Orange County Motorcycle Accident Attorney
Motorcycles can be enjoyable to ride, but they are also some of the most dangerous vehicles on the roads of California. A motorcycle is quick and maneuverable but offers no physical protection in a crash. When a motorcyclist experiences a collision with a driver operating a larger passenger vehicle, the motorcyclist is much more likely than the other driver to suffer severe injuries. Drivers may also cause accidents with motorcyclists without directly striking them, such as driving recklessly near motorcyclists and causing them to swerve and lose control of their bikes.
If you or a loved one recently suffered injuries and economic losses from a motorcycle accident that another driver caused, you need to know your options for legal recourse to recover compensation for your losses. An Orange County motorcycle accident attorney can be instrumental to your recovery. The team at Chris and Frank can provide the comprehensive legal counsel you need to navigate a motorcycle accident claim with confidence.
How Can a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Help With My Compensation Claim?
It’s common for accident victims to believe they can manage their recoveries unassisted, saving money on attorneys’ fees. Unfortunately, when you are suffering from injuries and dealing with the resulting medical bills, lost income, and other financial losses that typically follow these accidents, it can be challenging to justify the cost of hiring an attorney to help you recover. However, you stand to lose much more than the cost of your legal fees by not hiring legal representation.
Average people with no professional legal experience or training are likely to make critical errors that could jeopardize their cases before they truly begin. For example, if you were to miss a court filing deadline, the court may throw out your case before it started on a technicality. Even if a claimant does manage to meet the court’s procedural requirements, they may overlook crucial details of their claim and settle for much less than they should.
Your investment into legal counsel from an experienced Orange County motorcycle accident lawyer not only increases your chances of success with your claim and eliminates the possibility of your case being thrown out for a procedural violation but also increases the chances of maximizing your recovery to the fullest extent possible under California law. The team at Chris and Frank provides contingency fee billing for legal services, meaning you pay nothing until we win your case. There is no upfront cost for legal representation from our firm, and you pay your legal fees as a percentage of your case award to guarantee your recovery.
Most Commonly Reported Motorcycle Accident Injuries in Orange County, CA
When a motor vehicle driver experiences a collision, their vehicles provide several safety features designed to minimize injuries. Airbags, seatbelts, and vehicle frames designed to crumple and absorb crash impact forces can potentially mean the difference between life and death for a motor vehicle driver or passenger. Motorcycles have no such safety features. Riders are virtually unprotected from a crash, and the only physical protection they have includes their helmet and riding gear. Unfortunately, even the best helmets and riding equipment can only do so much in a crash. As a result, the fatality rate in motorcycle accidents is significantly higher than the fatality rate for accidents involving standard passenger vehicles. Motorcyclists are also much more likely to sustain severe injuries, including:
- Broken bones. These injuries may heal completely with time and rest, but severe bone fractures may require surgical correction, a steel plate, and pin placement and result in long-term complications such as diminished range of motion and reduced flexibility. These injuries are also excruciating.
- Internal organ injuries. Crash impact forces can easily damage internal organs. Some of these injuries can cause internal bleeding that requires immediate medical treatment, and an internal organ injury can result in permanent medical complications for the victim.
- Traumatic brain injuries. California state law requires motorcyclists to wear Department of Transportation-approved helmets while riding, but these devices can only reduce the chance of suffering a head injury; they cannot prevent them entirely. Traumatic brain injuries are dangerous, unpredictable, and capable of causing lasting disabilities. In addition, it can sometimes take months or even years before the victim can assess the full scope of a traumatic brain injury’s effects.
- Spinal cord injuries. The spinal cord carries brain signals throughout the body. If the spinal cord sustains an injury, these signals are interrupted, preventing the victim from controlling various parts of their body and some bodily functions. Spinal cord injuries are permanent, and the higher the injury is on the spine, the greater the affected area of the body.
- “Road rash.” This term describes friction burns sustained by sliding on asphalt. Motorcyclists are strongly recommended to wear heavy boots, gloves, and heavy protective clothing. However, a crash that sends a rider sliding along the ground can cause road fragments to become embedded in the skin. Road rash is very painful and often results in permanent scarring.
- Fatal injuries. The chance of fatality is much higher in a motorcycle accident than in most other vehicle accidents. In the event your loved one dies in a motorcycle accident due to another driver’s negligence, you and your family can pursue a wrongful death claim in place of the personal injury claim the decedent could have filed if they survived.
Most motorcycle accidents result in multiple injuries, many of which will require months of recovery or even years of rehabilitation before the victim reaches maximum medical improvement. Therefore, if you or a loved one suffered injuries in a motorcycle accident that another driver caused, you need to know the value of legal representation if you want to hold them responsible for your losses.
