If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident, then you know the severe physical, emotional and financial harm that can result from these crashes.
What you may not know is what to do next when it comes to seeking full compensation for the harm you have suffered. This is why you should contact a lawyer who has extensive experience with helping motorcycle accident victims in Vancouver and throughout British Columbia.
At Klein Lawyers, we have a proven track record of protecting the rights of injured motorcyclists in our region. Our legal team can review your case and help you to assess all of your options, which may include filing both a no-fault benefits claim with the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC) as well as an ICBC claim against another party who caused your accident.
Contact us today to arrange for a free consultation about your case.
Why Did Your Motorcycle Accident Occur?
Unfortunately, your accident is just one of the thousands of motorcycle crashes that occur in British Columbia communities each year. In fact, according to the most recent ICBC data, every year within the province, there are:
- 2,220 motorcycle accidents
- 1,500 motorcycle injury victims
- 35 deaths of motorcyclists or passengers
As our law firm knows from our experience of handling numerous motorcycle accident claims through the years, many of these crashes are caused by the negligence of car, truck and other vehicle drivers. These drivers fail – or simply refuse – to safely share the roads with motorcyclists.
When our legal team reviews your case, we will focus on whether your motorcycle accident resulted from another driver’s careless or reckless driving. If so, it will have a major impact on your rights and your options for seeking a financial recovery.
For instance, motorcycle crashes often are caused by motor vehicle drivers who:
- Misjudge the speed or distance of a motorcycle
- Turn in front of a motorcycle without signaling
- Fail to check blind spots and keep a proper lookout
- Miss a motorcyclist’s driving clues such as turn signals or hand signals
- Try to share a lane with a motorcycle
- Pass a motorcycle at a dangerously close distance.
We can turn to many sources of evidence to determine whether these factors or others contributed to your motorcycle crash. The accident scene itself can provide important clues as well as photos, witness statements and even electronic data recorders (EDRs) from the vehicle involved in the crash.
In many cases, we consult with accident reconstruction experts. They can analyze the evidence and provide a report on the cause of a crash. This report can play an important role when seeking a full and fair ICBC settlement. If the case goes to court, the expert can provide testimony on your behalf.
Motorcycle Injury Claims: What can you Recover?
In addition to conducting a thorough investigation into the cause of your motorcycle accident, the legal team of Klein Lawyers can gather and analyze all of the medical evidence in your case. Our goal will be to determine the full extent of physical and emotional harm that you have suffered in your crash.
We realize how these crashes can cause severe, life-changing injuries. This is due to the size and weight difference between motor vehicles and motorcycles. It is also due to motorcyclists’ lack of structural protection.
We have experience with assisting motorcycle accident victims who have suffered catastrophic injuries to the neck, spine, arms and legs, including:
- Soft tissue injuries
- Burns (often due to friction)
We also understand the unique challenges that motorcycle accident victims face if they suffer traumatic brain injury, or TBI, in a crash. Unfortunately, as we have seen, even motorcyclists and motorcycle passengers who were wearing helmets at the time of a collision can still suffer serious head and brain injuries.
Our legal team knows that motorcycle accident injuries can require extensive medical treatment. The injuries may prevent a victim from working for a prolonged period of time. In some cases, a victim may be unable to return to work at all. Family members may be burdened as well due to a lack of a loved one’s household services and the need to provide daily assistance to the injury victim.
We will seek a full recovery for you, including:
- Motorcycle repair and replacement
- Past and future medical care
- Past and future wage losses
- Loss of all other out-of-pocket expenses
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Loss of housekeeping capacity.
At Klein Lawyers, our case managers work closely with our clients to ensure their medical treatment needs are met while their case is pending. We want you to focus on your recovery above everything else.
Types of Motorcycle Accident Compensation
If you have been involved in a motorcycle accident that another motorist caused, you should be able to pursue two types of claims:
- First-party ICBC claim
- Third-party ICBC claim
A lawyer from our firm can help you with pursuing both types of claims and protect your rights throughout the ICBC claims process.
First-Party ICBC Claim After a Vancouver Motorcycle Accident
A first-party ICBC claim is often called a “no-fault” benefits or Part 7 claim. It is a “first-party” claim because you, the “first party,” are filing the claim with the ICBC, the “second party.”
You do not need to prove that another motorist was at fault to recover these benefits. However, you do need to show that you are in need of these benefits as a direct result of your motorcycle accident.
As your insurer, ICBC has a duty to fully investigate your claim and explain what benefits are going to be provided to you.
However, you should keep in mind: These benefits are subject to limits. For example, you cannot receive more than $150,000 in medical and rehabilitation expenses. Also, you can receive no more than $300 per week in wage-loss benefits, and those benefits can stop after 104 weeks.
Regardless, these benefits can play a key role as you pursue other compensation.
A lawyer from Klein Lawyers can help you to file notice of your accident with ICBC within 30 days after it occurred and proof of your claim within 90 days of the crash. We can also assist with any court actions that may be necessary to seek a recovery of the full amount of benefits you are due.
Filing a Third-Party ICBC Claim After a Motorcycle Accident
A third-party ICBC claim is also called a personal injury lawsuit, negligence claim or tort claim. It is a third-party claim because you are filing for a recovery through the ICBC liability coverage of the at-fault driver, or “third party.”
Unlike a first-party ICBC claim, you must establish that the other driver was at fault for causing your motorcycle crash. You must also show that you suffered damages that were caused by the accident.
At Klein Lawyers, we are often able to obtain ICBC settlements for our clients without the need to file a personal injury lawsuit. We carefully prepare cases for settlement, and we are aggressive negotiators.
In particular, ICBC often will try to place blame, or fault, on the motorcyclist. We know how to successfully counter those assertions and seek a maximum recovery for our clients.
If ICBC fails to agree to a fair out-of-court settlement, our skilled litigators can pursue just compensation for you by filing a claim in the Supreme Court of British Columbia. We have a proven record of securing significant court awards for our clients.
Like a first-party ICBC claim, or Part 7 claim, you must file a personal injury lawsuit within two years of the date of the accident.
Also, your recovery may be offset by what you have received in Part 7 benefits.
Contact a Vancouver Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Today
It is important to take immediate action to protect your legal rights after a motorcycle accident. You want to make sure that your ICBC claims are timely filed. It is also crucial to investigate your case before evidence is lost or destroyed.
Please call Klein Lawyers today for a thorough assessment of your legal options. We can carefully review your case and help you to make an informed decision.
We never charge for initial consultations. We also offer motorcycle accident victims our “No Fee Guarantee,” or contingency fee billing. If we don’t win, you pay no fee.
We never want concerns about legal costs to prevent you from seeking legal assistance. This is because we firmly believe that a lawyer can make a significant difference in your case and your future.
We serve clients in Vancouver and throughout British Columbia. Our law firm also features an office in Toronto. Call or reach us online and get started on your case today.
Sources / More Information
- Quick Statistics, Insurance Corporation of British Columbia