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Personal Injury Firm in Los Angeles

Open Car Door Motorcycle Accidents

What You Need To Know About Liability In Open Car Door Motorcycle Accidents

There is often a tendency to place the blame on a motorcyclist for an open car door motorcycle accident. Some people erroneously believe that all motorcyclists are reckless, and that it’s always the motorcyle doing the ramming and never the car. Most motorcycle accidents are actually caused because a driver simply failed to notice an oncoming motorcycle. Sadly, driver negligence is the most common cause for the majority of all open car door motorcycle accidents.

Regardless of who is at fault, the potential for serious injury is quite high. Many motorcycle accident victims will require medical care and rehabilitation services for the rest of their lives. Costs associated with treating motorcycle injuries can be extreme, causing motorcycle accident victims and their families stress about who will pay for these bills.

The experienced team of Los Angeles motorcycle accident lawyers at West Coast Trial Lawyers has decades of experience fighting for the rights of motorcycle accident victims. Whether your accident was caused by an open door or any other form of driver negligence, we are committed to helping you to obtain fair compensation and get your life back on track.

Common Causes For Open Car Door Motorcycle Accidents

Open car door accidents are a serious dangers for motorcyclists. There are several causes for open car door motorcycle accidents. The majority stem from unintentional acts, but in some cases they may be intentional.

  • Negligence: This is when a driver fails to look for a motorcyclist before opening their car door. All drivers and passengers are legally required to look before opening a car door in traffic, yet often fail to do so.
  • Motorcycle Turns: Bikers are required to move to the right side of the road before attempting a right hand turn. In doing so, they must ride dangerously close to parked vehicles on the shoulder, which can be dangerous.
  • Poor Visibility: Fog, rain, or snow can make it difficult to see an oncoming motorcyclist.
  • Illegal Parking: Vehicles that are illegally parked will often involve a driver who is eager to avoid a ticket. In their haste to move their car, they may fail to notice an oncoming motorcyclist.
  • Road Defects: When roads are full of potholes, it can become necessary for a motorcyclist to weave around these potholes. If a motorcyclist veers too closely to a parked car, it can easily result in an open door collision.
  • Road Rage: In some rare cases, a driver may intentionally open their car door to hit a motorcyclist.
  • Distracted Motorcyclist: In a few instances, the accident is caused because a motorcyclist wasn’t paying attention to his or her surroundings.

Who Is Liable For An Open Car Door Accident?

Generally, the person opening the door is at fault and, therefore, liable for all damages.  All drivers and their passengers have a duty to exercise reasonable care in opening a car door. The law requires that they refrain from opening a vehicle door unless it is safe to do so. They must also not keep the door open for longer than is necessary to load or unload passengers or cargo. Because of this, liability will often lie with car owners and their passengers in most open car door motorcycle accidents.

The amount of damages awarded will depend on the circumstances. If you were speeding as a motorcyclist, you may share a portion of the blame with the driver. You can still obtain compensation in such a case, but the damages will be reduced in proportion to the degree of your fault.

There are situations when neither the motorcyclist nor the driver are at fault. The accident could have been caused by poor road conditions, of the failure of the government to provide adequate safety measures.

Common Questions About Motorcycle Accidents

As a Los Angeles law firm that specializes in all types of motorcycle accidents, there are many questions and concerns we can answer. Our team of experienced Los Angeles motorcycle accident lawyers have created several resources tailored just for motorcycle accident victims who have suffered injury or loss. To learn more, please visit:

Our Team is Here to Help

If you or a loved one has suffered an open car door motorcycle accident, contact an experienced Los Angeles motorcycle accident lawyer at West Coast Trial Lawyers today. Our attorneys will get you maximum compensation for your medical care and damages. Consultations are always free, and there are no attorney fees unless we win your case. You can reach our friendly staff today by emailing us at or by calling toll free at (213) 927-3700.

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