Serious Motorcycle Accident Injury Trial Concludes With Award of $23.7 Million

Home » Serious Motorcycle Accident Injury Trial Concludes With Award of $23.7 Million
October 27, 2021
Edward Smith

Trial in Accident Between Truck and Motorcyclist Concludes

A serious motorcycle accident in Southern California where a rider required amputation of his lower leg has concluded with an award of  $23.7 million in damages to the injured rider. The accident occurred on December 5, 2017, when the plaintiff was heading southbound along Coldwater Canyon at its intersection with Ventura Boulevard, where he was planning to turn on his motorcycle. At that same time, an employee with an industrial supply company, who was driving a 28-foot utility truck, was waiting to make a left turn onto Coldwater Canyon northbound. 

How the Motorcycle Accident Occurred

As the motorcycle rider went straight through the T-intersection at Coldwater and Valleyheart Drive, the trucker attempted his turn and struck the motorcycle. The motorcyclist retained control of his bike but was overcome with severe pain following the motorcycle accident and laid it down on the pavement. Upon the arrival of paramedics, the rider was taken to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. 

Biker Suffers Extensive Injuries in the Motorcycle Accident

The injuries suffered by the motorcyclist were extensive and included a stress fracture and dislocation of the talus as well as crush injuries, fractures, and dislocations in his right foot. Although many surgeries were performed to attempt to save the rider’s lower limb, eight days after the motorcycle accident, it was amputated below the knee after he had been transferred to Huntington Hospital.

Motorcycle Rider Tries to Return to Work

The motorcyclist received a prosthesis in June 2018 and later tried to go back to work where he worked in a  hotel’s housekeeping department. However, an infection in the leg shortly afterward once again required that he be hospitalized and undergo additional surgery connected with his motorcycle accident injuries. Once again, he attempted to go back to work but found it difficult due to his disability and pain. Although physicians testified that the plaintiff should not be performing his job, he did so anyway in order to provide support for his wife and his three children, who were minors.

Defendants Argue That the Motorcycle Rider Was at Fault

Defendants in the case tried to shift blame for the accident onto the motorcyclist (the plaintiff) by saying his speed contributed to the collision. In addition, they disputed his claim for the loss of earnings in the future because he had returned to work. The defendants’ lawyers also disputed the cost and nature of medical care he would need in the future as well as household services.

Rider Awarded Millions for His Injuries

The bench trial lasted for nine days, after which the judge found the defendants held 100 percent of the fault for the accident. The plaintiff was awarded general damages of $18 million and economic damages of $4,520,996. His wife received an award of $1,200,000 for her loss of consortium.

Judge Explains His Decision for Awarding Substantial Damages

As the judge read his decision, he stated that the plaintiff had suffered a traumatic injury compounded by numerous surgeries, including revision and amputation, which was long, difficult, and painful. He also stated that the trauma from the plaintiff’s serious accident extended to his mental state, which continues, and awarded the motorcyclist $6 million in non-economic damages. The judge also awarded an additional $12 million for future pain and suffering.

Defending an Injured Motorcyclist in a Civil Court Case

When a rider suffers a serious injury in a motorcycle accident, it isn’t unusual for the defense to try and point the blame away from their own client. Because motorcyclists often suffer serious trauma such as amputations, a shattered pelvis, spinal cord damage, and others, it is important that they receive fair compensation to pay their outstanding medical costs and for their lost wages and pain and suffering.

At, we know how to counter-arguments that target motorcyclists to get you the compensation you deserve. We are honored to have successfully handled many such cases. This is because we know how difficult it is to go ahead with your life after suffering a serious injury and believe you should not also have to bear the financial burden as well.

Sacramento Motorcycle Accident Attorney

I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento motorcycle accident attorney. When you’ve suffered an injury caused by a negligent trucker or the company that employs them, you might benefit from legal advice about whether you can file a claim to recover damages. Contact us for our free and friendly advice at (916) 921-6400 or (800) 404-5400. You can also reach us online.

Our injury attorneys have helped Northern Californians get the compensation they deserve since 1982 in all varieties of traffic collisions, motorcycle accidents, wrongful deaths, and other cases.

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Photo attribution: Image by Albrecht Fietz from Pixabay 

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