Santa Barbara Motorcycle Accident Attorney
Although motorcycles are convenient in urban areas like Santa Barbara, motorcyclists are at a higher risk of fatal injuries when they get into a bad accident. Motorcycle accidents are often the result of distracted driving, which can lead to fatalities. A victim of a serious motorcycle accident must be compensated in order to cover the cost of the damages. With the proper evidence, witness accounts, and the help of a motorcycle accident attorney, they may have the chance to obtain a high settlement amount.
In a Santa Barbara motorcycle accident, even if you are partially at fault, you can still receive compensation. This means that even if you are responsible for a percentage of the blame, the other party can still pay you for damages up to their percentage of fault.
With the help of a dedicated motorcycle accident attorney in Santa Barbara, Southern California, you can obtain the settlement you deserve. Their additional support will help present your personal injury case in the best light. Contact a motorcycle accident lawyer now for a free consultation.
How Motorcycle Accident Attorneys in Santa Barbara Can Help You
When you have been injured in a motorcycle accident, you should receive compensation for your serious injuries even if you are partly at fault. A personal injury attorney can make the process easier for you.
How Do Motorcycle Accidents Occur?
If drivers and motorcyclists aren’t paying attention to the road, it increases the chance of accidents and deaths. Sometimes, it may be a case of poor weather conditions. However, in most circumstances, the reason a motorcycle vs. car accident occurs is due to distracted driving. A motorcyclist is 29 times more likely than a car driver and their passengers to be injured in a collision.
Drivers who are not focused on the road account for a high percentage of crashes, which means that they are probably liable if you are injured after a collision. Other reasons that motorcycle accidents occur are due to motorcyclists making improper turns, maneuvering between cars, speeding, or driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Drunk driving has resulted in one out of three motorcycle accidents. Additionally, 45% of motorcycle accidents cause more than just minor injuries. Mostly men are involved in motorcycle fatalities, with the average age being 43. Despite the low number of motorcyclists on the road — motorcyclists only account for 3% of all registered vehicles — they make up 14% of annual traffic deaths.
Motorcyclists are at a heightened risk of spinal cord injuries and traumatic brain injury because they don’t have the same protection that a car provides. Motorcycle collisions often happen because of the following reasons:
When car drivers are turning left, they often don’t notice smaller vehicles in the oncoming traffic. They typically only spot other average-sized or larger motor vehicles. When a motorcyclist is driving in the opposite lane, it can be difficult for a car driver to see this much smaller vehicle, causing a car driver to collide with a motorcyclist by accident.
Because cars are much larger than motorcycles, the car driver may find it difficult to see the motorcyclist in their blind spot. Car drivers must check their blind spots through their mirrors and by looking over their shoulders. If they neglect to do this, it can result in an accident when they change lanes not seeing the motorcyclist.
Car drivers sometimes speed, run red lights, ignore yield signs, cut people off, brake check, tailgate, and do other reckless behavior that can result in injured motorcyclists. Aggressive drivers don’t follow traffic laws due to impatience and can increase the chance of a motorcycle accident.
Distracted drivers create dangerous conditions by not being attentive to others sharing the road because they are talking to passengers, self-grooming, eating, and doing other activities. They also may be on their phones texting, GPS mapping, sending emails, and more. As soon as a driver takes their eyes off the road, they are less likely to be able to stop in time before colliding with a biker.
What Do Motorcycle Accident Injury Lawyers Do?
An attorney can review your case and guide you through the steps you need to take for your settlement claim to succeed. For example, your legal professional will tell you that you need to collect information from the other parties after you were injured, get medical help for your injuries, document information about your pain and suffering, and take depositions from witnesses. This information will all be used as evidence for your case, and your law firm will present your case to help you obtain a compensation amount.
Here are some items that your attorneys can take care of on your behalf after a serious California traffic accident involving injuries:
Your personal injury attorney will point out essential facts to help your case. An insurance company will always be looking to save money. However, they will not be able to ignore your injuries when your legal professional makes a stand for you and protects your rights. They may take your case to court if the insurance company does not agree to a fair settlement amount.
Collection Of Evidence
Motorcycle accident personal injury lawyers work by obtaining the necessary evidence to prove how you were injured. They do so by obtaining traffic camera footage, police reports, chemical or breathalyzer results, photographic evidence, accident reconstruction information, eyewitness testimonies, and other useful data. Our methods are very reliable and have a proven track record of creating stronger cases.
