Updated December 3, 2021
Motorcycle Accident Attorney
Motorcycle Compensation Stories
If you were injured in a motorcycle accident and are considering filing a claim, you need to know the 411’s of motorcycle accident lawsuits. These cases require advanced case framing to avoid the common bias that many people, including insurance adjusters, jurors, and insurance algorithms, have against motorcyclists.
In this article, we will review several:
♦ Motorcycle compensation stories and settlement values
♦ Motorcycle claim strategy tips
♦ General claim information to help value your claim
The case examples will help you get a feel for likely motorcycle accident compensation payouts. However, there are unique variables that go into calculating how much a specific accident claim amount might be.
Feel free to read that article, or use the table of contents below to browse the topics on this page, all written by a real personal injury lawyer on our team.
Before we do that, let’s look at a real case example for one of these claims.
Example Motorcycle Injury Settlement Amount
A lawyer on our team represented a client who drove directly into a car that was turning in front of him. The case had challenges.
For example, in these turn accident cases we expect the motorcyclist to lay the bike down to avoid the accident. In this case, that did not happen. That raised questions about whether the motorcyclist was paying attention or driving too fast to react to the situation.
The client’s medical bills totaled close to $50,000. The client had numerous serious injuries to his hands, back, and hip area. He had one surgery, and a short bout of physical therapy.
The insurance company was not impressed by the threat of a lawsuit, likely due to the concern we mentioned above.
This resulted in a lawsuit being filed. By pushing forward with the claim, aggressively pursuing discovery, fighting hard on the insurance company’s demand for an independent medical exam, and retaining a top notch expert, the case settled for $250,000 before trial.
Table of Contents
What is the Most Common Motorcycle Accident Type?
Do I have a Case if a Car Took a Left Turn Into My Motorcycle?
The single most common cause of motor cycle accidents are mistimed and mismanaged left-turns by other drivers.
Statistically, most motorcycle accidents happen when a car makes a left turn in front of the motorcycle, and this accounts for over 40% of motorcycle accidents. In these cases, the car failed to yield the right of way and there is a strong case that the car driver is at fault.
Fault is not automatic in left turn motorcycle accident cases. Common motorcycle accident liability disputes in these situations include:
- Motorcycle was going too fast
- Motorcycle tried to get through yellow light
- Motorcyclist’s light was turning red
- Motorcycle tried to pass an adjacent vehicle in intersection
- Motorcycle was in the wrong lane when going through intersection
We have helped a motorcyclist involved in a left turn accident case recover $280,000. The insurance company will look for reasons to blame you to reduce your recovery. You need an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer to help prevent that from happening, and we can help.
I was Splitting Lanes and Car Opened its Door, Can I Sue?
When a motorcycle drives between lanes passing in between cars, this is called lane splitting.
If your motorcycle accident happened in a state where lane splitting is illegal, yes, you can technically still sue if you were injured while splitting lanes in your motorcycle. However, you will likely not get any money from that lawsuit because you will likely be deemed at fault for the accident.
If you live in a state where lane splitting is allowed, such as California, or not specifically prohibited, such as Texas, you have a good chance at getting money in a motorcycle lawsuit which happened while you were splitting lanes.
It will depend heavily on the specific way your accident happened. Here are some examples of different scenarios that will have different outcomes:
- Lane splitting in rush hour traffic
- Lane splitting due to traffic crash closing all lanes
- Lane splitting to get to front of a red light
- Lane splitting to get off an exit ramp in rush hour traffic
- Lane splitting on three lane residential road
For more about laws related to lane splitting, read the linked article by the Motorcycle Legal Foundation.
Will the Reason I Split Lanes Impact My Motorcycle Settlement?
Yes, the reason you were lane splitting or lane filtering will impact how much money you get for a motorcycle accident case. We know from experience that the story behind an accident matters.
How you position your facts with insurance adjusters, or in traffic court, will dictate that story. Especially with touchy issues like lane splitting, or lane filtering, it can make or break your case.
What it boils down to for jurors is, the reason you were splitting lanes will impact whether you are found at fault and how much you money you get.
The reason behind why you were driving the way you were is not black and white, so you need to work with your lawyer early on to make sure an accurate, and helpful story is painted for everyone in your case.
Can I Sue if a Pothole / Road Hazard Caused My Motorcycle Accident?
