Contact a Barstow Motorcycle Accident Lawyer

California is a popular state for riding motorcycles. But such popularity comes with a price in terms of safety. According to the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration, motorcycle riders are “overrepresented” when it comes to fatal traffic accidents. Indeed, nearly 5,600 motorcyclists nationwide lost their lives in 2020 due to an accident.

Although motorcycles are often associated with “outlaw” behavior, the reality is that most accidents are caused by the reckless acts of others on the road, including car and truck drivers and even other motorcyclists. And even a non-fatal accident can leave a motorcyclist with catastrophic injuries. If you, or someone in your family, is in this position and you want to seek compensation from the negligent parties, the Barstow motorcycle accident lawyers at the Heidari Law Group are here to help.

How Can Negligence Cause a Motorcycle Accident?

Every motorcyclist understands that there is some degree of risk in riding their bike on public roads. After all, a motorcycle offers none of the protection of a car or truck in the event of a collision. And even when motorcyclists wear helmets and other safety gear, that is not an absolute guarantee they will walk away from an accident without injury.

As far as the law is concerned, motorcyclists have the same rights and responsibilities as any other driver on the road. This means those other drivers need to act reasonably and safely when driving alongside or behind motorcycles. A reckless or negligent act by another driver can easily lead to a serious accident for the motorcyclist.

Some of the more common acts of driver negligence that can lead to a motorcycle accident include:

  • A driver suddenly pulls directly in front of a motorcycle, giving the motorcyclist no time to react to avoid a collision.
  • A driver recklessly merges into the motorcyclist’s lane.
  • A driver is “tailgating” a motorcycle, i.e., the motorist fails to keep a proper distance.

There are other non-driver factors that can contribute to a motorcycle accident as well. For example, if a city or county fails to properly maintain its roads, uneven road conditions or hazards can lead to an accident. A defective part in the motorcycle itself may also fail at a key moment. In these cases a public authority or private company may be legally responsible for a motorcyclist’s injuries.

Assessing Your Damages Following a Motorcycle Accident

Anytime you are involved in a motorcycle accident, it is important that you seek immediate medical attention, even if you think you “feel fine” and can get up and walk away from the scene. There are too many cases of accident injuries not immediately manifesting themselves. And the sooner you seek documentation and treatment for your injuries, the stronger your case will be if you need to seek compensation from the negligent parties.

Aside from the most serious consequence–death–motorcycle accidents frequently cause the following serious injuries:

  • broken bones and joints;
  • traumatic brain injuries (i.e., concussions);
  • road rash;
  • scarring and facial disfigurement;
  • internal bleeding;
  • eye and hearing damage;
  • neck and spinal injuries; and
  • nerve damage.

Recovery from a motorcycle accident can take months–in some cases even years–during which time you may not be able to work or resume your normal activities. Such losses are key factors in determining the amount of compensation you are entitled to receive from the negligent parties that caused your accident. And in cases where you have lost a family member in a motorcycle accident, you may be entitled to seek special damages by filing a wrongful death claim.

What are The Causes Of a Motorcycle Accident

Motorcycle accidents can be caused by a variety of factors. Some of the most common causes include:

  1. Distracted Driving: Drivers who are texting, talking on the phone, eating, or otherwise not paying attention to the road can easily miss seeing a motorcycle.
  2. Speeding: Excessive speed reduces a driver’s ability to react to sudden changes and increases the severity of collisions.
  3. Drunk Driving: Impaired drivers have reduced reaction times and impaired judgment, making accidents more likely.
  4. Lane Splitting: Motorcyclists riding between lanes of slow-moving or stopped traffic can increase the risk of collisions, especially if other drivers are not expecting it.
  5. Failure to Yield: Many accidents occur when drivers fail to yield the right-of-way to motorcyclists at intersections or when making turns.
  6. Poor Road Conditions: Potholes, uneven pavement, debris, and other road hazards can be especially dangerous for motorcycles.
  7. Inexperienced Drivers: Drivers who lack experience may have difficulty judging the speed and distance of motorcycles, leading to accidents.
  8. Weather Conditions: Rain, fog, ice, and other adverse weather conditions can reduce visibility and traction, making accidents more likely.
  9. Left-Turn Accidents: A common scenario where a vehicle turning left at an intersection collides with an oncoming motorcycle.
  10. Mechanical Failures: Problems with the motorcycle, such as brake failure or tire blowouts, can lead to accidents.
  11. Aggressive Driving: Behaviors such as tailgating, weaving in and out of traffic, and road rage can increase the likelihood of a crash.

Understanding these common causes can help in taking preventative measures and also be crucial in determining liability in the event of an accident.

What Kind Of Compensation Can I Receive

In a motorcycle accident case, you may be entitled to various types of compensation, including:

  1. Medical Expenses: Coverage for all medical costs related to the accident, such as hospital stays, surgeries, doctor visits, medications, physical therapy, and future medical needs.
  2. Lost Wages: Reimbursement for the income you lost due to the accident, including time off work for recovery and medical appointments.
  3. Loss of Earning Capacity: Compensation for the reduction in your ability to earn a living if the accident results in a long-term or permanent disability.
  4. Property Damage: Payment for the repair or replacement of your motorcycle and any other personal property damaged in the accident.
  5. Pain and Suffering: Compensation for the physical pain and emotional distress caused by the accident. This can include anxiety, depression, and loss of enjoyment of life.
  6. Loss of Consortium: Damages awarded to family members for the loss of companionship, care, and affection due to the injuries you sustained.
  7. Punitive Damages: In cases where the at-fault party’s behavior was especially reckless or egregious, punitive damages may be awarded to punish the wrongdoer and deter similar conduct in the future.

