Some of the most serious accidents on Florida roadways involve motorcycles. When struck by another vehicle, riders and their passengers suffer severe injuries that can leave them disabled for life. While victims in motorbike collisions have a right to seek compensation like any other motorist on the road, their recovery of these damages depends on holding the at-fault party liable. This outcome is challenging when a vehicle strikes a motorcycle and then drives away without waiting for the police to arrive.
Hit-and-run accidents reached a staggering 105,000 in 2019, according to the Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles Department (FHSMV). State law makes it clear that fleeing the scene of an accident when there is property damage, injuries, or death constitutes a first-degree felony. The question is, though, how do motorcyclists who are the victim of a hit-and-run crash get personal injury compensation? Unfortunately, the answer is a complicated one.
Strategies to Recover Compensation After a Motorcycle Hit-and-Run Accident
If a negligent driver hits you while you’re riding your motorcycle and then flees the scene, you may have anxiety about how you will be able to afford the cost of medical bills, recover lost wages, or even return to work. Without knowing the at-fault driver’s identity, the type of motorcycle and automobile insurance coverage you carry will play a large part in what compensation you may be able to receive.
Florida does not mandate that motorcyclists carry personal injury protection (PIP) coverage on their insurance policy as it requires for automobiles. However, a motorcyclist may elect to purchase medical payments coverage for their bikes. This type of coverage will reimburse you for any medical treatments and transportation costs you incur as a result of the motorcycle collision. If your expenses exceed the limits of your medical payments coverage, then you may need to rely on other types of coverages you may have purchased on your insurance policy.
One such coverage type is an uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage on your policy. This supplemental insurance is available as an add-on to most automobile and motorcycle insurance policies for an additional premium. This type of coverage may allow you to be compensated for injuries sustained in hit-and-run crashes because the at-fault party will be deemed a phantom vehicle, and thus an uninsured motorist. An experienced motorcycle accident attorney will play a crucial role in this aspect since witness statements and other evidence may be necessary to convince the insurer it was a hit-and-run collision and that you were not responsible for your own injuries.
Reasons Why Drivers Commit Hit-and-Run Accidents
The idea of simply driving away from an accident seems unfathomable for many of us. Still, we have to ask why does it happen? From personal issues that cause a fear of legal repercussions to just not being conscientious, the reasons behind someone committing a hit-and-run range widely.
Here are some examples of reasons why an at-fault party may flee the scene of a motorcycle accident:
- Driving with a suspended license;
- Not carrying auto insurance or driving with a lapsed policy;
- Operating under the influence of drugs or alcohol;
- Hiding illegal weapons, narcotics, or similar contraband in their vehicle; or
- Attempting to avoid arrest on an outstanding warrant.
The irony of drivers committing hit-and-runs is that their punishment becomes much harsher if they are found after the hit-and-run despite all their fears of the initial arrest. Evading their responsibility rarely succeeds in today’s age of smart technology. With cameras routinely posted on storefronts and law enforcement utilizing red light camera technology, accident victims frequently succeed in locating the responsible party and pursuing a successful personal injury claim.
What Compensation You May Recover After a Hit-and-Run
Attorney Frank P. Marsalisi puts his over ten years of motorcycle personal injury case experience to work when representing motorcycle riders and their families. Not only will he ensure your claim gets the attention it deserves from the insurance company, but he will also make sure you get the compensation you deserve, including:
- Lost wages;
- Medical bills;
- Transportation costs to appointments;
- Damages for lost ability to work;
- Property damage; and
- Pain and suffering.
Contact a Skilled Motorcycle Attorney After Your Hit-and-Run Accident
If you are the victim of a hit-and-run motorcycle accident or a loved one suffers catastrophic injury because of such circumstances, hiring experienced motorcycle accident Attorney Frank P. Marsalisi is a critical first step. Our firm has helped thousands of motorbike enthusiasts recover compensation after a negligent driver has struck them and fled the scene.
As a proud member of the Tampa Bay Trial Lawyers Association, Mr. Marsalisi has consistently succeeded in helping his clients get the personal injury payout they need to begin fully recovering from the traumatic experience of a hit-and-run motorcycle accident. Our law firm is fluent in English and Spanish, allowing you to communicate your questions and get the answers you need. Contact our office online today or call (727) 800-5052 for a free case evaluation to learn what your rights are and how we can help you.
Marsalisi Law is Where Law Gets Personal!