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West Sacramento Motorcycle Accident Attorney


Riding a motorcycle is a great way to spice up your commute while saving you money at the same time. Bikes cost less to operate since they use less gas, meaning fewer stops at the pump and more savings. They also help shorten your commute and leave less carbon footprint on the environment. However, motorcycles can also have significant drawbacks as other motorists often do not pay attention to bikers on the road. When motorcyclists are involved in an accident, they may suffer catastrophic injuries that result in emotional, physical, and financial damages. If the collision was caused by another driver’s negligence, the biker might be able to seek compensation for those losses.

Common Motorcycle Accident Injuries

Bikers are at a distinct disadvantage when involved in a collision with a vehicle, and this is due to their lack of protection from impact. While helmets are required by California law, and most riders are prudent about wearing them and other protective gear, this is still no match for a crash with a truck or car. Injuries sustained in these accidents can range from severe to permanent, such as:

  • Emotional Trauma: Some injured bikers may conclude riding a motorcycle is not for them after a crash, especially if they suffer from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). This condition can present symptoms such as avoidance of specific actions or events, experiences of nightmares or flashbacks about the crash, and hyperarousal.
  • Facial Scarring: Wearing a helmet can help lessen the severity of a facial injury. However, serious collisions often result in jaw fractures and severe facial disfigurement. This is often beyond physical trauma and can cause emotional distress due to a loss of self-confidence. Moreover, costly surgical procedures are often necessary to correct the scarring.
  • Head Injuries: A motorcycle accident often occurs in a closed head injury, even if the rider was wearing a U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) approved helmet. Symptoms of closed head trauma include memory loss, dizziness, nausea, headaches, and ringing sensation in the ears.
  • Pelvis and Torso Trauma: Motorcyclists who strike the road and roll can suffer pelvic fractures and dislocated hip joints. These injuries often require extensive rehabilitation, where injured parties must remain immobile. Rib fractures can also be sustained through these accidents and risk causing internal bleeding or organ perforation.
  • Road Rash: Skin abrasions often occur when a biker is propelled from the motorcycle and skids on the pavement. There are three types of road rash: avulsions, open wounds, and compression. Avulsions occur when the skin is scraped away, exposing the muscles or bones. Stitches are often necessary to treat open wounds as well as skin grafts. When a part of the body is caught between a bike and a vehicle, this can result in compression road rash. This can cause muscle damage, bruising, or even broken bones.
  • Spinal Cord Injuries: Trauma to the spinal column can be severe, resulting in extreme pressure in the back or neck, a loss of sensation, or even partial or complete paralysis. Costly extended care and extensive physical therapy are often necessary for treating this type of injury.
  • Wrist Injuries: Since motorcyclists often attempt to brace or catch themselves with their hands after being ejected from their bikes, their hands and wrists can endure immense force during impact. Trauma to the wrist can cause deformity, tears in the ligaments and tendons, nerve damage, and bone fractures. Fractures to the scaphoid bone at the base of the thumb are also common in motorcycle accidents and often require immediate treatment.
Damages in a West Sacramento Motorcycle Accident Case

The types of damages awarded in a motorcycle accident case will depend upon the circumstances and facts of the incident and the types of injuries sustained. These include economic and non-economic damages such as:

  • Disfigurement: Injuries or scarring in a visible area of the body can be overwhelming for the injured rider and their family. A disfigurement can cause a loss in the quality of life, decrease self-esteem, and result in mental anguish. An injured biker may seek compensation to help cover expenses for cosmetic surgery to revise the scarring. Claims for disfigurement may also consider the humiliation and embarrassment suffered by the injured individual.
  • Lost Wages: Injuries from a motorcycle collision can cause a person to significantly miss work time to recover. In other cases, permanent disability can result in the inability to earn wages. An experienced injury attorney can help a biker recover compensation for losing past and future earnings.
  • Loss of Consortium: When a rider is severely injured in a motorcycle accident, this can cause damage to the marital relationship. As part of a loss of consortium claim, the loss of intimate affection, love, and contact and the inability to conceive children may be claimed.
  • Medical Expenses: When a biker is injured in a crash, they are entitled to claim compensation for all necessary and reasonable expenses for medical care. This also includes those expenses incurred in the future. Travel costs to and from medical appointments may also be claimed for reimbursement.
  • Pain and Suffering: The physical and emotional pain related to a personal injury. It includes the aches, affliction, discomfort, and other pain caused by the trauma. Quantifying damages for pain and suffering is not always straightforward since each person’s tolerance for emotional and physical distress differs.
  • Property Damage: If bikers fall off their bike in a crash, they may have damaged gear, such as their helmet, gloves, and protective clothing. When this happens, a claim may be filed against the at-fault driver’s insurance company for the repair or replacement costs of the bike and gear. A claim may also be filed for damaged motorcycle modifications. However, a collection of evidence, such as purchase receipts and photographs showing the damage, must be provided to the insurance company for reimbursement.
  • Punitive Damages: In cases involving malicious actions or extreme negligence, punitive damages may be sought from the at-fault party. These are not compensatory. Instead, they are intended to punish the negligent driver and deter similar behavior in the future.
  • Wrongful Death: When a motorcycle accident claims the life of a loved one, surviving family members may bring a claim against the negligent driver for resulting losses. These include a loved one’s funeral, burial, and end-of-life medical care expenses. The loss of future earnings for the family and reasonable costs of household services provided by the deceased person may be considered when calculating compensation.

