Tough lawyers for tough cases.

Denver Motorcycle Accident Lawyer

If you suffer injuries or lose a loved one to a Denver motorcycle accident, call the attorneys at Dormer Harpring. We understand the dangers motorcyclists face each day on our roadways. In fact, Attorney Sean Dormer is himself a motorcyclist.

Those of us who ride understand that a motorcycle can leave its rider vulnerable to serious injuries in the event of a crash and that drivers of passenger vehicles often fail to see us on the road around them. As attorneys, we know that obtaining compensation after a crash is often the key to healing and returning to daily life. At Dormer Harpring, our Denver motorcycle accident lawyers commit themselves to providing injured riders with unique representation and compassionate support while working to get the best legal result possible.

“Dormer Harpring, LLC, is a group of accomplished professionals who offer exceptional expertise. Everyone I came into contact with was incredibly courteous, intelligent, competent, engaging, and sympathetic.”

– Cassandra S. Via google.

Choosing Dormer Harpring is Choosing Excellence

Motorcyclists who retain Dormer Harpring get understanding, successful attorneys who:

  • Promptly respond to phone calls, emails, and text messages
  • Help with access to medical care and other accident-related services
  • Listen and really care about the best solutions to your needs on a personal level

We encourage you to continue reading the following motorcycle accident pages to learn more about how our law firm can help you. Then contact our law firm for clear, honest answers about your recovery options. We dedicate ourselves to helping injured motorcyclists and their families recover from accidents.

Meet Partner, Sean Dormer

Sean, an avid motorcyclist and impassioned personal injury attorney, discovered his purpose advocating for clients in CU Law School’s Defense Clinic. Dedicated to championing the underdog, he relentlessly fights for those harmed by negligence. With notable successes against corporate giants, Sean ensures just compensation for his clients.

Motorcycle Accident Quick Links

How Can a Denver Motorcycle Accident Attorney Help Me?

Banner saying a Denver motorcycle lawyer is here for you

A Denver motorcycle accident lawyer will stand by you throughout the claims process and ensure the insurance company does not take advantage of you. Our Denver personal injury attorneys will meet with you, listen to your story, and build the strongest case possible for compensation.

Dormer Harpring’s motorcycle accident lawyers will also:

  • Complete all of your claim paperwork and handle all dealings with the insurance company
  • File necessary court paperwork including any lawsuit
  • Gather any evidence and interview witnesses
  • Identify all liable parties and locate all possible sources of compensation
  • Assess a proper settlement amount that meets both current and future accident-related needs
  • Field creditor calls about your accident
  • Settle your claim on your behalf
  • If necessary, proceed with the lawsuit and trial

At Dormer Harpring law firm, we want you to focus on regaining your physical, mental, and emotional health. Our Denver motorcycle accident attorneys will focus on the legal aspects of your claim. Call us today and schedule your free consultation.

Who Can Be Held Liable for a Motorcycle Accident?

In Colorado, the driver or party responsible for causing a motorcycle collision will typically be held liable, or financially responsible, for a motorcycle accident victim’s damages. The identity of this party will depend on the cause of the crash. Liable parties may include:

  • A driver. Many motorcycle accidents are caused by mistakes made by drivers. Motor vehicle drivers can be careless or reckless behind the wheel and endanger the lives of everyone else on the road. Motorcyclists are particularly at risk, as they are prone to serious injuries.
  • The motorcycle manufacturer. If a motorcycle experiences a breakdown or equipment malfunction on a ride due to a part defect, such as bad brakes or a tire blowout, the manufacturer or distributor of the part could be held liable with a product liability claim.
  • The government. If a road defect such as a pothole, uneven shoulder, loose gravel or dangerous construction zone causes a motorcycle crash in Denver, the government in charge of road maintenance and repair may be liable.

One or multiple parties may be named as defendants in a Denver motorcycle accident case. Your Denver motorcycle attorney can investigate your accident to determine fault and name the liable party or parties. Then, your attorney can help you prove the defendant’s negligence to establish your claim and demonstrate liability.

How to Prove Negligence in a Denver Motorcycle Accident

Under Colorado’s car insurance laws, the person or party at fault for a vehicle collision must pay for the accident. It is the injured party’s task to prove fault, such as establishing that the negligence of the other driver is what caused the motorcycle accident. Negligence in a motorcycle accident claim means the failure to use ordinary or reasonable care. When negligence causes harm to others, the injured person can file a claim against the negligent party.

The burden of proof in this type of case is a “preponderance of the evidence.” You or your lawyer will need to present clear and convincing evidence of the defendant’s negligence. This requires proof that the defendant owed you a duty of care, breached or violated the duty, and caused your motorcycle accident. A duty of care is an obligation not to cause harm to others, such as a driver’s responsibility to prevent car accidents. A breach of duty can refer to any careless or reckless behavior, such as speeding or following too closely.

You or your lawyer must prove that your motorcycle accident would not have happened but for the negligence of the defendant. Meeting this burden of proof requires evidence such as a police report, accident reconstruction, eyewitness statements, expert testimony, photographs and videos, medical records, and cell phone records. An attorney can help you collect any available evidence to prove negligence during your motorcycle accident claim and handle negotiations with insurance companies.

