Motorcycle Hit and Run Accident Attorney
California Highway Patrol data suggests Los Angeles hit-and-run motorcycle accidents have reached “epidemic” proportions, with an accident occurring approximately every 18 minutes. People in the “City of Angels” – where it costs $100,000 a year just to rent a home — have a lot to lose. Logically, one would think drivers would be cautious to avoid landing in serious financial and legal trouble.
However, even rich people make mistakes and get into accidents. They drive distracted, tired, drunk, or under the influence of drugs. They speed, blow through red lights, and roll out of driveways without looking. They drive unlicensed and uninsured. The results are devastating when cars and motorcycles collide. If you or a loved one have been impacted by a hit and run driver, contact a Los Angeles motorcycle accident lawyer at the Salamati Firm to help track down the perpetrator and see that you are compensated for your losses.
Who is at fault in a motorcycle hit and run?
The legal definition of hit-and-run is “the crime of a driver of a vehicle who is involved in a collision with another vehicle, property, or human being to stop to give his/her name, license number, and other information as required by statute to the injured party, a witness, or law enforcement officers.”
In the state of California, it is a crime to leave the scene of an accident. Whether there are physical injuries or property damage or not, a responsible motorist has a duty to stop and make sure everyone involved is alright.
If the motorcyclist is not present when another vehicle hits the bike, the driver must leave a note with contact information if the damage is presumed to be worth more than $1,000.
California law uses a “comparative negligence” system – meaning that you can be held partially liable for the accident, but still receive compensation. The total amount granted will be reduced based on fault, so it’s wise to hire a skilled attorney to build a strong case for your innocence.
Motorcycle hit and run accident: what to do
- Gather information. If you have survived a hit-and-run accident, you are likely shaken up and filled with emotion. Do your best to write down any information you can remember – a description of where you were traveling, an approximate time, and weather conditions. Try to piece together anything you saw about the perpetrator – which direction they came from, the make/model/color of the other vehicle, a physical description of the motorist, or a license plate number. If possible, take photos of the accident scene and damage to your motorcycle, as well as photos of your injuries. Try and get contact information and statements from any witnesses. Check the area for traffic light or surveillance cameras that may contain evidence.
- File a police report as soon as possible. This document will aid in processing your insurance claim and will greatly strengthen your lawsuit, should you choose to file one.
- Get medical documentation. Even if you are unsure about your injuries, it is important to undergo professional medical evaluation. Brain, nerve and soft tissue injuries may not be readily apparent at first.
- Call your insurance company. Even if you cannot identify the other driver, you may still be able to recover compensation through your uninsured motorist coverage — which will cover up to $15,000 per person injured (with a maximum of $30,000 per accident) toward medical expenses, as well as $3,500 in property damage. If you selected higher limits, you may be eligible for more. Collision and bodily injury insurance coverage may be used as well, but far too often we find it falls short in covering all for the losses suffered in this type of accident. A lawsuit provides for additional losses, such as lost income from missed work or disability, emotional pain and suffering, and – in the worst cases — loss of support, loss of companionship, wrongful death, and funeral expenses. Spouses and children of a deceased motorcyclist are eligible for damages when a hit-and-run driver can be located.
- Contact the Salamati Firm for a free consultation. Calling a hit-and-run lawyer can help determine the extent of your losses and maximize your chance of winning a larger settlement or award. The Salamati Firm has a talented network of crash investigators, private detectives, auto body shop contacts, police officers, and others who can help support the police in their investigation.
Hit and run motorcycle accident statistics
According to the California Highway Patrol:
- Every 18 minutes a Los Angeles driver is involved in a hit-and-run accident.
- More than 28,000 hit-and-run crashes occurred in LA County last year alone.
- Some 4,000 drivers are killed or seriously maimed in LA County hit-and-runs.
- An astounding 50 percent of ALL accidents in LA County are hit-and-run.
- The national average for hit-and-run accidents is 11 percent of all accidents.
Common injuries in hit and run motorcycle crashes
Los Angeles hit-and-run accident victims sustain serious injuries such as:
- Broken backs
- Broken ribs and hips
- Facial lacerations and fractures
- Spinal cord injury
- Head and neck injuries
- Internal bleeding
- Leg fractures
- Psychological trauma
- Punctured organs
- Traumatic brain injuries
Motorcycle hit and run accident settlements
Hit-and-run accident settlements vary greatly, but depend upon the:
- Extent of injury and losses
- Plaintiff’s degree of negligence
- Strength of evidence, and
- Amount of pain and suffering involved.
There is no “absolute formula,” but often times, pain and suffering is calculated by multiplying medical bills by three.
Los Angeles motorcycle hit and run accident lawyers
The Salamati Firm aggressively pursues justice for accident victims in the state of California. Felony convictions are difficult to come by, as they require a good amount of evidence – which drives away with the perpetrator. Even so, we’ve secured amounts from $200,000 for a broken leg to over $2 million for traumatic brain injury for our motorcycle victims. Hire a team with the experience and the gravitas to track down your hit-and-run driver and see that justice is served.
All legal counsel is provided on a contingency basis, so you have nothing to lose by calling 888-259-4060.
Fleeing the scene of a motorcycle accident: resources
- NYS DMV – Motorist Accident Reports https://dmv.ny.gov/org/dmv-records/motorist-accident-reports
- NHTSA – National Pedestrian Crash Report https://crashstats.nhtsa.dot.gov/Api/Public/ViewPublication/810968
- AAA – Hit And Run Drivers Kill Nearly 1500 People Annually https://www.aaafoundation.org/sites/default/files/HitandRun.pdf
- NBC Los Angeles – LA Hit and Run Crash Investigation http://www.nbclosangeles.com/investigations/Los-Angeles-LA-Hit-Run-Crash-Investigation-370821201.html
- LA Weekly – LA’s Bloody Hit-And-Run Epidemic http://www.laweekly.com/news/las-bloody-hit-and-run-epidemic-2612282