Uninsured California Motorcycle Accident
What Happens if You’re in an Uninsured Motorcycle Accident?
Below, our experienced motorcycle accident attorneys will discuss what happens when a motorcyclist who does not have insurance is involved in a collision. If you have suffered injuries as a result of a motorcycle accident in California, the experienced motorcycle accident attorneys at West Coast Trial Lawyers are always here to answer any questions you may have about motorcycle accident claims and available damages.
No Pay, No Play
California requires all motorcyclists to carry the minimum insurance. Insurance is important because it guarantees that all motorcycle riders will be able to pay for any losses or injuries they cause to others. For obvious reasons, it is not always easy to make sure that all drivers and motorcyclists carry insurance.
California is known as a “No Pay, No Play” state. In 1996, California passed Proposition 213. This law was intended to discourage everyone from driving or riding without insurance by limiting their ability to file for certain types of damages. This law also does not allow convicted felons who were involved in an accident to recover damages for any losses that were sustained while committing a crime or when fleeing the scene of a crime.
In short, if you are a motorcyclist without insurance and are involved in an accident, there will be limits to the damages you will be allowed to recover. For example, when the other driver is held liable for an accident, you may be able to recover some damages, such as medical costs, lost wages, and property loss. However, an injured motorcyclist will not be able to recover any damages for pain and suffering, or disfigurement
The Uninsured Rider’s Rights
Just because an uninsured motorcyclist does not have any insurance coverage does not mean that the offending driver will not be held liable for any injuries or losses they have caused. Regardless of insurance coverage, an injured individual who was not at-fault for a motorcycle accident still has recourse to recover damages for medical costs and property loss.
However, it is important for an injured motorcyclist who does not have insurance to retain the services of an experienced motorcycle accident attorney who is familiar with Prop 213 statutes in order to recover all the damages they may be entitled to.
Consequences of Driving Without Motorcycle Insurance
Even though you can recover some economic damages after a motorcycle accident does not mean you will not face the consequences of riding a motorcycle without an insurance policy.
For example, any collision that involves injuries and property loss in excess of $750 means it must be reported with the DMV. This means the DMV will immediately know you do not have any insurance, which will trigger fines, license suspension, and the possibility of having your motorcycle impounded.
Accidents happen. If you were injured as a result of someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation for your losses. Below is a brief explanation of damages. Damages are a type of monetary award that is determined by a court of law to help compensate an aggrieved individual for any losses or injuries sustained as a result of someone’s negligence.
Economic damages are intended to compensate a plaintiff for losses that a dollar amount can readily be attached to. Economic damages are calculated by determining the amount of out-of-pocket losses an aggrieved individual has or will expect to incur as a result of their injuries.
A few examples of economic losses include:
- Loss of Earning Capacity
- Medical Bills
- Lost Wages
Non-economic damages are essentially intended to cover losses that are thought of as subjective and will not necessarily cover out-of-pocket losses. Non-economic damages may include compensation for:
- Emotional Distress
- Pain and Suffering
- Loss of Enjoyment of Life
The third type of damages a California court may award are known as punitive damages. Punitive damages are intended as punishment and are only awarded when a defendant’s behavior is especially harmful. Punitive damages are relatively rare and in fact were only incorporated in 5 percent of all verdicts.
Furthermore, there is no real set standard for calculating and awarding punitive damages. Punitive damages are awarded at the court’s discretion and will vary depending on the specific circumstances of a case.
Contact Us to Find Out How We Can Help
If you have sustained injuries in the city of Los Angeles as a result of a motorcycle accident, an attorney at our firm can help you recover financial compensation for the losses you have suffered, including medical bills, property damage, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Call us today at (213) 927-3700 or email [email protected] to schedule a free consultation with our experienced, caring, and compassionate legal team.