$465K Settlement for Husband & Wife Motorcycle Accident
DISCLAIMER: The results are specific to the facts and legal circumstances of each of the clients’ cases and should not be used to form an expectation that the same results could be obtained for other clients in similar matters without reference to the specific factual and legal circumstances of each client’s case.
Group ride ends in multiple motorcycles crashing when lead bike goes down unexpectedly. Our clients, husband and wife on same bike, were riding with a group of friends on Highway 8 near Ocean Shores. The lead rider went down in a turn unexpectedly after crossing the center line, causing a chain reaction which took out our clients’ bike who were following two bikes back.
The lead motorcycle crashed negligently because he crossed the center line without reason on a double yellow marked roadway. Our clients were following behind this bike, so the husband (who was driving the motorcycle) also had partial fault for following too closely. The wife had no fault since she was merely a passenger.
It’s surprising to people that a wife would have a legal claim against her husband in a motorcycle accident. But because she was a passenger and he was following too closely to be able to avoid the crash ahead, the husband had some fault in the collision.
The injuries to our clients after the accident were severe. The husband suffered a broken clavicle, broken shoulder blade, broken back, broken ribs, and a punctured lung. The broken back required spinal fusion surgery to stabilize his spine and prevent paralysis. The wife suffered a traumatic brain injury – TBI, a broken collar bone, low back nerve injury causing numbness in legs and feet, rib fractures and a punctured lung. The medical bills for both clients totaled over $500,000.
The lead motorcycle that caused the chain reaction accident had no insurance coverage. A potential financial nightmare given the astronomical amount of the medical bills. Fortunately, our clients had good health insurance and motorcycle insurance with Uninsured Motorist (UM) coverage.
Max was able to get a full policy limits settlement under their Uninsured Motorist in the amount of $300,000, which the husband and wife had to split among themselves. Max was also able to get the wife another $165,000 in a liability claim against her husband due to his partial fault in the accident.