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Motorcycle accidents happen in the blink of an eye and it is not uncommon to suffer from a physical or an emotional injury by accident or by mistake. When one of these unfortunate event happens, the victim will need a compensation that will cover the damages totally or partially. Among some of the types of accidents that hold the most traumatic potential, we can mention motorcycle accidents. These can have a lasting impact on the victim and a Los Angeles motorcycle accident attorney from our team of lawyers can help the victims claim damages for their losses.
If the event that caused the injuries and suffering took place in Los Angeles, in order to support your rights and fight for a plentiful compensation, you can contact aLos Angeles personal injury attorney. An expert will try to reach a settlement so that the defendant will pay you the rightful compensation. If this is not possible, the attorney will bring the case to court and present your case in the most suitable way.
Legal aid from a Los Angeles motorcycle accident attorney
It is important to seek specialized legal aid in case of a motorcycle accident because a lawyer who specializes in these types of case will be the one with an expensive background for understanding the legal claims that can be submitted and will be able to provide you with an objective evaluation of your case. Previous experience is important because case law can be used in judging these types of accidents and a Los Angeles motorcycle accident attorney who is well aware of previous high compensations for an accident of this sort can help you refer to similar cases and then negotiate a higher settlement amount.
While there are no two identical personal injury situations, in most cases an accident can be roughly judges according to the impact it has on the victim: lucky individuals will recover only from some bruises, maybe broken limbs, especially if they were wearing their protective gear at the time of the crash. They can obtain compensations for their injuries, in accordance with their severity and they will base their case on the negligence of the other party and on how if it weren’t for the defendant’s mistakes, they wouldn’t have been injured. These types of plaintiffs may be tempted to refuse or never solicit the services offered by a Los Angeles motorcycle accident attorney. However, we do recommend to request legal aid in all cases, even in those in which it seems like you were lucky that you were able to leave the accident scene on your own two feet.
The main reasons why you should always seek specialized legal assistance in case of motorcycle accidents (from a Los Angeles motorcycle accident attorney with extensive experience in these types of cases) are summarized below:
You have time for a proper recovery: when you choose to work with a Los Angeles motorcycle accident attorney you can take the time to focus on your healing – a step that is essential in order to be able to build a solid case later on;
You will know is your case stands: an experienced lawyer will be able to tell you how your case will be received and whether or not you have a strong legal claim;
Estimate the settlement amount: while using a personal injury calculator can be useful in many cases, a lawyer who has negotiated or litigated other motorcycle accidents will be able to approximate the settlement amount;
Negotiate the final settlement: you may not be physically able to negotiate the settlement amount or you may simply lack the experience of previous personal injury lawsuits and an experienced lawyer will be able to use his negotiation skills to your advantage.
Motorcycle accidents that have a significant impact on the victim should always be taken to court or settled with the help from a specialized Los Angeles personal injury attorney. A case is considered more complex when the victim suffers from extensive personal injuries that will forever alter his or her life from that day on. Due to their nature, because the bike rider is less protected than a vehicle driver, motorcycle accidents can result in catastrophic injuries. These are the ones that leave the victim with permanent damage and can include spinal cord injuries and traumatic brain injuries. Our brain injury attorney in Los Angeles can help you in this case.
It is important to seek specialized legal assistance in these types of cases because a lawyer will be able to help you claim not only the damages for the medical treatment and the lost property or lost wages but also that for non-economic damages like pain and suffering. These types of claims are harder to quantify but should be included in the settlement nevertheless. There are two ways in which the victim of a motorcycle accident in Los Angeles can obtain compensations for pain and suffering: either as a multiplier (according to the severity of the trauma) that is added to the existing economic damages and it is used to multiply it or as a per day amount when a fixed amount is to be awarded for each day during which it is considered that the victim suffered from the accident.
Our truck accident attorneys in Los Angeles are also here to help you if you were involved in this type of accident.
