How is motorcycle accident compensation calculated?
Written by Jayne Orme, Associate & Personal Injury Solicitor and Annmarie Miller, Trainee Solicitor.
Being involved in a motorcycle accident can have a devastating impact on you and your family. As well as the physical and psychological effects of the motorbike accident, there’s also the financial impact of being unable to work while you recover. Depending on your injuries, you might also have the cost of rehabilitation, and other unexpected costs.
Motorcycle accident compensation can help you as you navigate your recovery, enabling you to rebuild your life after injury.
Types of motorcycle accident compensation
When making a motorcycle accident claim, there are two categories of compensation: general and special damages.
General damages cover the compensation for the injury. The award covers pain, suffering and loss of amenity, e.g. to what extent the injuries affect the way you live your life.
Special damages cover the financial losses you may have incurred because of an accident. Common financial losses are: loss of earnings, motorcycle repairs, loss of use, damage to clothing and medical costs. The purpose is to put you in a position that you would have been in, if the accident hadn’t happened.
Special damages can also cover any rehabilitation costs or costs of adaptations you’re likely to need. We can include both past and future costs for rehabilitation, and adaptations as part of your claim.
How is compensation for my injuries calculated?
Compensation for your injuries will be based on Judicial College Guidelines and case law. Within the Judicial College Guidelines, each category of injury has specific guidance and a bracket for the level of compensation that’s recommended. Medical evidence will be used to help value this element of your claim.
How are general damages calculated?
The evidence we need to calculate your claim for loss of earnings will depend on whether you’re employed or self-employed.
If you’re employed, we’ll need wage slips from three-months prior to the accident, and wage slips from your time off work, which indicate the loss.
If you’re self-employed, we usually need profit and loss accounts, as well as tax returns from the last three years. We also ask for any invoices, receipts or details of contracts that may have been won or lost.
Can I claim compensation for my damaged motorbike and clothing?
Yes, you’re entitled to the pre-accident value of the damaged property, including your motorbike and clothing. There will usually be a deduction for depreciation based on the age of the item. If the property is brand new, then we expect to recover the full cost of the item.
In order to recover compensation for your damaged clothing, we require evidence of the loss. Usually this will be photographs of the damaged clothing, and the original invoice. If you don’t have the original invoice, we’ll need an idea of the replacement cost, such as a like-for-like quote from the internet.
Will a pre-existing condition affect my motorcycle accident claim?
Any pre-existing injuries will be taken into consideration when calculating your motorcycle accident compensation. For example, if you have pre-existing back pain, which is exacerbated in the accident, it will usually be for the medical experts to apportion injuries.
What if I was partly at fault for the motorbike accident?
Your solicitor will mediate with the defendant’s solicitor to divide the culpability (as a percentage) between the two of you. Your award’s reduction will be calculated using this percentage.
For example, if you were in a motorbike accident and suffered a head injury or neck injury, but you were riding negligently, you would be compensated 50% less if you were 50% to blame for your injuries.
Will any deductions be made from my motorcycle accident claim?
After the event insurance: in some cases, we take out after the event insurance at the start of the claim. If we take out an insurance policy, this will be deducted from any damages award you receive.
Success fee: If your claim is successful, a success fee is deducted from your compensation.
Motorcycle Accident Solicitors
As you can see, the amount of compensation you’ll receive for your motorcycle accident claim will depend on a range of factors, including the severity of your injuries, any losses you’ve experienced, as well as any adaptations or rehabilitation needed.
It’s important to remember that every serious injury case is different from the next. To talk through your claim, get in touch with our specialist solicitors on 0330 013 0248 or contact us online.