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Determining Fault in Manchester Motorcycle Accidents: Legal Challenges and Solutions

Fault in Manchester Motorcycle Accidents

Personal injury lawsuits help accident victims recover losses after motorcycle accidents. An attorney can sue the at-fault party to recover money for medical bills, lost wages, and property damage.

Receiving the maximum compensation for your injuries can ease your financial worries. But how can you get the outcome you desire?

An experienced personal injury lawyer understands the importance of proof of fault. This one factor can make or break your case. In this personal injury overview, we will share some insight about determining fault in motorcycle crashes and how it differs from car accidents.

Why Establishing Motorcycle Accident Fault Is Essential

In legal terms, fault refers to responsibility. When someone causes an accident, he or she is responsible for it and must pay for the damages that resulted to the injured party.


Drivers have a duty of care to those they encounter on the road. From the moment they start the driving task, each must exercise due care to operate their motor vehicles safely. Failure to take care is a breach of duty.

If a careless driver breaches his or her duty, it is negligent driving.


Some people do not care whether their actions endanger other motorists or pedestrians. If a driver injures someone, he or she can be held accountable for recklessness if:

  • The driver consciously disregarded the safety of others
  • He or she should have known that his or her actions could cause a serious accident

A reckless driver can face criminal charges and a personal injury claim. The decision of one court will not necessarily impact the other. Even if found “not guilty” of a crime, the driver can still be held liable and owe compensation if he or she injured people.


Malicious conduct refers to the actions of someone who intentionally hurt others. The liable person could be charged with malicious conduct and face civil and criminal charges.

Negligence, recklessness, and ill intent while driving are dangerous.

As you can imagine, improper behavior, such as listed below, often leads to serious injuries:

You will notice that some of the motorist behaviors mentioned above represent improper acts, or things a driver should not do. Others are omissions, or what a reasonable motorist should dobut a reckless or negligent driver may fail to do.

The role of New Hampshire personal injury lawyers

In general, the steps to determine fault are:

  1. Investigation: Collecting a police report, eyewitness testimony, camera footage, medical records, and other evidence to establish the legal duty of care, breach of duty, and causal relationship between the defendant’s actions and the plaintiff’s injuries
  2. Filing a motion: Making an official legal claim according to state law
  3. Discovery: The exchanging of information between the plaintiff and defendant
  4. Damages: Proving that you incurred losses due to the car accident and how much you deserve to collect for injuries, lost earnings, and more

Deciding who is at fault is a complex process that varies in every case. Since determining fault is one of the most critical factors of a personal injury lawsuit, you cannot afford to take this lightly. You could lose out on compensation if you try to sue someone who had no duty of care to you nor played a role in your accident.

At Kiley Law Firm, our record of success was built on thorough investigations that resulted in well-supported personal injury claims. We encourage you to take advantage of a free consultation with us to learn how our attorneys represent injured people and recover damages for their losses.

Overcoming Challenges of Determining Fault for Motorcycle Accidents

Since fault determines who pays compensation for a collision, some people deny responsibility for their actions. Even if the other driver admits negligence, the insurance company might try to find ways to reduce their liability or force you to file with your own insurer.

Preconceived notions about bikers

Stereotypes surround motorcycle accidents. Many of them suggest that the biker is always at fault.

For instance, some people say that motorcycle riders:

  • Exceed the speed limit
  • Weave between lanes
  • Follow too closely
  • Merge without signaling
  • Drive recklessly
  • Have insufficient experience
  • Race each other illegally
  • Do not use protective gear to protect themselves

Judges and juries are not exempt from these prejudices. The other driver’s insurance company will consider the role of the plaintiff and others involved when calculating the total damages.

Recklessness is a serious allegation. If the other party claims you were the reason for the accident, you could lose some or all of your compensation. You could be held liable in court for property damage and compensation for the injuries of the other person.

Multiple parties at fault

Suppose a New Hampshire truck accident results from a chain of events involving the car accident survivor, the truck driver, and other motorists. The resulting injuries may not be just one driver’s failure of duty. Liability could fall on multiple parties.

If multiple parties are liable, special legal rules would apply, namely:

  • Modified comparative fault: The plaintiff’s share of fault is calculated as a percentage out of 100. If you are 51 percent or more at fault, you cannot recover compensation for the injuries suffered in the collision. If your percentage is less, you can obtain compensation reduced by your proportion of fault.
  • Delegation of duty: This principle could apply if a New Hampshire motor vehicle owner gives someone permission to drive the vehicle, an employer insured damages for his or her employee, or a subcontractor’s negligence contributed to an accident.
  • Assumed risk: Injured victims might not be able to recover damages from conditions sustained in situations where they took on risks despite being aware of the dangers. For example, if a motorcycle speeds ahead of a moving car to get a space in a parking lot, or a passenger enters a car with a drunk person behind the wheel, opposing attorneys could claim that you can only blame yourself for your injuries.

In addition, the plaintiff has the burden of proving the other driver’s responsibility. Such principles vary by where the accident occurred, so New Hampshire law might not necessarily be the same as car accident laws in Massachusetts or New York.

To build a strong case, why not rely on a skilled personal injury attorney who can overcome challenges and protect your rights?

Complications of a New Hampshire wrongful death claim

Compared to a car, a motorcycle has little protection. Unfortunately, there are well over 4,000 motorcycle accident deaths every year across the nation.

If a loved one dies in a New Hampshire car accident, close family members can pursue compensation for:

  • Medical expenses
  • Lost income, including what the deceased would have earned had he or she lived
  • Funeral and burial costs
  • Pain and suffering the decedent endured
  • Loss of marital or familial relationships

Wrongful death claims can be challenging to prove. In contrast with other personal injury cases, wrongful death attorneys must show the negligence of the liable party without the testimony of the accident victim available.

The statute of limitations car accident claims

Every car accident claim has a deadline. You must take legal action before your time runs out to collect damages for your personal injuries.

Statutes vary by state. In New Hampshire, for example, you have 6 years from the time your loved one died in a motor vehicle accident to file a wrongful death claim. In Massachusetts, you have only 3 years after a car accident to pursue a wrongful death claim in civil court.

The length of time you have depends on the type of legal action you want to take, where the accident occurred, and the circumstances of the accident victim (such as age and awareness of injuries).

Exceptions can shorten or lengthen your window of opportunity. You might not realize the extent of your injuries until years after a wrong diagnosis or faulty medical procedure. So, in certain circumstances, the clock starts ticking after you discover the problem.

With so many variables involved, consulting a New Hampshire attorney is always a wise course of action. Getting a legal professional involved is the most informed way to learn your rights and ensure you can take action against the liable party before it is too late.

Rely on Kiley Law Group for Personal Injury Solutions

Legal problems can seem overwhelming, especially when you are recovering from injuries or grieving the loss of a loved one. Easing the burdens of your economic losses, though, can let you focus on your healing and your future.

Kiley Law Group is a team of compassionate personal injury lawyers ready to meet the challenges of your legal battle. If we take on your case, our New Hampshire attorneys can investigate your case to determine fault so you don’t have to stress about the details of your case.

Leave your legal challenges in the capable, professional hands of our New Hampshire and Massachusetts legal teams. Fill out the contact form or call (978) 965-3228 to schedule a free case review. The call is free, and our contingency fee program means you pay nothing unless you win your case.