Our roads aren’t 100% safe. Even knowing this and trying our best to always be responsible drivers on the road, accidents can happen. You’re more likely to get into a more serious accident when you hit a motorcycle than you are in a car.

Data supports the theory that riding a motorcycle is more dangerous than driving a car. In the United States, 80% of motorcycle-related accidents end up in injury or death. It’s because, unlike car occupants, motorcycle riders aren’t protected from the crash’s impact.

So, what happens if you accidentally hit a motorcycle rider?
What Happens Immediately After the Accident?

In case of a motorcycle accident, you should take certain actions and others you should avoid.

  • Call for an ambulance if anybody is injured.
  • Call the authorities and park your car away from the traffic.
  • Take photos of the accident, including your car and the motorcycle.
  • Exchange information with those involved in the accident.
  • Take the contact information of all the witnesses.
  • Get in touch with a motorcycle accident lawyer.

  • Don’t run away from the accident scene.
  • Don’t talk about the accident with witnesses, the motorcyclist, or the police.
  • Don’t talk about the injuries you or your passengers have sustained.
  • Don’t agree to sign anything without the presence of your lawyer.

Who’s Liable in a Motorcycle Accident?

In San Diego, California, the law of negligence is used to determine who is liable for the motorcycle accident. Negligence is defined as engaging in careless and thoughtless behaviour that might lead to another person being injured. Examples of negligent behaviour commonly associated with motorcycle accidents include lane splitting, speeding, stopping suddenly, and driving under the influence (DUI).

California is one of the few states that adhere to comparative fault law when determining liability in personal injury lawsuits. Comparative negligence states that whenever an accident occurs, liability is assigned based on how all parties involved in the accident contributed to the accident.

Once the accident’s facts are fully analyzed, a percentage of fault is usually assigned to each party involved in the accident. Then the plaintiff’s compensation is determined by the percentage they’ve been awarded. Therefore, liability lies with the person who caused the accident. However, in most cases, all parties involved in the accident usually bear some fault.

What Does the Motorcycle Rider Need to Prove to Show that You’re Liable for the Accident?

In case the accident resulted in severe injuries and the motorcycle rider decides to sue or claim compensation, they need to prove you’re legally liable for the accident. To do that, they need to prove your negligence was the cause of the accident. Below are the four elements of negligence that they need to prove to ensure you’re legally liable for the accident.
  • Your actions during the accident were responsible for the plaintiff’s injuries.
  • You were not driving carefully during the events. To determine whether you were careful or not, the law has to determine whether you acted reasonably.
  • The defendant has to prove that they suffered damages. If they didn’t suffer any injuries, then they have no grounds to sue you or make a claim.
  • The defendant must prove that the law required you to conduct yourself like a reasonable person at the time of the accident.

Possible Recoverable Damages

In case the motorcycle rider you hit decided to make a claim or file a civil action lawsuit, there is a likelihood that you’ll be found legally liable for the accident. And if you’re found legally liable, you’ll be required to pay for the losses and damages caused.

Below is a list of possible damages that you’ll likely pay the plaintiff:

  • Medical costs incurred as a result of the accident.
  • Permanent disability or disfigurement.
  • Lost income, including the plaintiff’s reduced earning ability.
  • Emotional and physical pain caused by the traumatic accident.
To reduce your financial obligation, you’ll need to hire a car accident lawyer.

Your Defence

If the accident’s victim decides to make a claim or sue, there are two ways it could end. You could be found legally liable, or you could successfully defend yourself. However, you have to prove that the plaintiff’s actions directly contributed to the accident to defend yourself successfully.

For example, if the motorcyclist was coming from the opposite direction and tried to overtake the vehicle in front at a dangerous angle, and you tried to swerve away and avoid a collision, you can prove the rider was at fault.

However, if the actions of the accident victim made their injuries worse but didn’t directly cause the accident, you might be found legally liable for the accident.

In case you have any questions, please feel free to leave them in the comment section below.