Nothing can truly match the joys of speeding along atop a finely tuned motorcycle. Unfortunately, there’s a tradeoff for the additional freedom, because motorcycles pose certain dangers. Per miles traveled, motorcyclists are 8 times as likely to be injured. In California, an injured cyclist must follow certain protocol to be compensated after a motorcycle collision.
Am I Entitled to Compensation
In California, there are certain expenses for which the victim of a motorcycle collision must be compensated. The following expenses are among the more common reasons victims are forced to pursue motorcycle accident compensation in California.
Damages eligible for Compensation in California
- Medical Bills
- Pain and Suffering
- Ambulance Ride
- Lost Wages
- Damage to the Motorcycle
- Prescription Medicine Cost
Some people settle their cases too quickly and find out their compensation is barely enough to cover future medical expenses. It’s important to heal completely, or obtain proof that you will never heal completely, before accepting a settlement offer. Too often, more serious medical issues manifest later. It can take several years for a case to go to trial, but the plaintiff must be willing to see it through to the end.
California Statute of Limitations
In most instances, you have two years from the date of the accident to file a suit. If the injuries were caused by the government or a government employee, the injured party has 6 months to file a claim. If the claim is denied, then the injured party has 6 months from the rejection date to file a suit.
Is a Motorcycle Accident Attorney Expensive
Attorneys are well-trained professionals, providing a valuable service. They are relatively costly, but they’re fees are usually factored into the settlement amount. Some attorneys will even take cases on contingency, if the injured party has no funds. A contingency lawyer agrees to take the case, and only collect a salary if the injured party is awarded damages. In some states, there’s a limit to how much of the settlement the lawyer can collect.
In California, there are limits placed upon contingency lawyers based upon how much the injured party receives. For instance, the attorney can take no more than 40% of the first $50,000 and 1/3 of the second $50,000. This means he attorney can take no more than $36,666.67 of a $100,000 settlement. If the settlement exceeds $600,000 the lawyer is limited to just 15%. Either way, the attorney’s fees usually pale in comparison to the cost of hospital fees and lost time from work.
If you’re truly worried about an attorney screwing you in court, I invite you to take a look at what the responsible insurance company is doing, before you condemn motorcycle lawyers. In most cases, insurance adjusters consider these instances to be an attack on their bottom line. They work for a company, and that company does not want to lose money.
For motorcycle victims, that is a recipe for disaster. They often will mistakenly believe that the insurance adjuster is trying to give them a fair deal. They accept a small settlement only to find out later that it wasn’t nearly enough to cover their bills. Medical expenses pile up, and they no longer have recourse to obtain compensation.
Why? They already obtained it when they accepted the settlement from the insurance company. Be smart, take your time when you are healing so that you know your injuries have healed. If you don’t, you could be left to pay huge expenses out of your own pocket.