Unfortunately, motorcycle accidents are common in the United States. In 2021, there were 5,932 motorcyclist deaths nationwide. Motorcycle riders accounted for 14% of all traffic fatalities that year. Motorcycle accident victims often suffer from serious injuries, costly medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. If you were injured in a motorcycle accident, it’s crucial to seek medical attention immediately and consult with experienced personal injury lawyers. A motorcycle crash lawyer will provide strategic legal advocacy and guide their clients throughout the complex claims process, protect their client’s rights, and work tirelessly to secure fair compensation.
How Much Does It Cost to Hire a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer?
The cost of hiring a motorcycle accident lawyer can vary depending on several factors, but most personal injury attorneys work on a contingency fee basis. This means that clients do not pay any upfront legal fees. Instead, the lawyer’s fee is contingent upon a successful case resolution.
In a contingency fee arrangement, the motorcycle accident lawyer receives a predetermined percentage of the compensation awarded in the settlement. In California, this percentage typically ranges from 30% to 40% of the final settlement or court verdict. If the lawyer does not secure any compensation for their client, they do not receive a fee.
The contingency fee structure allows accident victims to access quality legal representation without the burden of upfront legal fees.
What Does a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Do?
Investigate and Gather Evidence on Your Behalf
A motorcycle accident lawyer will conduct a thorough investigation and gather compelling evidence to strengthen your claim. Following a motorcycle accident, evidence collection is time-sensitive, as memories may fade, and physical evidence can disappear.
Motorcycle accident lawyers can obtain police reports, interview eyewitnesses, and investigate the accident scene. Additionally, they may collaborate with expert witnesses including accident reconstruction experts to establish liability and reconstruct the events leading to the crash.
Medical records are also a crucial aspect of a motorcycle accident claim. The motorcycle accident lawyer will work with the client’s healthcare providers to obtain detailed records of injuries, treatments, and medical expenses. Medical documentation is vital in calculating the full extent of the client’s medical costs and potential ongoing medical needs.
A Lawyer Will Identify All Your Damages
After a motorcycle accident, victims may suffer physical pain, mental distress, and financial strain. Motorcycle crash lawyers will consider the immediate medical expenses as well as the potential long-term costs associated with ongoing medical care, rehabilitation, and therapy. Identifying and quantifying all of your damages is essential to ensure you pursue full and fair compensation.
Build Your Motorcycle Accident Case
Building a compelling case is crucial, especially when dealing with insurance companies. A motorcycle accident lawyer will use the evidence gathered during the investigation to establish liability and negligence. They will demonstrate how the negligent party’s actions led to the motorcycle accident.
Additionally, a motorcycle accident lawyer will assess any potential contributory negligence on the client’s part. In some cases, both parties may share a degree of fault for the accident. California follows pure comparative negligence in personal injury cases. Under this legal doctrine, accident victims can seek compensation for their injuries and damages even if they are partially at fault for the accident.
The amount of compensation they receive will be reduced in proportion to their percentage of fault. An experienced motorcycle accident lawyer will work to minimize any impact this might have on the client’s personal injury claim and obtain maximum compensation.
Deal With the Insurance Company
Dealing with insurance companies can be very challenging for accident victims. Insurance adjusters are well-trained to minimize payouts, and their primary objective is to settle claims for the lowest possible amount. A motorcycle accident lawyer knows how to negotiate aggressively with insurance companies while protecting their client’s best interests.
Additionally, insurance companies may attempt to shift blame onto the motorcycle rider, claiming that riding a motorcycle inherently carries more risk. A skilled attorney will counter such arguments by focusing on the negligence of the at-fault party, ensuring the client is not unfairly labeled as reckless.
Represent Your Claim in Court
While many motorcycle accident claims are resolved through negotiations and settlements, there are instances where the insurance company is not willing to agree on a settlement. In these situations, it’s crucial to have a lawyer who is well-prepared to represent you in court.
If the insurance company refuses to offer a reasonable settlement or denies liability altogether, taking the case to court may be the best course of action to recover the compensation the client deserves.
Preparing for court involves thorough research, organizing evidence, and crafting persuasive arguments. The lawyer will be responsible for filing the necessary paperwork, gathering witnesses, and preparing the client for any court appearances.
How Much Is My Motorcycle Accident Case Worth?
Determining the value of a motorcycle accident case is a complex process that depends on factors including the extent of your injuries, the impact of the accident on your life, and liability.
Economic damages involve tangible losses with a measurable, monetary value. These damages can include the following:
- Medical bills
- Ongoing medical treatment
- Property damage
- Lost wages
- Physical therapy
- Cost of household services
- Cost of childcare
The personal injury lawyer will gather all relevant documentation and receipts to accurately determine the economic damages.
Non-economic damages are more subjective and difficult to quantify. These damages can include the following:
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Loss of consortium
- Disfigurement and scarring
- Lost enjoyment of life
While there is no fixed monetary value for non-economic damages, a motorcycle accident lawyer will use their experience and knowledge to determine just compensation.
If the defendant’s actions were particularly reckless or egregious, punitive damages may be awarded. These damages aim to punish the responsible party and deter others from engaging in similar behavior.
Do Most Motorcycle Accident Cases Settle?
Most personal injury cases, including those involving motorcycle accidents, are resolved outside of court. A pre-litigation settlement offers several advantages, including a faster resolution and lower costs. Additionally, it allows the injured party to receive compensation more quickly.
During settlement negotiations, motorcycle accident lawyers play a crucial role in advocating for their client’s best interests. They will leverage the evidence and damages to push for fair compensation that adequately compensates the injured party for their losses.
However, it’s important to note that not all motorcycle accident cases are settled outside of court, especially if the insurance company is unwilling to offer a fair amount or accept liability.
Why Should I Hire a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer?
Although you are not required to hire a motorcycle accident lawyer, it is highly advisable. Motorcycle crash lawyers are familiar with the unique aspects of motorcycle accidents and the specific laws that apply to these cases.
Dealing with insurance companies can be overwhelming and stressful, especially when you are recovering from injuries. Having a lawyer handle all communications and negotiations with the insurance company ensures that your rights are protected and that you can focus on your recovery. An experienced motorcycle accident attorney will fight tirelessly to help you recover the maximum compensation available in your case.
Get a Free Consultation Today
If you have been involved in a motorcycle accident, it’s crucial to seek legal representation promptly. At Golden State Accident Lawyers, we offer free consultations, during which you can discuss the details of your case and your legal options. Get the best motorcycle accident lawyer in San Francisco for your claim.
Our personal injury law firm is dedicated to helping injured victims obtain justice and recover the maximum compensation. Contact us today to schedule a no-risk, free consultation.