California Motorcycle Accident Lawyers

Motorcyclists understand the inherent risks that come with sharing the road. The California motorcycle accident lawyers at The May Firm understand this because they ride motorcycles. They understand why people ride and we understand how other drivers are the largest danger posed to motorcyclist.

A bike offers much less protection than a car which makes any accident a greater threat to the rider. NHTSA’s 2016 statistics report that motorcycle riders are 28 times more likely to die in an accident and 6 times more likely to be injured. As an organization that is passionate about motor-sports and specializes in motorcycle injury law, the California motorcycle accident lawyers at The May Firm understand the level of support you need to get well and get your life back in order after surviving a crash.

We know the risks that riders take on by choosing to ride a motorcycle, but we also understand why they do it. We understand that getting an adrenaline rush and being safe don’t have to be mutually exclusive ideas. Whether you’re a casual enthusiast, or only live a life on two wheels, The May Firm has the case proven experience to support you should an accident occur.

Motorcycle accident litigation is different from automobile collisions, and our expert team understands the nuances between the two. We’ll work to get you the highest financial settlement possible for your case, at no out of pocket cost to you. We work on a contingency fee basis, meaning the compensation for our services is entirely based on getting you the settlement you need.

Often we are able to settle out of court, giving you faster access to funds and allowing you to better focus on your physical and emotional recovery. It is likely your insurance company will actually work against you to minimize the payout for your accident. Riding a motorcycle is perceived to be an inherently risky activity for high risk individuals and as such, insurance companies will make every effort to make the rider appear at full or partial fault.

The May Firm motorcycle accident lawyers look past these common stereotypes to build a highly personal case with the best chance of getting you the proper financial compensation and medical care. If you’ve been injured on a motorcycle by the negligence of another, call us at 1-(866) 619-6679.

Have questions? Call our award winning California motorcycle accident attorneys with over a 99% success rate at 1(866) 622-6491 anytime, we’re here to help.

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In the Event of a Motorcycle Accident

If you are involved in a motorcycle accident, seek medical attention immediately. Some motorcycle accident injuries may not manifest themselves in the moment, and the pain from more injuries may be hidden by the rush of adrenalin following the crash. It is extremely important to have a checkup with a medical professional so that a baseline for your health can be established. Getting medical attention following a crash also helps us build a stronger case for you by giving us more evidence regarding the extent of your injuries.

In the wake of a crash, the rider has many issues to address to get their life back in order. Major concerns include personal injury, property damage, loss of wages if work is missed, and pain and suffering. The May Firm works with you to set a plan in motion towards your recovery. We rely on our business relationships with the medical community to assist you with getting ongoing medical care and physical therapy after the accident.

Motorcycle related injuries can include skin trauma like road rash, head, neck and spine injury, lacerations, and broken bones, and the recovery process can take a significant amount of time. We work with medical partners in the community on a lien basis, so regardless of your insurance plan you can get the care you need. Their payment towards your ongoing care is factored into your settlement cost, making it one less bill to worry about as you regain your health and strength.

Motorcycle Injury Statistics

Avoiding a crash on a motorcycle largely depends on your skills as a rider. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s finalized 2013 report reveals some eye-opening statistics

  • In 2013, 4,668 motorcyclists were killed.
  • There were an estimated 88,000 motorcyclists injured during 2013.
  • Per vehicle mile traveled, motorcyclist fatalities occurred 26 times more frequently than passenger car occupant fatalities in traffic crashes.
  • 25% of motorcycle riders involved in fatal crashes in 2013 were riding their vehicles without valid motorcycle licenses.
  • n 2013, motorcycle riders involved in fatal crashes were found to have the highest percentage of alcohol-impaired drivers than any other vehicle type: 27% for motorcycles, 23% for passenger cars, 21% for light trucks and 2% for large trucks.
  • Motorcycle riders killed in traffic crashes at night were almost four times more frequently alcohol-impaired than those killed during the day.
  • NHTSA estimates that helmets saved 1,630 motorcyclists’ lives in 2013, and that 715 more could have been saved if all motorcyclists had worn helmets.
  • In States without universal helmet laws, 59% of motorcyclists killed in 2013 were not wearing helmets, as compared to 8 percent in States with universal helmet laws.

