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Charleston, WV Motorcycle Accident Lawyers

Injured in a Motorcycle Accident in Charleston, WV?

Charleston boasts scenic roads and beautiful landscapes, making it a popular destination for motorcycle enthusiasts. However, these very roads can pose significant risks to riders due to their unique vulnerabilities in traffic. Motorcycle accidents can result in catastrophic injuries and, in some cases, even fatalities.

If you or a loved one has been involved in a motorcycle accident in Charleston, WV you need an experienced personal injury attorney to help you through this difficult time. At Mike Slocumb Law Firm, we understand the unique challenges that come with motorcycle accidents and are here to fight for your rights and your entitled compensation. Let us hold the at-fault party accountable for their negligence and help you make the best possible recovery from injury.

Call (304) 802-2115 or contact us online today to request a free consultation with one of our motorcycle accident lawyers in Charleston, WV.

Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents in WV

Motorcycle accidents caused by driver error, whether the error is made by the motorcyclist themselves or by another motorist on the road, are unfortunately relatively common. These errors can range from simple mistakes to reckless behaviors, and they can lead to a wide range of accident types and severity levels.

Here are most frequent culprits behind motorcycle crashes:

Inattention and Distracted Driving:

  • This is a major threat to motorcyclists because they have a smaller profile and are easier to miss. Drivers texting, talking on phones, using navigation systems while not looking, or simply daydreaming can overlook a motorcycle entirely. This can lead to rear-end collisions, sideswipes, or other types of accidents.

Impaired Driving:

  • Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs can impair a driver's judgment, coordination, and reaction times, making them more likely to be involved in accidents with motorcycles. This is especially dangerous for motorcyclists who rely heavily on these skills to navigate safely.

Poor Visibility and Unsafe Lane Changes:

  • Car and truck drivers often fail to properly check their blind spots before changing lanes or turning left, turning directly into the path of an oncoming motorcycle. Additionally, motorcycles' smaller size can make them harder to see in poor weather conditions or at night.


  • Excessive speed reduces a driver's ability to react to sudden changes in traffic or road conditions. Speeding motorists are more likely to be involved in accidents with motorcycles. Due to minimal protection, motorcyclists are much more vulnerable to serious injuries at high speeds.

Failure to Yield Right of Way:

  • Many motorcycle accidents occur when other drivers fail to yield the right of way to motorcycles. This can happen at intersections, when changing lanes, or when making turns.

Unsafe Lane Changes:

  • Drivers who change lanes without signaling, checking blind spots, or properly yielding to other vehicles can collide with motorcycles in adjacent lanes.

Opening Car Doors Without Checking:

  • In urban areas, parked car occupants may open their doors without checking for oncoming motorcycles, leading to dooring accidents.

Running Red Lights and Stop Signs:

  • Motorists who disregard traffic signals or stop signs can cause intersection accidents involving motorcycles.

Failure to Maintain a Safe Following Distance:

  • Tailgating or following motorcycles too closely reduces the driver's reaction time in case the motorcycle needs to brake suddenly.

Negligence and Aggressive Driving:

  • Aggressive behaviors such as road rage, weaving between lanes, tailgating, and aggressive passing can put motorcyclists at risk and lead to accidents.

Inadequate Use of Turn Signals:

  • Failing to signal turns or lane changes can lead to confusion and accidents involving motorcycles.

Road Hazards:

  • Uneven pavement, potholes, loose gravel, or unexpected debris on the road can cause motorcyclists to lose control and crash.

Motorcycle Rider Errors:

  • While many accidents involve other drivers' negligence, some can also be caused by motorcycle rider errors such as speeding, riding under the influence, or riding without proper safety gear.

Common Motorcycle Accident Injuries

Motorcycle riders are exposed to much greater risk of injury compared to car occupants in an accident. The lack of surrounding protection means injuries from a motorcycle crash can be severe and life-changing. Here's a breakdown of some common motorcycle accident injuries in West Virginia:

  • Head and Facial Injuries: Head injuries are some of the most serious and potentially fatal outcomes of motorcycle accidents. Wearing a properly fitted helmet is crucial for reducing the risk of skull fractures, traumatic brain injuries (TBI), facial lacerations, and even death.
  • Road Rash: This is a common and painful injury caused by sliding across pavement during a crash. Road rash can range from mild abrasions to severe degloving injuries where entire layers of skin are ripped away. Infection is a serious risk with road rash, and depending on the severity, scarring may be permanent.
  • Spinal Cord Injuries: The force of a motorcycle accident can damage the delicate spinal cord, resulting in partial or complete paralysis. Spinal cord injuries can have a devastating impact on a person's mobility, independence, and quality of life.
  • Broken Bones: Fractures are frequent in motorcycle accidents, with legs, arms, ribs, and collarbones being especially vulnerable due to their exposed position. The severity of the break will determine the treatment plan, which may involve casting, surgery, or a combination of both.
  • Internal Injuries: Blunt force trauma from a motorcycle accident can cause internal organ damage, including injuries to the lungs, spleen, liver, or kidneys. Internal bleeding is a serious complication, and prompt medical attention is crucial.
  • Psychological Trauma: Motorcycle accidents can be incredibly stressful and traumatic experiences. Riders may experience anxiety, depression, or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after a crash.
  • Long-Term Effects: Motorcycle accident injuries can have long-term consequences. This may include chronic pain, disability, limited mobility, and even psychological issues.

