Riding a motorcycle is many people’s favorite hobby and activity ─ something that’s done on weekends or for vacation. For other people, riding a motorcycle is a part of the daily commute, serving as a way to get from one destination to the next. For all motorcycle operators, though, as well as the passengers they carry, one thing is true: Riding a motorcycle is more dangerous than riding within the confines of a passenger car.
For motorcycle passengers, an accident can result in serious injuries, including head injuries, back injuries, spinal cord injuries, internal injuries, bone fractures, and more. When a crash occurs, understanding one’s rights and sources for compensation is important.
At Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard, P.C., our experienced motorcycle passenger accident lawyers are here to offer you support, guidance, and skilled legal representation throughout the claims process. Contact us now for your free consultation.
Compensation Can Come from Various Sources
If you’ve been hurt in a motorcycle crash where you were a passenger on the motorcycle, not the motorcycle operator, you may be wondering whether or not you can file a claim for your damages and, if so, against whom such a claim should be filed. It is likely that there are various sources of compensation available.
Our lawyers will review your case and identify all potentially liable parties and sources of insurance in order to pursue the maximum compensation you need to recover. Common sources of compensation for passengers involved in motorcycle accidents include:
- Motorcycle operator’s insurance. The first potential source of recovery is that of the motorcycle operator’s (with whom you were riding) insurance. Even if the motorcyclist was at fault for the crash, note that you will not be filing a claim against the person you were riding with. Rather, you will be filing a claim against their liability insurance coverage.
- Another at-fault driver’s insurance. If the motorcyclist with whom you were riding was not at fault for the accident, then you should file a claim against the liability insurance of the responsible party, such as the driver of the other motor vehicle involved. Liability insurance is required in Illinois.
- Passenger’s own insurance. It is very unlikely that neither of the two insurance types listed above exist since drivers are required to carry insurance in Illinois. However, it can be a comfort to know that your own insurance coverage may help pay for some of your injuries. For example, your health insurance should cover a portion of your medical expenses. In some cases, even your car insurance coverage may apply.
Recovering Damages for Motorcycle Accident Injuries
If you’ve been hurt as a passenger in a motorcycle accident in Illinois, you may be able to pursue both economic and non-economic damages for the harm that you have suffered. Examples of economic and non-economic damages include:
- Economic damages. Economic damages are actual economic losses suffered as a result of an accident. For example, medical expenses, lost wages, property damage expenses, costs of therapy, future anticipated expenses, and more are all examples of economic losses.
- Non-economic damages. Noneconomic damages may be harder to calculate, but they are no less important in a personal injury claim following a motorcycle accident. These types of damages are designed to compensate an individual for the value of their emotional or psychological losses, such as the value of one’s pain, suffering, emotional anguish, disability, or loss of quality of life.
Our skilled motorcycle accident lawyers can help you document the full extent of your current and future losses in order to demand the maximum amount of compensation you deserve. Contact our law firm today to start on your case with a free consultation.
Understanding Motorcycle Passenger Rights
Riding a motorcycle with a passenger may be fun, but it can be dangerous. It’s important that the operator understands the rules for safely riding a bike with a passenger, and that the motorcycle passenger understands their rights should an accident occur.
Like in other negligence-based claims, a passenger who is injured in an accident maintains the right to bring forth a claim against the party responsible for damages. The motorcycle passenger will need to prove that the accident (and their injuries) would not have occurred but for the at-fault party’s negligent or careless action.
If a fair motorcycle accident settlement cannot be reached, the injured passenger maintains the right to file a lawsuit directly against the responsible party for damages. Fortunately, most claims settle before litigation is necessary. If your claim does end in a lawsuit, though, you can count on our law firm to bring the trial experience to your case that is necessary.
Time Limit for Filing a Claim
A statute of limitations is a limit on the amount of time that a party has to bring forth a claim after being involved in an accident and suffering an injury. In Illinois, the statute of limitations for personal injury claims is two years from the date of the injury.
If you wait longer than two years to file your claim, you will likely be barred from recovery. Our lawyers strongly recommend initiating the claims process as soon as possible to ensure that there is time to collect all the evidence, build a strong case, and file your claim within the statute of limitations.
Talk to Knowledgeable Motorcycle Accident Attorney Now
Many motorcycle passengers are harmed every year in crashes throughout the United States. If you’ve been in a motorcycle accident in Illinois, working with a knowledgeable motorcycle accident lawyer is the smartest move you can make to protect your legal right to compensation. Your attorney will know the law and your rights, as well as how to deal with aggressive insurance adjusters who attempt to minimize or deny your claim.
To schedule a free consultation with the respected personal injury attorneys at Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard, P.C., please call our law firm directly or send us a message telling us more about how we can assist you.