Comparative Negligence

During a Denver motorcycle accident claim, you may encounter the comparative negligence defense. This is an allegation that you caused or contributed to the accident. Under Colorado’s modified comparative negligence law, if a vehicle operator is found to be more than 50 percent at fault for an accident, he or she is unable to collect financial compensation for damages.

If, however, the individual is less than 50 percent at fault, partial compensation can still be recovered. The amount awarded will be reduced by the plaintiff’s percentage of fault. If an insurance company is alleging that you contributed to a motorcycle accident, hire an attorney to help you combat the comparative negligence defense and protect your financial recovery.

Motorcycle Accident Compensation

Motorcycle accident injuries may result in physical, mental, and emotional damages to riders. Long-term, motorcycle accident victims can suffer permanent impairments requiring physical therapy, rehabilitation, and home care. This care is costly and affects an injured riders’ ability to earn a living and as well as their quality of life.

No sum of money can account for the damages a rider and their family suffer after a motorcycle accident. However, financial recovery can provide a sense of closure to a victim and serve to hold any negligent parties responsible for the injuries they caused.

Amounts of compensation available to motorcycle accident victims may vary. However, typical damages include:

  • Current and future accident-related medical bills
  • Property damages
  • Loss of income
  • Lost earning potential
  • Rehabilitation and physical therapy
  • Assistive or long-term care expenses
  • Home care or help with daily personal care
  • Psychological counseling
  • Pain and suffering
  • Mental and emotional trauma
  • Loss of consortium
  • If applicable, wrongful death expenses

The amount of damages awarded in a motorcycle accident depends on the circumstances of that particular accident, such as:

  • The nature of the injuries
  • The extent of the injuries
  • The financial impact on the rider
  • The effect on the rider’s life
  • The impact on the other driver
  • The fault of both parties

An experienced motorcycle accident lawyer can evaluate and assess the value of an individual motorcycle accident claim. It is wise to speak with an attorney before making any statements or accepting any offers from an insurance company.

The Difference Between Motorcycle and Car Accident Cases

Proving negligence is necessary during both a car accident and motorcycle accident case in Colorado. However, these are very different types of claims that require unique attention. Motorcyclists who are injured in accidents face several additional issues compared to standard motor vehicle drivers. They include:

  • Biases and prejudices against motorcyclists. A perceived assumption of risk can lead to reduced insurance settlement offers and liability disputes based on arguments that the motorcyclist was engaged in risky behaviors at the time of the crash.
  • Increased injury severity. Motorcyclists are more likely than motor vehicle passengers to suffer catastrophic and life-threatening injuries in accidents. This can make it more important to hire a motorcycle accident attorney to demand fair compensation for high-value injuries and medical costs.
  • A lack of motorcycle knowledge by jury members. Many jurors in motorcycle accident cases do not understand how motorcycles operate or what it is like to ride one on the road. This can affect the jury’s judgment when it comes to determining fault or liability for an accident.

The most effective way to handle these unique issues is by hiring a Denver motorcycle accident attorney to represent you. An attorney can accurately represent the extent of your severe injuries to push for full compensation. Your lawyer can also help control the juror selection process and present compelling evidence to establish the defendant’s liability on your behalf.

Insurance Requirements for Colorado Motorcycle Riders

Every motor vehicle operator in the State of Colorado must purchase certain amounts of automobile insurance. Motorcyclists are not exempt from this requirement. Every motorcycle rider in the state must carry at least the following minimum amounts of insurance at all times:

  • $25,000 in bodily injury coverage (per person)
  • $50,000 in bodily injury coverage (per accident)
  • $15,000 in property damage coverage

If a motorcyclist chooses to opt-out of uninsured or underinsured motorist insurance, he or she must do so in writing when purchasing the policy. Otherwise, it will automatically be added. It is possible for motorcyclists to purchase greater than the minimum required amounts of insurance if he or she desires more coverage. For example, a motorcyclist can purchase first-party insurance, such as collision and comprehensive coverage, to pay for his or her own losses, no matter who is at fault for the crash.

Liability insurance is required in Colorado due to the tort-based or fault-based insurance system. Colorado is in the majority of states in that it holds the person or party at fault for an accident financially responsible. Liability insurance pays for the medical bills and property damages of others after an accident. It ensures a motorcyclist’s financial ability to pay for victims’ losses if he or she causes a collision. Likewise, if the motorcyclist is not at fault, he or she can seek benefits from the other driver’s insurance policy.

Time Limit to File a Motorcycle Accident Claim in Colorado

Motorcycle accident claim statute of limitations

Under Colorado law, you have no more than three years from the date of your motorcycle accident to file a lawsuit in pursuit of damages for injuries sustained in the crash. The time limit or statute of limitations on personal injury cases that do not involve motor vehicles is two years. If you don’t discover your injuries immediately, the clock won’t begin counting down until the date of discovery. However, you may have less time to file if you plan on suing the government (e.g., for a dangerous road defect).

