May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month, and this month the California Highway Patrol ramps up its efforts to educate the public about the increased presence of motorcycles on the roadways as we enter the spring and summer months. In an effort to reduce the number of motorcycle accidents, drivers are being reminded to check their blind spots for motorcycles before making lane changes, and riders are being reminded to allow plenty of distance between them and other vehicles, and to watch their speeds.
In 2018, there were over 17,000 motorcycle-related collisions in California, resulting in nearly 500 fatalities statewide. Since they have less protection than other motor vehicle occupants, motorcyclists are 28 times more likely to be killed in these types of accidents. Thousands more sustain serious injuries as well.
When someone is injured in a motorcycle accident, they often wonder if they need to retain an attorney to assist them with the process. They may have already been offered a settlement from the insurance company or been told by an insurance adjuster they will be “taken care of.” So why should they hire an attorney and give them a percentage of their settlement?
Even in a “simple and straightforward case,” it never hurts to speak with an attorney to review the facts and circumstances to determine your legal rights and options. This will give you the confidence to know you are making the most informed decision about which avenue to pursue.
However, more often than not, there are issues that complicate every case. These issues require the assistance of a skilled attorney. For example, the parties may disagree as to who is at fault for the accident. In addition, the injuries sustained may be disputed and/or you may require extensive treatment and/or testing to understand the full extent of injury. Depending on the severity of your injuries, you need an experienced attorney to ensure you receive the proper treatment for your injuries and eventually the full amount of compensation you deserve.
Insurance adjusters may seem nice, but their interests are not aligned with yours. Your goal is to receive the proper treatment for your injuries and full compensation. Their goal is to minimize the amount of compensation they have to pay out. When this is the case, it makes sense to have a skilled advocate in your corner who is looking out for your interests.
Retaining an attorney after a motorcycle accident has several other benefits as well, including:
- Properly evaluating your claim and demanding full damages, which can include non-economic damages such as pain and suffering, psychological distress, and diminished quality of life;
- Dealing directly with the insurance company and handling all the other complex legal issues, so you can focus on your recovery;
- Negotiating a settlement with the insurance company, and if the insurer is not willing to negotiate in good faith, pursuing full damages through litigation;
Injured in a Motorcycle Accident in California? Call Garmo & Garmo, LLP Today for Skilled Legal Guidance.
If you or someone close to you has suffered an injury in a motorcycle accident in San Diego, El Cajon, or anywhere in Southern California, call Garmo and Garmo, LLP today at 619-441-2500 or send us a message through our online contact form to schedule a free consultation.