Katy Motorcycle Accident Attorney
Fighting for the rights of injured victims
As a motorcyclist in Katy, Texas, you know the true meaning of freedom. You find peace and quiet when you ride local roadways. The long flat plains of Katy make for great riding. The newly expanded I-10 gives you plenty of room, and reduces traffic backups. If you need urban excitement, the Katy to Houston ride is short, sweet, and easy.
For a car or truck driver, an accident with a motorcycle often means minor property damage and minimal or no injuries. For a biker, that same crash is often disastrous. A minor impact can throw you to the pavement. The force can cause serious or catastrophic injuries with enduring consequences. A vehicle driver is usually shaken up after a crash. When you’re a biker, that same accident can leave you fighting for your life – we’ve seen it too many times.
If this happened to you, call us right away, no matter the time. We are open, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to provide a FREE consultation at 800-898-4877, or you may contact us now by CLICKING HERE to submit your case for review.
We Seek MAXIMUM Recovery for Our Clients
Cars, pickups and tractor-trailer rigs sometimes steal away your roadway freedom. They drive distracted or ignore your right to share the road. Their negligent actions cause accidents and catastrophic injuries that can change your life.
At Stewart J Guss Personal Injury Attorneys, we’re committed to making irresponsible drivers pay for the damages they cause. Our law firm founder, attorney Stewart J. Guss, is a Texas Class M driver. He knows the danger negligent drivers present and the catastrophic injuries they cause. He’s seen how a single accident can destroy a biker’s freedom and change their life forever.
Our personal injury attorneys understand the challenges bikers face on Texas highways. We have a strong working knowledge of the relevant statutes and we understand the potential for liability complications. We’ve worked with catastrophically injured victims and their families and have always put our clients’ needs first. Our legal team has recovered the damages our clients’ needed as they struggled to recover from physical, financial and personal losses.
Our Firm Gets Results!
Attorney Stewart J Guss and his personal injury team handle cases for injured clients only. Our focus on accident victims has given us the knowledge and experience to provide the best personal and financial outcomes. We’ve investigated our clients’ accidents, weighed the liability issues, and prepared each case to follow the best path to resolution. As we’ve always put our clients first, we’ve resolved their cases through methods that best served their interests.
When possible, our lawyers have aggressively negotiated injury claims directly with a negligent driver’s insurance company or legal representative. We have resolved cases through mediation and other Alternative Dispute Resolution forums. When responsible parties and their insurers won’t negotiate fairly, we’ve confidently presented our clients’ evidence before a judge and jury.
As each case is different, we can’t promise a specific outcome. We let our solid track record of settlements and judgments speaks for itself. We value our clients’ privacy so we don’t reveal their case details. However, we invite you to check out our clients’ comments and acknowledgments on our Testimonials Page.
Motorcycle Accidents in Katy
The Texas Department of Transportation has 420,000 registered motorcycles in the state. That number is growing because there are a lot of great reasons to hop on a bike and head out on the open road. Unlike cars and trucks, bikers have no metal and glass compartments to prevent them from connecting with fresh air and sunshine. Compared to a car or truck, a motorcycle is a seriously cool way to get from point A to point B. Of course, the gas mileage is better. The Alternative Fuels Data Center at Energy.gov credits motorcycles with 40-plus miles per gallon.
To enjoy these benefits, bikers must give up some of the safety and security that keeps other drivers cushioned and buckled-up in a car or a truck.
- Protection: Unlike cars and trucks, motorcycles have no metal enclosures, steel reinforcement barriers, or passive restraints such as airbags. A minor crash can eject a biker from a cycle and cause serious and catastrophic injuries. Armored biker suits, boots, and DOT certified helmets reduce fatalities but they can’t prevent all injuries.
- Balance: For a biker, balancing a cycle is a critical driving skill. When a crash interferes with a biker’s balance, they often lose control or skid across the pavement. An impact can eject a cyclist from their bike and into the road, a wall, or some other damaging surface.
- Visibility: A motorcycle’s size often renders it “invisible” to some vehicle drivers. Of course, bikers aren’t actually invisible. Other vehicle drivers have problems with motorcycle awareness. They don’t always notice cycles, especially in congested traffic. The Texas Department of Transportation’s “Share the Road“ Campaign seeks to address this visual dilemma. It urges drivers to “Look Twice for Motorcycles.”
