting can lead to collisions between vehicles and bikers when a driver makes a move without knowing the motorcyclist is beside them. These collisions can send a biker to the pavement and cause serious injuries. Who is at fault in these accidents? It will depend on if your state allows lane splitting and a few other factors.
If you are injured in a lane splitting accident, you will want help in determining who may be held responsible. The motorcycle accident lawyers at The Kaufman and Stigger Law Firm can help you prove that another driver caused your accident and should be held liable for your expensive recovery.
Is Lane Splitting Legal in Kentucky?
California is the only state that legally permits lane splitting. Many states specifically outlaw the move. Other states, like Kentucky, don’t recognize lane splitting as a legal maneuver, but they don’t have specific statutes that prohibit it.
This creates confusion in some accident cases when figuring out who is at blame. Insurance companies like to blame the motorcyclist in these cases, robbing them of compensation. But there are actions to take that can improve a rider’s chances of getting help with hospital bills and lost wages from work.
In these cases, the fault can sometimes depend on the actions of the rider and the driver just before the accident. If you can prove a driver was making unsafe traffic moves before the accident you have a much better chance at making a claim. An experienced motorcycle accident attorney can be a big help in cases like these.
An attorney can assist a victim in proving some of these factors involved in the accident should be considered:
- The driver was breaking other traffic laws leading up to the accident. Drivers may have been changing lanes without signaling or doing something similar to lane splitting themselves.
- The motorcyclist was driving cautiously. Not using excessive speed.
- The motorcyclist is an experienced rider and has completed safety courses.
Comparative Negligence in Motorcycle Accidents
In these complex cases, the concept of sharing blame in an accident can help get a motorcycle rider compensation for injuries. Kentucky is a pure comparative negligence state meaning that a percentage of the blame in an accident can be assigned to everyone involved in a collision.
For instance, you may be found responsible for 40% percent of a lane splitting accident, but the other driver may be hit for 60% of the blame. Perhaps the driver was switching lanes in a hazardous manner. In this case, you would still get an award in a settlement, but the 40% you were at-fault for would be subtracted from whatever you received.
Contact a Lexington Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
It’s important to know that with an accident involving an injury, Kentucky generally allows you one year to file a claim. The experts at Kaufman & Stigger Law Firm don’t recommend waiting that long to file. The more time that passes, the harder it’ll be to gather evidence and documents to build your case. You can see why talking to a local attorney is even more important in these cases. You need someone on your side to level the playing field.
Talk to a Lexington Motorcycle Accident Attorney you can trust to be on your side and get you what is yours under the law. The attorneys at Kaufman & Stigger, PLLC, have that knowledge and a combined 100 years’ experience in helping clients get the results they deserve. To discuss your case, contact Kaufman & Stigger, PLLC today, by clicking here to contact them online.