Yes, if you were in a motorcycle accident caused by a pothole or road hazard, you can sue. These types of accidents often happen because of:
- Dead animals
- Uneven lane height
- Wet grass mowed into the road
- Manholes covers not even with road
- Loose gravel from construction on the road
- Objects falling out of cars
- Debris left on road after an accident
In some situations, a motorcyclist can sue a homeowner who caused the hazard, such as mowing wet grass onto a road that causes a slippery hazard for motorcycles and bicycles.
Most of the time, road design and pothole lawsuits related to motorcycle accidents involve suing a state, county, township, city or other local government.
When you are suing a government, your case may have financial limits on how much money you can get.
Government entities fight these cases hard, and they almost never settle without an experienced lawyer fighting to get the injured victim a fair recovery. Cases against a government also have strict deadlines for giving the government notice of the claim and for filing the lawsuit.
Our team has experience successfully suing government entities, and have recovered hundreds of thousands of dollars against government entities.
What Are Common or Typical Motorcycle Accident Injuries?
Are Head Injuries Common in Motorcycle Accidents?
Somewhat, yes, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 15-21% of hospital treated motorcycle accident victims suffered a traumatic brain injury, also known as a TBI, with the variation depending on whether the motorcyclist was wearing a helmet.
This means brain injuries are sufficiently common for motorcycle accidents and the personal injury lawyer you hire should know how to establish damages for these often classified invisible injuries.
Are Face Injuries Common in Motorcycle Accidents?
Somewhat, yes, The NHTSA notes that 13-22% of motorcycle accidents resulted in a facial injury.
Only 2-3% of those were serious face injuries, but approximately 20% of that 2-3% group suffered substantial face injury trauma. Statistically, you have a one in five chance of suffering a face injury in a motorcycle accident.
Are Neck Injuries Common in Motorcycle Accidents?
No, NHTSA data finds that you have about a 1/3 of a percent chance of suffering a neck injury in a motorcycle accident.
This means, statistically speaking, neck injuries are very rare in motorcycle accidents. Of course, if you suffered a neck injury in a motorcycle accident, be sure to question the lawyer you are considering hiring on their familiarity with neck injury related trauma and causation. At IAG, we have taken seminars on these topics, have collected several decades worth of scientific literature on it, and have litigated these issues for successful case resolutions.
Are Abdomen Injuries Common in Motorcycle Accidents?
Somewhat, yes, NHTSA data reveals there is an approximate 10% chance of a motorcyclist having an abdominal injury in a motorcycle accident.
Surprisingly, less than 3% of motorcycle abdomen injuries were moderate or severe. Although you have a one in ten chance of suffering an abdomen injury in a motorcycle accident, you have a less than 1% chance of that injury being serious.
Are Internal Organ Injuries Common in Motorcycle Accidents?
No, internal or organ injuries are possible but not statistically probable in motorcycle accidents. Common internal injuries that motorcycle accident victims suffer are punctured lungs caused by broken ribs, and an injured spleen.
An IAG lawyer handled one such case. The motorcyclist suffered a lacerated spleen due to how he landed with his motorcycle. We helped this client recover just shy of $300,000 for his case without ever having to step into a courtroom or even be subjected to a deposition.
Are Spine Injuries Common in Motorcycle Accidents?
Somewhat, yes, a motorcycle occupant has approximately a 12% chance of suffering a spine injury in a motorcycle accident. A tiny fraction (.3%) of motorcycle accident spine injuries are serious.
Wearing a helmet has almost zero impact on protecting a motorcyclist from a spine injury, according the available NHTSA data.
Are Arm and Hand Injuries Common in Motorcycle Accidents?
Yes, Injuries to the arms and hands, referred to collectively as your upper extremities, are collectively one of the top two most common injuries that motorcyclists will suffer in an accident.
Government data shows a motorcyclist has about a 37% chance of suffering an arm injury in a motorcycle accident. This means upper extremity, arm, and hand injuries are very common in motorcycle accidents.
Are Leg and Foot Injuries Common in Motorcycle Accidents?
Yes, leg and foot injuries, collectively referred to as your lower extremities, are the number one most common injuries suffered by motorcyclists involved in an accident.
A motorcyclist involved in an accident has about a 42% chance of having a leg or foot injury in a motorcycle accident.
You may think there is no relation between a motorcyclist wearing a helmet and suffering a lower extremity injury in a motorcycle accident, but the government data tells us that 42% rises to over 45% if the motorcyclist is not wearing a helmet.
This could indicate a relationship between more risky motorcyclists suffering more serious injuries. It could also represent a motorcyclist without a helmet sacrificing limbs to protect a head not protected by a helmet.
Are Burn Injuries Typical in Motorcycle Accidents?
Motorcycle accidents can cause burns from exposed engines that have temperatures above 200 degrees. Depending on how you landed, if the engine made substantial or compressed contact with your body that can cause a burn.
Because motorcycle accident burn injuries are not very common, there is not good data available on how frequently they occur. It is often coincidental based on how the motorcyclist lands after an accident.
Even though that injury is coincidental based on how you landed, it is a reasonably foreseeable injury for motorcycle accidents and you can get settlement money for a motorcycle burn injury.
Are Rash Injuries Typical in Motorcycle Accidents?
Road rash injuries are the most common injury in motorcycle accidents, and categorically fall under the motorcycle injury statistics reported for upper and lower extremities summarized on this page.
The Motorcycle Safety Foundation provides good insight on protective gear that could reduce or eliminate these injuries.
An Injury Advocates Group lawyer represented a motorcyclist who suffered a leg rash in a motorcycle accident. This was a compromised result because it was a difficult case.
The motorcyclist guessed that another driver was going to do something wrong and threw down the motorcycle to avoid a possible accident. The motorcyclist made an assumption, albeit one that risked some injury at the cost of avoiding a potential greater injury.
The car driver denied any responsibility, and the insurance company refused to offer even $1 for the claim. This client successfully recovered just over $15,000 thanks to our lawyer’s efforts.
Which Bones Are Most Likely to Break in a Motorcycle Accident?
Even if a motorcyclist is wearing a helmet, a skull fracture can happen due to the sheer force of the head and skull being pushed in one direction with a sudden stop in velocity.
Although the broken skull itself is not tremendously dangerous, the damage below the skull to the brain, veins, and arteries can be catastrophic.
If you are having any brain injury related symptoms after a motorcycle accident, you should rush to the hospital. Delays in treatment can make this injury far worse. This is an injury for which you should not use a “wait and see” approach to recovery.
In addition to health reasons as to why you should seek immediate treatment for head injury symptoms, there is an evidentiary reason which relates to protecting the value of your claim. It concerns an obligation on all injured victims called mitigation of damages. If you fail to take reasonable steps to recover from, or get treatment for, your injuries, you could lose your case entirely or a substantial percentage of your claim’s value.
What is “reasonable” under the circumstances of your injury, accident, and symptoms? Our Los Angeles motorcycle accident lawyers can answer this question once we learn more about your case. We invite you to contact us and ask these important questions.
Due to the mechanics of motorcycle accidents, if a motorcyclist lays down the bike during an accident or before an accident in an attempt to prevent it, the bike can land on the motorcyclist’s leg and crush the femur.
Major arteries are in close proximity to the femur, so upper thigh and upper leg injuries in motorcycle accidents should be taken very seriously if there was substantial blunt force trauma to the leg in a motorcycle accident.
If you were in a motorcycle accident where you start to have any of these symptoms, you should rush to the hospital because your motorcycle related leg injury could be worse than it appears:
- Dizziness, which could indicate blood flow problems
- Sudden leg stiffness
- Leg locking up for extended periods of time
- Large pooling of blood under the skin
- Loss of sensation in the leg
Femur fracture injuries are generally high value for settlement and trial because they check many boxes off the list of what makes a high value case, including being a broken bone, being permanent, large medical bills, and correlate to more time missed from work.
We are familiar with broken leg bone injuries, and one of our lawyers helped a client recover over $170,000 for a leg fracture where the defendant denied doing anything wrong.
What Rights Do Motorcycle Passengers Hurt in Accident Have?
Am I More Likely to be Hurt in Motorcycle Accident as a Passenger?
Yes, statistically, motorcycle passengers are more likely to suffer a head injury in a motorcycle accident.
This greater likelihood remains true even if both the motorcycle driver and passenger are wearing helmets. This is at least in part because a motorcycle passenger is more likely to be ejected during a motorcycle accident.
