Motorcycle Accidents

A Motorcycle Accident Can Happen Out of Nowhere.

Motorcycle Accident image with a car

Motorcycle accident avoidance is in your control – but for the other drivers you share the roads with.

You’re riding through Big Sur.  You take a deep breath as you ride from the shady canopies of the coastal redwoods back into the sun.  It’s the perfect day for a ride.  You approach a turn out, and proceed with caution.  When suddenly a car throws itself into reverse from the turn out.  They obviously do not see you.  You think to go left to avoid it, but that will mean heading into oncoming traffic.  You think to go right, but that will mean hitting the parked cars on the right, or going over the edge of a cliff.  You consider laying it down, but there’s no time.  Before you know it, you’re flying over your bike, on to the trunk of a car, and the next thing you know you’re rolling on the road.  You’re terrified.  You hop up and scramble to safety.  That’s when you realize the blood, and then the pain.  You have compound fractures.  The world is spinning.  Your vision is foggy.  Your head hurts.  Things fade to black.  The next thing you know paramedics are asking you questions.  Then, you’re in an ambulance.  More questions.  More pain.  More fog.  You start coming to in the hospital when you realize what happened.  Then you wonder…

What do I do if I have been in a motorcycle accident?

Getting into a bike crash is scary.  You are nine times more likely to be injured while riding a motorcycle than while driving a car. Enjoying the world from a bicycle or motorcycle is more rewarding, more in touch with the world we journey, but statistically, being a rider in a motorcycle accident is more dangerous. More rewarding for the motorcycle rider(s).

First, things first, you need to take care of yourself.  Get yourself to safety.  Assess yourself for injuries.  Call 911 if you have been hit by a car.  Responding officers will fill out an accident report and document the scene.  Try to get a copy of the report as soon as you can.  Tell the driver to stay.  If the driver refuses, take a picture of their car.  At the very least try to get a description of the car and maybe even their license plate.  Try to get the contact information of any witnesses.  Don’t tell anyone it was your fault.  Do not apologize.  Talk to a lawyer about what to do next.

Lots of people think they should call their insurance company.  “What’s the harm?  I wasn’t at fault.”  Except, imagine your insurance company asks how you’re doing.  You tell them you are a little sore.  But, as the days go on, you get worse.  Or, without thinking you say you’re fine.  Now, as it turns out the driver of the car gave you a bogus insurance card.  So, you have to go after your own insurance company for the uninsured motorist coverage.  Suddenly your insurance company is trying use those statements against you.  Insurance companies make their money by keeping premiums high, and payouts low.  They don’t want to give you anything if they can help it.  Remember that.  It will serve you well in your fight.

Is the driver at fault?

California drivers have a duty to use ordinary care and skill while operating a motor vehicle. In short, they have to act like a normal person would.  A normal person, using ordinary care and skill doesn’t just back out onto a highway.  It does not even matter if the driver hits you.  Say you’re in the left lane on 101 and the driver in the right lane doesn’t see you.  So, he starts to change lanes.  You move to the left to avoid getting hit.  You end up on the median where you hit a rough patch and lose control.  You end up with broken bones, and your bike is totaled.  You can recover from the driver even though the driver never actually hit you. 

What can I get if I have been in a motorcycle accident?

There is no way to turn back time.  But, the law does what it can to compensate you for your losses.  If you get hurt in a motorcycle crash, you can recover things like:

  • Medical expenses;
  • The cost of replacement or repair of your motorcycle and gear (even if it’s a single vehicle accident);
  • Lost wages;
  • Pain and suffering; and
  • Emotional distress. 

What Should I Look for in a Motorcycle Accident Attorney?

You want a lawyer who will be open and honest with you and who will fight for you.  Attorney John F. McCarthy is nationally recognized as a top attorney in personal injury and wrongful death.  He got there by being open and honest with his clients and by fighting like hell for them.  He got passionate about representing bikers after losing a friend to a motorcycle accident.  He saw firsthand the devastating impact a motorcycle crash could have on a family.  So, he fights to save other families from the pain and suffering he saw so up close.   

We offer a free, confidential case evaluation.  The case evaluation goes straight to Attorney McCarthy’s inbox.  Attorney McCarthy reviews and responds to every case evaluation typically the same day.  If we decide we are in a position to help, we will schedule a free consultation.  If we decide we are not in a position to help we will provide resources to help you understand the law, find a lawyer, and even represent yourself.  We take cases on a contingency fee basis meaning that we only get paid a percentage of whatever we collect for you.  So, if you don’t get anything, we don’t get anything.  Personal injury cases can have short windows to fail claims.  So, why wait?               



Your responses will go straight to John’s inbox. John will review and respond by the end of the business day. If John thinks he can help, he’ll email you a link to schedule a free consultation with him. If John doesn’t think he can help, he’ll email you resources to help you understand the law, find a qualified lawyer to help you, and take steps to protect your rights. No waiting around.

McCarthy Law Monterrey Locations

McCarthy Law

From our offices in Monterey, California and Fresno, California, we serve clients throughout the California Central Coast, including but not limited to: Fresno County, Kern County, Madera County, Merced County, Monterey County, San Benito County, San Joaquin County, San Luis Obispo County, Santa Barbara County, Santa Cruz County, Stanislaus County, and Tuolumne County.