In the most severe scenario, when the motorcycle rider is killed instantly or shortly after the accident from extremely severe injuries, a Los Angeles motorcycle accident attorney is the one who can help the grieving family file a case. Also a wrongful death attorney in Los Angeles can be of help in this situation.
Los Angeles personal injury attorneys providing services tailored to your needs
If you were the victim of a motorcycle accident, all you have to do is to contact our law firm in Los Angeles for a free evaluation of your case and then follow the steps recommended by one of our experienced Los Angelespersonal injury attorneys in order to obtain the maximum compensation possible. We treat every client according to his personal needs because every case is unique and it will receive our full attention and expertise.
You don’t have to worry about the legal procedures in certain cases, because our Los Angelespersonal injury attorneys will handle the entire situation, from the first evaluation to the final settlement or litigation. They are experienced in claiming the insurance due for certain types of accidents, will ask for evidence necessary for settlement or litigation and will present the claim for compensation. Our Los Angelespersonal injury attorneysdefend also the persons accused of different types of accidents and mistakes in case of a settlement or a litigation. Moreover, we also provide specialized personal injury services for a certain category of accidents, helped by a Los Angeles motorcycle accident attorney.
The most important aspect is that you don’t have to pay a cent before obtaining the final result, our Los Angelespersonal injury lawyers will represent you free of charge and they will be paid only if you obtain a compensation. You will pay them a percentage of the total amount of the compensation and this is agreed from the very beginning. This is also available for our slip and fall lawyers in Los Angeles.
Proving fault in motorcycle accidents
The most important step after a motorcycle accident in any Californian city is to seek adequate medical attention, even if the initial injuries do not seem serious. A head injury can have important consequences, even if the signs are not immediately visible.
If you are in good condition immediately after the accident you should try to take photos of the crash, the motorcycle, and the damage. You should also note the traffic conditions, time of day or other special events/conditions that could have contributed to the accident.
In order to prove fault in a motorcycle accident, you should be able to show that the other party was involved in the accident and, moreover, that he wasnegligent. This is typically done by showing that he did not observe the traffic regulations, that he was distracted while driving or worse that he was driving under the influence.
Apart from the pictures, you can also take eyewitness testimonies and get a copy of the official police report.
Talking to one of our Los Angeles motorcycle accident attorneys and requesting an initial consultation can be helpful if your case, especially if you have never been involved in a personal injury lawsuit or are willing to start a negotiation instead of having to go to court.
How a Los Angeles motorcycle accident attorney can help you
You should remember that you have to years to make your claim or file a lawsuit. This two-year period from the date of the injury is the statute of limitations in California.
Our lawyers also invite you to watch the following video on proving fault in a motorcycle accident:
Tips for selecting a Los Angeles motorcycle accident attorney
The first step for choosing a motorcycle accident lawyer in Los Angeles is to narrow down the search to attorneys who only specialize in these types of accidents. Law firms will work with many lawyers who can specialize in one or more types of accidents. Ideally, you will select an attorney who has had plenty of experience in dealing with all types of motorcycle accidents. This will mean that they not only have case experience but also that they have the highest degree of familiarity with the driving laws in California.
The four tips presented below summarize the main issues to take into consideration when choosing to work with a specialized Los Angeles personal injury attorney:
The success rate: the fact that a lawyer specializes in a certain type of accident is a good starting point, however, you will also want to look at his success rate.
The reviews: how other victims have worked with the attorney can also be a good starting point for evaluating a chosen lawyer.
Prepare a list of questions: once you have a narrowed down list of motorcycle accident Los Angeles personal injury lawyers you can start making a list of questions;
Schedule an initial consultation: you will want to schedule an initial consultation and make the most out of it by asking questions.
The State Bar of California can allow you to search for an attorney’s history, provided that he is registered with the Bar. If the lawyer has a history of favorable settlements and verdicts for the plaintiffs he represented in court, he could be a good candidate.