- Weight: Private passenger vehicles are smaller than in years past. Still the smallest car or pickup truck weighs far more than a motorcycle, which averages in at 700 pounds. When a vehicle and a motorcycle collide, the cycle doesn’t have the weight to withstand even minimal force. A minor collision is often minor only for the car or truck. For a motorcyclist, it can mean damage and serious injuries.
- Distance: When a car or truck driver is aware of an approaching motorcycle, they sometimes misjudge its speed and distance. When a car or truck driver makes a left turn in front of an oncoming cyclist, this judgment failure often leads to injuries or death. Texas DOT documented intersection-related accidents as the most common cause of motorcycle crashes. 30 percent of the state’s motorcycle fatalities occurred at an intersection.
- Braking: Motorcycles often decelerate faster than motorists anticipate. As cyclists sometimes downshift instead of braking, the change doesn’t activate a cycle’s brake lights and motorists can’t tell when they’re stopping. Rear end accidents occur when a vehicle driver relies on brake lights instead of maintaining proper following distance as required by Texas Transportation Code, Title 7, Subtitle C, §545.062.
Because of these and other contributing factors, 417 motorcyclists lost their lives on Texas roads in 2018. An additional 1,920 bikers sustained serious injuries. Motorcycle fatalities are down 17 percent from 2017, but biker safety is still an issue. It’s a key element of #EndTheStreakTX. The safety campaign urges drivers to end highway deaths by making “…safer choices…” on the road.
Motorcycle Accident Injuries
As a biker, your drive to connect with the open road shouldn’t leave you vulnerable to horrific injuries. Unfortunately, each time you travel Texas roadways, you risk an accident with an inattentive, distracted, or speeding driver. Protective motorcycle gear is a biker’s only option for minimizing injury.
The research study, Motorcycle Protective Clothing: Protection From Injury or Just the Weather, found that armored suits and boots protected bikers but primarily during low-speed crashes. Research from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention shows that helmets are “highly effective“ in protecting a cyclist’s head during a crash. CDC documented a 22 to 42 percent reduction in fatalities and a 41 to 69 percent reduction in biker brain injuries with helmet use.
The available safety gear provides only limited protection. Fatalities, serious injuries, and catastrophic injuries still occur. Traumatic brain injuries cause severe physical, neurological, and cognitive impairments that often last a lifetime. Treatment is often longterm and expensive and disabilities have a profound effect on a biker’s life. Motorcycle accident trauma also causes spinal cord injuries, which are usually catastrophic. They often cause varying degrees of paralysis as well as losses of important bodily functions.
When an accident occurs, a biker is vulnerable to multiple injuries and conditions.
- Spinal cord trauma
- Complete paralysis
- Partial paralysis
- Traumatic brain injury
- Severe abrasions/”road rash”
- Nerve damage
- Disc injuries
- Eye injuries
- Multiple fractures
- Lower body trauma
- Pelvic Fractures
- Traumatic amputations
- Internal organ damage
Who Will Pay For My Damages?
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has found that when a multi-vehicle accident involves a motorcycle, it’s usually because the car or truck driver “simply didn’t see the motorcyclist.” When a driver does realize that they’re sharing the road with a biker, they misjudge the biker’s speed, distance, and braking and operate their vehicle based on faulty assumptions. These negligent acts cause accidents but other entities may share the responsibility for paying for a cyclist’s accident and injuries.
- Vehicle driver: A negligent driver is responsible for their actions while behind the wheel.
- Vehicle owner: An owner is responsible when a negligent driver causes injury while driving the owner’s car. An owner also incurs liability when a negligent driver is an employee, under the owner’s direction, or acting within the scope of their employment. An owner may also share responsibility for negligently entrusting a vehicle to a known unsafe driver. Texas statute, §601.503, requires that owners show evidence of financial responsibility for accidents involving their vehicle.
- Manufacturer: When a vehicle driver proves a vehicle defect caused or contributed to their negligent actions, the may receive a contribution or full indemnification from the manufacturer. A manufacturer is strictly liable or negligent for defective products under Texas Product Liability Statutes and Remedies Code, §16.102.
- Maintenance or repair company: When a service or repair company’s faulty performance causes or contributes to an accident, they share responsibility for the damages.
