24/7 Live Call Answering

Request Free Consultation

All Fields Required

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Motorcycle Accident Lawyer IL: Your Guide to Legal Protection

Posted on June 27, 2024

Riding a motorcycle can be exhilarating, but it comes with risks. One moment you’re cruising down the open road, feeling the wind in your face, and the next, you’re lying on the pavement, injured and scared. If you find yourself in such a situation, you’ll need a motorcycle accident lawyer in Illinois to fight for your rights.

Motorcycle crashes can be devastating. The injuries are often severe, including broken bones, road rash, and traumatic brain injuries, leading to mounting medical bills. To make matters worse, insurance companies may try to minimize your claim, adding to the nightmare.

However, you don’t have to face this alone. An experienced motorcycle accident lawyer in Illinois can act as your advocate and guide you through the legal complexities. They can investigate the crash, gather evidence, and build a strong case to help you obtain the compensation you deserve.

Why You Need a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer in Illinois

Illinois has some of the busiest roads in the country, especially in Chicago, making it a risky place for motorcyclists. Distracted drivers, poor road conditions, and other hazards contribute to the high number of motorcycle accidents in the state.

The Illinois Department of Transportation reports thousands of motorcycle accidents each year, many resulting in serious injuries or fatalities. Motorcycles offer less protection than cars, making riders particularly vulnerable to severe injuries during a crash.

Having a skilled motorcycle accident lawyer in Illinois on your side is crucial. They understand the unique challenges bikers face on the road and in the courtroom, including combating bias against motorcyclists. Most importantly, they have the legal knowledge and experience to help you achieve a favorable outcome.

Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents in Illinois

Motorcycle crashes can occur due to various factors, with some being more prevalent than others. Some of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents in Illinois include:

Distracted Driving

Distracted driving, even for a split second, can have dire consequences. A driver looking at their phone, adjusting the radio, or engaging in other distractions can easily overlook a motorcycle, leading to a collision.

Failure to Yield Right of Way

Many motorcycle accidents occur when drivers fail to yield the right of way, particularly when making left turns. Drivers often misjudge a motorcycle’s speed or fail to see it altogether, resulting in dangerous collisions.

Unsafe Lane Changes

Motorcycles can be difficult to see, especially in a car’s blind spot. Unsafe lane changes by drivers who fail to check their blind spots can force a rider off the road or cause a sideswipe collision.


Speeding significantly reduces a driver’s reaction time, making high-speed crashes extremely dangerous for motorcyclists.The impact force at high speeds can be fatal for riders.

Drunk Driving

Drunk driving is a serious offense that impairs judgment, slows reaction times, and increases risky behavior. Drunk drivers pose a significant threat to everyone on the road, especially motorcyclists who are more vulnerable.

Poor Road Conditions

Road hazards like potholes, loose gravel, or debris can pose significant dangers to motorcyclists. While these hazards might be a minor inconvenience for cars, they can cause motorcyclists to lose control of their bikes, leading to accidents.

Determining the cause of your motorcycle accident is vital for building a strong case. A skilled motorcycle accident lawyer will thoroughly investigate the accident, examine the evidence, and interview witnesses to establish liability.

Common Motorcycle Accident Injuries

Motorcycle accidents often result in severe and life-altering injuries due to the limited protection available to riders. Understanding the common injuries sustained in motorcycle accidents can help you appreciate the importance of legal representation.

Some of the most common motorcycle accident injuries include:

Injury Type Description Potential Long-Term Effects
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) Damage to the brain from impact or penetrating injury. Cognitive impairment, personality changes, disability.
Spinal Cord Injury Damage to the spinal cord, leading to loss of function. Paralysis, loss of sensation, chronic pain.
Road Rash Severe skin abrasions caused by sliding on pavement. Scarring, nerve damage, infections.
Broken Bones Fractures to arms, legs, ribs, etc., often requiring extensive treatment. Chronic pain, limited mobility, arthritis.
Internal Injuries Damage to internal organs resulting from blunt force trauma. Organ failure, chronic health issues.