You can try to look at client testimonials, both the favorable and unfavorable ones, as they may reflect underlying issues (some of them may be related to the fact that they could not properly communicate with the lawyer even if his track record was impeccable). Another option is to ask your friends and family as good lawyers are sometimes recommended through direct references.
Types of compensations for motorcycle accidents
Our team of experts includes a Los Angeles motorcycle accident attorney who can help victims claim compensations for two distinct types of damages: the economic ones and the non-economic ones.
Primary compensation areas include monetary compensations for the following:
medical bills: the costs for the medical treatment after the accident are covered by the compensation; these are almost always the highest costs and in some situations will also include future medical care.
the lost earnings: the wages lost by the victim as a result of not being able to work after the accident.
future lost earnings: the victim can also claim compensation for the future lost income when the recovery period is longer or when he is an entrepreneur who can prove the lost business opportunities.
the property damages: included here are the costs for repairing/replacing the motorcycle itself as well as any other valuable property that might have been lost in the crash.
Calculating the compensation amount
Our Los Angeles motorcycle accident attorneys can help a victim calculate the compensation amount. Before talking to one of our experts, you can also try to use a personal injury calculator, although this tool will only give you a rough amount. A lawyer will help you include the medical bills and expenses, the property damage as well as the lost wages and estimate an amount that will suffice for the emotional distress after the accident. In case of malpractice, a medical malpractice attorney Los Angeles can help you obtain compensations.
It is important to bring forward an adequate compensation amount because this figure will be subject to negotiation and, as a victim, you may find that if the initial request was not high enough, after the negotiation phase it will be reduced as much as it will not cover the true costs in their entirety.
Motorcycle accident victims need to remember that California has a statute of limitations of two years from the date of the accident (during which the case can be brought to court) and a shared fault rule, through which the compensation amount can be reduced by the victim’s percentage of fault for the accident.
Working with one of our Los Angeles motorcycle accident attorneys can help you not only calculate an adequate and satisfactory compensation but will also mean that you will be able to observe all of the laws applicable to personal injury cases involving motorists.
How to calculate the settlement for a motorcycle accident in Los Angeles
Calculating the settlement for a personal injury accident is a task that requires the victim to have completed at least part of the medical treatment. This is one of the reasons why it is important to make a personal injury claim after you have been discharged from the hospital. Nevertheless, the time between the accident and the moment you make your claim should now be too extensive: preparing the evidence and gathering all of the case files can take some time and California has a statute of limitations of two years from the date of the accident, meaning that the time you have to ask for a settlement amount is limited.
One of our Los Angeles motorcycle accident attorneys can help you calculate the settlement based on:
the medical costs: the expenses for treating the injuries and, in some cases, even those expenses for the future medical case associated with the accident.
the lost income: the income lost as a direct result of not being able to work during the recovery period and even afterward.
the property damage: private property damaged in the accident, can include the motorcycle itself.
pain and suffering: a special non-economic type of damage, is the monetary equivalent of the period of pain and suffering after the accident.
When calculating the settlement amount it is always useful to keep in mind these four basic categories. Victims can use a personal injury calculator prior to requesting legal aid.
How to decide if the settlement is suitable
Victims of personal injury accidents can either choose to settle their case out of court or take the case to court to be trialed by a judge and jury. In most cases, it is quicker to settle than to go to court, however, this is a suitable choice only if advised by an experienced attorney. If you stand better chances of obtaining a higher settlement in court, a Los Angeles motorcycle accident attorney from our team will advise you on how to proceed.
When deciding to settle the case, the negotiation phase is very important and so is to resist accepting a first offer that seems suitable. If in doubt, it is always recommended to seek legal aid. Our Los Angeles personal injury attorneys will not collect their fee until after you have gained the negotiated settlement amount.
The California Vehicle Code
Below, we list some of the top issues to take into consideration in regards to road safety and the actual conduct while driving a motorcycle. The California Vehicle Code is relevant when discussing a personal injury accident because the motorist who was injured may have been uncompliant with the road regulations in force.
