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Why You Need a Lawyer Who Rides
Posted on May 4, 2012 8:48am PDT
I have been riding motorcycles for the past 40 years. When I began my practice of law, I was a criminal attorney. The firm that employed me represented a number of the motorcycle clubs in the Detroit area. This was in the 1970’s. In the 1980’s, I changed my focus to personal injury law. I have been a personal injury lawyer, specializing in motorcycle accident cases, ONLY, for over 30 years.
It appears now that there are a great many lawyers who have “discovered”motorcycle accident law. They have pictures of themselves standing next to motorcycles. They write pamphlets and books, explaining how they specialize in motorcycle accident law. If you take the time to really check their websites or Google them, you will see that they are specialistsin everything. Truck accidents. Slip and falls. Medical malpractice. Lead paint poisoning. Swimming pool accidents. They are experts in everything. I am not about to hire a plumber to fix my roof. Why would I hire a medical malpractice lawyer to represent me in a motorcycle accident?
I have seen one lawyer who, because he doesn’t ride a motorcycle, tells people on his web site that if they are in a motorcycle accident, they do not need a lawyer who rides. They go so far as to say that if you needed medical help, you would not insist on having a doctor who rides. That is their analogy. A better analogy would be, if you were in a car accident, you would want to hire a lawyer who, at least, knows how to drive a car!
This so-called expert prints on the internet some interesting statistics. 1) 25% of super sport bike accidents were fatal motorcycle accidents. 2) 49% of all motorcyclists without helmets are killed in motorcycle accidents. I am not making this up. I took this right off of his internet post.
Then he gives riding tips (a lawyer who doesn’t ride a motorcycle) He advises people to ride in the center of the lane. If you ride, you know that it is probably the last place you want to be riding. All of the grease and oil accumulate in the middle of the lane, and if it should start to rain, it would be like riding on glass. He also advises people riding in groups to ride single file. When was the last time you saw a group of bikers riding single file (other than in a curve)? I have ridden with many groups throughout the years. We ride staggered. This gives you even more room between yourself and the motorcycle in front of you. But how could a lawyer who doesn’t ride a motorcycle know that? The better question is how can a lawyer who doesn’t ride a motorcycle give motorcycle riding advice? That would be like me giving advice on Rodeo Bull Riding!
How could a lawyer who doesn’t ride a motorcycle understand what happens in an emergency situation, where a biker must lay his bike down to avoid an accident? Do you think these lawyers know the difference between a high-side and a low-side accident? Most of them don’t know which side of the handle bars is the clutch lever and which is the brake lever.
Why am I saying all of this? Simple. Every year I see more lawyers trying to get a “piece of the pie”. Unfortunately, you, as motorcycle riders, are the pie. Not to me. To me, you are a brother. You know what I’m saying. You ride into a gas station, and if there is another biker, you start up a conversation. If you are driving down the road in your car, and there is a motorcycle on the side of the road, you pull over to offer assistance. That is, as a motorcycle rider, what we do. Can you imagine one of these non-biker lawyers pulling his car over to the side of the road to help a biker? Not a chance.
If you are unfortunate enough to be involved in a motorcycle accident that may affect you for the rest of your life, you want a lawyer who will, not only be in your corner, but will be able to understand you, understands how much motorcycle riding means to you, and will make it a priority, not only to get you the compensation you deserve, but to get you back to where you want to be…on your bike.
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