Damages and Compensation for Your Motorcycle Accident Claim
A motorcycle accident claim falls under the purview of personal injury law. California personal injury statutes allow a plaintiff to claim all damages they experience due to a defendant’s negligence. Chris and Frank have years of experience helping our clients navigate complex personal injury claims, including those stemming from motorcycle accidents. Typically, we can successfully help our client secure compensation for various economic damages, including:
- Immediate and future medical expenses. Motorcycle accidents often cause severe injuries, many of which require emergency medical care and ongoing therapy that can be extremely expensive. Our team can help you recover your immediate medical costs like hospital bills, and if your situation requires long-term care, we can help you recover these medical expenses as well.
- Lost income, both immediately following the accident and lost future income. Motorcycle accidents can leave victims unable to work until they recover. In addition, some victims cannot return to work at all due to permanent disabilities from their injuries. Our team will help you recover any wages lost during your recovery time. If you cannot return to work due to a permanent disability, we can help you recover compensation for your lost future earning capacity.
- Property damage. It’s common for a motorcycle accident to destroy the bike involved in the crash. Personal injury plaintiffs may claim compensation for their damaged or destroyed property, including their vehicle and any personal belongings lost in the accident.
It’s not only crucial to prove the exact extent of your damages but also provide unambiguous evidence that your damages would not have happened if not for the defendant’s negligence. When you account for all these economic damages, you may be surprised to discover that your motorcycle accident claim is worth more than you initially expected. However, when you hire an experienced Orange County motorcycle accident lawyer to represent you, it’s possible to secure additional compensation beyond your economic damages.
How Much Is a Motorcycle Accident Case Worth?
If you are wondering how much your motorcycle accident claim is potentially worth, you need to assess your economic damages as well as non-economic damages. California law allows personal injury plaintiffs to recover pain and suffering compensation. These non-economic damages serve to compensate the plaintiff’s physical pain and psychological distress resulting from an accident. It may sound difficult to determine an appropriate amount, but experienced personal injury attorneys have various formulas they can use depending on their clients’ situations.
Motorcycle accident injuries are extremely painful. Some injuries require extensive recovery time, during which the victim will experience intense ongoing pain and discomfort. In addition, when a motorcycle accident causes permanent disabilities, the victim is likely to experience significant psychological distress as they confront their new reality and diminished quality of life because of their disabilities. Your Orange County motorcycle accident lawyer will work closely with you to determine a fair amount of non-economic damages to include with your claim. In many cases involving severe injuries and permanent disabilities, plaintiffs receive more pain and suffering compensation than their other combined damages.
Proving Liability for Your Motorcycle Accident Injuries
Success in any personal injury claim requires proving negligence. The term “negligence” describes a party’s failure to exercise reasonable care in a given situation. For example, suppose you want to succeed with your motorcycle accident claim and recover compensation for your losses. In that case, you will need an experienced Orange County motorcycle accident attorney to help you identify the defendant or defendants responsible for causing your accident, calculate the full scope of your claimable damages, and prove that your damages only occurred due to the defendant’s negligence.
Your attorney can use several methods to establish negligence. Typically, proving fault in a motorcycle accident claim hinges on physical evidence and witness testimony. For example, your attorney may issue subpoenas for traffic camera footage and the defendant’s cell phone records to establish their breach of duty of care. Your legal team may also obtain sworn statements from eyewitnesses who saw the accident occur. If your case involves highly complex or technical details, your attorney may consult expert witnesses, including accident reconstruction experts, vehicle engineers, and others to help the court clearly understand how your accident occurred and why the defendant is liable for your damages.
Expert witnesses can help a plaintiff prove liability for their damages and prove the full scope of those damages. For example, suppose you are claiming pain and suffering compensation due to the psychological distress you experienced from the accident. In that case, your attorney may consult a psychotherapist and other medical professionals who can help the court understand the full range of effects your accident has had on your life.
What to Expect From Your Orange County Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
Navigating any personal injury case is much easier when you have reliable legal counsel on your side. An experienced Orange County motorcycle accident attorney will help you approach your case with confidence, helping you prove liability for your damages and the full extent of those damages. In addition, a good attorney is responsive, providing their client with multiple contact options so they can reach out to their legal team when they have questions or concerns about their case. When you have the right attorney handling your case, you can recover with peace of mind and focus on your everyday life, knowing your case is in capable hands.
Most personal injury claims settle outside of court, so it is reasonable to assume that your case will end in settlement negotiations. As long as both parties are willing to negotiate, settlement offers a speedy and satisfying resolution to the case and saves both sides the trouble and expense of protracted litigation. However, settlement is not always a guarantee. If the defendant disputes liability or contests any aspect of the damages the plaintiff demands, the case may proceed to a trial. Your Orange County motorcycle accident attorney will help you navigate your settlement negotiations and represent you in court if necessary.
Talk to a Our Injury Attorneys for Motorcycle Accidents in Orange County
It’s natural to feel uncertain and stressed about your legal options following a motorcycle accident. The team at Chris and Frank can provide the clarity and confidence you need to handle this situation effectively. In addition, if you or a loved one is struggling with the aftermath of a motorcycle accident that someone else caused, we are ready to assist in your recovery. Contact Chris and Frank today to schedule a free case review with our team.
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