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How can you tell who is at fault for a motorcycle accident?

If you're in a motorcycle accident, you probably have a few questions about who is at fault and how you'll be compensated for the pain and suffering you have had to endure. The first thing that needs to be determined is who is responsible for the accident. To figure this out, police will reconstruct the accident when necessary, and witness testimonies and the reports of the drivers will be considered.

If it's found that both parties are at fault in some way, then comparative negligence comes into play. With comparative negligence, both parties are found responsible, but one party is then found to be more at fault than the other. For instance, one person may have been speeding, but the other person may have been distracted. Together, they caused an accident due to mutual neglect. Now, the person speeding didn't pull out in front of someone, so he could be less at fault than the person who did.

Another example of this is if a motorcyclist's headlight is out at night or at dusk, when it could make it hard to see him. It can't be a driver's fault completely if he or she couldn't see a motorcyclist due to the motorcyclist not having his bike in good working order.

If the other driver was truly at fault for the accident and you were doing nothing wrong, then you'll likely have a right to claim for full compensation. You may find that you're offered several settlements, and you'll want to review them to see if they're enough to cover all your needs now and in the future. This is especially true if you will have ongoing medical care requirements.

Source: FindLaw, "Motorcycle Accident FAQ," accessed July 22, 2015

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