While side-by-side ATVs continue to rise in popularity due to the thrill of riding these all-terrain vehicles and the ability to travel on off-road trails at high speeds, these vehicles are not without their risks. For instance, following a side-by-side ATV crash, victims of this horrifying collision will often deal with severe trauma, excruciating pain, and astronomical medical expenses that can forever change their lives.
However, if this collision resulted from another person’s negligent, reckless, or intentional actions, you should not have to deal with these devastating consequences on your own. Instead, you deserve compensation and justice for the harm you endured. Fortunately, with the law office of Nicolet Law Accident & Injury Lawyers fighting on your behalf, you will not have to go after these financial damages on your own.
Nicolet Law Accident & Injury Lawyers—About Us
The Nicolet Law Accident & Injury Lawyers office was founded in 2007 to provide the residents of Wisconsin and Minnesota with tailored, affordable, and trusted legal representation. Today, not only has our firm met these goals, but we continue to provide our clients with the legal services they deserve and the guidance they need to make the most informed decisions.
As a result of this hard work, drive, and dedication, we have helped thousands of clients and secured millions of dollars on their behalf through settlement negotiations and jury trial verdicts, including a $550,000 settlement for a UTV accident.
Though we cannot promise these same results in every case we handle, you can rest assured that when you work with Nicolet Law Accident & Injury Lawyers, an experienced legal team will fight hard to secure the money you need to cover your losses.
Side-by-Side ATVs Versus Standard ATVs
All-terrain vehicles or ATVs are off-road vehicles with four wheels and motorcycle-like controls. Generally, riders will sit on a saddle-like seat and control the vehicle with handlebars.
A side-by-side ATV operates a little differently. These ATVs are considered utility task vehicles (UTVs), designed more like golf carts. In a side-by-side ATV, the vehicle has car-like controls and pedals, including a steering wheel and either a technical seat or a bench.
These vehicles are referred to as side-by-side ATVs because they will usually have two seats beside each other and may even have additional seats in the back. People drive these vehicles on all sorts of terrain, including snow or dirt, and because of the sharable driving experience, they tend to be more costly than standard ATVs.
Common Causes of Side-by-Side ATV Accidents
Although side-by-side ATV accidents can occur for several reasons, these crashes typically tend to result from:
- Negligent drivers driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, especially since many individuals use them on bar crawls or booze cruises instead of getting rides from designated drivers
- Underage drivers since they tend to drive these vehicles in dangerous ways, which can lead to severe injuries primarily because these vehicles do not have doors or protective coverings
- Inexperienced drivers
- Driving at excessive speeds
- Driving the side-by-side ATV on unpaved roads
- Driving these vehicles carelessly or recklessly
- Not wearing proper safety equipment
Though these are some of the more common causes of these accidents, this list is not exhaustive. Side-by-side ATV accidents can result in devastating injuries, both for drivers and passengers. If you suffered an injury in a side-by-side ATV accident due to another person’s careless actions, consider reaching out to a side-by-side ATV accident attorney as soon as possible. An experienced lawyer can help you determine if you have a valid legal claim and what actions you should take next to secure the compensation you deserve.
Common Injuries Resulting From a Side-by-Side ATV Crash
If an individual is involved in a side-by-side ATV accident, the resulting injuries can be catastrophic.
Yet, while the severity and extent of these injuries will depend on the circumstances of the accident, some of the more common injuries that usually result from these crashes include:
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Head and neck injuries
- Spinal cord damage, including paralysis
- Deep lacerations
- Soft tissue injuries
- Crushing injuries
- Broken bones
- Internal bleeding and internal organ damage
Who Can I Hold Liable for a Side-by-Side ATV Accident?
When it comes to a side-by-side ATV accident, you might hold many different parties responsible for the collision, including:
- Negligent or reckless motor vehicle drivers
- ATV manufacturers or designers whose defective vehicles or parts caused the accident
- Property owners, if the side-by-side ATV accident was due to a dangerous condition on a property
In addition, if the individual harmed was the passenger on the side-by-side ATV, they can also hold the ATV driver liable for their harm and losses if the accident was due to their careless driving.
However, the best way to determine who was at fault for your side-by-side ATV accident is to reach out to an experienced accident attorney, such as those at Nicolet Law Accident & Injury Lawyers, as soon as possible. These lawyers can review the incident, figure out what happened and who was at fault for the crash and hold those responsible accountable for the injuries you endured.