Preventing Potential Crashes

California offers some of the most dynamic motorcycle riding in the United States. The Beautiful coastlines, rugged mountain passes, lush redwood forests, and scenic deserts are enough to entice any type of motorcycle enthusiast to take to the road. Riding a motorcycle can be one of the most rewarding ways to experience this great state but unfortunately it can also be one of the most dangerous. Road hazards like debris or poor pavement, distracted drivers, and potential mechanical failure all risk factors that increase the possibility of a crash. Staying vigilant and riding defensively are of the utmost importance. The NTHSA cites that most multi-vehicle crashes involving motorcycles are caused when other drivers don’t see the motorcycle. Wearing bright visible clothing is advised, as is wearing a DOT certified helmet.

Be aware of state laws when riding a motorcycle in California. Riding a motorcycle requires a specific license certification and training, and licensing requirements vary from state to state. If you’re riding a motorcycle that is new to you, practice handling that vehicle in an enclosed or controlled area like an empty parking lot or uncrowded road. Unlike bicycle law, wearing a helmet is mandatory for motorcycle riders. Although splitting lanes is considered legal in the state, riders should proceed at their own risk. Driver awareness of motorcycles on the road is often questionable. Even though a driver may be 100% at fault in a crash your motorcycle offers much less protection than a car, often making the consequences of an accident much more dire. Obey the rules of traffic, stay vigilant, and don’t take unnecessary risks. If injured in a motorcycle accident contact The May Firm today for a free no obligation case review.

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frequently asked questions

Answers to our most commonly asked questions about motorcycle accident injuries in California.

Motorcycle accidents are not more common than other vehicular accidents. The difference is that a motorcycle accident is 35 times more likely to result in death. 56% of motorcycle deaths are caused by collision with other vehicles. 78% percent of the time, it’s a frontal collision which will surely be fatal to the rider.

Overtaking and Lane Splitting: One of the perks of having a motorcycle is that you can avoid traffic. A common practice is to drive between the spaces of other vehicles to overtake them. What most drivers are not aware of is that other vehicles don’t see them coming. Cars are not expecting a vehicle to pass while they are stuck in traffic. An accident can happen fast when a car simply goes out of its lane, makes a turn, or shifts the angle of the vehicle.

Driving while Drunk or Drugged: Half of motorcycle accidents are caused by drunk drivers. A motorcycle is vulnerable while traveling down the road with bigger vehicles. Drivers need to have full control of the vehicle or else the danger is multiplied several times. Since the motorcycle does not provide any protection, accidents often result in serious injury or death.

Roadblocks and Potholes: Anything that stands in the way of a motorcycle is a serious threat. 25% of motorcycle deaths are caused by colliding with unexpected objects.

Road Conditions: Wet roads, uneven roads, potholes, construction works and other road hazards can be a danger to motorcycle riders. It can cause the motorcycle to skid, overturn and throw the driver off their seats.

Blind Spots and Glares: A motorcycle driver has blind spots, even when they’re wearing high quality helmets. Other drivers might not see them coming if the lighting condition is not right.

The fact that a motorcycle provides very little protection to the driver can result in injury even when the driver is taking all necessary precautions. In fact, only a quarter of motorcycle accidents are caused by the motorcycle driver themselves. Most of the time, the accident is caused by other drivers, for one reason or another.

If you got into a motorcycle accident, get a lawyer who specializes in motorcycle accidents or a personal injury lawyer so you can get some expert legal advice. You only have 2 years from the time of the accident to file a suit. You have a legal right to be compensated for any personal injury or damage to your motorcycle. Accidents result in loss of wages, psychological trauma and pain and can incur expenses such as hospitalization bills, medication and the repair or replacement of your motorcycle. The right lawyer can tell you what type of compensation you are entitled to.