Your injury lawyer can calculate the economic cost of your damages. Your attorney will calculate damages such as wage loss, future medical bills, and other costs. However, there is much more than property damage that will be accounted for. For example, your lawyer will include non-economic damages like pain and suffering in the total estimation. In severe accidents, you can also include loss of a limb, rehabilitative treatment, disfigurement, and reduced earning capacity. Your legal professional will know whether testimony from medical experts is necessary and what approaches they need to take to help calculate your settlement amount.
Help Prevent Errors
There are many mistakes that a motorcyclist could make when filing a personal injury claim after a motorcycle accident. Your injury attorney can help you avoid these pitfalls. After a crash, your attorney can provide you with useful advice to help support your traffic accident claim. For instance, they will give you advice to prevent insurance companies from lowballing your settlement or disputing your damages. One example is advising that you don’t expose evidence in your case to the other party or post it on social media.
Negotiating With the Insurance Company
Attorneys are great at negotiating to help you get the compensation you deserve. The driver’s insurer will try to offer a settlement that is lower than what you need. Your attorney can negotiate with them to ensure they make a fair offer.
Going to Trial
If none of the parties can come to a settlement agreement, your lawyer can help you file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver. This helps relieve you of all the preparation for trial as your legal professional prepares the documentation for you. They will prepare all of the necessary evidence and present your claim. In some cases, the other party may change their mind if they know you’re going to initiate litigation. Even if this doesn’t occur, your lawyer will represent you in court and let the jury decide the outcome.
FAQs For Motorcycle Accident Victims
Here is additional information that can help prepare you for your settlement claim. You can also ask our motorcycle accident lawyers about how to get started.
How Much Will My Settlement Be?
The compensation you receive depends entirely on the damages you suffered. For example, if you suffered a long-term disability after the accident, you will be unable to work. For this reason, your settlement amount will be higher. Non-economic damages include things like pain and suffering, emotional trauma, and more. For wrongful death victims, the surviving family members can also claim loss of consortium, loss of mentorship, loss of guardianship, loss of valuable services, and many other damages. If the wrongful death victim had dependents, the settlement would also considerably increase. The amount you can collect for these damages depends on a variety of factors that your attorney can discuss with you.
What Does Being Partially At Fault Mean?
In a complex motorcycle accident, you may be held partially liable for your injuries if you contributed to the accident. Your settlement amount will depend upon the proportion of the accident that was your fault. In Santa Barbara, California, you have to be 100% at fault for your motorcycle accident to not receive compensation of any kind. The police report can reveal if the driver contributed to the crash. Your attorney can check the report to see if the driver was under the influence or just simply fatigued. They can also analyze the evidence by reviewing eyewitness accounts, traffic cameras, and more.
If you were partially at fault for your accident, this doesn’t prevent you from receiving damages in the State of California, according to the law of comparative negligence. In some states, you aren’t given any compensation if you are more than 50% at fault. In California, even if you are 99% responsible for your injuries, you can still receive 1% compensation. This is calculated with the help of your attorney based on the circumstances of your case. To get an accurate assessment, speak to your attorney and tell them how your errors could have helped cause your motorcycle accident.
When Should I File My Settlement?
Although it is a good idea to speak to your attorney as soon as possible, you should file your claim within the two-year time limit. The statute of limitations prevents you from filing a claim beyond this two-year limit except when there are extenuating circumstances. Make sure you have gotten medical treatment and are close to recovering before you file. This helps your attorney estimate how much in medical expenses you are owed, the ongoing cost of treatment, and any additional fees you expect to pay. For example, you may not know that you need surgery the day you were injured or how much it will cost. You should receive the surgery and find out if you need any additional treatments, such as physical therapy. Doing this will give your attorney enough information to calculate your economic expenses.
How Does The Contingency Fee Work?
Our law firm won’t require any upfront costs. Instead, when you receive your settlement, we take an agreed-upon percentage of that amount for our services.
Learn More About How to Work With Motorcycle Accident Attorneys in Santa Barbara, California
After you’ve been in a motorcycle accident, it is beneficial for you to receive formal legal advice to help you through this difficult circumstance. Motorcycle accident cases can be hard to prove, and once you sustain injuries, you’ll need additional support while you are recovering. Your attorney can negotiate on your behalf and make the process easier. They’ll do their best to stay on your case consistently so that you receive compensation sooner rather than later. You can get access to the talent of an experienced professional who can represent your case in Santa Barbara, Southern California, and help you get a fair settlement amount. Insurance companies aren’t always looking out for your best interest, which is why a lawyer can aid you. You can contact a Maho | Prentice LLP lawyer today and request a free consultation.