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miSta's motorcycle accident... what to do now?

Discussion in 'General Motorcycling Discussion' started by mista, Feb 17, 2008.

  1. 6 months on, and i'm getting better n better. from almost not being here to now feeling 80% its been slow (for me anyways). for those that don't know, i had a major 'off' back on the 25th august 2007 due to a car hitting me from behind after i overtook it in the adelaide foothills (anstey hill, vista), shunting me at over 100kmph causing me to lose control and wreck myself and my motorcycle... but the car kept goin n did a runner. *swears under his breath*.

    6 months on and its been a struggle trying to get the story straightened out. no my bike wasnt insured, i spent 2 nights in hospital (dont remember anything from lying down on the side of the road until i woke in a hospital bed more than 6 hours later) got discharged and slept for 20hrs a day for a month or more (i was NOT well). over my recovery time, from feeling like i was drunk 24/7, to having a memory like a sivve, dosed up on painkillers 24/7, visiting the docs and physio, specialists, etc i have been trying to get the police report straight, which involes also 'the nominal defendant' 'insurance' 'private investigator' and of course the police.

    3 months from my accident is when i actually had contact with reporting officer on the scene of my accident after many times of trying to sort this mess out.

    reporting officer on scene did NOT gather any evidence, nor investigate the accident scene properly, nor got 'proper statements' from the witnesses (a vehicle saw it all, and stopped to assist me, then so did my father). the reporting officer on scene stated in the police report that 'motorcyclist due to error, missed the corner and crashed on own accord' which is total and utter bullsHHHt. and i am still disputing that to this day (and its been a LONG haul for me... and still is). the police did not want to take a statement from me, nor follow up anything regarding my accident. as far as anyone was concerned, it was 100% my fault, but it was NOT, which in fact IF the police did their job properly, i would be in a totally different situation as i am in currently.

    proceeding the police report, i lodged insurance forms and stated EXACTLY as what DID happen, and the whole truth of the matter. upon this 'discrepency' between my statement that was put forth to the insurance company and the police report, i then got contacted by a private investigator to interview me (which i was VERY pleased about, as noone since the accident contacted me, so i could have 'my say' and on record).

    the interview took close to 2 hours, in which the investigator asked question after question, and asked the same question at least 10 times each in different ways... i told him how it was, what i remember, what i dont, etc... he could see i wasnt lying, and telling the whole truth. this was voice recorded, documents supplied, took photographs of the motorcycle (as it has NOT been touched since my accident), photos of my smashed helmet, gloves, and jacket.

    next after that, i recieve a letter in the mail from the 'nominal defendants' reguarding 'can you please calculate your loss of wages since the accident as you have had considerable amount off work'. in the process of doing this, roughly a week later i recieve another letter containing 'sorry but your claim has been denied' and if unhappy to seek professional help... lawyer.

    so... now im upto the lawyer stage... contacted one 'injury specialist' lawyer, told the story n they basically told me to 'not even bother' because the police report is against me. i quickly got rid of them and got another lawyer. i stated my case, gave all paperwork required my lawyer wrote up a report... now the ball is in my court.

    in order to proceed with fighting my battle to be compensated for injuries, loss of wages and even replacement motorcycle cost i must firstly hire a 'proper' accident investigator which will cost myself roughly $3000 from my own expenses.... now... thing is... i have been off work for the last 6months, on centrelink disability payments (which is f.a) and to come up with $3000 for this is.... not gonna be easy. and even then from what the lawyer stated to me after the fact of doing all this, he is not sure what sort of settlement i would recieve if... yes IF i won the case. yes i DO have a case, lawyer stated that, but at the end of it if indeed i did win, what compensations would i recieve (something fair is all im wanting).

    my question to all is.... what would you do in my situation?

    i have been constantly stressed and depressed over this matter as NOONE is willing to listen to my story and im fed up... i am out of pocket on my wages, my health has suffered bigtime, and i am also without transport.

    on a good note 'i am starting a new job this week' to try and get back on my feet (and money for myself), yes i am still recovering (my employer knows this), but i AM making the effort to get back up, and get back on a bike... this is my first step back to independence. i still have ALOT of neck aches/pains/trouble, and also memory problems, but i hope in time that i make a full recovery.

    for those of you that have just read all this... i thank you... if you are going to make a comment, please let it be a truthful one, and not a derogatory 'go' at me.

    -mR :)
  2. Man that sucks, and the worst part is the Police didn't even believe you. :evil:
  3. You have my sympathy mR, l had neg driving charge after hiiting a roo, I wanted to fight it but gave up in the end. It was more damaging to my health than the actual accident. Good luck if you do go ahead
  4. Jason dont forget i have the photo on my phone still if ya need it of the sign

    Good to see your feeling better dude :cool:
  5. Jesus mate, sounds like you have had a terrible run with this. If i was you I would try to figure out which one would put you in a better financial standing in the end and go for that. I know it sounds a bit vague but its what I would do. 3k doesn't sound like much of an investment to get possibly a lot more.

