Best Motorcycle Accident Lawyers Phoenix, AZ (2024) – Forbes Advisor – Forbes

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Arizona has complex laws concerning personal injury and motorcycle accidents. We couldn’t possibly cover all of them here. If you’ve been injured in an accident, finding an experienced Phoenix motorcycle accident lawyer is definitely in your best interest.

We can provide a general overview of some of the laws in Arizona, but motorcycle accident cases can be complex. Understanding the basics of how Arizona defines fault and negligence may just be the tip of the iceberg regarding your specific case.

Arizona Statute of Limitations

A statute of limitations is a time limit within which a lawsuit must be filed. Each state has its own statutes of limitations, which can vary depending on the type of case.

Arizona law generally sets a statute of limitations of two years for personal injury cases, including those arising from motorcycle accidents. This means that from the accident date, you typically have two years to file a lawsuit seeking compensation for your injuries.

Arizona Laws for Motorcycle Drivers

As in all states, motorcycle riders in Arizona must follow all state laws for motor vehicles, which includes meeting insurance requirements.

These requirements are $25,000 for bodily injury per person, $50,000 for bodily injury per accident and $15,000 for property damage, minimum.

There are some motorcycle-specific laws that must be followed, too.

  • Age Restrictions. Arizona requires all riders under 18 to wear helmets while riding. There is no requirement for those over 18 to wear helmets, but it’s generally a good idea.
  • Safety Features. Arizona requires that all riders have some sort of face protection. Many motorcycles have a protective windshield, which is sufficient for compliance with this law. If your bike doesn’t have this feature, you must wear protective goggles, glasses or a face shield.
  • Lane Splitting. Arizona doesn’t allow lane-splitting at all but has recently passed a law allowing “lane filtering” in specific circumstances. Motorcycles can “filter” between two lanes of stopped traffic if the lanes are facing in the same direction, the posted speed limit is 45 miles per hour or less and the motorcycle travels at 15 miles per hour or less.

Identifying Fault for a Motorcycle Crash

Arizona, like most states, uses the fault-based approach to vehicle accidents and insurance. In a fault-based state, the at-fault driver pays for all damages caused in an accident. All drivers are required to carry liability insurance for these situations—when they are liable—and can carry other types of coverage at their discretion.

This system focuses on determining fault and assigns financial responsibility accordingly. If you’re involved in a motorcycle accident in Arizona, the insurance companies investigate the circumstances to determine who was at fault, and the at-fault driver’s insurance should be responsible for covering the damages and injuries resulting from the accident.

The at-fault driver is responsible for all the damages they caused, but the insurance company is only required to pay up to the policy limits that driver has. If the damages exceed these limits, the driver, not their insurance, can be held responsible and sued if necessary.

Arizona Negligence Rules and Who Can Recover

Arizona follows pure comparative negligence to determine how parties can recover after an accident.

Most states follow a modified version of comparative negligence that only allows someone to sue if they are less than 51% responsible for the accident. Arizona allows anyone to sue, but their responsibility for the overall accident will limit their compensation.

For example, a rider with $20,000 in damages who is found to be 10% at fault would recover $18,000 under either type of comparative negligence. If that same rider was found to be 70% at fault, they couldn’t recover in a modified comparative negligence jurisdiction, but in Arizona, they could recover $6,000.

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