Motorcycles are dangerous vehicles. They offer very little protection to the driver that the smallest of accidents can cause serious injury and even death. There are so many factors that can contribute to a motorcycle accident that even if the driver takes all precautions, sooner or later an accident is bound to happen. We hope it does not happen to you, but when it does, you should know the right steps after a motorcycle accident.

As a motorcycle rider, you need to be aware of the motorcycle and helmet laws in your state, your legal rights, and what you can be compensated for. 70% of motorcycle accidents are caused by other vehicles. When an accident happens, the strength of your claim will depend on the actions you take 24 hours after the accident happens. Below we’ve outlined the first steps following a motorcycle accident:

Do Not Leave the Scene: Leaving the scene of an accident can be construed as Hit and Run.

Assess the Injuries Sustained: Check if you or your passenger were injured. Since you are driving a motorcycle, you will most likely have injuries. Call for assistance.

Seek Medical Attention: Your safety and your passengers are your primary concern. Even if you do not feel pain, have yourself checked for internal injuries that may present symptoms in the future.

Document all your Injuries: Take pictures of bruises or wounds sustained in the accident. Tell your doctor about them and ask for a medical report. Include any treatment and medication recommended by the doctor.

Inform the Proper Authorities: Report the accident to the police or the California Highway Patrol Group. Serious accidents resulting in death, injuries, or damages that exceed $750 should be reported to the DMV within ten days. You, your insurance agent, or your lawyer must complete and submit the SR1 form whether you caused the accident or not.

Do Not Apologize or Discuss Fault: We automatically say “I am sorry” when someone gets hurt whether it is our fault or not. In a motorcycle accident, don’t. Acts of kindness and any statement you make in the scene of the accident can be used against you when you file a claim.

Do not talk to Insurance Companies: Hire a motorcycle accident lawyer if you don’t have one yet. They are well versed in motorcycle laws and personal injury claims and you can tell the insurance company to contact them when they call you.

Get all the Information: If it is safe and you are able to do so, ask for the other driver’s license, car registration and insurance document. If you have a smart phone, get permission to take pictures of these documents for your file. Take pictures of the scene of the accident and the plate number of all vehicles involved.

Find Witnesses: If there are bystanders who witnessed the accident, try to get their names and contact information.

Do not accept Settlement Offers: Your first instinct is to get it over with, especially if you do not see any injury to yourself or your passenger. Do not accept any settlement. Discuss it with your motorcycle accident lawyer first. You may have sustained injuries that have not presented themselves, but can do so in the future. Once you have made a settlement, you cannot file any claim for additional injuries.

Do not Repair your Motorcycle: When you file a claim, your motorcycle can be used as evidence. Keep it as it is until after the case.

Motorcycle accidents can result in loss of income since you will be unable to work until you fully recover, psychological trauma, pain, medical expenses and expenses from the repair or replacement of your motorcycle. If you follow the steps mentioned above, you will have a chance to recover any losses you incurred from the accident and be compensated for the injuries you sustained.

You might think that settling right away will put an end to it and you can close this unfortunate chapter in your life. This is often a big mistake. Some injuries do not show until after a few weeks. Once you agree to a settlement, you can no longer make a claim for additional compensation.

Contact a lawyer specializing in motorcycle accidents and personal injury claims. Accidents are unfortunate, but you have a right to be compensated the right way.

With the weather and great views, California can be a great place for riding a motorcycle – however, it can also be a dangerous one, with motorcyclists 25 times more likely to die in a traffic accident than those driving cars. In 2009 there were 385 fatal motorcycle accidents in the state.

The best solution to this is to stay ultra alert, wear the correct gear (pads, helmet etc.) and drive carefully. But what happens if you are involved in a motorcycle accident in California? Hundreds of these types of accidents are investigated by insurance companies every year, and this article will give you a good idea of what to expect if you are ever involved in an accident that wasn’t your fault. Bearing this information in mind, you can give yourself the best chance of getting compensation for your accident.