Watch the video below for more details on what damages can be claimed in a motorcycle accident claim.

Are Hit and Run Motorcycle Accidents Covered by Insurance?

To recover losses suffered in a hit-and-run motorcycle accident, the injured person must collect evidence to prove contact between their motorcycle and the car that caused the crash. Retaining an experienced motorcycle accident attorney in West Sacramento in these cases is essential. A lawyer can help conduct an independent investigation of the collision and look for evidence to show the validity of the personal injury claim. An attorney can also locate the motorist who fled the scene and hire crash reconstruction experts to help strengthen your case. If the driver cannot be tracked down, your attorney can file a claim against your insurance company if you carry uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. This type of insurance provides reimbursement for damages caused by a driver who leaves the scene of a crash or has little to no insurance. While you bring the claim against your insurance company, this does not mean they are on your side and have your best interests in mind. They are in the industry of paying out claims as little as possible to maximize their profits.

Comparative Fault

Bikers sometimes face untrue and unfair biases about their driving habits and safety. Insurance companies often use this to their advantage by falsely pinpointing blame on an injured rider for a motorcycle wreck. Since California operates under a comparative fault system, the compensation awarded to injured bikers would be reduced by the percentage of fault allocated to them. An injury lawyer with years of experience understands these tactics and knows how to overcome them to recover fair compensation in a motorcycle accident case.

West Sacramento Motorcycle Accident FAQ

What is the statute of limitations for a motorcycle accident?

After being injured or losing someone you love in a motorcycle accident, you have a certain amount of time for which you must file a claim. For personal injury and wrongful death cases, the statute of limitations is two years from the date of loss in California. If a claim involves negligence on the part of a government entity, it must be filed within 180 days or 6 months from the incident. The court may dismiss the case if the claim is not filed within the deadline. The best thing to do is contact an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer in West Sacramento. An experienced attorney can help determine the statute of limitations for your case and help you proceed with a lawsuit.

Can I afford a motorcycle accident lawyer?

Some people are under the impression that they cannot hire an attorney for their case. However, this is not always true. Most attorneys handle motorcycle injury cases on a contingent fee basis. An injured biker will not have to pay any upfront fees or hourly billing. A fee is only to be paid if the lawyer obtains a successful outcome in the case.

Contact a Lawyer for Your Motorcycle Injury Claim

Financial difficulties can happen after a motorcycle accident. Injuries resulting from these crashes often require extended periods of rehabilitation. This can affect an injured person’s state of employment or earning ability. On top of this, medical bills can mount quickly and create more stress on the injured biker and their family. An experienced attorney knows the best ways to proceed in these situations to help an injured person get back on their feet after a traumatic crash.

West Sacramento Motorcycle Accident Attorney

A motorcycle collision can result in emotional, physical, and financial damages for those involved. If you or someone you love has been seriously injured in a motorcycle accident caused by someone else’s negligence, please call our West Sacramento motorcycle accident attorneys at (916) 921-6400 or toll-free at (800) 404-5400 to receive our free, friendly case advice.

We are a member of the National Association of Distinguished Counsel and the Million Dollar Advocates. The first organization selects the top one percent of attorneys who provide their clients with legal excellence. Membership of the other group is extended solely to top trial attorneys who have obtained $1 million or more for a client.

Review a compilation of cases that our law office has handled and their results on our Verdicts and Settlements page.

Editor’s Note: updated [cha 9.13.23] Photo by codymonser via Pixabay ds cha [cs 1818]