The specific amount and types of compensation you can receive will depend on the details of your case, including the severity of your injuries, the extent of property damage, and the impact on your life. An experienced motorcycle accident attorney can help you assess your case and pursue the maximum compensation available.

Understanding Comparative Negligence in California Motorcycle Accidents

California’s comparative negligence laws play a crucial role in motorcycle accident claims. This doctrine allows for a sharing of fault, meaning that even if a motorcyclist is partly at fault in an accident, they can still recover damages. The amount of compensation they receive, however, is reduced by their percentage of fault. For instance, if a motorcyclist is found to be 30% responsible for an accident and the total damages are $100,000, they can still recover 70% or $70,000. Understanding this can be vital for a motorcyclist in asserting their rights and preparing for the implications their actions could have on the legal outcomes.

The Critical Role of Immediate Medical Assistance after a Motorcycle Accident

Seeking immediate medical attention after a motorcycle accident isn’t just crucial for health reasons. Medical records serve as a pivotal piece of evidence in personal injury claims. These records can prove the extent and severity of injuries which directly influence the compensation amount. Delay in medical treatment can be used by insurance companies to argue that the injuries were not serious or were unrelated to the accident. Hence, to build a robust claim, ensuring timely and detailed medical documentation is essential for victims. This strategy is something that experienced attorneys like the Heidari Law Group strongly advocate for in their legal practice.

Common Asked Motorcycle Accident

What types of accidents does the Heidari Law Group handle?

The Heidari Law Group handles a variety of accidents including motorcycle accidents, car accidents, truck accidents, ride-share accidents, premises liability cases, trip and fall accidents, medical malpractice, and airline accidents. Their expertise spans across personal injury law, ensuring support for clients suffering from all types of accident-related injuries.

What are some common injuries from motorcycle accidents that the Heidari Law Group might help with?

Motorcycle accidents can cause severe injuries including broken bones, traumatic brain injuries like concussions, road rash, scarring, facial disfigurement, internal bleeding, eye and hearing damage, neck and spinal injuries, and nerve damage. The Heidari Law Group helps clients with these injuries seek compensation for their medical treatments and recovery processes.

How does negligence play a role in motorcycle accidents?

Negligence can cause motorcycle accidents when other drivers perform risky maneuvers such as cutting off a motorcyclist, merging dangerously into their lane, or tailgating. Additionally, negligence could involve poor road maintenance or defective motorcycle parts where other entities could be responsible. Proving negligence is critical in obtaining compensation in an injury lawsuit.

What should someone do immediately following a motorcycle accident to help their case?

After a motorcycle accident, it is crucial to seek immediate medical attention even if no clear injuries are apparent. Documenting the injuries and the accident scene thoroughly can provide crucial evidence. Contacting an attorney like those at the Heidari Law Group as soon as possible can also help in guiding the victim through the legal steps and protecting their rights during the claims process.

Can the Heidari Law Group assist in wrongful death claims related to motorcycle accidents?

Yes, the Heidari Law Group can assist clients in filing wrongful death claims if a motorcycle accident results in fatality. They help families receive compensation for their loss, covering aspects like funeral costs, lost wages, emotional distress, and loss of companionship.

What languages does the Heidari Law Group offer consultation in?

The Heidari Law Group offers consultations in both English and Spanish, accommodating a broader range of clients in California and ensuring that more individuals can access legal assistance following an accident.

What is the policy of the Heidari Law Group regarding legal fees?

The Heidari Law Group operates on a contingency fee basis, which means they only charge fees if they win the case. This makes legal representation more accessible to clients who may not have the financial means to pay upfront.

How might shared fault affect a motorcycle accident claim in California?

In California, shared fault in an accident doesn’t necessarily bar recovery. If the motorcyclist was partially at fault, California’s comparative negligence law still allows them to claim damages proportional to the other party’s degree of fault. This means a motorcyclist could still receive compensation even if they were partly responsible for the accident.

What specific actions does the Heidari Law Group take to ensure their clients get the best settlement possible?

The Heidari Law Group diligently gathers evidence, consults with medical experts, negotiates with insurance companies, and prepares to take a case to trial if necessary. Their thorough preparation and aggressive advocacy help ensure that their clients receive the maximum compensation possible.

Can the Heidari Law Group handle cases outside of Barstow, California?

Yes, the Heidari Law Group has multiple offices throughout California, including Los Angeles, Irvine, Bakersfield, and Sacramento, as well as an office in Las Vegas, Nevada. This allows them to represent clients in various locations beyond just Barstow.

    Speak with the Heidari Law Group Today

    Even if you know a negligent motorist or some other party caused your motorcycle accident, never assume they will accept legal responsibility. Defendants and their insurance companies will often try to shift the blame to the motorcyclist. But even in cases where your own actions may have somehow contributed to the accident, you can still recover some damages if you can prove another party’s negligence.

    A qualified Barstow motorcycle accident lawyer can provide you with further guidance and advice. Contact the Heidari Law Group, P.C., today to schedule a consultation in English or Spanish.