Brain injuries represent one of the costliest harms anyone can experience following a motorcycle accident. The financial and day-to-day toll they take is extraordinary. These cases below should give you an indication of how Illinois motorcycle accidents involving brain injuries play out in litigation or via a settlement with an insurance company.
While the cases below may provide some background regarding how insurance carriers and juries evaluate motorcycle injury cases, the truth is that each case is unique. The facts and parties involved in motorcycle crash cases play into the value of each case. Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers is experienced with motorcycle injury cases in Illinois. Contact our office for a free consultation to determine the value of your case.
BUTLER VS. BEEGLE; JO DAVIESS COUNTY; $500,000 SETTLEMENT
In this unique incident, the plaintiff was on his motorcycle riding along a country road when he came upon a group of livestock. Unfortunately, he did not possess adequate time or space to avoid colliding into some of the animals, and the force of the crash sent him off his bike.
He sustained injuries to his brain and spine that eventually resulted in paraplegia. He sued the owner of the animals for negligence for failure to control his livestock and to prevent the accident. The owner shot back that the plaintiff’s injuries were exaggerated and, in any event, the motorcyclist was responsible for the crash in the first place. Eventually, both sides decided to settle for $500,000.
SHREVE VS. SWALEC; COOK COUNTY; $3,209,000 JURY AWARD
In this case, a motorcyclist, Larry Shreve, was driving down a road when a Verizon truck attempted to turn left into a driveway right in front of Shreve. Unfortunately, before the truck driver could do that, both crashed into each other.
The incident left Shreve with significant brain damage. He sued the truck driver as well as the driver’s employer, Verizon North Incorporated. Interestingly, the defendants both agreed the truck driver was negligent and that his negligence caused the plaintiff’s injuries, but they both denied the extent of the plaintiff’s claimed injuries.
However, their arguments in court were not valid with the jury because they returned a $3,209,000 award for Shreve for pain and suffering, emotional distress, disfigurement, medical bills, and loss of ordinary life.
BIDINGER VS. COLLINS; KANE COUNTY; $100,000 SETTLEMENT
This complicated incident involved a motorcycle that collided with a car. The car attempted to make a left turn into the lane of the motorcycle but did not leave enough time for the latter to pass by before running into it.
The plaintiff was a passenger on the motorcycle and was thrown off the bike and into a metal sign following the injury. She claimed she suffered a closed head injury as a result of the accident and sued both drivers as well as the owner of the sign.
Her lawsuit contended that the drivers were negligent in not slowing down and staying alert; also, it argued that the sign owner created a dangerous condition by not removing it at the urging of the local authorities. This case did not last long in court, however, as all sides agreed to short-circuit the litigation in favor of a settlement of $100,000.
HILL VS. J.M. IRRIGATIONS INC.; COOK COUNTY; $5,750,000 SETTLEMENT
The defendant driver, in this case, turned left right into the plaintiff as he was driving his motorcycle. The crash left the victim with a severe head injury as well as foot, hand, and pelvic pains.
He sued the driver as well as the driver’s employer under a vicarious liability theory. At trial, he not only claimed damages in the form of medical bills, pain and suffering, and reduced quality of life but also that the incident left him unable to attend work.
To this point, he brought expert economic testimony to project his loss in earnings due to the incident. After this strong showing and faced with his already significant brain injuries, the defendants offered to settle at $5,750,000.
MCCLOUD VS. GOODYEAR; COOK COUNTY; $15,000,000 JURY AWARD
In this products liability case, a motorcyclist sued the manufacturer of the tires she had on her bike when they gave out, and the malfunction led to her being thrown to the ground of an interstate highway. The force of the fall inflicted her with an extreme head injury and required around-the-clock medical attention for the rest of her life.
In her lawsuit against the manufacturers, she claimed the tires were not fit for their intended use as manufactured and distributed. To the contrary, the defense countered that the tires were fine but that the plaintiff did not correctly fill them with air before departing. As such, they refused any liability. The jury disagreed and awarded her $15,000,000 for pain and suffering and other damages.
VITHA VS. STAPLES; MCHENRY COUNTY; $151,000 JURY AWARD
The plaintiff, in this case, got hit head-on as he drove his motorcycle down a busy public street when the defendant’s vehicle tried to make a left turn into his lane.
Among other injuries, he claimed the incident left him with significant head and lumbar pains. The defendant not only denied liability but also contended that the plaintiff was exaggerated his injuries. The jury returned a $151,000 award for the plaintiff for medical bills, pain and suffering, and other damages.
Do You Need Assistance With an Illinois Motorcycle Case?
No one can ever anticipate getting involved in a motorcycle accident. At Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, our office is staffed with attorneys and accident investigators who can be quickly deployed to investigate your case. Our track record winning compensation for injured motorcyclists is second to none. Contact our office today for a free case review.