If you or a loved one have been injured in a motorcycle accident, it is important to realize that it’s handled differently than a standard car accident (see article on this topic). There are several factors that affect what the outcome might be when seeking a settlement for a motorcycle case.
Whether it is your own belief or not, there are preconceived judgments surrounding motorcyclists, a lot of it having to do with distrust. Even though personal bias should never play a role in legal matters, it is unfortunately impossible to completely avoid. If such case were to be taken to court, it is more likely that a jury will exercise their bias in favor of the other party that was not on the motorcycle. Insurance adjusters are fully aware of such situations and they use it as a justification to offer lower settlement amounts, or even not fully accept liability. For this reason, the burden of making a concrete case, and proving the key issues described in this article, becomes even more important for an injured motorcyclist.
The Plaintiff’s Damages
A motorcyclist’s injuries are extremely severe compared to an injury from a car accident. Even just a minor tap from a car can cause harsh damage that requires extensive treatment and higher medical bills. Along with the measurable damages, there is also a lot of pain and suffering following a motorcycle accident that deserves to be compensated for as well. Additionally, in Florida a motorcyclist is not required to show permanent injuries to receive compensation, which is required in a car accident case.
In Florida, all insured drivers of motor vehicles have a coverage called personal injury protection (PIP), however, it does not apply to motorcycles. Although insurance coverage is not required in Florida if you own a motorcycle, there are penalties if you are involved in an accident and do not have the proper documentation required with the state! If you were charged with an accident, you are financially responsible for the bodily injuries and property damage. Although not required, it is highly recommended that a motorcyclist purchased UM coverage because usually the injuries sustained from motorcycle accident exceed the limits that the minimum BI insurance will cover.