Compensation for a Motorcycle Accident in WV

In West Virginia, if you're injured in a motorcycle accident caused by another driver's negligence, you may be entitled to compensation for various damages under the state's fault-based system.

Economic Damages

These are quantifiable losses with clear financial value and aim to make you financially whole again. Examples include:

  • Medical Expenses: This covers all costs associated with your accident-related injuries, including:
    • Doctor visits
    • Hospital stays
    • Surgery
    • Medication
    • Physical therapy
    • Rehabilitation
  • Lost Wages: If you're unable to work due to your injuries, you can recover compensation for lost income. This may include salary, bonuses, commissions, and other forms of work-related compensation.
  • Motorcycle Repairs: If your motorcycle was damaged in the accident, you can recover the cost of repairs or the value of the motorcycle if it's totaled.
  • Out-of-Pocket Expenses: This covers any other expenses you incur due to the accident, such as transportation costs, medical equipment rentals, or home care services.

Non-Economic Damages

These are intangible losses that are more difficult to assign a dollar value to, but they still impact your life significantly. Examples include:

  • Pain and Suffering: This covers the physical and emotional pain you experience due to your injuries.
  • Emotional Distress: This includes psychological effects like anxiety, depression, or PTSD.
  • Loss of Enjoyment of Life: If your injuries limit your ability to participate in activities you once enjoyed, you may be entitled to compensation for this loss.
  • Loss of Consortium: This refers to the loss of marital intimacy or companionship due to your injuries.

West Virginia's Cap on Non-Economic Damages:

It's important to note that West Virginia has a cap on non-economic damages in medical malpractice claims. In these cases, West Virginia Code § 55-7B-8 caps noneconomic damages at $250,000, with exceptions allowing recovery of up to $500,000 under specific circumstances.

Motorcycle Rider Fault and Shared Responsibility

West Virginia follows a comparative negligence law. This means if you are found to be partially at fault for the accident, your compensation will be reduced based on your percentage of fault. For example, if you are found to be 20% at fault, your damage award will be decreased by 20%.

Maximizing Your Compensation for a Motorcycle Accident

  • Consult a Motorcycle Accident Attorney: An experienced attorney can help you understand your legal rights, navigate the claims process, gather evidence to support your case, and negotiate with insurance companies to maximize your compensation.
  • Document Everything: Keep detailed records of all medical bills, lost wages, and other expenses related to your accident.

The specific damages you can claim and the amount of compensation you may receive will depend on the unique facts and circumstances of your case. Consulting with our Charleston, WV motorcycle accident attorney is essential to determine the full scope of your damages and fight for the compensation you deserve.

  • I thank Mike Slocumb so much for changing my life.

    “I thank Mike Slocumb so much for changing my life. David and Mike were like Angels to me. I didn’t know if I would ever walk again.”

  • Mr. Gracie handled my case, he was superb.

    “Mr. Gracie is really, really experienced and an exceptional lawyer.”

  • I Couldn't Have Been Happier

    “My case was actually settled earlier than projected and I couldn't have been happier with the outcome.”

  • Great Communication!

    “I dealt with Lowell Moore here and I’ll recommend him to anyone, anytime! The defining factor was his communication... I was able to always deal with Lowell firsthand about any questions or concerns I had.”

  • Incredible Attorney!

    “Attorney Lowell Moore was awesome in the whole process! He kept us included in every move made for our accident/injury case. Never had an issue with communication and he really showed us he cares about his clients!!!”

How Long Do I Have To File A Motorcycle Accident Claim In WV?

In West Virginia, the deadline to file a motorcycle accident lawsuit is two years from the date of the accident. This is governed by the state's statute of limitations for personal injury claims. If you don't file your lawsuit within this two-year window, you will likely be barred from seeking compensation in court.

There might be some exceptions to this two-year rule in rare cases, such as:

  • Minor Injured: If the injured party was a minor at the time of the accident, the two-year clock may not start ticking until they reach adulthood.
  • Legal Disability: If the injured party has a legal disability that prevented them from filing a lawsuit on their own behalf, the deadline may be extended.

It's crucial to act promptly after a motorcycle accident. For the purpose of gathering evidence, getting medical treatment, and meeting insurance deadlines. Memories fade, witnesses relocate, and crucial evidence can become lost over time. Seeking medical attention as soon as possible establishes a clear connection between your injuries and the accident. Most insurance companies have their own deadlines for filing claims. Missing these deadlines could jeopardize your ability to recover compensation.

While the statute of limitations provides the general timeframe, consulting with our Charleston, WV motorcycle accident attorney as soon as possible after the accident is highly recommended. We can advise you of your specific situation, the applicable deadlines, and the best course of action to protect your rights and maximize your chances of a successful outcome.

Why Choose Us?

Our team of skilled attorneys has years of experience representing clients in motorcycle accident cases. We will work tirelessly to ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages.

No matter where you are located, Mike Slocumb Law Firm is here to help. We will work closely with you to understand the specifics of your case and develop a strategy to pursue the compensation you deserve.

If you have been involved in a motorcycle accident, don't go through it alone. Contact Mike Slocumb Law Firm today to schedule a free consultation with one of our Charleston, WV motorcycle accident attorneys. 

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