Things to Know about Line Splitting in California

Wrongful Death Lawyer
Line Splitting Laws

It is common to see two-wheeler vehicles splitting lanes while driving. There is a major misconception regarding lane splitting in the general public. In addition, there are several basic things, which you need to know about it in order to prevent a visit to the wrongful death lawyer. Below are a few things to remember while you are riding a motorcycle on the California roads.

It is Legal

According to the state’s declaration in 2016, “Lane splitting is defined as driving a motorcycle that has two wheels in contact with the ground, between rows of stopped or moving vehicles in the same lane, including on either divided and undivided streets, roads, or highways.”

One of the main misconceptions regarding two-wheeler vehicles is that lane splitting is illegal. According to a study, only 60.7 percent of vehicle drivers are aware that lane splitting is legal. Yet again, motorcyclists have to make sure that they follow the road safety rules strictly and split the lanes responsibly. Note that the California state law also adds that lane splitting is a dangerous act and that it should be performed with utmost caution and preparation.

Some Tips for the Motorcyclists

Keep the entire surroundings in mind while splitting lanes. This covers the size of the neighboring vehicles, lighting conditions, weather, and the width of the lanes. It is advised to split lanes between the far left ones instead of the other ones. Moreover, remember that the possibility of danger increases as the speed and the differential increases.

Riding on the shoulder of another vehicle is illegal. In addition, always ensure that you remain visible to other drivers. You should avoid riding on the blind spots and behind other vehicles at any cost. Furthermore, use reflective protective gear or brightly colored clothes to help other drivers notice you easily.

You can gain the visibility of the other drivers by using high beams during daylight. However, try to avoid splitting lanes next to the larger sized vehicles such as motor homes, big RVs, and buses.

A Few General Tips for All Drivers

  • Check the mirrors regularly before changing lanes. This is to prevent any accident due to the hidden visibility of a vehicle in the blind spots.
  • Always be alert while driving and anticipate the possible moves by the other motorcyclists.
  • Make sure that you drive while you are fully focused and not intoxicated by any kind of substance, alcohol, or fatigue.

Wrongful Death vs. Survivorship Claims

California Injury Lawyer
Wrongful Death Claims

A wrongful death lawsuit is one where one person responsible for causing the death of another person, lacks any lawful excuse for the same. Under the California state law, wrongful death is seen as a fatality resulting from “the wrongful act or neglect of another”.

Wrongful Death Lawsuits

Some states have laws allowing close family members, or heirs, of the deceased to legally acquire compensation, for losses that they suffered from the death under consideration. Filing a proper lawsuit in court allows them to pursue compensation from the defendant, as long as the latter is proven to be responsible for the fatality. With a competent California injury lawyer handling the case, the chances of obtaining this become much greater.

Some states also allow suing the defendant’s insurance company, while in others, the defendant is legally obligated to notify their insurer of the claim leveled against them. Wrongful death lawsuits fall under the civil action category, and are different from criminal prosecution for manslaughter or homicide. In each of the latter cases, the government brings the lawsuit upon the wrongdoer.

Being a civil action, a wrongful death case does not allow seeking punishment or imprisonment; only monetary damages can be acquired, and that too, only if a charge of neglect or deliberate intent is proven.

Survivorship Claims

Instead of awarding compensation for losses from another person’s death, survivorship claims are a way for the estate of the deceased to acquire compensation for losses suffered by the deceased, before their passing. Said losses need to be a proven result of negligent or wrongful conduct on the defendant’s side.

Damages that the plaintiff can pursue include medical expenses, ambulance fees, loss of earning while being hospitalized, etc. California does not allow seeking damages for pain and suffering incurred by the deceased within a survivorship lawsuit, but does allow pursuing compensation for losses resulting from neglect or abuse in a dependent care facility.

Damages recovered by the estate’s personal representative from a survivorship claim, are thenceforth the property of that estate. These damages are distributed among the heirs of the deceased, either according to the latter’s will, or absent that, stipulations or guidelines provided by the state law.

Expenses incurred by the estate due to or following the death, including expenses for burial and funeral, are normally required to be clumped with the wrongful death claim. Despite this and the survivorship claim being distinct in the legal sense, they are usually covered under the same lawsuit.