If you were injured while riding as a motorcycle passenger, you may have more opportunities to recover compensation than the person who was operating the motorcycle. When an accident is entirely the fault of the motorcyclist, that person cannot recover compensation. A motorcycle passenger, on the other hand, may be entitled to recover compensation from the motorcyclist's insurance company as well as the insurers of all other vehicle operators who shared responsibility for the accident.
In a single-vehicle motorcycle accident caused by the operator's carelessness, the passenger has a claim against the operator's insurance company. In a multiple-vehicle collision, the passenger has potential claims against the motorcycle operator and against all drivers who shared responsibility for the accident.
Having spent more than thirty years representing injured motorcyclists and their passengers, Timothy J. Ryan & Associates passenger rights attorneys understand how to negotiate favorable settlements with tightfisted insurance adjusters. Extensive experience helping victims of traumatic brain injuries and other serious impacts of motorcycle accidents has taught motorcycle injury attorney Timothy Ryan to balance compassion for victims with an aggressive approach to negotiating with insurance adjusters. And when insurance companies refuse to negotiate a fair settlement, Attorney Ryan uses his extraordinary skills to persuade juries to give his clients the compensation they deserve.
Helping Motorcycle Passengers Pursue Insurance Claims
Insurance adjusters almost always try to convince accident victims that the accident was their fault. They try to reduce the amount the insurance company pays by arguing that the victim's own carelessness contributed to their injuries.
When a car turns left in front of a motorcycle and the two vehicles collide, the insurance adjusters for the car's driver and for the motorcyclist will each argue that the accident was the other person's fault. They can rarely argue that the accident was the fault of the motorcycle passenger.
Unless a passenger does something foolish that distracts the operator or knowingly accepts a ride from an intoxicated motorcyclist, the passenger cannot reasonably be accused of contributing to his or her own injuries. That means the passenger does not face the same reduction of compensation that an injured motorcycle operator may need to accept.
Drivers of cars and trucks often have better insurance coverage than motorcyclists. As an experienced personal injury attorney who represents motorcycle passenger accident victims, Timothy Ryan will work to assure that the combined contributions of each insurance company provide his client with full compensation.
Compensation for Motorcycle Passenger Injuries
Passengers in a car or truck have substantial protection from injuries. They ride in a steel cage that is designed to crumple in a collision while deploying airbags to minimize the impact of a crash.
A motorcycle passenger does not have the benefits of those protections. The passenger's impact with the street or with another vehicle may result in broken bones, shattered teeth, brain injuries, road rash, eye injuries, hearing loss, and a variety of other health problems.
Compensation for a passenger's injuries may include recovery of:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Expenses of cosmetic surgery to correct facial scarring
- Past and future dental expenses
- Past and future wage loss
- Physical or occupational therapy
- Necessary home health care expenses
- Necessary expenses for vocational training or rehabilitation
- Motorized wheelchairs, hearing aids, and other equipment needed to cope with disabilities
- Home modification expenses needed to cope with disabilities
- Pain, suffering, emotional distress, and mental anguish
We also assist family members in obtaining compensation for the wrongful death of a passenger who is killed in a motorcycle accident.
Act Promptly to Maximize Your Compensation
The settlement value of a motorcycle passenger's case cannot be evaluated until the full extent of injuries are known, but victims should not wait to obtain legal representation. If you wait too long, you will lose your right to bring a claim.
Delay may also jeopardize the ability of your legal team to conduct a full investigation of the accident. Witnesses should be interviewed while their memories are fresh. Photographs of road conditions should be taken before skid marks disappear.
Contacting a passenger rights lawyer in California immediately after an accident occurs will enhance your opportunity to recover full compensation for your injuries. Hiring an experienced motorcycle passenger accident lawyer who has a proven track record of success — an attorney who will never charge you a fee unless compensation is obtained — allows you to focus on recovering from your injuries, secure in the knowledge that a team of dedicated professionals is protecting your rights.
For help with your motorcycle passenger accident claim in Orange County, Los Angeles County, San Diego County, or elsewhere in Southern California, call Timothy J. Ryan & Associates at 1-800-838-6644. You can also fill out our online contact form to request a free evaluation of your case.