Yes, a pedestrian hit by a motorcycle can usually file an insurance claim against one or more insurance policies. It can be confusing to try to make sense of several different kinds of insurance policies, but we can navigate through that process so that you do not have to. We deal with insurance companies every day.
The Motorcycle Rider’s Liability Insurance
If the motorcyclist was negligent and caused the wreck, you should be able to make a claim against their liability insurance policy for your damages. The purpose of liability insurance is to pay for the harm that a person causes when their negligence hurts someone else.
The Pedestrian’s Uninsured or Underinsured Automobile Policy
The pedestrian might be able to make a claim on their own automobile insurance policy if they carry uninsured coverage and the motorcycle rider does not have liability insurance. Another possibility is if the walker has underinsured coverage and the motorcycle rider does not have enough coverage to pay the pedestrian’s losses in full.
The Motorcycle Rider’s Umbrella Liability Policy
This insurance can cover amounts that the motorcyclist’s bike liability policy does not pay, or if they do not have liability insurance on their motorcycle. Not everyone buys “umbrella” liability policies, but if the motorcyclist who hit you does have this coverage, it can provide a high level of compensation.
The Pedestrian’s Health Insurance Policy
If there is no other insurance that can help with your losses, you might be able to get your health insurance to pay for some of your medical bills. Be aware, however, that many health insurance policies specifically exclude coverage for motor vehicle accidents.
How to Determine Who is Liable for Your Injuries
You cannot file a claim against someone’s insurance merely because they were in an accident with you. We must prove that the person is responsible for your injuries before we can pursue damages.
We will have to satisfy all four of these elements of liability to seek compensation for your pedestrian vs. motorcycle accident:
Duty of care: The motorcycle rider must have owed the pedestrian a duty of care. This factor is easy since every driver of a motor vehicle has a responsibility to obey the law and operate their car, truck, or motorcycle with caution.
Breach of the duty: If the motorcycle rider does not live up to the legal duty of care, they are negligent. Let’s say that the motorcycle rider’s blood alcohol level was over the legal limit. Breaking the law that prohibits driving while under the influence of alcohol is negligence.
Causation: Their negligence must have caused the accident that injured the pedestrian. Because of their intoxication, the motorcycle rider lost control of their bike, running off the road and onto the sidewalk, where they struck the walker. This fact pattern satisfies the causation element of liability.
Actual harm: The pedestrian must have suffered damages to file an insurance claim for the wreck. This can include medical bills, lost wages, etc.
Damages in a Pedestrian-Motorcycle Accident
Once we establish liability, we can pursue compensation for your damages. Every case is different, and the actual recovery you get will depend on the facts of your case, but here are some of the common damages in pedestrian accidents:
- Lost wages: These damages compensate you for wages, salary, self-employment, and other income that you lost because of the wreck and recuperation.
- Diminished earning capacity: You may entitled to compensation if you cannot make as much money as before because of your injuries.
- Disability: In the event that your injuries leave you unable to support yourself through gainful employment.
- Medical expenses: All of the reasonable and necessary medical bills you incurred because of the collision. These costs can include things like the ambulance fees, emergency room, hospital, diagnostic testing, x-rays, surgery, doctors, prescription drugs, and physical therapy.
- Ongoing or future medical care: For situations in which you will need additional or continuing medical services because of your injuries.
- Long-term care: In a case involving devastating injuries, you might need daily assistance with medical treatments and personal care.
- Pain and suffering: This category honors the physical discomfort and emotional distress you endured.
- Loss of enjoyment of life: If your injuries make you unable to engage in activities that brought you joy before the accident, like walking or hiking, you might experience loss of enjoyment of life.
- Disfigurement: This type of damage applies when the injuries caused significant scars or other disfigurement.
Every case is unique, but it can be complicated for a pedestrian hit by a motorcycle to file an insurance claim after a motorcycle hits you. The multiple possibilities of insurance coverage that could apply to your losses can be overwhelming.
You do not have to sort through all of those issues on your own. Just call S. Burke Law, and we will be happy to talk with you about your claim at no charge to you. Call us today at 404-842-7838 for your free consultation. We do not charge legal fees until you win.