Why an investigation?
It is a sad public misconception that motorcycle accidents are often the fault of the motorcyclist. Motorcycle investigations are essential in challenging this idea, either during the claims process or if the case ends up in court. We have motorcycle accident investigations to accurately find the sequence of events and the cause of the accident, which can back up the validity of your claim.
Statements at the scene
When you have been involved in a motorcycle accident, you will be expected to give a statement at the scene of the accident. Accident victims can often be in shock, or confused about exactly what happened. In this situation, try to keep a clear head and report the simple facts of what happened – not whose fault it might be. Accidents are often traumatic and difficult experiences, and it is not always obvious whose fault they are. The other party, plus witnesses will also make statements which may coincide with, or argue against, your own. Giving a statement to police will provide a reliable record for whatever comes next, and may also be used by your insurance company, who should also be contacted as soon as possible after the accident has occurred – which brings us onto our next point.

Contact your insurance company
This should be done as soon as it is reasonable to do so – the best way to do this is by using the toll free number usually provided. Be prepared to give the claims person as much information as possible, including the police report number (or incident number), the other person’s details and insurance info, and the names and contact numbers of any witnesses involved. All of this information will aid any investigation which may occur, but do not admit any fault. Just give the facts as they happened, and assume that your call is being recorded for legal purposes.

The person dealing with your claim may ask you about any property damage of physical injuries – however, it may be too soon to know the full extent of either. In this scenario, it is best not to guess, as injuries can manifest days or even weeks after an accident has occurred. It is wise to consult a physician if you feel you have any injuries such as whiplash, or aches and pains. Of course, broken bones or any other serious damage will be much more apparent, and can be reported along with any medical bills. As for your motorcycle, it is best to wait until a mechanic has carried out a full inspection. When reporting the damage, also keep hold of any bills or receipts that you can use in your claim.

Fault assessment
Assessment of fault can involve looking at all the evidence such as witness statements, expert investigations, police investigations, photographic or CCTV evidence, reconstructions of the scene, and assessment of the damage caused by the accident. If it becomes clear that the other person was at fault (say, they ran a red light or you were rear-ended), your insurance company may decide to directly work with their insurance company to pay for any damage that was caused. If the person does not have insurance, you would be entitled to payment from your uninsured motorist coverage if applicable (strongly recommended). However, it is possible that your damages exceed your policy limits and it is then advisable to contact a motorcycle lawyer.

If it is found that you were at fault by an insurance company, it could stay on your record and affect any future coverage you decide to take out, which is why finding the right lawyer is a must. The right lawyer could provide you with valuable assistance on making a claim and either clearing your name, or taking the best course of action.

No matter how careful a driver may be, accidents can happen caused by other circumstances. 70% of all motorcycle accidents are caused by the negligence of other drivers. A motorcycle driver is particularly susceptible to personal injury, since a motorcycle does not provide any protection to the driver at all. Statistics say that a fatal outcome is 35 times higher in motorcycle accidents than in car accidents. When you are involved in an accident, the next best thing to do after seeking medical attention is to hire the services of a motorcycle accident injury litigation lawyer.

Under California Law, a person who sustained injury through the negligence and carelessness of others is entitled to recover past and future medical costs, past and future lost wages, property damage, rental vehicle expense, and pain and suffering. The motorcycle law differs in each state and is different from car accidents, and you need to have a lawyer who is experienced in motorcycle accidents and motorcycle litigation. They can determine if you have grounds for a lawsuit and the amount of compensation you’re entitled to.

You have a strong case if the following scenario can be proven:

– The driver was not careful. The defendant’s behavior will be compared to that of a “reasonable person’s” actions.
– The driver’s behavior caused you to be injured (physical or mentally) and sustain losses.
– You were not breaking any motorcycle law when the accident happened.
It is better to have a Motorcycle Accident Injury Lawyer determine whether you have a case for a lawsuit or not. They are more experienced in dealing with motorcycle litigation and may see angles to the accident that are not obvious to you.

Motorcycle accidents can seriously affect your life. Injuries sustained from motorcycle accidents can range from sprains, broken bones, internal organ damage, brain injury or spinal injury – just to name a few. Very rarely does a driver recover from a head on collision with another car. Aside from these visible injuries, there are large medical bills incurred from operations, therapists, doctor’s bills and medications. There is physical pain, long months of recuperation and inability to work resulting in loss of income. You can be compensated for all of these injuries and you can spend time fully recovering from the accident without having to sell everything you own.

Motorcycle drivers have the same rights and privileges as other drivers on the road. It has been estimated by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration that half of motorcycle accidents happen because another vehicle turned into the path of the motorcycle. The most common reason used by defendants in motorcycle accident injury litigation is that they were looking out for other vehicles and did not notice the motorcycle until it was too late. That is not a reason, it’s an excuse.

Before you contact a Motorcycle Accident Injury Lawyer, you need to provide the evidence to help them file a lawsuit. Here’s what you need to prepare: 

– A copy of the Police Report that will have details of the accident.
– Your Medical Record that will have details of your injuries.
– Pictures of the scene of the accident, the damage to your vehicle and the injuries you sustained.
– Copies of all Medical Bills.
– Contact information of witnesses to the accident.
– Any supporting evidence that will show loss of income/wages due to the accident.

The Litigation Process
In the investigation phase your lawyer will question you about the accident, your driving history and your injuries. Once your lawyer is satisfied with all the information they have, they will begin negotiating with the insurance company of the other driver. They will begin by sending a Demand Letter informing them of your intent to sue for damages, the injuries you sustained, the current and future costs of your medical bills and the amount that you are willing to accept as settlement. If you have a motorcycle accident lawsuit, you will need to hire the right attorney for your specific case.

If the insurance company agrees to the amount of the settlement, you and your lawyer can settle the claim and that’s it. You can recover in peace with the funds you need. If the insurance company contests the claim, your lawyer will file a claim with the court and the litigation will begin. Most claims are settled before they go to court. Litigation is also costly for the insurance company and if they can negotiate for a settlement, they will.  Lawsuits can be a complicated and long drawn out process which will incur additional expenses for all parties involved.

When you’re involved in an accident legal representation is a necessity. This is more then you can do on your own and the expert advice of an attorney is invaluable. An attorney does more for you then just work with the insurance companies. They also research the events of the accident itself. This can include expert analysis from outside professionals, a review of the accident scene, interviews with witnesses, and research into other necessary data such as motorcycle recall and local road conditions. There is also the matter of insurance companies to deal with.

Insurance companies are often not on the side of the accident victim as sad as that is. Many insurance companies simply want to pay out as cheaply as possible and close the case. In this respect you should never agree to any accident settlement before having it reviewed by a knowledgeable attorney. Often these settlements greatly undervalue the true costs of an accident, which may not be apparent at first. Many accident injuries are not obvious at first glance. It may take days or perhaps a week or more for the true extent of certain types of injuries to become apparent. If you’ve already agreed to a settlement at this point you have not been fairly compensated for what you are truly owed.

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When injuries occur due to someone else’s negligence we answer the call. Your family’s been through enough. We have serious experience in a variety of accident cases.

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Contact Us to get started. It is important to have the proper legal representation on your side if you’re involved in a motorcycle crash. Often wrongful blame is placed on the rider in a multi vehicle collision, due to the increased risk that comes with riding a motorcycle. Insurance companies are reluctant to side with the motorcyclist, and often times will attempt to place the full or partial blame on them. Don’t accept that blame and the legal repercussions that come with it.

Call 1-(866) 619-6679 to schedule a free consultation with our award winning motorcycle accident lawyers. We’ll help determine the viability of your case based on your testimony and help you determine the best way to proceed. Working on a contingency fee means our lawyers are only compensated when your case or settlement is won, and our extensive experience and case history allows us to settle most claims out of court, giving you a faster resolution to your case and allowing you to focus on your recovery process. We factor in every possible expense when building your settlement: Medical bills, wage loss, property damage, and emotional suffering are all considered. Our goal is to help you put your life back in order to the best of our ability.

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