Potential Damages Claimable in a Motorcycle Accident Lawsuit
An Orange County motorcycle accident attorney who accepts a motorcycle accident case will review the details of the case with the client and determine the damages available. Most motorcycle accidents result in serious injuries, and a motorcycle accident lawyer can breakdown the available damages in a claim, such as:
- All medical expenses resulting from the accident. If a motorcyclist suffers severe injuries, it’s possible to claim not only immediate medical costs such as ambulance or airlift fees, hospital bills, and prescription costs but also long-term expenses for necessary rehabilitative treatments, multiple surgeries, and any other care needed for the victim to reach maximum medical improvement.
- Property damage, such as the cost of repairing or replacing the plaintiff’s motorcycle. A personal injury claim can potentially recover compensation unavailable through insurance.
- Lost wages. If a motorcycle accident victim cannot work during their recovery, their attorney can claim their wages lost during this time as damages in the personal injury claim. Many serious motorcycle accidents result in permanent disabilities that may interfere with victims’ ability to work in the future. If the plaintiff’s earning potential is negatively impacted due to a defendant’s negligence, the plaintiff’s attorney can potentially secure compensation for the income the plaintiff would have reasonably expected to earn in the future.
- Pain and suffering. When a motorcyclist suffers severe and painful injuries, they will likely experience not only physical pain but psychological trauma as well. The California legal system allows plaintiffs in personal injury cases to claim compensation for pain and suffering, and the court will determine an appropriate amount based on the amount of compensatory damages in the claim and the severity of the plaintiff’s injuries.
The plaintiff’s attorney will need to provide documentation to prove the full extent of the plaintiff’s claimed damages, and the court may award additional compensation as well depending on the behavior of the defendant. For example, if the defendant was grossly negligent, caused the accident while in the process of committing another crime, or driving with a restricted or suspended license, the court may award punitive damages to discourage that kind of behavior in the future.
How to Succeed with a Motorcycle Accident Personal Injury Claim in Orange County, California
Motorcyclists in Costa Mesa and throughout Orange County need to know their rights when it comes to handling accidents that leave them injured and in financial uncertainty. An experienced Orange County motorcycle accident lawyer can handle a motorcycle accident victim’s legal concerns so they can focus on their recovery. The first step in succeeding with such a claim is identifying the party or parties responsible for causing the accident. Potential defendants in motorcycle accident cases could include other drivers, the organization responsible for maintaining the road where the accident occurred, or other related parties.
The next step is to gather as much evidence and documentation as possible that prove the full extent of the plaintiff’s claimed damages. For example, if the plaintiff had a preexisting medical condition or injury that the accident in question worsened, it is possible to secure compensation for the treatment necessary to repair this exacerbated condition, but not for any outstanding medical bills the plaintiff held prior to the accident. Personal injury law in Orange County, California allows plaintiffs to recover the damages that directly result from defendants’ negligence.
The plaintiff’s attorney must prove the defendant or defendants in a motorcycle accident lawsuit held a duty of care they failed to uphold and directly caused the plaintiff’s claimed damages.
A Recent Orange County Motorcycle Accident Injuries Client
For example, as the video above explains, attorneys at Easton & Easton, LLP achieved a $1,000,000 settlement in 2009 for a motorcyclist who was found at fault for the accident by the CHP.
In that case, our client was in a head-on collision with another motorcyclist on a canyon road. The collision resulted in the death of the other motorcyclist. Our client suffered numerous injuries, including head trauma that resulted in amnesia surrounding the accident. Based on a set of skid marks going across the double yellow lines, our client was found at fault for the accident by the CHP. Because of this CHP finding, our client’s insurance carrier settled a claim by the heirs of the other motorcyclist who died for approximately $300,000.
About 1 year after the accident, the client came to us for help. Within a short period of time, through a proper accident reconstruction, we were able to determine that the skid marks the CHP relied upon were not even motorcycle skid marks at all, but had in fact been created by a braking semi-truck long before this accident. With this analysis, we were able to debunk the CHP’s accident report and prove instead that the other motorcyclist had actually caused the accident.
With this information, we settled our claim against the other motorcyclist’s insurance for the full policy limit of $30,000. Thereafter, we were able to settle an underinsured motorist claim with our client’s own insurance carrier for the full remainder of the policy- $970,000. This client came to our office with significant medical bills and a CHP report blaming him for the accident, and he left our office just a few short months later with a $1,000,000 settlement and the comfort of knowing that he was not at fault for the accident.
