Accurately predicting the value of a motorcycle accident claim is difficult, but there are some important considerations that can shape a settlement offer.
Analyzing Motorcycle Collision Settlements
Motorcyclists are sometimes behind the eight ball from the outset. Studies have shown that many people have an unfavorable view of motorcyclists, including jurors. Jury awards are generally lower for motorcyclists than passenger-car claimants, a fact that hasn’t escaped the attention of insurance adjusters, who may be inclined to reduce settlement offers.
Obviously, the extent of damages and injuries influences the amount of a case settlement. Another key component is determining how likely it is that the defendant will be found liable. If liability is questionable, the defendant may roll the dice in court. If they win, the plaintiff gets nothing. Therefore, a settlement offer will be lower.
If the plaintiff’s case is solid, a defendant might not risk going to trial, where, if the defendant loses, the plaintiff’s award will be greater. This leverage will likely result in a higher settlement offer.
A plaintiff who was physically active prior to an accident and whose “quality of life” has been curtailed by his/her serious or permanent injuries will generally have a higher case valuation than someone who was not as active. In addition, if a person’s serious or permanent disability does not affect their livelihood; their lost earnings award will be diminished.
If a defendant has few assets, the plaintiff will likely only receive the limits of the defendant’s auto insurance policy in a settlement or verdict. In some cases that coverage will fall short of the total damages.
If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident, contact an auto accident attorney to protect your rights.
How a Vehicle Accident Attorney Can Help
Although you do not need an attorney to file an insurance claim, it can be helpful to have an attorney do some of the legwork. If you are injured, you should focus on trying to heal. An attorney can help with the following:
- Communicating with the other driver’s insurer
- Obtaining the necessary evidence to prove your claim
- Organizing medical records and bills
- Ensuring all medical records are in order
- Negotiating with the insurance company to reach a satisfactory settlement
If an agreement cannot be reached between you and the negligent driver’s insurance company, an attorney can help you file a lawsuit to recover damages.
Alaska attorney Ben Crittenden has helped countless accident victims, and he can put his experience to work for you. Call his Anchorage office today or take a moment to fill out the contact form on this page to learn more.