What Damages Am I Entitled to Recover?
At Stewart J Guss Personal Injury Attorneys, we have always sought maximum recoveries for our injured clients. When we’ve settled, mediated, or tried our clients’ cases, we’ve included economic damages and non-economic damages. In some instances, we’ve successfully recovered exemplary damages. Each type of damage reimburses an injured motorcyclist for a specific element of their injury claim.
Economic damages include the dollar losses actually incurred as a result of an injury. Often a motorcyclist’s prognosis anticipates an extended recovery or ongoing disabilities. When an economic damage settlement includes future expenses, an economic expert projects the costs.
Economic damages may include:
- Medical bills
- Lost income
- Mobility devices, prosthetics, and structures
- Physical therapy
- Psychological therapy
- Medical transportation
- Replacement services
- Plastic surgery and scar revision
- Funeral and burial expenses
General damages are highly subjective so they’re often difficult to assess. They’re based on an injured person’s perceptions of accident-related lifestyle, psychological, and emotional issues. General damages often include:
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Loss of companionship and social interactions
- Changes in family and spousal relationships
- Permanent scarring and disfiguration
- Loss of bodily functions
Juries may also award exemplary damages based on Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code, §41.003. Exemplary damages punish a defendant when a plaintiff shows “clear and convincing evidence [of] fraud, malice or gross negligence.”
Can a Negligent Driver Get Away Without Paying?
Even when the evidence clearly indicates that a vehicle driver caused injuries, a negligent driver’s insurance company may try to avoid paying the damages. This sometimes reflects an unreasonable bias against motorcyclists. It may be an attempt to support the insured driver’s no-liability position.
It could also be an insurance company’s effort to reduce the ultimate claim payout and settle a claim under their reserve amount. Insurers understand that plaintiffs must weigh the cost of recovering damages in the courts against the potential dollar settlement. The potential financial consequences of pursuing a case in the courts often exert pressure for plaintiffs to settle for an unreasonably low amount.
Insurance companies and corporate entities who provide their own defense may choose to try a case on liability issues or damages. They often rely on traditional defenses.
- Comparative fault: Under the Texas Proportionate Responsibility Code, §33.001, a defendant pays their share of damages based on their liability percentage. It’s a modified comparative statute that can prevent a plaintiff from recovering damages. A defendant avoids paying damages if they prove that the injured person had 51 percent or greater negligence in causing their own injuries.
- No negligence: If a defendant convinces a jury that they did not commit a negligent act and have no liability, the injured plaintiff doesn’t recover damages.
- Damage mitigation: Defendants sometimes try to minimize their responsibility by mitigating the damages. They accomplish this by trying to prove that the plaintiff didn’t sustain injuries in the accident, that the injuries occurred elsewhere, or that the injuries weren’t as serious as alleged.
- No defect: If a driver alleges that a defect caused their negligent actions, the manufacturer avoids liability by proving there was no defect. They must also prove that the vehicle or component part was not unreasonably safe for it’s intended use.
Our personal injury attornies have always managed defendants’ courtroom maneuvers by preparing our cases early in the investigative process. We’ve analyzed the evidence, assessed liability, and relied on our experience to overcome even the most creative defense strategies.
Contact Stewart J. Guss, Attorney at Law, if a Motorcycle Accident Injured You in Katy
If you were injured in a motorcycle accident in Katy, Texas, or the Greater Houston Area, you must take immediate steps to protect your rights. We’d like the opportunity to help you recover the damages you need to get your life back on track.
The legal team of Stewart J. Guss, Attorney at Law, is nationally recognized for protecting the rights of injured victims for more than 20 years. If you were injured in a Katy motorcycle accident, call our office right now to schedule a free consultation! Because we take all of our personal injury cases on a contingency fee basis, you will not owe us a DIME unless we win your case. We are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, so call us today at 800-898-4877 or contact us now by CLICKING HERE.
We’ll schedule a free consultation to discuss your case and determine if we can help you. If you’re unable to visit our office, we’ll meet with you at your home or in your hospital room.
Don’t Take Chances – Let Us Help You!
See what past clients have to say:
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
“We received QUALITY service, reliable guidance and we are VERY satisfied with the outcome. Our treatment was both fair & honest; we highly recommend. If one word sums it up, the word would be Exceptional. “Thank you” for all you did!”