Have you been in a motorcycle accident in Long Beach? Did this accident seriously injure you or someone you love? If your accident was caused by the negligence of another party, you may be eligible for compensation through a personal injury claim or lawsuit.

Call the Long Beach personal injury attorneys of OnderLaw today and schedule a consultation to determine if you have a valid injury claim. The consultation is absolutely free, and you are under no obligation to use our services, so there’s no reason to delay. Call now and get the help you need after a debilitating motorcycle accident.

Why Do I Need an Attorney for My Motorcycle Accident?

We are asked this question regularly by our prospective clients, and in truth, California law doesn’t require you to retain legal counsel to pursue compensation through an injury claim. You’re certainly able to do so yourself. However, having the assistance of a qualified attorney can make the entire process smoother and easier on you.

We don’t just write letters and argue your case in court. We will bring the full weight of our knowledge and experience to bear on your case and make sure your claim is as strong as possible. We will do all the legwork needed to build your claim, from interviewing witnesses to gathering evidence and documents, and negotiating with insurance adjusters to get you the full and fair settlement you deserve.

Motorcycle riders can be at a disadvantage in claims for compensation because of the inherent bias many people have against them. The stereotypes of the “outlaw biker” or thrill-seeking mentality make many people think that motorcyclists deserve whatever injuries they sustain as a result of the risk inherent in riding. An attorney can help you combat this incorrect assumption.

We’ve built a reputation as a firm that knows how to get the job done right, and we can put that reputation to work for you and your family. We know how to deal with the underhanded tactics and questionable methods insurance adjusters might employ to get you to accept a settlement that’s less than what your accident is worth, and we can show you how to navigate the complex claims process.

An experienced attorney can also make sure you get compensation for all your losses, not just the material ones. We can help you understand how losses and damages work and ensure that you’re justly compensated for all the losses you’ve suffered.

Why Hire OnderLaw for My Motorcycle Accident?

First and foremost, because we get results. We’ve successfully obtained billions of dollars in compensation for our clients through settlements and awards. Our dedicated and knowledgeable team of attorneys has experience handling claims of all types, and when you choose us to represent you, you get the full benefit of that wealth of knowledge.

But we aren’t just a settlement farm. We understand how serious a motorcycle accident can be and the effects it can have on you, your finances, and your family. We know that you’re not just a statistic. We strive to treat all our clients with compassion and dignity and to be more than just qualified legal counsel. We are your advocate, your confidant, and your support during this difficult time, and that responsibility is just as important as getting you fair compensation.

We also strive to support the communities that have done so much for us. We regularly provide donations of time and money to organizations like MADD, Toys for Tots, and Lupus Foundation of America.

Motorcycle Laws in Sacramento

There are several laws pertaining to riding motorcycles safely in California, such as:

  • Lane splitting is legal in California as of January 1, 2017. This practice allows motorcycle riders to move between two rows of stopped traffic at a safe speed and disallows vehicles from blocking a motorcycle from lane splitting. The law was conceived as a measure to allow motorcyclists to escape the danger of being rear-ended and to decrease the impact motorcycles have on traffic conditions.
  • Motorcycle helmets are required in California, per California Vehicle Code 27803. The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration estimates helmets saved 1,859 lives in 2016. The penalty for not wearing a motorcycle helmet in California is $197 for the first offense.
  • Handlebars must be no more than six inches above shoulder height, per California Vehicle Code 27801
  • Right and left mirrors are required for motorcycles per CVC 26709.
  • Lane sharing, or two motorcycles sharing the same lane, is not specifically disallowed by California law and is considered lawful.

