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Motorcycle accident claims - Introduction

Motorcycle accidents account for nearly 20% of serious injuries and fatalities sustained on UK roads - even though less than 1% of vehicles is a motorbike.

If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident that was not your fault, you may be able to claim compensation for your injuries, treatment costs, damage to your bike, loss of earnings and any other financial losses.

What are the statistics?

319 motorcyclist were killed in 2016, 5,553 were seriously injured and a further 13,425 were slightly injured.

In 2006 there were 599 motorcycle accident fatalities.  When considering a 10 year trend these figures show marked improvements.  However these figures should be 'interpreted with caution' as there have been changes in reporting systems during this period.

Statistically, motorcyclists are still more exposed to the negligence or recklessness of other road users than car drivers are.

The vast majority of motorcyclists ride with due care and attention and it is estimated that car drivers are to blame for approximately 2 in every 3 accidents.

Many bikers choose a defensive riding style and 'go over and above' with protective gear. Despite this motorcycle injuries are all too common.

Do I have a motorcycle accident claim?

An injured motorcyclist could be able to make a compensation claim if the accident occurred within the last 3 years and was the result of another road user's negligence or recklessness.

You will also need to be able to establish that your injury resulted from the accident and that the defendant (the party who caused the accident) was legally responsible for the accident.

Get a better idea of where you stand

Use our Online Claim Eligibility Calculator

Pease note that if there was blame on both sides a claim may still be possible with a split liability agreement.

How much compensation can you claim for a motorbike accident?

Motorcycle accidents can be life-altering. Compensation settlements or awards will factor in:

  • the severity of injuries sustained
  • medical treatment and care costs
  • anticipated future treatment and care
  • loss or reduction of mental or physical capacity
  • general pain and suffering
  • lost earnings during recovery and if unable to return to work
  • damage to the motorbike and protective equipment
  • other expenses including travel costs and potentially property damage

Awards are set out by the Judicial College guidelines for personal injury awards in the form of bracketed minimum and maximum amounts.

The guidelines are used by insurers when proposing a settlement, and are applied when Courts calculate awards.

The approximate values in the these tables are updated for 2018. The compensation figures represent a part of the total compensation you could claim, not including treatment costs, lost wages and other financial losses:

Neck, back and shoulder injuries

Back injuries

 

Back injury healing in up to two years

£1,950 to £6,290

Back injury healing in between two and five years

£6,290 to £9,970

Back injury with permanent symptoms

£59,120 to £70,490

Neck injuries

 

Neck injury healing in up to one year

£1,950 to £3,470

Neck injury healing in between one and two years

£3,470 to £6,290

Spinal cord damage

£72,620 to £128,320

Other neck injuries

£330 to £118,240

Shoulder injuries

 

Minor to severe shoulder injury

£6,290 to £38,280

Arm and hand injuries

Elbow injuries

 

Serious elbow injuries

£12,480 to £43,750

Fracture of one finger

Up to £3,790

Fractured index finger with permanent symptoms

£7,270 to £9,760

Severe finger fractures

Up to £29,290

Hand injury

 

Minor hand injuries

£770 to £3,460

Serious hand injuries that heal completely

£4,640 to £10,580

Serious hand injuries with permanent loss of function

£23,110 to £49,350

Thumb injury

 

Thumb injuries healing within 6 months

Up to £3,150

More serious thumb injuries

£7,700 to £27,910

Other arm injuries

 

Forearm fractures

£5,280 to £15,300

More serious arm injuries with permanent symptoms

£15,300 to £104,370

Wrist injury

 

Wrist injury healing within 2 years

Up to £8,160

Wrist fractures and other injuries healing within 1 year

£2,810 to £3,790

Wrist injury causing permanent pain, stiffness and loss of function

£10,040 to £31,220

Leg and foot injuries

Ankle injury

 

Ankle injury healing completely

Up to £10,960

Ankle injury with permanent symptoms

£10,960 to £39,910

Foot injury

 

Less severe foot injury with no permanent symptoms

Up to £10,960

Foot fractures with permanent symptoms

£10,960 to £19,920

Serious injury to one or both feet

£19,920 to £87,410

Knee injury

 