Am I More Likely to Get Compensation if Injured as a Motorcycle Passenger?
Yes, if you were the passenger of a motorcycle involved in an accident, you are more likely to receive compensation that the driver of that motorcycle is.
As a motorcycle passenger, you almost always have a stronger case than the motorcycle driver or operator. This is because you are rarely guilty of fault, so the value of your settlement will not be compromised by any liability disputes.
If Motorcycle Crashes While Racing, Can Passenger Make a Claim?
Yes, if a motorcycle crashes while involved in a race, whether a sanctioned or unsanctioned race, and you are hurt as a passenger on that motorcycle, you can make a claim and could be entitled to a monetary recovery.
However, if a motorcycle was racing and you were a passenger on that motorcycle, the insurance company will make a legal claim that you assumed the risk of your injuries by engaging in knowingly dangerous behavior. That is called an affirmative legal defense.
There are ways to overcome that defense, but you’ll need to brainstorm with your lawyer to find a path to success on those cases.
If a Motorcycle Crashes While Speeding, Can Passenger Make a Claim?
Yes, if a motorcycle is speeding and is involved in an accident, a passenger on that motorcycle can make a claim and receive settlement money.
Some states even have laws that say a speeding vehicle is not automatically negligent.
In these states, regardless of the state’s liability or shared fault laws, the act of speeding will not automatically reduce the injured motorcycle driver or passenger’s settlement amount.
How strong of a case that injured passenger has from a speed related accident, and how much money that motorcycle passenger’s case is worth, will vary greatly depending on the specific facts surrounding the speeding incident.
If Motorcycle Driver is Drunk, Can Passenger Make a Claim?
Yes, a motorcycle passenger injured in an accident where the motorcycle driver is drunk, intoxicated, or has been drinking can make a claim and receive settlement money.
Similar to a motorcycle that is racing, the motorcycle passenger could be guilty of assuming the risk of any injuries suffered. How and why you ended up on that motorcycle will be relevant, and you’ll need to flush that out.
Depending on your state’s laws, this could result in a reduction in your compensation or preclude you from recovering any money, what is referred to as a complete bar to recovery.
How Much Are Motorcycle Accident Cases Worth?
Injuries v. Stigma: Impacts on Your Motorcycle Accident Compensation Payouts
Two things have the greatest impact on your motorbike compensation claim. One is your lawyer. The other is what your injuries are. Although serious injuries pull your settlement amount in one direction, stigma pulls it in the other direction.
If you ride a motorcycle or know many people who do, you may not be surprised to learn that 80% of motorcycle accidents result in injury or death. This is a whopping four times higher than compared to passenger vehicle accidents, which have a 20% chance of causing injury or death.
We know from injured motorcycle accident clients we helped that cars and trucks often treat motorcyclists as second class citizens. Motorcycle enthusiasts know this, and are ever vigilant to avoid injury.
If you are injured in a motorcycle accident, there is a stigma against motorcycles and motorcyclists that will negatively impact the value of your case.
All of this can be summarized into a few sequential points:
♦ Motorcycle accidents result in very serious injuries
♦ More serious injuries result in larger motorcycle injury settlement amounts
♦ At the same time, there is a stigma against motorcycle riders
♦ That stigma negatively impacts the average insurance settlement for a motorcycle accident
Motorcyclist Stigma Hypothetical
A hypothetical helps explain what these principles mean in terms of a numerical impact on your bike accident claim amount. This is of course oversimplified, but it illustrates the point.
Let’s say you broke your wrist in a car accident and, all facts considered, a fair settlement amount for your claim is $100,000. If that exact same set of injuries happens while you are riding a motorcycle, on average, that motorbike compensation claim would range between $80,000 to $90,000.
Part of the reason for this is a stigma against motorcyclists. Another part is there is almost always some degree of liability dispute in motorcycle injury lawsuits. That alleged liability dispute often rides the back of the stigma we just described. It increases the risk of rolling the dice at trial, and lowers the average settlement for a motorcycle accident.
This is why the other most important variable – your attorney – is so important. Many attorneys will roll over on this reduction to your claim amount. We do not. We fight to overcome that sigma, and fight to get you a full recovery.
Does The Type of Motorcycle In an Accident Impact Settlement Value?