    All in all it sounds like you got the bad end of things but look on the bright side, you can still walk, talk and ride!

    Goodluck in the future!
  6. fukin shit luck mate. good luck with it.
  7. So you have to pay $3000 for the investigator, but what for the lawyer? If it's a defined amount like $3000, and I felt I could get the funds together some how, I'd probably go for it... just because you've done so much already, might as well finish it. I get stubborn like that. But if it could be ongoing and you have to keep paying and paying who knows how much... I doubt I'd start it unless the lawyer was super confident.
  8. you need to find the car that saw it, at any cost. you are fuked without it as a witness.
  9. Bad luck on top of bad luck :cry:

    Everything is against you and you don't have the power or money to make it right.. If you are on centrelink disability payments, why don't you get LegalAid and just rock up at a court with no extra evidence etc, tell your story to a judge and let them do whatever they are good for doing.. and then ,regardless of the outcome, move on...

    But before that, go and find that cop and tell him that you wish his kids won't be involved on a hit and run and then have a cop pass them by, without giving them a hand... Let him know that he did you wrong...
  10. my lawyers charge is 125% (inflated 25% of their normal charge).... no win, no fee (but the $3000 + other expenses.. the police report, documents, etc will be out of my pocket). if i end up winning (and if/when this all goes ahead i HOPE i win, and WIN BIG) ALL costs to me will be compensated back in my pocket.

    my lawyer is unsure of what percentage of blame will be on my part as i 'overtook' this vehicle. but even so, as i was overtaking it, the vehicle sped up for whatever reason, so i had to speed up even more (as there was a r/hand blind corner coming up quicker that i would like), and i chose to speed up and get back in, rather than slam the brakes, risk losing control myself, and/or having a head on with something coming around that blind corner. in my quick judgement, i think i completely DID the RIGHT thing in that situation. if the vehicle stayed at the pace (under 80kph) when i over took it i would have been fine, rather than speed up and then shunt me off the road. but no matter, on my part there is a 'percentage of blame' for being a motorist on the road. depending on that percentage of blame is what percentage compensation i will get. which is unknown until a proper accident investigation is done.

    as for being able to walk and talk. yes i am VERY VERY VERY lucky, as the hospital and docs all said i'm very lucky to be walking at all. like i said, it has been a struggle, but im eager to get my life back on track and eventually jump back on a nice new bike and go riding once again.

    but now i just want my livelihood back.

  11. Hey miSta,

    Keep in mind all the following is related to what I dealt with under NSW law so may not be exactly applicable for you.

    Has your lawyer given you a schedule of costs to sign? This lays out exactly what fees/costs/disbursements etc you can expect to pay. It also includes approximate fees vs win amount estimations (i.e. what you can expect to shell out for lawyers and _some_ associated costs for differing levels of $ won - if you win) as well as estimations of costs if you lose. Keep in mind that even if your lawyer is "no win no fee" you may still be up for a lot of $: firstly in legal costs during the battle (various silly expenses here... for instance I saw one law firm charging $1.00 per 60Kb of electronic correspondence for any email etc related to your case). Secondly for the other party's fees. If you lose you will likely be forced to pay their legal costs (even if "they" is an insurance company etc... am not 100% clear on who you're going against here as you've not identified the other party).

    In some cases the fees your lawyer charges may be more than any payout you win. This is especially the case if you end up with partial blame and thus only a percentage of the payout.

    Ultimately only you can decide if the legal process is worth it. While thankfully I neither needed nor wanted legal process as part of my accident, the documents provided to me by the Sydney law firm the hospital arranged were scary indeed. You can get into serious debt if you go down this path and lose. Also at least in NSW, Personal Injury payouts are (as far as I can remember) capped.

    If you do decide to go ahead I'd get your law firm to provide in writing a commitment that all costs you incurred during the case are refunded from any payout _before_ their fees are taken out. Furthermore I'd be after a written guarentee of the maximum percentage they will take from your win fee (fat chance of this but try anyway). And finally try for a written commitment to spend up to a maximum of $X in costs before requiring further written permission from yourself.

    In general, the more written material they can give you the better.
  12. Thats a REALLY rough story. I bet you'd give anything to meet the person who did this to you! Best wishes and good luck mate!
  13. PM me your contact details. I'll see what I can manage with my SA contacts (include your email as I can't PM back owing to some weird crap from the admins here)
  14. I felt for you when I first read your story, and still do.

    May you recover fully and get on with a succesful life.

    The following is what I believe - I am not intending in any way to "have a go" at you.

    If you are accurately reporting what your lawyer has said I would almost get another lawyer, or better still, drop the case.

    You made a serious error of misjudgment, contrary to traffic rules and common sense. To me (and possibly to anyone who hears the case) it appears as if you might have been playing racing at the time, and while the other vehicle has, at the very least, not backed off to help you pass, and at the very worst has rammed you, the onus is on you to overtake with safety.