Knee injuries with no ongoing symptoms

Up to £10,960

Knee injury with mild long-term symptoms

£11,820 to £20,880

Knee injury with serious long-term symptoms

£20,880 to £34,660

Leg and knee fractures

£41,550 to £55,590

Leg injuries

 

Fractured femur

£7,270 to £11,220

Fractured tibia or fibula

Up to £9,440

Leg fractures or muscle injury with permanent symptoms

£14,320 to £67,410

Severe crushing injury or complicated leg fractures

£21,100 to £29,800

In some cases an accident cause an existing injury to worsen. A claim may also be possible under these conditions.

For a better estimate of what you claim could be worth, call us on 0800 612 7456 or try our Enhanced Compensation Calculator.

How long does it take to get compensation?

Motorcycle accidents are considered in the same way as general road accidents. This means that if the claim is estimated to be worth less than £25,000, they can be fast tracked (usually in less than 6 months) through a system known as the 'Claims Portal'.

If the case dies not meet the portal criteria, or is more complex, or contentious, it could take longer. Split or denied liability will probably protract the case.

The vast majority of claims are settled by insurance companies and never go near a courtroom.

Sometimes it is better for the injured rider to reject an initial offer to settle as this strategy can result in a larger award.

Driver blind-spots, turning right and changing lanes

Drivers who fail to check their mirrors and blind spots when changing lanes or turning right risk colliding with motorcyclists and causing serious accidents.

The Highway Code states that before turning right or changing lanes, motorists should apply the 'mirror, signal, manoeuvre' method.

Drivers are required to:

  • Check their mirrors for other traffic
  • Signal their intention to change lanes or move right
  • Carry out the manoeuvre in a 'safe fashion'.

If a motorist fails to carry out these basic safety checks, the driver's negligence will endanger themselves and others.

A motorbike does not offer the rider any protection from these types of collision and the rider is only protected by their helmet and protective clothing.

If a motorist pulls out into the path of a motorbike and causes a collision that injures the rider, then it is very likely that the rider could make a personal injury claim.

Uninsured or untraceable drivers

If you have been injured in an accident with an untraced or uninsured driver, it is still possible to pursue a compensation claim via the 'Motor Insurers Bureau' or 'MIB'.

The MIB was set up to ensure that people injured in accidents with uninsured or untraceable drivers still have a route to fair and prompt compensation.

You do not need to engage the services of a personal injury solicitor to pursue a claim via the MIB - you can apply directly. However, many people pursue such claims through a solicitor as there are a number of benefits in doing so.  Call our MIB line on 0800 612 7456 for more information.

How we help injured motorcyclists

Quittance's solicitors have helped hundreds of injured motorcyclists to successfully claim compensation for injuries resulting from:

  • Negligent drivers
  • Defective, potholed and poorly maintained road surface accidents
  • Road spillages
  • Uninsured driver and hit and run incidents
  • Defective motorbikes
  • Defective safety wear including faulty helmets

Several of our solicitors are bikers themselves

Mark is one of our expert bike accident panel solicitors

The circumstances of a mororcycle accident are better understood by solictors with specialist experience in ths area.  A number of our solcitors have chosen to focus their legal careers on motorcycle accident claims.

As such we are used to dealing with typical insurance company tactics e.g. dealing with false accusations that the rider was speeding.

Choosing the right solicitor can have a dramatic impact on both the success of the claim and the amount of compensation awarded.

Making a no win, no fee motorcycle injury claim

A no win no fee contract (more correctly called a 'CFA' or 'Conditional Fee Agreement') is put in place between a claimant and their personal injury solicitor.

A no win no fee agreement sets out the conditions under which the solicitor acts for the claimant.

The contract details what the lawyer will do as well as how they will be rewarded if your legal case is successful.

With a Quittance solicitor for your motorcycle injury claim there are no additional costs in the terms and conditions, no up-front fees and the reassurance that you won't be out of pocket.

Road traffic accident case study

£30,000 awarded to pillion passenger on motorcycle View case study