The aftermath of a Nashville motorcycle accident can be costly. There is damage to your bike, the cost of repairing or replacing protective gear or a helmet, and most importantly the expense of medical treatment and emergency services. Each year motorcyclists spend hundreds of thousands of dollars treating and rehabbing injuries from motorcycle accidents in Tennessee.
As all of these costs add up in the months after a Nashville motorcycle accident, many injured riders begin to consider their options for recovering expenses and costs from the at-fault driver. A Nashville motorcycle accident lawyer can help you seek damages and compensation after your accident. However, the State of Tennessee places some restrictions and rules on what damages you can request.
What compensation should you seek or expect after a Nashville motorcycle accident? Continue reading to learn more about recovery, damages, and the laws on personal injury cases in Tennessee.
Recovering the Cost of Medical Expenses
The cost of emergency medical treatment and medical bills are often the biggest expense for motorcyclists and their families after a motorcycle accident. Compared to other motor vehicle accidents, crashes and collisions involving motorcycles are more likely to require ongoing treatment, physical therapy, and rehabilitation. As well, there is a far higher rate of concussions, traumatic brain injuries, and other head and neck injuries for motorcyclists than other drivers on Tennessee roads. All of these injuries require more extensive and expensive treatment.
After a Nashville motorcycle accident, a Nashville motorcycle accident lawyer will help you recover reasonable medical costs. Based on recent Tennessee case law, reasonable medical expenses means that amount actually paid by injured motorcyclists for treatment and services. A Nashville motorcycle accident lawyer cannot compile a list of itemized medical services but must present to the court the medical bills and state the amount paid by an injured motorcyclist.
Cost of Future Medical Care and Treatment
After a Nashville motorcycle accident, it is common for motorcyclists to require ongoing care or treatment. As described above, the range of injuries from a motorcycle accident is extensive, varied, and serious. Whether you suffer a fractured bone in your arm or leg, require treatment for burns, or need physical therapy from a serious neck or shoulder injury, your medical care could continue for months or years into the future. However, the time to file your personal injury claim against the at-fault driver is now.
Courts in Tennessee recognize that you may not have an accurate or full accounting of your medical costs when you file a personal injury lawsuit and allows plaintiffs to predict the cost of future medical costs. These costs of future medical costs can be included, as part of your reasonable medical expenses, but you’ll need to evidence of the necessity of these costs.
As evidence of your future medical costs, a Nashville motorcycle accident lawyer will have you obtain a doctor’s diagnosis and recommendation. Opinions from specialists and the physicians or therapists hired to handle your treatment are also helpful to establish reasonableness.
The Emotional Cost of a Nashville Motorcycle Accident
The laws in Tennessee also allow an individual injured in a motorcycle accident to seek punitive damages from an at-fault driver. Unlike compensatory damages, which are those related to personal injury and property damage, punitive damages don’t represent expenses and amounts paid after a Nashville motorcycle accident, but rather other losses to the plaintiff. These damages are also called non-economic damages in Tennessee.
Non-economic damages can include amounts for physical and emotional pain from your Nashville motorcycle accident, suffering, mental anguish, and emotional distress. For example, punitive damages for physical pain may be warranted when there is a severe or distressing physical injury that leads to serious physical anguish after the Nashville motorcycle accident. In contrast, a request for mental anguish or emotional distress is related to the psychological impact of substantial injuries or a gruesome accident.
Other punitive damages can include the loss of companionships, consortium, or society related to a plaintiff’s inability to interact with family members and friends in the same capacity as before the accident or loss of enjoyment of normal activities. The loss of enjoyment of normal activities applies when a motorcyclist is incapable, not merely unwilling, to participate in the same wellness and lifestyle activities as before the Nashville motorcycle accident.
However, there are a number of rules and restrictions on punitive damages in Tennessee, including the requirement that your motorcycle accident lawsuit must be filed within one year to request these damages.
Talk with a Nashville Motorcycle Accident Lawyer About Your Case
The best way to determine the appropriate amount of damages, compensation, and reasonable medical costs after a Nashville motorcycle accident is to speak with a local lawyer in your area. At Surber, Asher, Surber & Moushon, PLLC, our team of Nashville motorcycle accident lawyers can help you assess damages and the possible cost of your case in a free, initial consultation. To schedule this free consultation, call Joel Surber at (615)997-1921.