Types of Motorcycle Accidents

Motorcycles are at a disadvantage in vehicle accidents for several reasons. They lack any safety equipment aside from helmets, are smaller and harder to see, and they’re more susceptible to adverse road conditions, such as inclement weather or poor road maintenance. Some types of motorcycle accidents include:

  • Lane splitting accidents
  • Open door accidents
  • Blind spot accidents
  • High side accidents
  • Left-turn accidents
  • Right-turn accidents
  • Head-on collisions
  • Rear-end collisions
  • Distracted driving accidents
  • Failure to yield accidents
  • Impaired driving accidents
  • Striking stationary object accidents
  • Road hazard accidents
  • Poorly maintained surfaces accidents

Causes of Motorcycle Accidents in Sacramento

Motorcycle accidents have a wide variety of causes in California, including the following:

  • Open car doors. The legal practice of lane-splitting can lead to motorcycles striking an open car door while navigating through stopped traffic.
  • Poor road conditions. Motorcycles, by definition, have less tire area contacting the road than cars. This can make riding even more dangerous in inclement weather when visibility is poor and stopping distances increase. These hazards are multiplied when the rider is on roads that have been improperly maintained.
  • Impaired driving. When other drivers get behind the wheel in a drunk or drugged state, they are putting everyone on the road at risk, and motorcyclists are particularly vulnerable. These drivers are even less likely to be aware of smaller motorcycles near them than those who are not impaired.
  • When drivers of larger vehicles choose to speed, they’re not only taking their own lives for granted. They’re putting everyone else on the road in peril. When they’re speeding along, it’s unlikely they’ll have time to react in time to avoid a collision with a motorcycle they may not have seen until the very last minute.
  • Left turns. Motorcycles are difficult to see, especially when facing oncoming traffic to make an unprotected left turn.

Common Injuries Suffered in Motorcycle Accidents

Sadly, injuries from motorcycle accidents tend to be more severe across the board than injuries from car or other vehicle accidents because of the lack of safety protection. Some common injuries from motorcycle accidents include:

  • Road rash
  • Broken bones
  • Concussion
  • Whiplash
  • Traumatic brain injury
  • Organ damage
  • Internal injuries
  • Burns
  • Spinal cord injury or paralysis
  • Soft tissue injuries
  • Amputation
  • Scarring/disfigurement
  • Coma
  • Death

Who Is Responsible for My Motorcycle Accident?

In order to obtain compensation after a motorcycle accident, you must prove that someone else was at fault for your injury. You must show that the responsible party was required to behave in a certain way, that they didn’t behave as they should, that their behavior caused your accident, and that accident caused you serious injury. If you’re able to prove this with your claim, you could receive compensation for your losses.

Proving fault is complicated by California’s pure comparative negligence standard. This means that if your case goes to trial and a judge finds that you were partially responsible for the accident that caused your injury, any financial reward you receive can be reduced by the amount of responsibility you bear. For example, if you’re hit by a car on your motorcycle at night while attempting an unprotected left turn, but it’s later discovered that your headlamp was not operating at the time of the accident, a judge may find you partially responsible for your accident. If a judge finds you 20% responsible, any award you receive would be decreased by 20%.

What Kind of Compensation Can I Receive?

The more severe your accident and injury in general, the more you should demand in compensation for your losses. It’s nearly impossible to determine the exact amount of compensation you may receive without reviewing the unique circumstances of your accident and injury.

Losses caused by an accident are referred to as damages. Economic damages are any losses with a specific dollar amount attached, such as:

  • Lost wages
  • Medical bills
  • Loss of employment
  • Increased living expenses
  • Property damage

There are also damages without a specific dollar amount called non-economic damages. Some examples include:

  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Loss of consortium
  • Pain and suffering
  • Mental anguish
  • Emotional distress

Your attorney can assess your circumstances, your injury, your recovery, and everything else related to your accident to arrive at an appropriate value for your claim.

Motorcycle Accident Statistics

Here are some statistics and information regarding motorcycle accidents and injuries in California and elsewhere:

  • Per the NHTSA, helmets are 37% effective at preventing motorcycle fatalities.
  • California had 548 motorcycle fatalities in 2016.
  • 24% of motorcycle rider fatalities in California in 2016 had a blood-alcohol content over the legal limit.
  • Despite growing numbers across the country, motorcycle fatalities decreased almost 10% in California between 2018 and 2019.
  • California has more registered motorcycles than any other state, at over 800,000.
  • The vast majority of motorcycle accidents in California occur during the afternoon rush hour.

Call Today for a Free Consultation

If you’ve been injured in a motorcycle accident in Long Beach, don’t wait any longer to seek the compensation you deserve. Call the attorneys at OnderLaw today for a free, no-obligation consultation, and let us help you move on with your life after an accident. Call today.