After sustaining injuries in a motorcycle crash, people often ask about the average settlement amount. Since most Virginia motorcycle accident settlements happen privately between the victim’s attorney and the at-fault party’s insurance company, the amounts are often kept confidential.
While there is no official average, motorcycle accident settlements in our state typically range from several thousand to a couple million. Your compensation will depend on factors like the extent of your injuries, the at-fault driver’s insurance coverage limits, and the circumstances of the crash.
As an experienced Virginia motorcycle accident lawyer, I can estimate the value of your claim during a free, no-obligation consultation.
How Injuries Impact Settlement Value
The most crucial factor in your settlement is the severity of your injuries. More catastrophic injuries typically result in higher compensation.
This is because serious injuries often lead to:
- Significant medical expenses, including long-term treatment costs
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Loss of income
- Permanent disability
- Reduced quality of life
Spinal cord damage, brain injuries, and other major traumas warrant substantial compensation to address the resulting medical costs and long-term issues. Some cases may also qualify for punitive damages.
How Virginia’s Auto Insurance Requirements Affect Motorcycle Accident Settlements
Virginia requires all motorists to carry certain minimum auto insurance coverage, as set forth by Code of Virginia § 46.2-472. These state-mandated liability limits can impact your settlement.
Virginia drivers must carry the following liability coverage:
- $30,000 bodily injury per person
- $60,000 bodily injury per accident
- $20,000 property damage per accident
Unfortunately, these extremely low minimums won’t even come close to compensating a motorcycle rider for severe, permanent injuries. Often, just paying for your initial medical treatment exhausts the at-fault party’s insurance coverage.
Of course, they may carry higher policy limits. Also, if your claim exceeds the policy limits, you can use your uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage or go after the at-fault driver’s personal assets via a civil lawsuit. As an experienced trial lawyer, I will gladly take your case to court if needed.
For a free legal consultation, call 757-648-8579
Other Key Settlement Factors
In addition to your injuries and the other party’s insurance coverage, several other important factors impact the value of a motorcycle accident settlement.
The negligence of the liable party, the supporting evidence, and having a lawyer all significantly influence settlement negotiations.
Evidence of Negligence
Strong evidence clearly establishing the defendant’s negligence can increase your settlement amount. On the other hand, when the fault for the accident is unclear or can be called into question, insurance companies will be reluctant to settle for full value.
Putting together a solid case that shows the defendant was careless by using police reports, expert analysis, photographic evidence, and supporting witness statements will help you get the most money in a settlement.
Having credible supporting evidence for your injuries and damages will further motivate the defendants to settle.
Testimony from doctors about your injuries and documentation of lost income and property damage will strengthen your case.
Insurers are more likely to settle when presented with ample supporting evidence across all aspects of the claim. I would rather compile more evidence than I need than risk being even slightly unprepared for insurance negotiations or a trial.
Strong Legal Representation
Hiring an attorney signals to insurance companies that you are serious about exercising your legal rights and pursuing damages.
Insurers know that a seasoned motorcycle accident attorney like me has the resources to build a compelling case and won’t back down. In fact, securing experienced legal counsel may result in an immediate increase in your settlement offer.
Actions You Can Take to Protect Your Right to Compensation
In the aftermath of a serious accident, certain actions can protect your right to seek maximum compensation for your injuries.
Here are some important steps to take following a motorcycle accident:
- Seek immediate medical attention: Even seemingly minor injuries may worsen later. Prompt medical attention not only safeguards your health but also establishes an official record of your injuries.
- Preserve evidence: If possible, gather evidence from the accident scene, including photographs, videos, and witness contact information. This documentation strengthens your claim by providing a clear picture of what happened.
- Be careful what you say to the insurance company: Anything you say to an insurance company representative can be used against you. An adjuster’s goal is to minimize your payout or deny your claim outright. As your attorney, I will handle all communications with insurers on your behalf.
- Exercise caution on social media: Refrain from discussing the accident, your injuries, or your case on social media. Information you share online can potentially be used against you in your claim.
- Consult with an experienced attorney: You don’t have to navigate the legal system alone. Reach out to a seasoned Virginia motorcycle accident attorney, like myself, who can guide you through your insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit.
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Contact Atkinson Law for a Free Consultation
At Atkinson Law, we provide effective legal representation tailored to your needs. By only taking on a few cases at a time, my team and I are able to provide best-in-class service for you and your family. Throughout your case, I’ll keep you informed with regular status updates, providing transparency at every step.
I handle motorcycle accident cases on a contingency-fee basis, which means I only get paid when you receive an insurance settlement or court award. I can meet you in the comfort of your home, in the hospital, or at another convenient location. We can also discuss your case over the phone or Internet.
Contact us today to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation.