Albuquerque E-Scooter Accident Lawyer a
As electric scooter (e-scooter) usage continues to rise, so does the risk of related accidents and injuries. E-scooter accidents can be physically and emotionally devastating for riders, who often have little to no protection from injury. E-scooter collisions involving motor vehicles can be deadly for vulnerable scooter users. At The Fine Law Firm, our Albuquerque e-scooter accident attorneys provide effective and compassionate legal representation to victims and their families. Contact us today to request a free case consultation.
How Our Albuquerque E-Scooter Accident Attorneys Help You
Navigating the legal process involved in recovering from an e-scooter accident can be complex, especially when dealing with insurance companies that want you to settle for as little as possible or nothing at all. Hiring an e-scooter accident lawyer in Albuquerque can help you pursue maximum financial compensation.
The Albuquerque personal injury attorneys at The Fine Law Firm can help you with a case in many ways, including:
- Using our knowledge and understanding of New Mexico’s e-scooter laws to build a strong case.
- Investigating the circumstances surrounding your accident and gathering evidence.
- Determining liability and identifying one or more parties to name as defendants in your case.
- Coordinating with e-scooter companies to gather evidence and work toward a resolution.
- Handling insurance negotiations to ensure you are treated fairly.
- Advocating for the compensation you deserve during a court trial, if necessary.
Our goal as your attorneys will be to maximize the compensation you receive for your injuries and losses to allow you to move forward with greater peace of mind. We will use our decades of experience in personal injury law to provide effective representation and make sure you have everything you need to get through this difficult time.
What Steps Should I Take Immediately Following an E-Scooter Accident in Albuquerque?
E-scooters have become a convenient and popular mode of transportation in many cities due to companies such as Bird, Lime and Spin offering rentable electric scooters. While e-scooters can be a fun and eco-friendly travel option, they pose certain accident risks.
If you get involved in an e-scooter accident in Albuquerque, take the following steps:
- Get to a safe location. If you are safe where you are, remain there and limit your movements in case you have serious injuries. Otherwise, get to a safe place, out of the way of traffic.
- Report the accident and get help. Call 911 to report the e-scooter accident if it involves a motor vehicle, injuries or property damage. If you have been injured, request paramedics.
- Do not admit fault. Do not apologize to the other parties involved or make statements to the police that could be interpreted as an admission of guilt.
- Exchange information. If a motor vehicle driver or another party was involved in the accident, write down his or her name, contact number and insurance information.
- Document the scene. If possible, take photographs of the accident scene, including damage to the vehicle and e-scooter. If there are any witnesses, obtain their information.
- Notify the e-scooter company. If you were riding a rented e-scooter, notify the company of the crash by contacting customer support or submitting a report through the app.
- Obtain medical documentation. Keep copies of your hospital bills, medical records and a recommended treatment plan created for you by a doctor.
- File a claim. Contact the at-fault party’s insurance company to file an initial accident claim. Before you engage in negotiations with an insurer, contact an attorney.
- Be wary of insurance claims adjusters. Don’t trust e-scooter companies or their insurers to protect your best interests. Do not give a recorded statement or accept a fast settlement.
- Consult with an e-scooter accident lawyer. Contact an experienced Albuquerque e-scooter accident lawyer at The Fine Law Firm to learn your legal rights and options.
After an e-scooter accident, your top priorities should be your safety and health. Once you are in a safe place and have received medical care for your injuries, begin thinking about your financial recovery. Work with an attorney to ensure the protection of your rights throughout the negotiation or litigation process.
E-Scooter Accidents Can Cause Serious Injuries
The injuries suffered in an e-scooter accident can be severe for the rider or a pedestrian. E-scooter riders are vulnerable road users, meaning they are at a higher risk of suffering serious and fatal injuries in accidents than motor vehicle operators. In New Mexico, state law does not require e-scooter users over the age of 18 to wear helmets. Most riders do not wear any type of protective gear.
A crash involving an e-scooter can cause many injuries, including:
- Abrasions and road rash
- Back and spinal cord injuries
- Bone fractures and dislocations
- Bruises and contusions
- Emotional distress and post-traumatic stress disorder
- Facial and dental injuries
- Head injuries and skull fractures
- Internal injuries and organ damage
- Muscle and ligament damage
- Permanent disability
- Serious cuts and lacerations
- Soft-tissue injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Wrongful death
E-scooter accident victims may never be the same after suffering serious or debilitating injuries in collisions. Sadly, e-scooter accidents are on the rise. Injuries associated with e-scooters and other micromobility devices increased by nearly 21 percent from 2021 to 2022, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission. From 2017 to 2022, 233 deaths and an estimated 360,800 emergency department visits were associated with these devices.
Common Causes of E-Scooter Accidents in New Mexico
Electric scooters can be a convenient way to travel, but they are also highly dangerous. Many people who rent e-scooters in Albuquerque are first-time riders. They may be unsteady and inexperienced on e-scooters, which can travel at speeds of up to 15 miles per hour. This can lead to a dangerous loss of scooter control. Riders may also fail to recognize the serious dangers presented by careless and reckless drivers surrounding them.