The Statute of Limitations Following a Side-by-Side ATV Accident
Every state has a statute of limitations, which sets a deadline to file a lawsuit. If you do not file your case within that time, you cannot pursue legal action and collect compensation for your losses.
As a result, victims of a side-by-side ATV accident have a limited time to file their case. However, exceptions to this rule can shorten or extend the deadline.
For these reasons, following your side-by-side ATV accident, reach out to our skilled side-by-side ATV accident attorney as soon as you can. Our lawyers can promptly go over what happened, determine how much time you have to file your case, and ensure that all your legal documents are appropriately prepared and filed with the correct court before time runs out.
Compensation You Can Pursue Following a Side-by-Side ATV Accident
If you or a loved one suffered harm in a side-by-side ATV accident due to another person's wrongful actions, you may recover compensation. This compensation typically includes:
These damages refer to compensation for verifiable, actual losses that result from an accident.
- Past and present medical expenses related to hospital stays, doctor visits, surgeries, medications, and other medical treatments
- Future ongoing medical treatments
- Lost wages and reduced earning capacity
- Replacement services include cleaning, grocery shopping, or child care services.
- Personal property damages
- Domestic replacement services
- Other costs
Non-economic damages refer to the subjective losses that result from an accident. Unlike the other economic damages, these losses are not easily measurable and often hard to prove.
They include things such as:
- Emotional hardship
- Loss of companionship
- Loss of consortium
- Limb loss
- Reputation loss
- Loss of enjoyment of life
Protect Your Legal Rights Following a Side-by-Side ATV Accident
After a side-by-side ATV accident, take action. Although it is not always possible depending on your injuries, try to take the following steps. Not only will these precautions protect your health and safety, but also your legal rights.
Contact the Police
After the accident, you or someone else at the accident scene needs to call 911 immediately. This is the fastest way to get the accident on record and notify the police and emergency medical personnel of the incident and your injuries.
In addition, once the police investigate the crash, they can jot down their findings in their official police reports, which can help your legal claim if you decide to pursue legal action. Your lawyer can obtain the police report later.
If possible, you should try to take videos and photos of the crash scene in the immediate aftermath. This should include pictures of the ATV, the damage done to it from every angle, other vehicles involved in the incident, your visible injuries, any dangerous conditions that caused the crash, the weather at the time of the collision, and any other evidence that can help show what happened.
If you are severely injured, do not put yourself in the path of further harm by pursuing this evidence. Witnesses and the police will likely have taken photographic evidence of their own. Your lawyer can follow up with additional investigations once they have begun to pursue compensation on your behalf.
Check With Others at the Scene
If there were individuals present at the scene, who saw what happened, make sure you get their names and phone numbers. These individuals can often provide your attorney with valuable details regarding the crash and offer testimony that can help your claim.
However, as you talk to these individuals and others following the accident, watch what you say, especially since the insurance company will use the comments and statements you make against you. After the crash, do not make any definitive statements about what happened, apologize, or take any of the blame.
Fight for the Financial Damages You Deserve With Nicolet Law Accident & Injury Lawyers
At Nicolet Law Accident & Injury Lawyers, we know you have been through enough following your side-by-side ATV accident. The last thing you want to do is secure relevant evidence, prepare legal arguments, and obtain witness testimony to prove your case. Fortunately, when you retain our skilled legal professionals, you will not have to take on this legal battle alone.
Rather, once you hire our attorneys, we can:
- Go over the facts of your side-by-side ATV accident, evaluate your legal case, and determine whether you have a viable legal claim.
- Go over your questions and concerns regarding your case and the legal proceedings involved, and figure out the legal options you can pursue.
- Thoroughly investigate your crash and gather the evidence necessary to prove what happened and who was at fault.
- Hire experts, such as accident reconstructionists, doctors, and financial specialists, to substantiate your legal claim.
- Handle the settlement negotiations with the other side and go after a fair offer.
- Head to trial and fight for maximum compensation if the other side will not get you the money you need.
If you or a family member sustained severe injuries in a side-by-side ATV accident because of another person’s wrongful actions, do not wait to get the legal help you need. Instead, contact Nicolet Law Accident & Injury Lawyers today at (218) 460-5863 for your free case evaluation and find out how our law firm can help you fight for the justice and damages you deserve.