Yes, the type of motorcycle you were driving or on which you were a passenger will have an impact on how much your motorcycle accident case is worth. The most common types of motorcycles are moped, cruiser, touring, sport bike, dual-sport, and off-road.
There is a stigma against motorcyclists and motorcycles in general. That general stigma spills over into the valuation of your motorcycle injury settlement amount.
Worse yet, if you were on any type of sport bike or off-road bike, that stigma is the highest and jurors will look unfavorably towards your case, with underlying assumptions that your speed or driving may have had something to do with the accident happening.
For example, the average motorcycle accident compensation payout will likely be higher for someone riding a modern style motorcycle, like Harley Davidson, versus someone riding a speedster, like a Kawasaki Ninja.
A good lawyer knows how to flush out that bias during jury selection, and how to position the facts of your case to reduce and eliminate that negative bias. In terms of case development, this is accomplished almost exclusively through indirect character and story building.
Call our Los Angeles motorcycle accident legal team and ask how we can help position the facts of your motorcycle accident to maximize your recovery.
Can I get Money if My Only Injury from a Motorcycle Accident is a Rash?
Yes, if the only injury you suffered in a motorcycle accident is a rash, you can still get settlement money.
A lawyer on our team helped a victim of a motorcycle accident get over $15,000 where the only injury was a leg rash, even though the insurance company denied liability and refused to offer even $1 to settle the case.
The more serious the rash, the more money your motorcycle accident rash injury is worth. It is important to take pictures of the rash immediately after the motorcycle accident so you have proof of this injury.
Do Rookie Motorcycle Riders Get Less for Motorcycle Accidents?
If you were a rookie or relatively new motorcycle rider or just were in a motorcycle accident not long after you got your motorcycle license, yes, you could end up getting less money for your motorcycle accident case.
This is for the same reason that we have more easily proven that a young or teenage defendant driver caused our clients’ injuries. As examples, here are just two cases that we handled:
Case Example 1
Teenage driver causes rear end accident. The client, represented by one of our lawyers, had a lot of holes in her story, but we got over $100,000 after we cross-examined the teenage defendant and exposed how ignorant she was about driving safety, proper following distance, and the rules of the road.
Case Example 2
Teenage driver causes rear end accident. The client, represented by one of our lawyers, only had about $25,000 in medical bills, but after we cross-examined the teenage defendant on her lack of safety awareness or the driving rules for the driving exam she recently took, we compelled the insurance company to pay $100,000 to settle the case.
These examples prove that there is a bias against novice drivers. Although in the above examples we utilized that bias to our clients’ benefit. The insurance company can and will weaponize that bias against you.
The reality is, this bias is not without merit.
Rookie drivers are inexperienced, the everyday person knows this, and juries are full of everyday people. You have to look for creative ways to overcome these biases and position your case for success.
What is an Average Motorcycle Accident Settlement or Verdict?
We are often asked how much a motorcycle accident claim is worth. Based on our research, the average motorcycle accident verdict is over $200,000.
The average settlement for a motorcycle accident is harder to determine because not all settlements are public, but a sample review of cases indicates the average motorcycle accident settlement is around $80,000.
If the motorcyclist broke a bone, the average motorcycle accident compensation payout is over $250,000.
Keep in mind, these averages include multi-million dollar settlements and verdicts which pull the average up.
The majority of motorcycle accident settlements our lawyers have helped injured motorcyclists achieve are around $200,000.
Depending on the injury, and a host of other intangible factors, the value of the case will change tremendously. You need an attorney familiar with looking beyond the hard facts of the case and analyzing the soft facts, or intangibles, to help you achieve the full value of your claim.
Best Way to Calculate What My Motorcycle Accident is Worth?
Where your case falls on the spectrum of the average motorcycle settlement or verdict will depend on dozens of unique factors. It’s more of an art than a science.
If you visit any website or law firm that offers you a motorcycle accident calculator where you plug in your lost wages or medical bill totals to calculate how much your case is worth, you should leave that website or hang up the phone immediately!
Any lawyer using those calculators or formulas does not understand how non-numeric factors have a major impact on motorcycle accident case value. This is something that all the lawyer referral services with generic information on their websites do not understand.
Here are some questions to illustrate the point:
- What if I prematurely laid down my motorcycle to avoid an accident?
- What I was riding a new BMW motorcycle?
