I’m Not the Kind of Person Who Likes to Sue!
There are three big differences I see with motorcycle accident clients and people who were injured in car accidents:
- Motorcyclists usually have more serious injuries.
- Motorcyclists don’t complain about their injuries and don’t like to go to doctors. When they do complain, I know it hurts!
- Motorcyclists aren’t the kind of people who like to sue. Some are even against it.
We were retained by a motorcyclist with serious burns over his whole leg from both the exhaust and tire, which was spinning on his leg, while he was pinned underneath a car. He has substantial pain; he will be seriously scarred; and because he will be out of work for some time, he filed for disability insurance which pays a lot less than his salary. He still didn’t want to file a lawsuit!
He only called us because the driver who struck him lied and said he never even hit the motorcyclist. The driver told his insurance company that the motorcyclist already had an accident and was standing on the sidewalk when he drove by in his car. His insurance company actually believes him! But we just got witness statements from two witnesses who say otherwise.
So, why should you file a claim or lawsuit?
CLAIM OR LAWSUIT? Many motorcycle accidents are settled in the claim stage without having to file a lawsuit. Even when a lawsuit is filed, they are usually settled without you having to testify at trial or incur substantial trial expenses that are paid back to your lawyer out of the money you receive.
All cases start by filing a claim. Sometimes, insurance company claim representatives don’t understand motorcycle accidents and think it’s your fault. When that happens, we may have to file a lawsuit. Sometimes we’re able to explain why it wasn’t your fault and sometimes we’re able to send an investigator to get a witness statement to prove that it’s the other driver’s fault.
PAIN & SUFFERING – You are entitled to be reimbursed for your pain and suffering when your body has been injured because of someone’s negligence just the same as you are entitled to be reimbursed for the damage to your motorcycle. That’s what insurance is for. Even if the other driver didn’t do it on purpose and it was just an accident. Although sometimes, some people are just really stupid and even lie about it.
YOU ALREADY PAID – You paid for insurance in case you injured someone, why shouldn’t you receive compensation when you are injured?
SOMEONE IS DEFINITELY PAYING – When you’re injured, someone will pay the costs. Why should you, your health insurance or the hospital pay the costs because a driver didn’t see you? Your health insurance, the hospital or the government may even come after you for the money. You may have medical costs that are not be covered by your health insurance (you may not even have health insurance). Medical treatment costs alone usually range from $30,000 to $50,000. We have had clients receiving treatment costing almost $1 million.
Why should the insurance company for the other driver get off without having to pay for the costs of your injuries? If I damage your motorcycle because I didn’t see it while I was parking my car, why shouldn’t I or my insurance company reimburse you for the damage? Why should your motorcycle insurance have to pay for the damage to your motorcycle?
If you have health insurance, the cost to your insurance company can be substantial and affects everyone’s premiums because a negligent driver injured you. But if you file a claim, the cost of your medical treatment is added to your claim and your insurance company may be entitled to recover part of the money paid for your medical treatment.
YOU THOUGHT YOUR INJURIES WOULD GO AWAY – You may have injuries that you thought would go away but they may never go away completely. We have clients who thought they would be back at work in a couple of weeks only to find out that they will be out of work for six months or longer. Often, injuries come back or get worse years later.
YOU DON’T THINK YOU’RE INJURED – Some injuries can surface long after your accident. Many times, symptoms from a concussion or mild traumatic brain injury are not recognized until months or years after your accident. This type of injury will change your life forever. Treatment can improve your symptoms but it is very costly. This type of injury can be worth over $1 million.
LOST WAGES – You are entitled to be reimbursed for your lost wages, lost over time, and lost vacation time. You are entitled to be reimbursed for other financial hardships that will occur. For instance, Your injuries may take longer to heal than you thought and you may be unable to pay your rent or mortgage and other expenses while you are out of work.
QUALITY OF LIFE – Later, you’ll find that your quality of life seriously deteriorates when your injury is costing you money; you’re spending time running to doctors, and lingering injuries and pain reduce your ability to earn a living. This isn’t even fair to your spouse and you could find yourself getting divorced. You now start thinking about calling a lawyer. However, waiting to call a lawyer can have advantages for the negligent driver’s insurance company.
THE OTHER DRIVER MAY BE MORE AT FAULT THAN YOU THOUGHT – Most motorcycle accidents happened because the other driver just didn’t see you. Sometimes, that’s because they were on the phone or texting. If we file a lawsuit, we will demand a copy of the cell phone records of the driver who hit you.
WHAT IF YOU WERE PARTIALLY AT FAULT? Even where someone was just a little negligent, you’re still entitled to receive compensation. In New York, you are entitled to receive compensation for the percentage of fault of the other driver. For instance, if you are 50% at fault, you’re entitled to receive 50% of the value of your injury. With most motorcycle accidents, 50% of the value is still usually more than the other driver’s insurance policy.
HE OR SHE JUST DIDN’T SEE YOU! Most motorcycle accidents occur because a driver didn’t see the motorcyclist. That’s why we started the motorcycle awareness campaign in New York, “BE AWARE MOTORCYCLES ARE EVERYWHERE”®.
WHAT SHOULD YOU DO? Call 1-800-HURT-911 immediately for a free consultation. Call 7 days/nights 1-800-487-8911
Get New York Motorcycle Accident Lawyers Rob Plevy, Esq. and Phil Franckel, Esq. at the 1-800-HURT-911® Personal Injury Dream Team™ on your side and become a member of our family!
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—Frank Sundancer Perugi
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Motorcycle Attorney Phil Franckel talks about how motorcycle accidents are different
Philip L. Franckel, Esq. is the author of all articles and content on this website, one of the Personal Injury Dream Team™ Founding Partners at 1-800-HURT-911® New York, well-known for representing motorcyclists. He has a 10 Avvo rating; Avvo Client’s Choice with all 5-star reviews; Avvo Top Contributor; and is a former Member of the Board of Directors of the New York State Trial Lawyers Association. Mr. Franckel created the motorcycle awareness campaign BE AWARE MOTORCYCLES ARE EVERYWHERE®.
Founding Partner Rob Plevy, Esq.
Robert Plevy, Esq. is a motorcycle accident lawyer and one of the Personal Injury Dream Team™ Founding Partners at 1-800-HURT-911® New York. Robert began his legal career in 1993 as an Assistant Corporation Counsel defending The City of New York against personal injury lawsuits.