Injured on a Motorcycle?

This article was first published November 5th, 2010. Some of the laws may have changed since this that date.

The number of motorcyclists on our busy roads and highways in the greater Orlando area has been increasing with each year as more people driving motorcycles as a recreational hobby or as their primary form of transportation. We see motorcyclists ranging from the young sport bikers who love zipping along the roads on their Japanese made bikes such as Yamaha, Kawasaki, Suzuki or Honda, to the more seasoned bikers driving their cruisers, usually from Harley-Davidson. In addition to the steady increase, our roads are flooded with bikers during the two weeks of Bike Week and Biketoberfest in Daytona Beach along with other smaller motorcycle festivals throughout the year in Orlando and Leesburg.

Unfortunately, with all of the motorcycles on the road at one time there is an increase in reported cases of motorcycle related injuries. Under Florida law there are differences if you are injured while operating a motorcycle or while riding as a passenger. Furthermore being injured while on a motorcycle is treated differently than being injured while a driver or passenger in an automobile.

What Motorcyclists Are Entitled To

For instance, if you are driving your automobile and you are injured in an auto-accident, you are entitled to $10,000 of Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage. PIP pays 80% of your accident related medical expenses and 60% of your gross wage loss as a result of you accident related injuries. However if you are driving a motorcycle or are a passenger on a motorcycle you are not entitled to PIP benefits as Florida law does not allow PIP coverage for motorcyclists. Fortunately, motorcyclists can purchase optional Medical Payment coverage which will cover their accident related medical expenses up to their policy limits.

Another example of this difference is if you are involved in an auto-accident with another automobile and both automobiles are properly insured under Florida’s law then the injured driver or passenger must have sustained a permanent injury within a reasonable degree of medical probability in order to recover non-economic damages which are known as pain and suffering damages from the at fault drivers insurance coverage. However if you are a motorcyclist or a passenger on a motorcycle you do not have to meet the burden of sustaining a permanent injury within a reasonable degree of medical probability in order to recover for pain and suffering damages. The rule is if you do not receive the benefits of PIP you do not have the burden of meeting the permanent injury threshold in order to recover pain and suffering damages.

Have You Been Injured On A Motorcycle?

If you are a motorcyclist who has been injured due to the negligence of another driver please call The Umansky Law Firm today at 407-228-3838.