- What if I was on a motorcycle tour from out of state?
- What if photos from the scene show me wearing a leather jacket with a skull?
You likely had no idea that the answers to these questions can impact your settlement payout, and a lawyer referral service or inexperienced lawyer is similarly clueless. The fact is, the answers to these questions will change how much your motorcycle accident case is worth, and these facts need to be addressed, they cannot be avoided.
Lawyers who do not know this will inadvertently overlook how intangible facts can improve, or hurt, the value of your case. Worse yet, lawyers who do not know this will not protect the value of your case by positioning it in a way to reduce the negative impact of bad facts.
Sample Motorcycle Accident Settlements & Verdicts
Sample Settlement: VON NORMANN v. BLOOM, $10,250,000. The defendant ran a red light at an intersection, broad siding a motorcyclist in the process. The motorcyclist-plaintiff had his leg crushed by the car. His leg suffered multiple compound fractures, resulting in several surgeries, skin grafts, and surgical hardware. He got an infection from his treatment, and his leg was amputated. This plaintiff was lucky that such a large insurance policy ($10M) was available here. These are catastrophic injuries and the result was deserving.
Sample Settlement: MADONIA v. MURRIETA, $1,015,000. This was a full policy limits case, every penny of insurance money was offered to settle the case. In this motorcycle accident, a retiree was crusing in his motorcycle when a three car collision relayed to his motorcycle, and killed him. The defendant tried to blame the motorcyclist for the accident (typical), but that argument did not stick. Again, lucky for the plaintiff that such a large policy was available. The defendant was working at the time, and his company vehicle’s corporate policy covered the large settlement.
Sample Settlement: BARNER v. KORKHART, $2,167,500. A motorcyclist broadsided a car who failed to yield the right of way, and was left paraplegic after fractures to his spine. The paraplegia was instantaneous. He also suffered several broken arms. Predictably, the defendant argued that the plaintiff motorcyclist was speeding and that caused the accident. The defendant argued that if the plaintiff was driving slower, the accident would not have happened. The plaintiff’s injuries were massive, he could not work, he was relegated to social security disability in his early 30’s. The settlement took these into account, but was clearly reduced in value due to the speeding and liability dispute.
Sample Verdict: BROUSSARD v. ERIE INS. CO., $80,915. A car tried to pass a motorcyclist while the motorcyclist was making a left turn. This is what happens when drivers are impatient and do not respect vulnerable motorcyclists. The defendant disputed liability, but lost that battle. The defendant also disputed the injuries, and seems to have lost that battle, too. Unspecified orthopedic injuries resulted here. About $60k of the verdict was for medical expenses, and only $20k for pain and suffering. I would not chalk that up as a win. However, without any further facts, this may serve as a representative example of a fair orthopedic injury settlement, assuming no broken bones or surgeries are involved. Here, the $60k could represent lots of pain management, and pain injections can tally up quickly and are expensive.
Motorcycle Accident Q&A
What is the average payout for a motorcycle accident?
While this amount can vary based on your specific situation, the average payout for a motorcycle accident is around $80,000 but can be higher if the injuries you have are more serious. Keep in mind this “average” is pulled up due to multi-million dollar catastrophic motorcycle accident settlements and verdicts, so the “average” number is not really useful in helping you value your claim.
Which factors are involved in calculating my payout settlement?
This will depend on the types of injuries that you have as well as who was at fault in the accident as all of these will impact the final payout possibility. At the minimum, your lost wages, medical expenses, and other out of pocket expenses will be used to calculate your payout settlement. Pain and suffering is also a component, as is pre-impact fright.
Will I get a pain and suffering payout for my settlement?
Pain and suffering can be included in your settlement depending on the extend of your injuries and how incapacitated you are due to your accident. In our view, it is the most important part of your settlement for two reasons. One, it’s the only payment made to you for what you have been put through. Two, it provides the greatest opportunity to increase your net take-home cash as part of the settlement.
Will my injuries from a motorcycle accident be permanent?
Some injuries from an accident involving a motorcycle can be permanent and others can be treated with surgery, rehabilitation and medications. A great majority of motorcycle accident injuries will have permanent residual symptoms, even though the injury itself healed and is not permanent.
I was the passenger on the motorcycle, will that make a difference?