It is always in your best interest to speak to an attorney as soon as possible after a motorcycle accident in Denver. You don’t want to miss your time limit, as exceptions to the rule generally are not accepted. If you attempt to file after the statute of limitations has expired, you will most likely be barred from making a financial recovery. You could also risk the loss or destruction of important evidence to support your claim, such as accurate eyewitness accounts.

Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents and Injuries

Motorcyclists account for 14% of all traffic fatalities in the U.S. However, they make up only 3 percent of the registered vehicles on U.S. roads. Motorcyclists do not have the added safety layer of a motor vehicle surrounding their bodies, which makes motorcycle crashes more fatal overall.

When motorists cause motorcycle accidents, they often do so through the following:

  • Failing to yield right of way to motorcyclists
  • Attempting to share a lane with a motorcycle
  • Tailgating
  • Failing to check mirrors and blind spots for motorcycles
  • Failing to use signals when changing lanes or turning

The above accidents leave riders with injuries specific to motorcycle crashes such as:

  • Mild to severe head and brain injuries, from concussions to traumatic brain injury (TBI)
  • Back and spinal cord injuries like broken vertebrae and paralysis
  • Multiple fractured and broken bones
  • Loss of limbs
  • Chest and shoulder injuries
  • Foot and knee injuries
  • Eye injuries
  • Frictions burns, also known as road rash
  • Scarring and disfigurement

Although it is impossible to control the actions of other drivers, taking active precautions like wearing a motorcycle helmet and appropriate clothing while riding a motorcycle can reduce the risk of some traumatic injuries. Complying with traffic laws, including Colorado motorcycle laws, is also essential to safe riding.

How Do I Protect Myself After a Motorcycle Accident in Denver?

Knowing what to do after a motorcycle accident empowers riders in the event they are in a crash. Please read and keep the following steps in mind in the event you are in a motorcycle accident. If you cannot follow any of these steps, please contact a Denver personal injury attorney for help.

  1. Stay calm and call 911. Notify the police about the motorcycle accident right away. Even if your crash appears minor, obtaining a police report is important.
  2. Check yourself for injuries. Look for bleeding, swelling, bruising or other signs of injury. Note that your adrenaline may mask pain for several hours after your crash.
  3. Get medical attention without delay. Request paramedics to the scene of the accident or go to the nearest hospital for prompt medical care.
  4. Exchange information with the driver. Get the driver’s name, insurance information and phone number. When speaking to the driver, do not apologize or admit fault for the accident.
  5. Speak to witnesses. If anyone else was present, such as passengers on the motorcycle or in the other car, write down their names and contact information.
  6. Take photographs. Use your cell phone to take pictures and record videos before leaving the scene. Capture important details, such as property damage and road conditions.
  7. Collect records. Request copies of all medical records, motorcycle repair estimates, police reports, letters from insurance companies and other documents that are relevant to your case.
  8. File an insurance claim. Call the driver’s car insurance company to report the crash and file a claim. Be careful what you say to an insurance claims adjuster, as he or she is not on your side.
  9. Do not accept a fast settlement. The initial settlement offered by an insurer may be less than you deserve. Do not sign anything until you’ve spoken to an attorney.
  10. Contact a motorcycle accident lawyer in Denver. Consult with an attorney about your recent accident and legal options. You can trust an attorney to give you advice that preserves your best interests.

At Dormer Harpring, our motorcycle accident lawyers see other law firms treat riders like every other accident case. We treat riders as individuals and as fellow motorcyclists. It is our mission at Dormer Harpring to fight for your rights as a rider and do everything possible to win for you.

Motorcycle Accident Resources in Colorado

  • Live to Ride. A motorcycle safety campaign organized by the Colorado Department of Transportation to help prevent motorcycle accidents. Phone number: (303) 757-9383.
  • The Colorado Operator’s Handbook. You will find a list of your rights and responsibilities as a motorcyclist in Colorado here, as well as tips on how to stay safe.
  • Who to call after an accident: 911 in an emergency or (720) 913-2000 to reach the Denver Police Department’s non-emergency line to report an accident.
  • Request a copy of your motorcycle accident report online here or by mail. You will have to pay a $10 fee for a copy of the report.
  • Nearest hospitals in Denver: Rocky Mountain Urgent Care Center, Saint Joseph Hospital, Denver Health, Porter Medical Plaza, St. Anthony Hospital and the UCHealth University of Colorado Hospital.
  • Civil courthouse in Denver, Colorado to file a personal injury lawsuit: the Small Claims Court if your case is worth less than $7,500 or the Denver County Courthouse for a higher-value claim.

Denver Motorcycle Accident Attorney at Dormer Harpring

Learn more about your options following a motorcycle crash. Call (303) 747-4404 or email our firm via the contact form on this page.

From offices based in Denver, our attorneys provide exceptional representation to riders throughout Denver County, Adams County, Boulder County, Arapahoe County, Jefferson County, and the state of Colorado. Our commitment to representing motorcyclists from all walks of life means that we never charge for a consultation. Our legal fees are “contingent,” meaning they’re based only on the amount we recover.