Riverside Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
Riding a motorcycle can be an enjoyable way to get around in Southern California. Coupled with incredible weather, the region is also home to some of the most scenic roads in the country. It is no surprise that the state has one of the greatest numbers of registered riders, but unfortunately, California is also no stranger to motorcycle accidents.
Motorcycle accidents can happen for many different reasons. Although some result in minor injuries, a vast majority often result in very serious injuries or death. According to data published by the California Office of Traffic Safety, there were 488 motorcycle fatalities in 2018. When motorcycle accidents occur because of the negligence of someone other than the motorcyclist, the opportunity to recover compensation arises.
Dedicated Experience in Riverside Area Motorcycle Accident Cases
As a Riverside motorcycle accident attorney, Attorney Gary G. Goldberg knows motorcyclists often face significant hazards on roads and freeways that range from negligent drivers to dangerous roadways.
Sharing the road with other drivers requires everyone to operate by the same set of rules. Those who ignore the rules of the road put others at serious risk of injury or death. If you find yourself injured on a motorcycle, contact the Law Office of Gary G. Goldberg. Attorney Goldberg has a well-earned reputation for providing aggressive and high-quality representation to clients who have suffered motorcycle accident injuries in Riverside County.
Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents in California
An accident of any kind can result in a devastating and catastrophic situation. Motorcycle accidents are no different; if anything, they can be worse. With no protection, other than a helmet, the victim is helpless during the impact, and the injuries can often lead to broken bones, neck and back pain, internal bleeding, head injuries, spinal injuries or death. A motorcycle accident can have an overwhelming impact on both the injured person and his or her family for many years to come – sometimes a lifetime.
There are many potential causes for serious motorcycle accidents that include:
- Drunk drivers
- Distracted drivers
- Negligent and reckless motorists
- Hazardous roads
- Motorcycle defects
- “Blind Spot” Accidents
- Construction Zones
California Law on Lane Splitting: The State of California is one of the very few states that allow motorcyclists to practice what is known as “lane-splitting”. Lane splitting is controversial, as it is considered dangerous by many motorists. Based on the California Vehicle Code §21658.1, lane splitting allows motorcyclists to drive alongside other drivers in the same lane. Riders can drive on the painted lane divider between stopped or slow-moving vehicles. Most riders favor lane-splitting because it allows them to move faster through slow traffic. Unfortunately, the practice can be perilous for the rider.
Accidents that occur when a motorcyclist is lane-splitting can happen for a number of reasons. Such accidents can happen because drivers fail to look for a lane-splitting rider before merging into a lane. Based on the state’s Comparative Negligence law, riders can still pursue compensation even if they are partially at-fault for the accident.
Damages Available Following a Motorcycle Accident
According to California’s personal injury laws, a person who is injured as a result of another’s intentional wrongdoing or negligence can pursue legal action against the at-fault party for compensation. Negligent and distracted drivers cause life-altering motorcycle accidents each and every day. When an accident occurs, injured riders have a right to seek monetary compensation from the negligent driver for their losses. Compensation may be available for the following damages:
- Medical Costs and Associated Expenses – When a motorcycle accident occurs, emergency medical treatment for the rider will most likely be required. An injured rider may be able to recover compensation for medical expenses as well as any foreseeable future expenses. This can include follow-up doctor’s appointments, the need for surgery, physical therapy, rehabilitation and prescription medications.
- At-Home Repairs and Modifications – When the accident has resulted in a devastatingly catastrophic injury, it is likely that the rider will be disabled. This can require at-home accommodation to help the injured motorcyclist improve his or her quality of life.
- Loss of Wages and Earning Potential – Depending on the severity of the injury, it may be possible that the rider may be unable to return to work for a period of time. Any loss of wages, including a loss of benefits and bonuses may be recovered through a personal injury claim. When the accident resulted in a permanent disability, the loss of earning potential can be claimed.
- Non-Economic Damages – Compensation may be available for intangible damages, such as emotional pain and suffering, trauma and anxiety. Non-economic damages can also include mental conditions developed following an accident, such as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and clinical depression. For most injured victims, putting a price on intangible losses can be a very difficult process. Consequently, it is very important to seek professional legal counsel when evaluating these types of damages.
- Punitive Damages – Additional damages may be available when the accident involved intentional wrongdoing from the at-fault party. It may be possible that the court will award punitive damages to the victim as a way to punish the wrongful driver.
Wrongful Death After a California Motorcycle Accident
Regrettably, not every injured motorcycle victim will walk away from the accident. Motorcyclists have a higher probability of sustaining fatal injuries in an accident than passengers of other types of vehicles. When the accident results in a tragic fatality, the victim’s surviving family members can file a wrongful death claim against the party who caused the accident.
Wrongful death cases are always devastating and difficult for grieving family members. Nonetheless, the unexpected accident can leave an already heart-broken family with serious financial distress. The State of California recognizes this and, therefore, allows certain family members the opportunity to bring a case against the negligent party that caused the accident. Eligible family members can also seek the following damages:
- Medical costs accrued by the victim before his or her passing;
- Funeral, burial and memorial services expenses;
- The loss of companionship, relationship, and support;
- Loss of the decedent’s financial support;
Obtain the Legal Support of a Knowledgeable Riverside Motorcycle Accident Attorney
Motorcycle accidents often result in catastrophic, incapacitating injuries or death as a result of various inherent risks. For one, as careful and as vigilant as a motorcyclist can be, it is impossible to fully predict the actions of other drivers on the road. This can leave riders susceptible to the negligent actions taken by other drivers they share the road with. Additionally, even with the use of a proper helmet and full protective body gear, riders do not have the same protections drivers have in a car. Upon collision, riders can be thrown off their bike, which can lead to very serious, and sometimes deadly injuries.
When a motorcycle accident occurs, injured motorcyclists should know that the State of California allows for compensation when the accident occurred as a result of another’s careless actions. If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident and are unable to work or perform your daily routine, a well-versed personal injury attorney can help you receive compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, physical pain and disability, mental suffering, and the loss of enjoyment of life.
For more than 39 years, Attorney Gary G. Goldberg has tirelessly championed on behalf of injured motorcycle riders. After an accident, consider contacting Attorney Goldberg for a free case consultation. He will provide you with a fair and honest assessment of your case and tell you if you have a claim. Contact Attorney Gary G. Goldberg today at (951) 788-8325 or send a message by email using the Contact Form here.