Motorcyclists know how much fun riding can be with the exhilaration of cruising down the open road. But motorcyclists are also well-aware of the dangers.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, motorcyclists are 24 times more likely to die in a traffic crash than occupants of a passenger car and four times more likely to be injured.
If you were injured in a motorcycle accident, there is no generally accepted “good” settlement amount for motorcycle accident lawsuits.
A unique set of factors influences each claim. The liability party, the severity of your injuries, and your demonstrable losses all significantly impact the compensation you might receive.
A skilled personal injury lawyer will assess your claim and work to negotiate a favorable settlement.
If you sustained injuries in a motorcycle accident and need to explore your legal options for getting motorbike accident compensation, the lawyers at Peerali Law can help.
Common Causes for Motorcycle Accidents
Every day, negligent drivers get behind the wheel and endanger other drivers, including motorcyclists. California has more than its fair share of motorcycle injuries and fatalities.
Common causes of motorcycle accidents in California include:
- Distracted driving,
- Driving while impaired,
- Hazardous road conditions,
- Speeding, and
- A violation of traffic laws, such as illegal turns.
Motorcycle accidents often result in severe personal injuries. When faced with catastrophic injuries, it’s essential to know what factors influence a motorcycle accident settlement.
Factors Influencing a Motorcycle Accident Settlement
The amount you can expect to receive depends on several factors.
Liability determination is at the heart of all personal injury claims. California is a fault-based auto insurance state, which means that the party deemed to be at fault is liable for damages to other drivers or passengers.
Determining liability necessitates looking at the whole picture. Evidence typically used to assess liability includes the following:
- Police reports,
- Photos of the accident scene,
- Surveillance footage,
- Medical records,
- Medical bills,
- Independent witness statements, and
- Expert testimony.
This evidence plays a critical role in ascertaining which parties might share in the liability for the accident.
California is a pure comparative fault state. This means that even if you are 99% at fault, you could still attempt to recover 1% of your losses.
An experienced attorney can help you identify all potentially responsible parties. The parties that might be responsible for the motorbike accident compensation include the following:
- The driver of the other vehicle involved in the accident,
- The manufacturer of the motorcycle,
- The manufacturer of the vehicle that collided with you,
- City or state governments,
- The manufacturer of any parts of the motorcycle or other vehicle involved in the accident, and
- The other driver’s employer if they were driving on the job when they hit you.
Identifying and naming each potentially responsible party is critical to your case. Naming all potential defendants improves the likelihood of complete financial recovery.
Damages Available for a Motorcycle Accident Injury
In addition to liability, your compensable losses profoundly impact the value of your case. Generally, the more severe the injuries, the greater your losses.
Motorcycle accident settlements are highly variable because each individual’s injuries and losses vary widely from accident to accident.
Damages fall into two main categories: economic and non-economic.
Economic damages represent financial compensation for the victim’s actual financial losses. Economic damages can include the following:
- Hospital and medical bills,
- Rehabilitation or physical therapy expenses,
- Lost wages,
- Future lost wages and lost earning capacity, and
- Property loss and damage.
Non-economic damages are more difficult to prove than economic damages because they do not represent direct out-of-pocket costs or amounts you can easily calculate.
Non-economic damages are intangible losses related to the accident and include the following:
- Pain and suffering,
- Emotional distress,
- Psychological harm,
- Reduced quality of life,
- Loss of consortium, and
- Loss of society and companionship.
When non-economic damages are at issue, you will benefit from a skilled and experienced motorcycle accident attorney to prove them and assess their value.
Your attorney can also fight to recover any available punitive damages, but they are rarely justified in a motorcycle accident case.
Punitive damages are imposed only in exceptional cases where the liable party needs to be punished for egregiously wrongful conduct. California law does not cap punitive damages.
Large insurance companies defend claims in most motorcycle accident lawsuits. Insurance companies have teams of well-trained insurance adjusters and insurance defense attorneys.
Their goal is to settle your claim for the lowest possible amount to protect their bottom line.
The opposing side will do anything to avoid paying a full and fair settlement.
Unrepresented accident victims often accept less than full compensation for their injuries, usually because they don’t have any way of knowing that the offer is low and will leave them in financial need down the road.
When insurance companies are involved, you will only want to proceed with the help of experienced legal counsel.
The insurance carriers begin investigating the claim as soon as they are notified. You will need someone to build your case from the outset, too.
Contact a Los Angeles Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Today
How much you can recover for a Los Angeles motorcycle accident injury depends on the facts and circumstances of your case. Recovery is personal to your lawsuit.
If you have questions regarding liability for a motorcycle accident and potential recovery for your injuries, we are here to help.
Our attorneys have successfully recovered millions of dollars in compensation for our clients. We treat our clients like family and hope to have the opportunity to serve you.
Contact us online or call for your free case consultation.