These injuries can result in significant medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages. A motorcycle accident lawyer in Illinois will fight to secure the compensation you deserve to cover these losses.

Steps to Take After a Motorcycle Accident

Knowing what steps to take after a motorcycle accident can be crucial in protecting your rights and maximizing your chances of receiving fair compensation. The moments following a crash can be chaotic and stressful, but taking the right actions can significantly impact your ability to recover compensation later on.

Here’s a step-by-step guide on what to do after a motorcycle accident:

  1. **Ensure Safety:** If possible, move yourself and your motorcycle to a safe location off the road.
  2. **Contact Emergency Services:** Call 911 immediately to report the accident and request medical assistance.
  3. **Keep Safety Gear On:** Do not remove your helmet or other safety gear unless instructed by medical professionals.
  4. **Document the Scene:** Take photos and videos of the accident scene, including vehicle damage, road conditions, and your injuries.
  5. **Exchange Information:** Obtain the other driver’s contact and insurance information.
  6. **Gather Witness Information:** If there are any witnesses, collect their contact information as their accounts can be valuable.
  7. **Avoid Admitting Fault:** Refrain from apologizing or admitting fault, even if you think you might be partially responsible.
  8. **Seek Medical Attention:** Even if you feel fine, seek medical attention as some injuries may not be immediately apparent.
  9. **Contact a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer:** Reach out to an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer in Illinois as soon as possible to discuss your case and protect your rights.

Remember, the insurance company’s primary goal is to minimize their payouts. They might try to downplay your injuries or offer a low settlement. Having an experienced attorney by your side can help you navigate these challenges and level the playing field.

How a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer in Illinois Can Help

Navigating the legal system after a motorcycle accident can feel like navigating a maze, especially while recovering from injuries. A motorcycle accident lawyer serves as your guide, handling all the legal complexities so you can prioritize healing.

Here’s how a motorcycle accident lawyer in Illinois can help you:

Investigating the Accident

A thorough investigation is crucial to build a strong case. Your attorney will conduct a comprehensive investigation, which may involve gathering evidence from the accident scene, interviewing witnesses, and consulting with accident reconstruction professionals to determine the cause of the accident and identify liable parties. 

Dealing with Insurance Companies

Insurance companies often try to minimize payouts and protect their interests. Your motorcycle accident lawyer will handle all communication and negotiations with insurance adjusters on your behalf, protecting your rights and preventing you from saying anything that could jeopardize your claim.

Calculating Damages

Determining the full extent of your damages after a motorcycle accident involves considering various factors, including current and future medical expenses, lost wages, diminished earning capacity, pain and suffering, emotional distress, and more. Your attorney will accurately calculate the full extent of your damages to ensure you seek fair compensation.

Negotiating a Settlement

Most personal injury cases, including motorcycle accidents, are resolved through settlements before going to trial. Your attorney will engage in negotiations with the insurance company to reach a fair settlement that covers your damages adequately. They will leverage their area of focus to protect your interests and secure the best possible outcome.

Taking Your Case to Trial

While settlements are common, a trial might be necessary if the insurance company refuses to offer a fair settlement.Your motorcycle accident lawyer will be prepared to take your case to court and present a compelling argument before a judge and jury.  

Compensation You May Be Entitled To

The compensation you can receive in an Illinois motorcycle accident case depends on various factors, such as the severity of your injuries, the impact on your ability to work, and the negligence of the other party involved. It’s essential to understand the types of damages you can recover to ensure you’re fully compensated.