Yes, there is a higher chance of you getting a payout if you were the passenger on the motorcycle and not the person who was driving the bike. We discuss this above, and the reason is you are not as vulnerable to a liability defense argument.
Am I automatically at fault if I was lane splitting when I got into an accident on my motorcycle?
No. The whole blame will not automatically be on you just because you were lane splitting. Fault can be, and usually is, split between the parties and assessed based on the details and who contributed most to the accident taking place. Read our section in this article devoted to analyzing lane splitting and lane sharing.
I swerved to avoid a pothole and got into a motorcycle accident, does that make a difference in my case?
Yes, it does make a difference in your accident if there are circumstances like road conditions, potholes, swerving to avoid signs and so on as they help to explain the overall situation of the accident. You may have a case against the government or state responsible for that pot hole.
My face was injured during an accident on my motorcycle, will I be able to get compensated for this?
Yes, there is the potential to get compensation for your face injury both for the medical costs you incur as well as the emotional damages that come from face injuries that can have emotional and psychological damage to you. You may also quality for money to get plastic surgery to repair any scars.
I have had neck pain since my motorcycle accident, is this related?
Neck injuries are not very common in accidents involving a motorcycle. However, if you were neck-symptom free before a motorcycle accident and started having neck symptoms after, there may be a relation. Go see a doctor, who can run diagnostics and do proper therapy, to answer this question for you. We are medically savvy in our office, and read quite a bit of medical literature, but we recommend you seek medical advice from a doctor, not a lawyer.
Los Angeles, San Bernardino, & Ventura County Motorcycle Accident Attorney
You need a lawyer who knows how to rebut the stigma against motorcyclists and ensure you get full value for your injuries, pain and suffering. If you were in a motorcycle accident and want to maximize your recovery, you need an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer. That’s who we are the Injury Advocates Group.
If you were hurt in a Los Angeles motorcycle accident, on in the surrounding areas of San Bernardino County, Orange County, or Ventura County, or most of Southern California, we can help you.
Even if you are not in Southern California, you have nothing to lose by calling us. You are entitled to a FREE 30 minute consultation with our firm. We have resources around the country and, if we are unable to help you, we can likely connect you with an attorney who can.
We are here to help, in a non-cookie cutter way, with detailed analysis of your case to help you achieve the greatest compensation possible. Call or email us 24/7 for help.
Supporting Citations, Literature & Resources:
MSF. Protective Gear.
NHTSA. Motorcycle Safety program.
NHTSA (2009). Motorcycle Helmet Use and Head and Facial Injuries. US Department of Transportation.
Rapaport, L. (2017). Motorcycle passengers have higher head injury risks. Reuters.
Motorcycle Legal Foundation (2009). Motorcycle Lane Splitting: Legality by State + Guidelines.
Sander, U. (2017). Opportunities and limitations for intersection collision intervention—A study of real world ‘left turn across path’accidents. Accident Analysis & Prevention, 99, 342-355.
Box, P. C., & Basha, P. E. (2003). A study of accidents with lead versus lag left-turn phasing. Institute of Transportation Engineers. ITE Journal, 73(5), 24.
Aupetit, S., Espié, S., & Bouaziz, S. (2015). Naturalistic study of riders’ behaviour in lane-splitting situations. Cognition, Technology & Work, 17(2), 301-313.
Ouellet, J. V. (2012). Lane splitting on California freeways. In Proceedings of the Transportation Research Board 91st Annual Meeting.
Ankarath, S., Giannoudis, P. V., Barlow, I., Bellamy, M. C., Matthews, S. J., & Smith, R. M. (2002). Injury patterns associated with mortality following motorcycle crashes. Injury, 33(6), 473-477.
About the Author
Article Author: This law article was written by attorney Ray Benyamin, Esquire. Mr. Benyamin received his Juris Doctor degree from the Thomas Jefferson School of Law, and his license to practice law from the State Bar of California. His law license number is 277263. He has been practicing law for 10 years. Mr. Benyamin is a registered member of the following legal organizations: Consumer Attorneys Association of Los Angeles (CAALA), the Los Angeles County Bar Association (LACBA), the State Bar of California, the American Bar Association (ABA), and the American Association for Justice (AAJ). Mr. Benyamin has personally helped his clients recover over $10,000,000 dollars in vehicle accident insurance claims in the State of California.
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