If a motorcycle injury has set you back, we'll help you move forward
Motorcycle accidents can be devastating, both physically and financially. If you or a loved one has been involved in a motorcycle, scooter or moped accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries.
In this article, we will explain the process of starting a motorcycle accident compensation claim, including what types of compensation may be available, who may be liable for your losses, and what steps you should take to pursue a claim.
Whether you are a motorcycle rider, a passenger, or a pedestrian who has been hit by a motorcycle, understanding your rights and options can help you navigate the legal system and recover the compensation you deserve.
In this article
You are not alone
If you've been injured on a motorcycle, you're not alone. With over over 1.2m motorbikes registered in the UK, accidents are still a relatively common occurrence, and there's support and guidance available to help you through this challenging time.
Motorbikes account for 1% of UK traffic, but 19.5% of fatal road accidents involve a motorcycle, moped or scooter.
According to the latest data available in 2023 published by the Department of Transport, 310 motorcyclists were killed, 5,264 were seriously injured, and 10,264 were slightly injured on UK roads in 2021.
Safety data does, however, suggest a positive trend as although motorcyclist fatalities increased by 9% in 2020 and 2021, motorcyclist traffic actually grew by 17%.
Nearly 40% of motorbike, moped and scooter accidents involve a collision with a car.
What if the other driver was uninsured or untraceable?
If the driver responsible for the injury is either uninsured or untraceable, a claim can be pursued through the Motor Insurers' Bureau (MIB).
The MIB is an independent body that pays road accident compensation to the victims of uninsured or untraced (unidentified) drivers.
What if a child was injured?
The 3 year rule does not apply to minors.
A claim can be pursued for anyone under the age of 18 by a parent, guardian or litigation friend. The injured child has up to the age of 21 to start an injury claim on their own behalf.
How much compensation can I claim for a motorcycle accident injury?
The amount of money you could claim for your injury will depend on:
- the seriousness of your injury, and
- any financial losses or costs you have incurred.
At the start of your claim, your solicitor will consider the many ways your injuries have affected your life. Your solicitor will take these considerations into account to calculate the correct compensation award.
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General damages are awarded for pain, suffering and loss of amenity (PSLA).
Awards for general damages are set by the Judicial College and published in their guidelines for personal injury awards.
Special damages are for financial losses and expenses you have incurred because of your accident. In addition to paying for loss of earnings, motorbike damage and repairs, helmet and safety equipment, special damages can cover any care costs and medical procedures you need, such as pain medication and physical therapy.
Road accidents and psychiatric health
Road accidents are often unexpected, shocking events that leave lasting psychological effects.
Our 2023 Road Injury Claimant Survey highlights how common psychiatric injuries are, with 32.47% of road accident claims involving psychological harm. 78.53% of these were also associated with a physical injury.
Claiming general damages for mental and emotional distress can help provide access to mental health care and therapies, some of which might not be available through the NHS.
Our compensation calculator can estimate your compensation for psychological injuries. Or you can call us on 0800 376 1001 to speak to a specialist advisor.
How long does a motorbike injury claim take?
A straightforward uncontested road accident claim could settle in a few weeks. If liability is denied, the process might take substantially longer.
Typically road accident claims take between 4 and 9 months.
What if I was injured as a passenger on a motorbike (pillion)?
If you sustained an injury whilst riding pillion on a motorbike, scooter or moped, a compensation claim may be possible.
Motorcyclists have a duty of care for the safety of passengers, but passengers must also minimise any risks.
The accident was the fault of the rider
There are various considerations for a motorcyclists to take into account when carrying a passenger.
The rider should take into account how a pillion passenger changes the way a bike handles and balances. The bike's suspension and braking performance will also be affected by the additional weight.
- The bike must have an adequate pillion seat.
- Motorcyclists without a full motorbike licence may not carry a pillion passenger.
- Passengers must be provided with a BSA approved helmet.