In general, you may be entitled to compensation for the following:

  • Medical Expenses: This includes past, current, and future medical costs, such as hospitalization, surgeries, medications, rehabilitation, and ongoing therapy.
  • Lost Wages: If your injuries prevent you from working, you can seek compensation for lost income. This includes wages, salaries, bonuses, and self-employment income.
  • Loss of Earning Capacity: If your injuries result in long-term or permanent disabilities that affect your ability to earn a living, you may be entitled to compensation for the reduction in your earning potential.
  • Pain and Suffering: This category compensates for the physical pain, discomfort, and emotional distress you’ve experienced due to the accident and your injuries.
  • Emotional Distress: Motorcycle accidents can lead to significant emotional trauma. You can seek compensation for emotional suffering, such as anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and loss of enjoyment of life.
  • Property Damage: This covers the cost of repairing or replacing your motorcycle and any other damaged property in the accident.
  • Loss of Enjoyment of Life: If your injuries prevent you from engaging in hobbies, activities, and social events you once enjoyed, you might be eligible for compensation for the negative impact on your quality of life.
  • Disability or Disfigurement: Severe injuries can result in permanent disabilities or disfigurement, significantly impacting your life. Compensation may be available to address these long-term challenges.

In cases involving extreme negligence, such as drunk driving or reckless driving, you might also be awarded punitive damages. Punitive damages aim to punish the at-fault party for their egregious conduct and deter others from engaging in similar behavior.

Illinois Motorcycle Laws You Should Know

Familiarizing yourself with Illinois motorcycle laws can help ensure your safety on the road and protect your rights if you’re involved in an accident. Understanding these laws can strengthen your case by demonstrating you acted responsibly.

Here are some key Illinois motorcycle laws to be aware of:

  • Helmet Laws: While helmets are not mandatory for riders over 18, they are strongly recommended.
  • Eye Protection: Motorcycle riders and passengers are required to wear eye protection, such as goggles or a face shield, unless the motorcycle is equipped with a windscreen.
  • Passenger Requirements: Motorcycles carrying passengers must have a separate seat and footrests designed for passengers.
  • Lane Splitting: Lane splitting, or riding between lanes of traffic, is illegal in Illinois. Motorcyclists must adhere to lane restrictions and ride within a designated lane.
  • Full Lane Use: Motorcycles are entitled to use a full traffic lane. Drivers are prohibited from sharing a lane with a motorcycle.
  • Motorcycle Equipment: All motorcycles in Illinois must have at least one working headlight and one working taillight.

Illinois follows a “modified comparative negligence” rule. This means if you’re found partially at fault for the motorcycle accident, you can still recover damages, but your compensation will be reduced in proportion to your percentage of fault. For example, if you’re found 30% at fault, your compensation will be reduced by 30%.

FAQs about motorcycle accident lawyer il

If you’ve been involved in a motorcycle accident, you likely have many questions about your legal rights and options. Understanding the legal aspects of your situation is crucial, so here are some frequently asked questions (FAQs) about motorcycle accidents in Illinois:

How much are most motorcycle accident settlements?

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question as the value of a motorcycle accident settlement can vary significantly from case to case. Factors that influence settlement amounts include:

  • Severity of Injuries: More severe injuries, such as traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, and multiple fractures, generally result in higher settlements due to the increased medical expenses, long-term care, and impact on the victim’s life.
  • Long-Term Impacts: Injuries resulting in permanent disabilities, disfigurement, or chronic pain will likely lead to larger settlements to account for the ongoing medical treatment, rehabilitation, lost earning capacity, and diminished quality of life.
  • Available Insurance Coverage: The amount of insurance coverage available from the at-fault driver’s policy is a significant factor. Cases involving underinsured or uninsured drivers might have lower settlement potential unless the injured rider has sufficient underinsured/uninsured motorist coverage.
  • Liability: The degree of the other party’s fault plays a role in settlement negotiations. Cases with clear liability and significant negligence on the part of the at-fault driver tend to result in higher settlements.

An experienced motorcycle accident lawyer in Illinois can evaluate your case’s specific circumstances and provide an estimated settlement range based on their experience and knowledge of similar cases.

What to do if there is a motorcycle accident?

