Five Things Motorcyclists Must Know About Injury

Lerners LLP


Lerners LLP is one of Southwestern Ontario’s largest law firms with offices in London, Toronto, Waterloo Region, and Strathroy. Ours is a history of over 90 years of successful client service and representation. Today we are more than 140 exceptionally skilled lawyers with abundant experience in litigation and dispute resolution(including class actions, appeals, and arbitration/mediation,) corporate/commercial law, health law, insurance law, real estate, employment law, personal injury and family law.
I have been helping accident victims for 30 years at Lerners. There is no call more heartbreaking to me than the ones I get after a motorcyclist has been injured.
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I have been helping accident victims for 30 years at Lerners. There is no call more heartbreaking to me than the ones I get after a motorcyclist has been injured.

Here is what I wish every motorcyclist knew before they called me.


You don't have control over all dangers on the road, but you do have complete control over the insurance coverage you purchase.

The most important thing you can do for yourself is ensure you have this insurance coverage:

  • As much liability insurance coverage as you can afford because your own liability limits also protect you against an inadequately insured motorist. If you have $2 million in liability limits and an at-fault motorist only has $1 million in limits, in a worst-case scenario where you are critically injured, your own insurance coverage steps in to top up the inadequate insurance of the other driver, up to the limits of your own coverage.
  • Optional benefits for increased coverage for medical, rehabilitation, and attendant care needs. The basic coverage for non-catastrophic limits is only $65,000-worth of treatment and it only runs for five years. You can purchase coverage that protects you for your lifetime and in a much higher total amount. As a motorcyclist, you need this kind of protection.
  • The increased optional benefit for catastrophic impairment limits. Not long ago the standard coverage for someone who had a catastrophic injury was up to $2 million. In its wisdom, the Ontario government reduced that to $1 million, instead making the second $1 million an optional coverage that you can purchase. No one expects to be catastrophically injured, but if a disaster happens to you, you will need more than standard coverage. Simply put — you should buy this extra coverage.


Never, ever, ever ride a motorcycle that doesn't have liability coverage. Don't do it. Let me repeat. Never do it!

While the public is becoming generally aware that the minimum fine if caught driving without insurance is $5,000, no one knows that if you don't have insurance, your right to sue is also taken away. It doesn't matter that the other person is 100% to blame.

If you take an uninsured motorcycle around the block for a spin, and someone who is texting runs you over while you stopped at a red light — making you a quadriplegic — you cannot sue that driver for any of your losses. It doesn't matter that it wasn't your fault.

It just isn't worth the risk. Never put yourself in this position.


Always wear your helmet, jacket, gloves, pants, and motorcycle boots — always! An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, so it is best to avoid an injury in the first place.

Aside from prevention, insurance companies and defence lawyers have a habit of blaming the victim when it comes to motorcyclists. Don't give them any reason to point the finger at you.

I have seen a person whose only injury is a mangled leg be criticized as being a generally unsafe operator because his helmet wasn't approved, even though there was no head injury complaint of any kind.

The deck is stacked against you already just because you are on a motorcycle — don't hand the other side any extra cards.


Always make a call to an experienced critical injury lawyer if you have been hurt on a motorcycle to find out if you are entitled to have your treatment covered, or if a lawsuit is advisable.

When someone tells me at a cocktail party that their back is ruined because they hit a deer years ago while out riding — and they didn't access their accident benefit coverage — I wish they had simply called me at the time. I would have told them their treatments would have been fully covered and all they had to do was apply.

If you are hurt because you hit an animal, slide out on gravel, hit a pothole, or sideswiped a parked car, any one of those events triggers your coverage for treatment from your own accident benefit insurance company. It doesn't have to involve another motorist.

I acted for a motorcyclist who hit a cow on the road and I was able to track down the owner of the cow, determine that the farmer was negligent, and recover damages for my client. A good lawyer will turn every stone — but only if you first make a call.


You are very unprotected on a motorcycle. When you ride aggressively or take risks, you increase your chance of getting hurt.

For me as your lawyer, speeding, doing wheelies, weaving through traffic, or engaging in confrontations makes my job so much harder as it is easy for my client to then be portrayed as reckless or negligent.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.
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