Motorcycle Accident FAQs
What To Do After A Motorcycle Accident in Orange County, CA?
First thing to do after a motorcycle crash in Orange County is to make sure you and others are safe. Even if you’ve only suffered minor injuries you should call for medical and police help. You may not realize the severity of your injuries at the time due to heightened adrenaline. Police are needed to record accident details to prove fault for courts and insurance companies. Follow up with your medical doctor afterwards to fully access your injuries and keep track of your expenses. Then contact a motorcycle accident attorney to help you recover damages from the accident to navigate the legal process and deal with insurance companies.
What Is The Average Payout For A Motorcycle Accident in Orange County?
The average payout for a motorcycle accident varies greatly depending on your injuries and property damage that occurred. For instance, the most commonly suffered injury is whiplash which average payouts can be a few thousand dollars for a minor case – to around $30,000 for severe cases. Broken bone injuries can reach up to $100,000 depending on recovery time. Recoverable spine injury average around $50,000. Brain injuries can be a few hundred thousand dollars. Paralysis and death settlements often reach millions of dollars.
What You Should Look For A Orange County Motorcycle Accident Lawyer?
Attorneys at Easton & Easton, LLP have many years of experience in handling motorcycle accident cases. Our motorcycle accident lawyers know how to use the tools of the law and reputable experts to our clients favor in proving the true cause of a motorcycle accident. Our years of experience also allow us to seamlessly assess and coordinate medical care to make certain the full extent of our clients’ injuries are identified, treated, and provable.
When Should I Call A Motorcycle Accident Attorney?
You should call a motorcycle accident attorney immediately if you’ve suffered severe injuries or if the accident was your fault. A lawyer will help determine fault of the accident and get you the most compensation possible if you’re found not at fault. You want to move quickly on your case while the accident details are fresh in the minds of witness if they’re called to give a statement.
If I Get Into An Accident On My Motorcycle, Should I Get A Lawyer To Help Me?
Lawyers can help you deal with insurance companies and opposing lawyers to make sure your case is handled fairly. Accident and injury details need to be conveyed to courts and insurance companies to receive maximum compensation. Insurance companies seek to payout as little as possible so having a skilled professional attorney on your side can help greatly in your case.
Do I Really Need A Motorcycle Accident Attorney?
If there were no damages in the accident and no injuries occurred, you may not need an attorney. When injuries and damages are present, an accident attorney is often necessary to navigate the legal process. You can represent yourself, but this process is often confusing. Opposing attorneys and insurance companies can try to minimize the seriousness of your case to avoid a high payout. A professional attorney is your best bet for a fair outcome.
How Long Will It Take To Resolve My Case?
You can receive your first settlement offer from the insurance company within the first month or two. You can then decide whether the offer is fair or not and accept or reject it. Even if rejected, this process often moves fast especially when injuries occurred in the accident.
What If My Motorcycle Accident Was Caused By A Hit-And-Run Driver?
You should treat a hit-and-run accident similar to a regular accident. First, if you suffered injuries alert medical help. Then call the police to report the incident. You will need the police report to send the accident details to your insurance company. If you are able, take pictures of any damages that occurred to send to your insurance provider. Write down all the details you have on the other driver. Get witness statements, if any, to document the accident details. Send a detailed statement of what happened to your insurance company and then contact a lawyer to help you with the legal process to hold the other driver responsible and manage your case.
What If My Loved One Was Killed In A Motorcycle Accident?
If a family member was killed in an accident you may seek compensation for medical costs and damages that occurred. Acquire as much detailed information about the accident as possible as evidence in your case. During this emotional time if may be tough to talk to an attorney but it’s necessary to have a skilled and informed professional on your side to hold the other party to account in a wrongful death lawsuit.
Talk To a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer in Orange County, CA Today
We understand the tricks, stratagems, and defenses the insurance companies and their attorneys use to defeat or minimize a claim, and at Easton & Easton, LLP, we utilize our experience, skill, and dedication to make certain our clients do not fall victim to the insurance companies’ tricks and stratagems.
Please call us at 800-461-8259 for a free initial consultation. If we do not take your case, there is no charge.