Did you know that motorcyclists are 29 times more likely to be involved in an accident than the driver of a passenger vehicle when they drive the same number of miles?
Further, riders don’t have the benefit of being encapsulated in a protective layer of steel and aluminum, making them even more susceptible to serious injury. You may then be wondering what an injured rider can expect to receive by way of compensation for a motorcycle accident.
Every incident is different, but we will share some statistics about average payouts in this article.
Average Payout for Motorcycle Accidents
There are several variables that affect how much an accident victim can receive in financial compensation for a motorcycle injury. On average, however, the figure is approximately $70,000 to $80,000, though there can be settlements that reach the six and seven-figure mark.
What Affects the Amount of a Motorcycle Accident Payout?
In determining the payout, an insurance company or court will evaluate the specific injury and how it affects the victim’s lifestyle, the financial impact of the accident, pain and suffering, and even punitive damages in some instances.
Type and Extent of Injury
There are infinite combinations of injuries that can occur in a motorcycle accident. The most common include:
- Head injuries such as concussions, cracked skulls, and damage to the brain
- Spinal cord injuries (including paralysis)
- Skin afflictions such as road rash
- Arm and leg injuries
- Chest injuries
- Internal bleeding
The amount of the payout will be influenced by how severe the injury is, which can be calculated based on objective factors such as medical bills and lost wages, as well as subjective factors like pain and suffering.
Any motorcycle accident payout should include compensation for lost wages and medical bills, if applicable.
Calculating lost wages is typically straightforward and includes accessing the person’s pay stubs or other records that indicate compensation. There can be some debate about how long a victim will be unable to work and whether they’ll be able to return to their same career and at full capacity. These issues can affect the payout.
Medical bills are another objective measure, but some subjectivity can still exist if medical providers have conflicting opinions about the right course of treatment and the recovery time.
Further, depending on the extent of the injury, there could be long-term accommodations required for the victim, such as:
- Training for a new career
- Long-term physical therapy or rehabilitation
- Home health care
- Home renovations to accommodate a new lifestyle
- Modifications to a vehicle for victims using a wheelchair or other equipment
Pain and Suffering
This figure can be difficult to calculate because it’s not based on compensating someone for a financial loss. Instead, the goal is to compensate a victim for having the painful and uncomfortable experience that the accident caused. If not for the accident, the victim would not have suffered.
Pain and suffering can include compensation for dealing with painful procedures as well as emotional trauma, stress, PTSD, depression, disfigurement, and more. An attorney may argue for higher pain and suffering compensation if your life is permanently affected by the accident.
Punitive damages may be awarded at trial to “punish” the party who was negligent and caused the accident. In addition to serving as a punishment, punitive damages are meant to hopefully deter others from acting recklessly in the future.
Punitive damages are added to the total settlement amount and may be a multiple of total damages. Though the compensation in this area can be substantial, seeking punitive damages can be risky because it involves taking your case to trial.
Reaching a Fair Settlement for a Motorcycle Accident
We understand that the immediate days, weeks, and months following a motorcycle accident can be physically and emotionally trying times for you and your loved ones. The team at Law Tigers are passionate motorcyclists dedicated to helping other riders recover after an accident. Reach out to us for a free consultation.