Riding a motorcycle is a popular hobby in Pasadena. Whether just blowing off steam after a tough week on the job or riding down the coast with a group of friends, thousands of people in Pasadena enjoy being out on the open road. While riding a bike can be exhilarating, anyone who rides should be aware that they are inherently vulnerable to serious injury.
Unlike a car or truck, motorcycles offer little to no protection during a crash. Unfortunately, due to their size and the inattention of other drivers, motorcycles are often not seen until it is too late to avoid a collision. When the driver of a car or truck fails to see a motorcycle, the results can be catastrophic. Whether the accident is caused by another vehicle turning in front of an oncoming motorcycle, sideswiping a motorcycle while changing lanes, or striking a motorcycle from behind, a motorcycle vs. car collision often results in devastating injuries.
If you have suffered an injury in a motorcycle accident, a determined injury attorney can help you with the claims process. Negotiating with the insurance company on your own may seem easier and convenient. You may expect them to treat you fairly or just don’t want to make a big deal out of your injury. Unfortunately, many people, including insurance adjusters, have a negative impression of motorcycle riders. They are often viewed as thrill seekers and willing to take chances. While this may sometimes be true, such generalizations should not affect an insurance company or jury’s view of your claim. But it often does. An experienced Pasadena motorcycle accident lawyer can work to overcome these negative stereotypes and fight to obtain fair compensation for your injuries.
Pursuing a Motorcycle Accident Claim
When a Pasadena motorcycle accident attorney starts a new case, their first step should be to review the facts of the accident carefully to identifying any potential sources of evidence. All available evidence, such as witness statements, or video recordings from nearby businesses, photos of the scene or vehicles involved should be collected and secured. This is important in all motor vehicle collision, but even more so with a motorcycle accident. Because of the negative stereotypes involved with Motorcycles and their riders, we find that insurance companies and defendants often try to accuse the rider of reckless behavior and blame him for the collision.
In most motorcycle accident cases, the defendant is another motorist. These claims commonly result from the other driver violating the rules of the road or simply failing to operate their car, truck, or bike in a safe manner. Examples could include drivers that speed, turn illegally in front of an oncoming bike, change lanes when unsafe forcing the motorcycle to crash while trying to evade a collision, or striking the motorcycle from behind.
In order to recover damages for a motorcycle crash, the rider must not only prove that it was the other driver’s fault, but they must also show that he suffered injuries or other damages. Unfortunately, in a motorcycle crash claim, the injuries are typically so severe that this part of the claim is not usually very difficult. However, in order to recover for his damages, a rider and his attorney must identify and document all potential damages. Monetary damages in a motorcycle accident claim or lawsuit will include medical bills, lost wages, mental anguish, or any other expenses related to the accident.
Often, in motorcycle crash claims, the rider has also lost riding equipment for which he can also recover. Items such as leathers, boots, gloves, and helmets are destroyed in a motorcycle wreck. These damaged items should be catalogued and preserved just in case they are needed as evidence at trial. A Pasadena motorcycle injury lawyer should also work to ensure that the rider is compensated for these damaged items.
The role of a jury in a motorcycle accident claim is straightforward when one party is clearly at fault. However, motorcycle accidents are often chaotic and a plaintiff may share some of the fault for the crash, limiting their recovery.
In Pasadena, shared fault in a crash is governed by what’s known as the pure comparative negligence doctrine. Under this doctrine, a plaintiff is not barred by state law from pursuing compensation, even if they are partially responsible for a crash. An injured Pasadena motorcyclist can recover as long as they are not primarily responsible for the wreck. This means that you can still recover for your injuries as long as a jury does not find you 51% responsible for causing the wreck. However, the damages awarded to the injured rider will be reduced in direct proportion to their level of fault.
Discuss Your Claim with a Pasadena Motorcycle Accident Attorney
No matter the circumstances of a crash, you could have a viable claim for compensation following a motorcycle accident whether you are partially at fault or not. To ensure that you maximize your chances of recovery, contact Haines Law and speak to a Pasadena motorcycle accident lawyer right away. Call as soon as possible to schedule your consultation and start pursuing the justice you deserve.