Passengers are sometimes reluctant to pursue a claim as they are likely to know the rider. If the accident was the fault of the rider, a claim would be pursued through the rider's insurance company, rather than the rider themselves.
The accident was the fault of the passenger
Collisions sometimes occur when a passenger does something to cause the rider to lose control. However, passengers are not usually at fault for motorcycle accidents accident.
The accident was the fault of another road user
If the accident was the fault of a third party, a claim would be pursued through the third party's insurer.
Solicitors who understand the issues
Choosing an experienced motorcycle accident claims solicitor can have a dramatic impact on both the success of the claim and on the compensation award.
Given the severity of many motorbike accidents, treatment and rehabilitation can be a lengthy process.
Motorcycle accidents are better understood by solicitors with specialist experience.
Our experience means that your solicitor will be used to dealing with typical insurance company tactics, such as dealing with false accusations that the rider was speeding.
Claiming injury compensation with a solicitor
Your solicitor will ask you about how the road accident happened, and they will collect evidence to prove what caused your injuries. Your solicitor will also work out how much money you can claim, based on your injuries, lost earnings and other expenses.
By law, all drivers must have insurance to cover the cost of injury compensation claims. Even if you were injured by an uninsured or untraceable road user, a claim may still be possible.
We can help you make a motorbike accident claim on a No Win No Fee basis.
How we can help you with your road accident claim
Your solicitor will fight for the best possible compensation settlement for you, and the highly-experienced panel of solicitors have an excellent track record of winning road accident claims.
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If you have any questions, or would like to start a No Win No Fee road accident claim, we are open:
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Why do most claims never go to court?
Solicitors settle the vast majority of claims out of court.
Around 2% of motorcycle injury claims go to court. Generally, only very complex cases, or those where liability cannot be resolved, end up in court.
Cases that do ultimately go to court are decided by a judge or magistrate, not a jury.
Even if the claim does go to court, it is very unlikely you will have to attend.
Can I claim for someone else?
Yes. In certain circumstances, it is possible to claim compensation on behalf of another person in the capacity of a 'litigation friend'.
If an injured person is either too young or vulnerable, too injured or otherwise unable to claim on their own behalf, their litigation friend can handle the claim process on behalf of the injured person.
The litigation friend will be responsible for communicating with the solicitors, and for making decisions in respect of the claim.
Can I claim if I feel I was partly responsible for my accident?
Yes. You may still be able to claim compensation even if your actions may have contributed to the accident.
However, if you were partly to blame (known as contributory negligence), your compensation may be reduced and it may be more difficult to prove liability.
How long do I have to make an injury claim?
In general, you have a time limit of up to 3 years from the date of the injury to make an injury claim.
The last date you can make a claim is known as the claim limitation date - after which your injury claim becomes 'statute barred'.
Can I claim for an injury after 3 years?
Possibly. The general rule for adults is that a claim must be started within three years.
However, the three-year countdown starts on the day you learned of your injury or illness. This will usually be the date of the accident, but could be the date your doctor gave you a diagnosis.
If you were injured as a child, you do have up until your 21st birthday to make a claim.
There other circumstances that can also impact the limitation date. Call us now on 0800 376 1001 to find out if you are still able to claim injury compensation.
In reality, there are a number of factors that can affect whether a car accident claim will be taken on by a solicitor.
Do I need to visit a solicitor's office?
There's no need to visit your solicitor's office in person if you are thinking about making a motorcycle injury claim.
You can talk to a legally-trained advisor about your accident or injury, before you choose to start a claim.
Once you do start your claim, a road accident solicitor will take you through each step. Your lawyer will be with you throughout the process, from your initial questions to the day you recieve your compensation.
I need the money now - what are my options?
If you are unable to work and have bills to pay, you may be able to claim an interim compensation payment.
An interim payment is an advance on your compensation payment. Any amount you receive in interim payments would be deducted from your final compensation payment.
Gaynor Haliday, Legal researcher
About the author
Gaynor Haliday is an experienced legal researcher and published author. She has had numerous articles published in the press and is a legal industry commentator.