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Injured While Motorcycle Lane-Splitting in Houston: Can I Sue?

— December 16, 2022

According to Texas law, lane-splitting is illegal.

One of the key benefits of riding a motorcycle is the ability to maneuver in tight spaces. Whether you’re parking your bike or moving through a traffic jam, motorcyclists often find it much easier to get from point A to point B. But is it actually legal to weave in between traffic and “lane-split” while operating your motorcycle in Texas? More importantly, what happens if you get into a crash while engaging in this behavior? Can you still sue?

Texas’ Stance on Motorcycle Lane-Splitting

According to Texas law, lane-splitting is illegal. This practice involves motorcycles sharing lanes with another vehicle. This might be another motorcycle or a passenger vehicle. Often, motorcyclists ride on the white lines separating lanes to give them enough space to pass between vehicles. This is common behavior in traffic jams. While passenger vehicles are too big to pass between these gaps, motorcyclists can squeeze through and negate the effects of a traffic jam. While there is no specific law against lane-splitting in Texas, the Transportation Code does state that all vehicles must remain in a single lane. 

If you are caught lane-splitting, you may face a fine of up to $175. However, some motorcyclists claim that police rarely pull motorcyclists over for this offense, giving it a quasi-legal status. For the most part, you’ll only face penalties for this offense if you are lane-splitting in an extremely unsafe manner. Generally speaking, most traffic authorities are of the opinion that lane-splitting at speeds of under 20 miles per hour is unlikely to cause any serious safety issues.

Suing For a Lane-Splitting Motorcycle Accident in Houston

Destroyed motorcycle; image by fsHH, via
Destroyed motorcycle; image by fsHH, via

If you were injured while lane-splitting in Houston, you may still have the ability to sue. This is because Texas follows a system of comparative negligence when it comes to car accidents. What this means is that you can still sue even if you were partly responsible for your own injuries. However, there is a limit to this system, as Texas is a modified comparative negligence state. You can only sue if you were 50% responsible or less for your own injuries. For example, you might have been lane-splitting, but you may have been struck by a drunk driver who was texting while speeding. In this situation, your relatively minor traffic regulation would pale in comparison to the negligence of the other driver. Your lawyers can help you prove that you were less than 50% responsible for your own injuries. 

Where Can I Find Motorcycle Accident Attorneys in Houston?

If you’ve been searching for Houston motorcycle accident lawyers, there are many options available. Book a consultation with these Texas motorcycle accident lawyers, and you can immediately get started with an effective action plan. Even if you were lane-splitting at the time of your accident, you might still have a chance to recover compensation if you work with qualified motorcycle accident lawyers. Due to the statute of limitations, it is imperative that you book your consultation with accident lawyers as soon as possible. Reach out today. 



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