Mopeds are extremely convenient and common on Maui.
But this convenience comes at a cost of a heightened risk of a careless driver. Moped accidents on Maui result in personal injuries or death, often because of people driving while speeding, under the influence of alcohol or drugs, and/or disobeying traffic rules and regulations. Although riders usually take precautions to avoid accidents, often times another driver’s mistake can have serious ramifications.
"You are on your own. You are not protected by two tons of steel, rubber, foam padding and safety glass. Neither are you steering two tons of guided missile toward other cars, people and property. If you are prepared to accept the responsibility of your own actions, then motorcycling can be both safe and thrilling. Riding is an art as well as a craft and no amount of explanation can take the place of experience."
What do do after the Crash:
Call for Help
If you're able and it's safe, call the police or 911. Police will document the scene, collect witness statements, gather insurance information of all parties, and make a preliminary determination of who is the at-fault party.
Document the Scene
Though the police do their best, sometimes they don't get all the critical information. If it's safe and you're able, try to take pictures of the scene, including: cars or vehicles involved; witnesses; the road; and anything else that you think could be important. There can never be enough information to look over. Something small now may be critical later on.
Get Medical Treatment
If you've called the police of 911, chances are an ambulance with medics will arrive. Many times adrenaline will cause you to overlook injuries. Let medics examine you. Don't be afraid to take an ambulance to the hospital if recommended.
Start the Insurance Claims Process
Once you've been medically stabilized and recovering, it is time to begin the insurance claims process. In Hawaii, when you're the victim in a car crash, there can be a large amount of separate insurance claims, including but not limited to property claims; bodily injury claims; personal injury protection benefits claims; and underinsured ("UIM") or uninsured ("UM") claims.
Keep Up With Treatment
After the initial trauma and shock wears off from the crash, it will be time to start comprehensive treatment. You'll usually start by following up with your primary care provider, who will dictate your treatment. Treatment varies: it can be conservative such as massage therapy and physical therapy. It could require surgery immediately or down the road. Whatever it may be, it is important to listen to your doctors and keep up with their treatment plan not only for your well-being, but to preserve your rights related to your case.
Settle Your Case
When the time is right, and assuming you've met the procedural hurdles, your case will be ready to settle with the at-fault driver's insurance company. The time to settle will vary, but will usually occur after your injuries have resolved or there is a reasonable determination of when they will resolve. Settling prematurely will only lead to not being made whole.
What We Do
We take the guess work out of the process. Locally based with deep roots in the community, our Maui lawyers will help you with your insurance claims, reduce or eliminate the unpleasant amount of paperwork, assist you with taking advantage of your personal injury protection benefits, and even assist with the property claim.
"To me, a lawyer is basically the person that knows the rules of the country. We're all throwing the dice, playing the game, moving our pieces around the board, but if there is a problem the lawyer is the only person who has read the inside of the top of the box."
With years of experience representing injured clients, we offer a guiding hand to stabilize your life immediately after you're hurt. When ready, we proceed with litigating the case either pre-suit or with a lawsuit if necessary.
Your case is unique, with its own nuances and details. We try to learn all those details so that we can step into your shoes to try and understand how the crash and injuries affected your life to best fight on your behalf with strength and compassion.
What are personal injury protection benefits for moped accidents?
Hawaii is a “no-fault” state, meaning your car insurance will pay a minimum of $10,000 of medical expenses related to your injuries from the car accident. This type of mandatory coverage is typically called "no-fault" coverage or personal injury protection ("PIP") benefits.
After a moped accident on Maui, the if the moped meets certain requirements, the moped rider has a right to use the PIP benefits of the driver of the vehicle that was involved.
The minimum mandatory personal injury protection benefits under Hawaii law is $10,000.00.
No fault or PIP coverage is mandatory in Hawaii for every car driven on the road. If you get in a moped accident, you should still contact your own automobile insurance carrier in the event you will eventually need to use underinsured ("UIM") or uninsured ("UM") coverage under your own policies.
If your medical expenses exceed the maximum benefits of your personal injury protection, your personal health insurance should cover the remaining costs.
After becoming our client, we will oversee the PIP claim process to ensure that all medical bills are timely and properly paid. After your PIP benefits are exhausted, we will work with your personal health insurance carrier to minimize your medical expense reimbursement.
Other Claims Related to Moped Accidents on Maui
PIP benefits are only one claim in the process after a car crash in Maui or all of Hawaii. There are also property claims related to damage to any cars of objects; and bodily injury claims against the at-fault driver related to injuries to the body and mind. There can also be underinsured ("UIM") or uninsured ("UM") motorist claims from your own insurance in the event the at-fault driver's bodily injury coverage can't cover your losses.
One more thing about PIP benefits: in order to make a bodily injury claim or file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver, many times you need reach a "tort threshold," or $5,000 worth of PIP benefits paid to medical providers.
Bodily injury claims, underinsured motorist claims, and uninsured motorist claims are where personal injury attorneys become critical in the process. Bodily injury adjusters have an entirely different system when they know victims of a crash don't have an attorney. They know it's a confusing and intimidating process, effectively using your inexperience against you, ultimately coercing you into taking a bad deal.
We'll make sure that doesn't happen. When you've been involved in a bicycle accident on Maui or any other outer island, the sooner you contact a personal injury lawyer the sooner you can get the necessary guidance to maximize your case.
The Attorney-Client Relationship
Just like finding a good doctor, you need a lawyer that makes you feel comfortable and confident.
We are a family firm. We treat our clients the same.
You don't owe anything
Unless we win your case.
Tips to stay safe and avoid moped accidents
Wear a helmet and protective gear at all times.
Obey all traffic laws and road safety. Review the specific laws regarding moped use on Maui.
Avoid riding your moped after dark to avoid careless or drunk drivers.
Never ride your moped under the influence of any alcohol or drugs.
Moped and motorcycle accidents on Maui can often be prevented if you make sure drivers can easily see you in traffic.
Turn on the headlights during daytime as well and wear reflective gear while on the road.
If you are unfortunate enough to be in a moped accident, contact us right away so we can make sure that your rights are preserved