The California Vehicle Code is the primary law discussing various aspects that are of high importance to all motorists. Below, we list some of these:
Riding conditions: a motorcycle owner needs to have a valid license and must complete the relevant courses.
Safety conditions: the motorcycle itself needs to comply with some important regulations for safety, including the height of the handlebars.
Insurance: it is illegal to ride without adequate insurance and the coverage has a minimum, according to law.
Helmet law: and all riders should wear a helmet and this law also applies to passengers.
Lane splitting: the Code does not prohibit this practice; however, the Highway Patrol may stop reckless drivers who are engaged in this practice.
One of our Los Angeles motorcycle accident attorneys can give you complete information on the rules and regulations that apply to motorists in order to determine how the provisions of the Code will apply in your personal injury case.
The Tort Law
The California Tort Law is relevant in all personal injury accidents and it is also one of the laws governing motorcycle accidents. A tort is a non-criminal civil wrong that has grounds for a lawsuit and the respective wrong has led to the harm and/or injury of another party. Under this law, the injured party has the right to sue for monetary damages. These can cover the following:
Medical expenses: the costs associated with the immediate treatment after the accident; these can be substantial in some cases.
Future medical expenses: severe cases will also require specialized, prolonged medical treatment and victims can be compensated for it.
Lost wages: the income lost by the victim during the time he/she was unable to work because of the injuries; can also include future lost income.
Damages: the damages to the motorcycle itself can be compensated for.
Pain and suffering: victims can also be compensated for emotional distress, loss of consortium and general suffering after the accident.
The Tort Law is an important legal resource, however, understanding your rights that derive from this law can be somewhat of a hassle in the aftermath of the accident. This is why it is highly recommended to reach out to one of our Los Angeles personal injury attorneys for complete legal counseling.
What statute of limitations applies in case of motorcycle accidents in LA?
The general two-year period applies in cases in which the plaintiff was injured as a result of a motorcycle accident. Below, we illustrate some of the possible occurrences:
A crash between two motorists: when the motorcycle and another vehicle are involved in the crash, the statute of limitations is two years as per the California Civil Procedure Code.
Defective products: when the accident was caused by a defective motorcycle part, the statute of limitations is also two years from the accident.
Defective roads or highways: when a government entity is the one at fault for the poor maintenance of the road where the accident took place, the limit is two years after filing the Administrative Claim.
Others: in some particular cases, some exceptions are allowed from the standard two-year time period; this can occur when the victim is left mentally incapacitated after the accident or in other cases, as shown below.
The first category is the most common one and the one for which many clients request the assistance provided by our Los Angeles motorcycle accident attorneys. Our team can also provide details for each of the highlighted four situations.
There are situations in which this time period can differ. One of the examples, as highlighted by our Los Angeles motorcycle accident atorney is that in which the victim is a minor. The standard two-year period will not begin to run until the person has turned 18. Special consideration is advised in these cases.
Our Los Angeles motorcycle accident attorney can detail each of these situations. Below, we continue by answering some of the most common questions about this legal limitation and how it can affect a plaintiff’s ability to claim his rightful compensation.
Can the statute of limitations be extended?
The statute of limitations ordinarily begins to run on the date of the accident. However, in some cases, the date from which it begins can be different. A delayed discovery rule is included in the California Civil Jury Instructions and it instructs that when the plaintiff did not discover the injury or was unaware that the accident caused the injury on the particular date on which he occurred, then the statute of limitations can begin to run from the date on which this discovery was made. One of our Los Angeles personal injury lawyers can provide additional information about the case law that is used for judging the statute of limitations for these types of accidents.
Because the statute of limitations is important in a personal injury claim, plaintiffs who wait too long to file their claim can be at a loss.
Areas covered by ourLos Angelespersonal injury attorneys
You can contact our law firm if you have suffered a personal injury accident in Los Angeles or in another city nearby. By reaching out to us you can set up an appointment for a free consultation.