Many risks can endanger the lives of e-scooter riders, including:
- Adverse weather conditions
- Collisions with motor vehicles
- Defective scooters
- Distracted and inattentive drivers
- Drunk drivers
- Equipment breakdowns or malfunctions
- Failure to yield the right-of-way
- Lack of safety gear, such as a helmet
- No designated bike or e-scooter lanes
- Poorly designed road infrastructure
- Road defects and hazards, such as potholes
Human error is the most common cause of e-scooter accidents in Albuquerque. Many collisions are traced back to broken laws and violated traffic regulations. Careless drivers may fail to notice an e-scooter or stop to yield the right-of-way, for example, resulting in catastrophic collisions. In other cases, the e-scooter operator could make a mistake that leads to an accident, such as riding on sidewalks and colliding with pedestrians.
Were You Injured in a Pedestrian E-Scooter Accident?
Pedestrians are vulnerable to serious injuries when hit by electric scooters. If you suffered an injury after being struck by someone on an e-scooter in Albuquerque, you may be entitled to compensation from the at-fault party. E-scooter operators have a duty of care, or legal obligation, to obey the city’s e-scooter laws. In many jurisdictions, this includes no riding on sidewalks.
If an e-scooter rider was breaking the law by riding on a sidewalk when he or she struck you, the rider could be held liable (legally responsible) for your injuries and medical bills. Liability could also go to the e-scooter operator if he or she failed to operate the scooter carefully and prudently. If the rider was distracted, on the phone, not paying attention or failed to yield the right-of-way, he or she could be liable.
Most e-scooter rental companies do not require their riders to have insurance. Companies such as Lime and Spin avoid liability with waivers that must be signed before they ride. Collecting compensation for these accidents as an injured pedestrian can be difficult. You may need a personal injury lawyer to help you identify potential recovery options, such as a claim against the individual rider, your own insurance company or a third party.
Who Is Liable for an E-Scooter Accident?
New Mexico is an at-fault car insurance state, meaning the party responsible for causing a crash is liable. A victim who was injured in an e-scooter accident due to another person’s negligence, or the failure to use proper care, can seek financial compensation through an insurance claim or lawsuit against the responsible party.
Parties that can potentially be held liable for an e-scooter accident include:
- A motor vehicle driver: a driver who violates traffic laws or drives recklessly can be held liable for causing an e-scooter accident. All drivers in New Mexico must carry minimum amounts of liability insurance to cover victims’ injuries and property damage after at-fault collisions.
- The e-scooter company: negligence by Lime, Bird or Spin could lead to a lawsuit against the company for a related accident. Examples include poorly maintained e-scooters and the failure to warn users about foreseeable injury risks.
- An e-scooter or part manufacturer: the victim of an e-scooter accident could potentially file a product liability claim against the manufacturer of a defective device or part, such as in a case involving bad brakes and brake failure.
- The city or municipality: if an investigation finds that a road defect or hazardous infrastructure contributed to the crash, a government agency could be held liable for failing to maintain safe roads for users.
Some cases involve liability being assigned to more than one party. In New Mexico, the comparative negligence law states that if a victim is found to be partially responsible for an accident, he or she can still recover compensation from another at-fault party. In this scenario, the victim’s compensatory award is reduced by his or her percentage of fault.
How Do I Prove Negligence in an E-Scooter Accident Case in Albuquerque?
In a personal injury claim in Albuquerque, the injured party or plaintiff has the burden of proof. This means as the injured victim, you or your lawyer must establish that the claim you are making is more likely to be true than not true. This is known as a “preponderance of the evidence.”
Proving that someone else’s negligence caused or significantly contributed to your e-scooter accident requires evidence of four key elements:
- Duty of care: the defendant had a legal obligation to act with ordinary care based on the circumstances, such as a driver’s duty to prevent traffic accidents.
- Breach of duty: the defendant failed to act in a way that a reasonable person would have in the same or similar circumstances.
- Causation: the defendant’s breach of duty was the proximate or actual cause of the e-scooter accident.
- Damages: specific losses were suffered by the plaintiff in the accident, such as physical injuries and medical bills.
An attorney can help you prove negligence in an e-scooter accident case, such as by collecting evidence of someone else’s fault. Common examples of evidence include accident reports, eyewitness statements and testimony from highly qualified crash experts.
What Kinds of Compensation Can I Recover After Being Injured in an E-Scooter Accident?
At The Fine Law Firm, we know that no amount of money is sufficient to make up for the trauma of being involved in an e-scooter accident. However, we hope that by collecting fair financial compensation, you and your family can find it easier to move forward.
A successful injury claim could result in payment for the following losses:
- Medical bills
- Lost wages
- Property damage
- Pain and suffering
- Psychological trauma
- Emotional distress
- Loss of consortium
- Permanent disability
- Scarring or disfigurement
- Wrongful death damages
These are compensatory damages, which aim to make up for your costs and personal losses connected to an e-scooter accident. In rare cases, punitive damages may also be available. These are awarded to punish a defendant for gross negligence or egregious acts of wrongdoing.
New Mexico Statute of Limitations for E-Scooter Accidents
A statute of limitations is a law that places a formal deadline on the ability to take legal action. If you wish to file a personal injury claim in Albuquerque for an e-scooter accident, you have no more than three years from the date of your accident to do so under New Mexico’s statute of limitations. The clock on this time limit typically starts on the date of the accident but could be extended in cases involving delayed injury discovery. Property-damage only claims can be brought within four years of the accident.
Call Us Today for a Free Consultation
If you or a loved one has been injured in an e-scooter accident in Albuquerque or the surrounding area, contact the attorneys at The Fine Law Firm to schedule a free case consultation. You may be able to recover financial compensation for your damages to help you rebuild your life. We can explain your rights and guide you through the recovery process with personalized legal services. Speak to our attorneys today by calling (505) 889-3463 or contacting us online anytime.