Motorcycle accidents are some of the most devastating injuries. They can cause long lasting injuries to the body which may require intensive care and therapy. Most injuries are caused not by the motorcyclist, but by the carelessness of other drivers. To make matters worse, many drivers who cause motorcycle accidents are not adequately insured. As a result there is often a claim we need to file against your own insurance if adequate coverage is not available i.e. uninsured motorist claim.
Liability in Motorcycle Accident Claims
Motorcycle accident claims are not like your standard car accident collision claim for a number of reasons. For one your injuries are usually more severe, second there is almost always an underinsured or uninsured motorist claim to deal with and three motorcyclist are usually deemed the cause of fault. Issues like lane splitting are almost always likely to arise in a motorcycle accident claim. While lane splitting is not per se prohibited or allowed, insurance companies will attempt to make it a point of argument. They will usually use this to limit or reduce the value of your claim under California Comparative Negligence laws.
These laws essentially argue that because you were negligent, any amount awarded to you should be reduced by that percentage or dollar amount. This acts like an off-set against your ultimate damages award and can be harmful to your recovery.
If the injury was because of a manufacturing defect discussed below, you will be able to pursue a claim against the manufacturer and distributors for your injuries. In a product liability case any commercial supplier in the chain of distribution will be held liable for your injuries.
In cases where another motorist is at fault their respective insurance will be required to pay for your injuries, loss of income and pain and suffering. These are all issues you should speak with your motorcycle accident attorney about.
For Further Information Regarding Your Legal Rights as an Injured Victim of a Motorcycle Accident see here
Motorcycle Defect Claims
Motorcycle accidents are not always the fault of another driver. In certain situations the motorcycle can have a known defect, which can interrupt your ability to successfully ride your bike. A product defect or product liability claim can be based on a number of different factors. Generally a product is considered defective if there is a design defect, manufacturing defect or failure to warn defect. Each is explained below.
Motorcycle Design Defect
Design defects are those that occur at the time of the prototype production. When the prototype is designed with a flaw, it can be a cause of action for a motorcycle defect claim. Unlike other types of defects, design defects can impact the entire product line. Since the product is designed defectively it will likely have an inherent design flaw. This will in turn make almost every single production unit defective as well.
Motorcycle Manufacturing Defect
Manufacturing defects are those inherent within the product. They are defects that exist as a result of assembly error. When products are put together either by hand or with machines there is always room for some type of error. These errors are considered a manufacturing defect. Manufacturing defects exist when assembly men fail to properly put the product together. Or when machines fail to properly assemble the product. They can occur during any phase of production and can cause significant injuries. Manufacturers will almost always be responsible for these types of injuries.
Motorcycle Failure to Warn Defect
Failure to warn defects are defects which occur when then manufacturer fails to warn of the known danger. Failure to warn of a defect which exist will expose the manufacturer to liability for subsequent injuries. What is considered a failure to warn? Consider manufacturers who fail to recall an motorcycle they know to be defective. Or when the manufacturer fails to warn of a known issue with the bike. This does not necessarily need to be a fatal or significant issue. Generally failure to warn cases deal with labeling issues or failure to warn of potential dangers associated with the product.
Motorcycle defect claims can occur when the brakes on the product fail or when the tires fail while in transit. In certain cases, there have been known mechanical issues with the bike, such as brake line failure or other related issues. Certain tires have also been known to be defective.
In order to evaluate your case we will need to investigate every single fact associated with your case. This includes having an expert look at the bike-we retain and pay for the expert-looking at police reports, road conditions and other pertinent information. The review process will allow us to hold as responsible entities at fault and help maximize your claim for damages.
Common Motorcycle Injuries
Injuries associated with motorcycle accidents can be devastating below is a list of injuries we come across when dealing with a motorcycle accident claim:
- Fractured hip
- Lacerated liver
- Punctured lung
- Broken nose
- Broken leg
- MTBI Mild Traumatic Brain Injury
- TBI Traumatic Brain Injury
- Facial lacerations
- Hand abrasions
- Ocular injuries
- Spinal injury
Value of Your Motorcycle Accident Claims
Value for a accident claim is assessed by considering a number of different factors which include; (1) level of injuries; (2) coverage or insurance policies; and (3) number of at fault parties.
Level of Injuries
Depending on the degree of your injuries, the value of your case can be substantial. Generally cases that have serious injuries are valued at a greater level because of the amount of medical bills, loss of earnings and future medical bills. This will usually be the first factor in determining the value of your case.
Coverage Insurance Policies
Insurance policy coverage is also another key factor. If the at fault driver did not have sufficient insurance coverage then you are bound only to the limits of that policy. Of course if you have un-insured or underinsured coverage you will be able to go after higher limits. However this can be reduced by subsequent subrogation claims and other factors.
Number of At Fault Parties
Who is at fault? Was the motorcycle defective? Were the roads defective or improperly designed? Was the helmet defective? These are all important factors because it will allow you to maximize your injuries if more parties are at fault. Unlike motorist municipalities and product manufacturers carry much higher policies and if they are deemed liable, then you will be able to recover a greater amount for your injuries.
Downtown L.A. Law Group Motorcycle Accident Law Firm
Motorcycle accidents require special attention to detail and this is our passion. We will investigate each and every issue and pursue any and all potential leads. We thank you for trusting our firm with the opportunity to assist you and will do our absolute best to make sure you are properly taken care of. If you were injured in a motorcycle claim do not trust you claim in the hands of anyone else other then Downtown L.A. Law. We believe we are the best motorcycle accident attorneys in California. Contact us today for a free case evaluation.