We cover a large area around L.A., including Long Beach, Riverside, Palmdale, San Diego etc. You can find out more details if you contact our law office via phone or e-mail. If you have an accident in another country and you don't know what to do next, you may contact us and we can help you with information and put you in touch with foreign partners, such as LawOfficeMalaysia.com.
We can help you understand how you can claim a compensation that will cover the losses sustained in an accident. Our consultation also includes legal counseling on the laws that may impact your right to a settlement. Included here is the comparative negligence rule applicable throughout the state of California. This is a legal defense that can reduce the final amount of damages a plaintiff can receive if he or she is also found to blame for the accident. For example, if you were involved in a vehicle accident and during the discovery phase it is determined that you also have a certain degree of negligence, then the final settlement amount will be reduced by that degree.
Professional legal representation can be a key element in a personal injury case. Victims who choose to work with a Los Angelespersonal injury attorney that has extensive experience in their type of cases can maximize their settlement amount and can choose to either negotiate the settlement or take the case to court – whichever solution offers them the most promising outlook for a fair compensation amount.
Frequently asked questions
1. What are the most common types of accidents that lead to personal injuries in L.A.?
Vehicle accidents and those involving other motorized vehicles are among the most common types of accidents that lead to personal injuries. As a consequence, pedestrian accidents are also common throughout California.
2. When is an accident considered a personal injury case?
It is important for the victim to be able to prove that the injury(es) were caused by the negligence of the other party. A Los Angeles personal injury attorney can help you prove your case in court.
3. What can I do after being involved in a personal injury accident?
4. How can a lawyer help me file a personal injury complaint?
One of our Los Angeles personal injury attorneys will be able to help you gather the relevant evidence and build a solid case based on medical records, testimonials, and other sources. An expert will know exactly how the law applies in your case and what are our rights.
5. How can I prove negligence?
Negligence can be proved through evidence from the accident or medical records proving that the accident caused certain lesions. However, you should pay close attention to shared fault cases: if you are also to blame for the accident, you will not be given the same amount of compensations.
6. What are the types of compensations I can receive?
Compensations are awarded for monetary or non-monetary damages: either for medical bills, to replace lost property or even for the pain and suffering sustained in the accident. The latter is a special category of compensations, also known in some cases as hedonic damages. Because it is more difficult to prove that an accident left a significant emotional impact that affects your daily life, it is often necessary to request the services of apersonal injury attorney who will know how to present your case to highlight the emotional impact of the injuries.
7. What are the legal limitations on injury damages?
Limitations for compensations can apply, in cases of medical malpractice and the victim should know that it is best to take legal action as soon as possible after the accident.
8. What is the pure comparative negligence rule in California?
The pure comparative fault rule applies when the defendant argues that he is not entirely to blame for the accident. In these cases, the percentage of compensation is divided among the parties according to the percentage of fault they had in the accident.
9. What is the statute of limitations in California?
California has a statute of limitations of two years from the date of the accident. Victims who try to obtain compensations at a later date will most likely have their case rejected by the court. The California statute of limitations for medical malpractice cases is one year after the injured individual discovers the injury (or should have discovered the injury) or three years from the date of the injury, whichever occurs first.
10. To what extent does the insurance cover a personal injury?
Although insurance companies have clauses covering common accidents like motorcycle accidents, for example, insurers might try to reduce the number of compensations in difficult cases that will require more medical attention like those that involve spinal cord injuries. Our lawyers can help you if you have insurance problems. California has a law for a worker’s compensation insurance – a special type of insurance that needs to be provided by employers to their employees, according to the working conditions. Damages for personal injuries incurred while on the job are typically compensated through this type of insurance. Our lawyers can help you if you have insurance problems.
11. How important is the negotiation phase in a personal injury lawsuit?
Negotiation can be very important, especially if both the plaintiff and the defendant are willing to agree upon a settlement and not go to court. This phase will be the only chance the victim has to obtain rightful compensations and the help of a personal injury lawyer can prove extremely important.
