Motorcycle accidents are more likely to result in severe injury and death in comparison to auto accidents. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in 2013, 88,000 motorcyclists were injured in traffic crashes and 4,668 motorcyclists were killed. Motorcyclists are 26 more times likely to die in an auto accident in comparison to someone riding in a passenger car, and are 5 times as likely to be injured.
Our California motorcycle accident attorney represents injured motorcyclists and their families in personal injury and wrongful death claims.
Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents
Common causes of motorcycle accidents include the following:
- Motorcyclist speeding and alcohol use
- Motorcycle lane splitting
- Collisions between motorcycles and fixed objects
- Cars making left hand turns
- Open door accidents
- Distracted driving
Most motorcycle accidents arise when auto drivers fail to see the biker in their blind spot. Motorcycle auto accident injuries are usually severe. Though most motorcyclist wear helmets, gloves, safety reflectors, accidents result in serious bodily harm such as spinal cord and cranial injuries, bodily disfigurement, ligament tears, and soft tissue damage.
Do not wait to have a medical exam after being involved in a motorcycle accident. You should take a medical exam even if you feel the slightest bit of pain. If you incur a bodily injury as a result of an accident, contact our law office for a consultation.
DAMAGE AND NEGLIGENCE Liability
In order to establish that the auto driver was negligent in causing the motorcycle accident, the following elements must be proven:
- The defendant had a duty of care
- The defendant breached his/her duty of care
- The defendant’s breach of duty caused your injury
- The defendant’s actions were the proximate cause of your injury
- The defendant should have foreseen the dangers of his/her actions
- You suffered actual damages as a result of the defendant’s actions
If you are able to prove the negligent elements above, you may be able to recover the following types of damages for your motorcycle accident claim:
- Medical expenses (this includes past and future expenses)
- Pain and suffering
- Lost wages
- Punitive damages
- Emotional distress
- Property damage
Pure Comparative Negligence
Under California auto accident law, pure comparative negligence is applied in tort cases. Under this doctrine of law, the plaintiff is allowed to sue for the percentage of damages attributable to the defendant. This means that the defendant is only liable for his/her percentage of fault. The plaintiff will still be able to recover injuries for his/her damages even if he/she was at fault in contributing to the accident. The plaintiff’s award for damages will be reduced by his/her own percentage of fault.
Thomas Cifarelli handled our personal injury case for our teenage son when others passed and said we had no case! Thomas persisted and pressed on, winning our case for our son! His professionalism and follow-through and guidance in navigating our case were exceptional! - Anonymous
Jury Bias in California Motorcycle Accident Cases
Motorcycle accidents can result in severe injuries including death. Though most motorcyclists are safe drivers and take reasonable safety measures to avoid auto accidents, jurors and witnesses see motorcyclists as risk takers. Such negative stigmas regarding motorcycle drivers can have a harmful impact on a negligence claim for damages.
Fortunately, our motorcycle accident attorneys are skilled litigators and address juror bias in a favorable manner. Our attorneys will identify any negative factors in your case in order to successfully form an argument in favor of your claim.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle auto accident, contact our attorneys for a consultation. We are here to help you obtain the compensation you deserve. Do not let a negligent driver get away with harming you or your loved one. Read on to learn more about jury bias in California motorcycle accident cases and how we can help you.
Common Motorcycle Accident Jury Bias
Jurors usually have the following biases against motorcycle drivers:
Jurors often believe that most motorcyclists drive excessively fast which increases the odds of being involved in an auto accident. It is not an uncommon experience for a motorcyclist to come zooming past an automobile on the highway. Defense attorneys usually try to depict a negative image of a motorcyclist driving at excessive speeds beyond the flow of traffic. However, not all accidents arise from a motorcyclist traveling at excessive speeds.
Our attorneys will gather evidence to rebut any challenge the defense attorney makes in asserting an excessive speed claim as the result of the accident. We will investigate the traffic accident to obtain as much information as possible to show that you were in fact not speeding, but perhaps the driver was speeding when the accident occurred. We will collect evidence by taking pictures of skid marks, crash damage to the vehicles involved, and any witness testimony regarding the events that occurred. Evidence such as time, speed, and distance formulas will be analyzed by trained professionals to rebut arguments of speeding an unsafe driving.
Illegal Lane Changes
In addition to excessive speeding, defense attorneys usually draw on juror bias concerning illegal lane change practices commonly associated with motorcycle drivers. It is a misconception that all motorcycle drivers illegally change traffic lanes. Most motorcyclists will put on their blinkers and cautiously change lanes. They know illegal lane changes could subject them to an auto accident. Our attorneys can use eye witness testimony if the defense tries to assert that you illegally changed a traffic lane.
Motorcyclists are often depicted as being aggressive drivers. Movies and commercials often show motorcyclists speeding or violating traffic laws. These fictional adaptations leave a bad impression on safe motorcycle drivers. Our motorcycle accident attorney will ask a series of questions during jury selection to obtain a general scope of juror bias. This will help eliminate biased jurors from rendering a verdict against your claim for injuries.
Contact An Orange County Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
Our motorcycle accident attorneys are here to help you obtain damages for your injury. If your case goes to trial, during jury selection, our attorneys will screen for any potential jury biases. We will use pre-trial motions and simplify jury instructions to reduce bias and protect your injury claim. Call our Orange County personal injury law office at (949) 502-8600 to schedule a free consultation. You can also submit an email contact form and we'll get back to you at our earliest convenience.