As you evaluate whether or not to file a lawsuit after a motorcycle accident, one of your largest questions might be how much you can expect from a North Carolina motorcycle accident settlement. The answer to that question is somewhat complicated because the factors of your accident will determine your potential settlement amount.
The best way to know how large your motorcycle accident settlement could be is to discuss the matter with a North Carolina motorcycle accident attorney. Your attorney will walk you through the various factors the courts use to determine a settlement to help give you an estimate.
Here’s a look at some of the factors that determine a motorcycle accident settlement.
Factors in determining North Carolina motorcycle accident settlements
Four main factors can help your attorney decide how large of a motorcycle accident settlement to seek. These factors include:
- Amount of insurance the at-fault party has. The state requires a minimum of $30,000 in bodily injury coverage per person involved in the accident. This number determines the maximum compensation that the insurance company is liable to pay out for your medical bills. Although $30,000 is the state minimum for bodily injury coverage, the at-fault driver could have a higher level of coverage than this in their policy.
- Evidence supporting your claims. For your attorney to be successful in winning your lawsuit and earning you a settlement, you’ll need to have supporting evidence for your claims. This includes medical documentation, witness statements, lost income calculations, the accident report, and any other relevant proof of your injuries and the at-fault party’s negligence in the matter.
- Whether or not you’re filing the claim within North Carolina’s statute of limitations. You must file a motorcycle accident lawsuit within three years of the accident date. Otherwise, the courts will likely throw out your case, unless there are extenuating circumstances.
- The skill of your North Carolina motorcycle accident attorney. Your attorney makes a huge difference in your case. The skill level of your attorney will factor into how large of a settlement you receive. Many motorcycle accident cases settle outside of court, meaning your attorney’s negotiation skills are crucial to securing a fair settlement. And if you do go to court, your attorney’s ability to build a compelling case and present the evidence will determine how large of a settlement the courts award you.
What can I seek payment or reimbursement for in my motorcycle accident settlement?
In addition to the four factors listed above that will affect your motorcycle accident settlement size, the actual financial damages you’ve experienced will also be a factor. Generally speaking, you can seek compensation for the following expenses associated with a motorcycle accident.
- Past and future medical bills from your injuries
- Permanent impairments, scarring, injury or disfigurement
- Lost wages from being unable to work or missing work due to medical appointments
- The motorcyclist’s contribution to the accident or the injuries for failure to wear protective gear, such as a helmet
- The time it takes for the motorcyclist to recover
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
There is no simple formula that determines the total settlement you’ll receive in your motorcycle lawsuit. That number could be anything from nothing up to several million. The upper end of this spectrum is rare because few people have that large of an insurance policy, though you do see it from time to time.
The best way to determine the potential size of your motorcycle accident settlement is to contact a North Carolina motorcycle accident attorney. Robert Louis Armstrong is a personal injury attorney who offers free case evaluations to help clients determine whether or not a motorcycle accident lawsuit is right for them. Contact us for a motorcycle accident case assessment and settlement estimate.