The annual Sturgis motorcycle rally brings thousands of out-of-state motorcyclists to South Dakota each year. Unfortunately, such an increase in the number of bikes means an increase in the number of bike accidents as well. If you’re an out-of-state visitor involved in a South Dakota motorcycle accident that was not your fault, you might need an attorney to help you pursue an insurance claim for damages or file a personal injury lawsuit if your insurance claim is denied. Even if you live in a different state and have a lawyer there, you would be wise to consult a South Dakota motorcycle accident attorney in regard to your Sturgis bike crash.
Advantages of Having a South Dakota Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
South Dakota has jurisdiction over accidents that occur anywhere in the state, so that is where you should file your insurance claim or your personal injury lawsuit against the party who’s responsible for your damages: medical bills, property damage, lost income, and pain and suffering. There are several advantages to being represented by a South Dakota motorcycle lawyer:
- A South Dakota lawyer will be familiar with the state court system and its procedures.
- An attorney licensed in South Dakota, which is a tort state, will be accustomed to filing insurance claims against at-fault drivers’ insurers. If you happen to live in a no-fault state, your own attorney is more likely to have experience filing claims with victims’ insurers, which is a different process in some ways.
- In most cases, only an attorney admitted to the South Dakota Bar Association may represent you in a South Dakota court. Even if your case is settled through the insurance claim process, as most accident cases are, and never goes to trial, you want to have the option of filing a lawsuit because it gives you leverage in your negotiations with the at-fault party’s insurer. You have that leverage only with a South Dakota attorney who can practice here.
- An attorney who practices in South Dakota will have important knowledge of South Dakota motorcycle laws, the statute of limitations, and our comparative negligence rule, which allows you to receive compensation for damages even if you’re partially at fault for your own accident, as long as your portion of fault is slight. Because the law does not clearly define or quantify a “slight” portion of blame, it’s important to have a lawyer who knows how the South Dakota courts have historically interpreted that term.
Have You Been Hurt in a South Dakota Motorcycle Crash?
An experienced motorcycle accident lawyer can help you file your insurance claim or lawsuit. Contact us online or call us at 605-644-5003 to schedule a free consultation. You pay no attorney fees until we win your case.