12. What are third party liability claims and should I consider them?
A third party liability claim is typical in defective products cases or in worker's compensation cases. The claim is made against a third party that is through to have caused the injury, for example, the manufacturer of a defective or unsafe product. A personal injury attorney can help you submit a third-party claim.
13. Can I still receive compensations in cases where I took an assumed risk?
Individuals who engage in risky activities, such as extreme sports, will usually sign a consent that they are fully aware of the possible consequences of their actions. However, even if the individual took certain risks, he can file a personal injury claim if the injuries occurred in other circumstances and not from the causes he expressly agreed upon.
14. What can I do as a parent, if my child was injured in an accident?
As a parent, you have the right to claim compensations for your child's injuries occurred on an unsafe playground while he was playing in a public or private pool or even while on the local school bus. Personal injury cases involving children are more sensitive and a personal injury attorney specialized in these issues can provide you with important advice.
15. Are dashboard cameras a valid proof in court?
Footage shot with the help of a dashboard camera can be very useful to recreate the accident. While they can provide useful information, they may not be widely accepted as conclusive evidence. Nevertheless, if you were using a camera while being involved in a car accident, you can bring this evidence to support your case.
16. Can I calculate how much I could obtain after a personal injury?
Yes, you can use special personal injury calculators where you can introduce various elements related to your injury and see how much your case is worth. You can factor is economic and non-economic damages you can ask for. However, it is recommended to ask our Los Angeles personal injury attorneys to help you calculate the compensation in order to have the best outcome.
17. How do I choose my personal injury lawyer in Los Angeles?
Experience is the best factor you can consider when choosing your personal injury lawyer in L.A. Most law firms have websites where they say how they can help and the cases they can represent you in. You can also verify an attorney with the State Bar Court of California.
18. What is an informal settlement?
Informal settlement can be used personal injury cases in which no death or only minor injuries are sustained. These settlements are usually carried out between the insurance companies and the personal injury attorneys in L.A.
19. Can I be held liable if I suffered a personal injury?
Liability in a personal injury case is based on negligence or lack of exercising the duty of care. If the latter can be pinned on the defendant in a lawsuit, negligence can also be used against the injured party. However, our Los Angeles personal injury attorneys will make sure they have all the facts straight in order to prove their clients are the victims.
20. What should I consider when I calculate the compensation?
You can obtain compensation for suffering economic or non-economic damages. The substantial evidence and the pain and suffering caused by the injuries are the most important factors to consider when calculating the compensation. The emotional distress caused to family members is also important and can be considered when calculating the compensation for a personal injury case.
21. How do I recognize a low settlement?
You can recognize a low settlement when the insurance company rushes to make its first offer. You can calculate the compensation before going to the meeting with the insurance adjusted and compare the figures: the amount you calculated and how must you are offered. You can also make sure you are offered a low settlement if you go alone to the meeting with the insurer.
22. In a personal injury case, are fault and liability the same thing?
Fault will automatically trigger the liability of the defendant in a personal injury lawsuit. However, fault must be first proved before the party is held liable for the damage caused. Our L.A. personal injury attorneys can help in determining fault and liability in a lawsuit.
23. Insurance companies: how can I negotiate with them?
You can negotiate with an insurance company yourself, but the outcome could be poor one, as the insurer will try and settle for the lowest amount possible. However, if you have hired a personal injury lawyer, he or she can negotiate a right compensation based on the evidence they can bring to the attention of the insurer.
For detailed and answers to the above-mentioned questions please do not hesitate to contact our Los Angeles personal injury attorneys.
Our motto is: “No fee for no compensation”, so don’t hesitate to call us anytime for a free evaluation of your case. Our Los Angelespersonal injury attorneys are here to answer all your questions.
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Our personal injury lawyer in Los Angeles
Marc Y. Lazo is specialized in personal injury cases as well as in complex business and commercial litigation. He has tried numerous cases to successful verdict and has obtained multiple six-figure judgments in both state and federal court.