If you are involved in a motorcycle accident, taking immediate and appropriate action can protect your well-being, preserve evidence, and strengthen your legal position. Here’s a recap of what to do:

  1. **Check for Injuries:** The first priority is safety. Check yourself and others involved for injuries.
  2. **Move to Safety:** If possible and safe to do so, move yourself and your motorcycle to a safe location away from traffic.
  3. **Call 911:** Report the accident to the police immediately. This creates an official record of the incident.
  4. **Document the Scene:** While waiting for the police to arrive, if you are able, gather evidence. Take photos and videos of the accident scene, including vehicle damage, road conditions, traffic signals, and any visible injuries.
  5. **Exchange Information:** Obtain the other driver’s name, contact information, driver’s license number, insurance information, and vehicle registration. If there are witnesses, collect their contact information as well.
  6. **Do Not Admit Fault:** Refrain from apologizing or admitting fault, even if you believe you might be partially responsible. Let the police investigation determine liability.
  7. **Seek Medical Attention:** Even if you feel fine at the scene, seek medical attention promptly. Some injuries, such as whiplash or internal injuries, may not manifest immediately. A medical evaluation creates a record of your injuries, linking them to the accident.
  8. **Contact a Lawyer:** Contact an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer in Illinois as soon as possible. They can guide you through the legal process, protect your rights, and advocate for your best interests.

What is the average payout for a motorcycle accident in Illinois?

In Illinois, as with other states, the settlement value of a motorcycle accident case is determined by factors unique to each case, including:

  • Severity of Injuries: The extent and severity of injuries sustained significantly impact settlement amounts. Cases involving catastrophic injuries, such as traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, multiple fractures, internal injuries, or amputations, typically result in much higher settlements compared to cases with minor injuries.
  • Economic Damages: These damages are easily quantifiable and include medical expenses (past, present, and future), lost wages, and loss of earning capacity. The higher the economic damages, the higher the potential settlement.
  • Non-Economic Damages: These damages are more subjective and encompass pain and suffering, emotional distress, loss of consortium (loss of companionship and support for spouses), and diminished quality of life. Calculating non-economic damages often involves considering the severity of injuries, the impact on the victim’s daily life, and the long-term consequences of the accident.
  • Liability: The degree of fault assigned to each party involved plays a significant role in settlement calculations. If the injured motorcyclist shares some degree of fault for the accident (e.g., lane splitting, speeding), their compensation will be reduced accordingly. In Illinois, under its modified comparative negligence rule, if the injured party is found 50% or more at fault, they are barred from recovering any compensation.

Given these variables, providing a general average payout for motorcycle accidents in Illinois, or any state for that matter, is misleading. Consulting with a local motorcycle accident attorney is essential for an accurate assessment of your case and a realistic expectation of potential settlement ranges.

How many motorcycle deaths per year in Illinois?

Motorcycle accidents are a significant concern in Illinois, as they are in many states. While the exact number of motorcycle fatalities fluctuates from year to year, data from the Illinois Department of Transportation highlights a concerning trend.

According to recent statistics, motorcycle fatalities constitute a disproportionately high percentage of all traffic fatalities in the state, often accounting for about 14% of total traffic deaths annually.

These sobering statistics underscore the importance of promoting motorcycle safety, raising awareness among all motorists about sharing the road responsibly with motorcyclists, and emphasizing the crucial role of legal representation for injured riders or families who have lost loved ones in motorcycle accidents.


Motorcycle accidents can have life-altering consequences, leaving victims with severe injuries, emotional trauma, and financial burdens. The aftermath of a motorcycle accident can be overwhelming, especially when dealing with insurance companies and legal complexities.

However, seeking legal help from a skilled motorcycle accident lawyer in Illinois is essential. They can guide you through every stage of the legal process, protect your rights, and strive to secure the maximum compensation you deserve for your injuries, damages, and losses.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident, don’t hesitate to contact an experienced attorney, like Brad Lakin, who focuses in motorcycle accident cases in Illinois. He can provide a free consultation, assess your case, and explain your legal options.  

Az: 480.418.9100
MO: 314.387.5900
AZ: 480.418.9100
MO: 314.387.5900