    Since no witnesses have come forward to support you and there seems to be no evidence that the police will accept as showing a collision from behind, your lawyer would, if he was honest, say, "You have zero chance of winning anything. However, I'll give it a go on your behalf, but it will be costly."

    Even if the following car made contact with you deliberately, their defense could simply be that you gave them no time to brake.

    There have been some big wins in recent times, including several in close proximity to where I live, where people who acted foolishly (like diving into a river and hitting a submerged object) still won massive compensation claims against a local authority. Your best chance is to find someone with that sort of ability to fight for you, if you wish to persist.

    The alternative is simply to acknowledge that you made a foolish mistake which cost you far more than maybe you deserved, but for which there will be no compensation. Sometimes that, and determination, is all damaged people need to get on with a fruitful life.

    All the best whichever way you go

    Trevor G
  15. might be a good case o write a letter to something like ACA or todaytonight. would love to hear a story like this, about a rider getting screwed just because he rides a bike. if this was a car it would never have happened. its a case of a rider being treated as a second class citizen cause he chooses to ride a motorcycle.

    sorry to hear about your problems mate. all the best with getting it sorted. im pig headed, id be fighting it to the end. maybe if you can describe the person in the car that saw it, write to the papers and see if they will run it for you to help.the witness will really make your claim easier.
  16. hey trevor, thanks for your concern, and yes i totally understand the 'onus' on my part, overtaking within a safe distance and what not.... in my judgment i did have plenty of time to overtake safe and pull back in before the corner. i didnt expect the car to speed up as i was doing so... and NO i was not racing at the time, the witnesses behind (the 1st vehicle i overtook) can vouch for that. i was fortunate not to have a head on collision, yet unfortunate for that car to shunt me off the road.i use to treat all other road users as 'idiots', now i treat them as 'felons'.

    btw, yes there were witnesses, but unfortunately when i pulled back in front of the car (the bike is smaller than a car) all they saw was my bike launch off the side of the road.. their words 'by the way the bike left the road it looked like it was hit', yet the police forced the witness to either black or white... yes you did see the collision, or no.

    'say i didn't get hit'... why didn't the car i overtook stop to assist in the accident? any humane person would.

    plus my rear tail light and pillion seat were found over 10m back down the road at the initial collision point, along way from where my motorcycle ended up. yet the police never noted that in their report either.

    my case is very difficult, but i want justice... i aint greedy, i just want my life back.. and to be compensated for my losses.. ALL my losses.

    at the accident no one had the rego number but after the accident my father went for a ride up the same place the following weekend and saw the car, followed it safely through the hills (he was driving crazy, passing double white lines through blind corners etc) and took down the registration. it was the same vehicle i described after my accident, it was a small silver hatchback with a globe sticker on the back window.. i do know the registration number also. but not posting it here. as far as anyone is concerned 'there was no other vehicle involved'.


  17. There is no guarantee of justice in this life.

    Some people live unsatisfied lives fighting for something they cannot find and die trying to achieve it.

    The trick, and it is not easy to do, is to be very satisfied with what you have now while you continue the fight. More often than not people are stuck in the past, when a change of mind is all they need to change their future.

    If you think that you have something to gain, something you must gain to put your life back on track, then you have possibly lost already.

    That is what I am concerned about - I have seen and read and heard about this all before. Maintaining that healthy balance is very hard when you are seeking justice for yourself.

    If you allowed me just 5 words they would be: forgive, forget and move on.

    All the best

    Trevor G
  18. The law is there to screw victims of crime, not help them,

    The police force in my opinion along with the RTA are the worst and most poorly run section of government, common sense has left this section of the public service, I swear - If I was the minister for roads, or police there would be massive changes.

    What happened to you blows big time,
    I hope you heal up 100% and get something for your pain.


  19. no matter what the outcome, i know in myself i will move on, but i will never forgive nor forget. people that are out to cause harm and grief to others are scum.

    if i died... would have there been a accident investigation then? is that what is needed for measures and proper accident procedure to take place?

    as far as im concerned that police officer did NOT do his job correct... and resoning behind it? who knows. he is authority and what he says 'goes'. a few of my mates 'spoke' to him, he is arrogant and unwilling to listen to anyone, as he has the uniform and the badge, so how dare any of us try to dispute his 'statement'.

    alot of people dislike motorcyclists... for what reason? i dont know... yet motorcycling... especially in australia has BOOMED in the last few years, there are thousands of motorcyclists... just take the adelaide toy run for example. 15000+ turned up. so to 'hate' on motorcyclists is a biased unwarranted excuse. respect the roads and respect each other.

    i thank you all for your 'look on things' and your well wishes and support. i hope to make a FULL recovery, but it has been hard along the way. 6 months on 25th february.

  20. There's forensic evidence of a collision (paint scraping etc) and the police are stating that the spill was your fault????


    Something is definitely not right.

    Hope you heal fully mate and if justice will help balance the scales, hope you get that too.