A good reason to make sure you are properly covered. - BMW Luxury Touring Community
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 5 Old Feb 17th, 2013, 10:52 am Thread Starter
Lifetime Supporter
DanDiver's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Tampa, FL, USA
Posts: 4,849
A good reason to make sure you are properly covered.

Many bikers ride with the minimum and no uninsured motorist coverage. Good coverage for me in Tampa runs about $900 a year. Without uninsured motorist, it would be less then 1/3 of that. For me, it's not worth it.

"Crash victim fights for $18 million jury award from Tampa"


The drastic turn in fortune began on Nov. 22, 1996, when Companioni was riding his motorcycle on Hillsborough Avenue and, according to witnesses, a city water truck pulled in front of him near 50th Street. The accident left him with head, spine and internal injuries.

He's accepted that he will never fully recover from those injuries. He's still fighting, though, to recover an $18 million verdict a jury awarded him after his wreck — and he now has a state senator on his side.

After the wreck, Companioni filed a lawsuit against the city. In 2004, he won the $18 million award, which has withstood years of appeals by the city.
What the city paid, though, was $100,000, the amount at which state law caps liability for government entities. The restriction is designed to keep cities and counties from going bankrupt if they lose a major lawsuit.
The claims bill tallied Companioni's medical expenses at more than $1.2 million. The $100,000 he collected from the city was eaten up almost immediately by medical costs. He now lives on his disability check and the extra cash he makes selling hot dogs outside Tampa Bay Buccaneers games.

To get the full amount awarded by the verdict, the Florida Legislature would have to pass a claims bill. Sen. Oscar Braynon, D-Miami Gardens, has taken up Companioni's case.

"I wish they would do what they are supposed to do," he said. "I believe strongly that I've done everything I was supposed to do. I believe in the justice system, the city should too."

Tampa, Fl.

12 K1600 GTL
02 K1200 LT (gone but not forgotten)
DanDiver is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 5 Old Feb 17th, 2013, 2:43 pm
Enjoy The Ride
saddleman's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Huntersville, NC, USA
Posts: 3,941
Re: A good reason to make sure you are properly covered.

18 million is a absurd amount of money for any crash victim. Pain & suffering is just part of life. I would never award anyone any amount of money for anything other than what it takes to live a very cheap lifestyle. Lawsuits come out of all of our pockets in one way or the other.

Dave Selvig
2004 Black LT
2000 Canon Red LT

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
saddleman is offline  
post #3 of 5 Old Feb 17th, 2013, 8:36 pm
Senior Member
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Chicago, IL, USA
Posts: 1,206
Re: A good reason to make sure you are properly covered.

The perfect catch 22.
In my state uninsured and under insured are mandatory. I got both and like Dan said without it my premiums would be much less.
Also the victim in this case followed the law and even endured the process. The court decision was also ruled in his favor and backed by other courts.
Saddleman I hear where you are coming from but it is not all that cut and dry. Just like we must have insurance the city should also be required to have comparable if not carrying higher coverage better policy. If the rolls were reverse and the motorist was at fault and the city won the ruling you can bet they would press the other policy holder's insurance to come up with the sum.
My opinion to resolve is to make good on all medical bills. And possibly work with the victim over a smaller settlement. Two more things maybe the city can work with the hospital/doctors to bring down the size of the bill. Lastly I wonder if the the Jury was instructed on a cap to their award. When times are good the insurance companies are sitting pretty and when time to pay on a claim then the restrictions abound.
My professional qualification in this matter, why LT rider of course
ride safe
billsmith is offline  
post #4 of 5 Old Feb 18th, 2013, 7:27 am Thread Starter
Lifetime Supporter
DanDiver's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Tampa, FL, USA
Posts: 4,849
Re: A good reason to make sure you are properly covered.

I contributed this as simply a reminder to make sure you have the insurance coverage you think you do. If you are only paying several $100 a year, then something is probably missing and you won't know until after it is too late.

In Florida, (this is anecdotal) it has been estimated that more than 25% of the drivers, do not have any coverage and another large percentage, have the bare minimum.

Just as a defensive measure, if your coverage is limited, you are on a motorcycle and you are in an accident, it is likely that what you have will only have enough coverage to pay for the first day or a couple of hours in the ER. In a car, you have a lot more protection. On a bike, it is quite limited.

Without uninsured coverage, even if you are not at fault, you are going to have to pay if the person responsible is without assets and has no insurance.

I really didn't want to go in the direction of large claims or torts. Just as I ride, check your 6 and don't be a victim....

Tampa, Fl.

12 K1600 GTL
02 K1200 LT (gone but not forgotten)
DanDiver is offline  
post #5 of 5 Old Feb 18th, 2013, 12:15 pm
Senior Member
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Harleysville , PA, USA
Posts: 471
Re: A good reason to make sure you are properly covered.

Kinda ridiculous that the city has a whole fleet of heavy trucks out there with all kinds of drivers (no doubt a few are not good) yet they are allowed to provide only $100,000 per incident.
They are self insured. Saves them from the very-high premiums they'd have to pay a private insurer.
They get to have their cake and eat it, too.

Seems like a great idea until you're the one with piles of medical bills, can't work and can't collect from the responsible party.

2011 R1200RT (sold)
2012 K1600GTL
GRB60 is offline  

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the BMW Luxury Touring Community forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Rather longish, but good tips & info! vvk Bike Talk 7 Jun 19th, 2011 4:43 pm
File under: You just can't make this stuff up! mconlogue Chit Chat 33 Feb 18th, 2009 8:31 am
Our Curve Cowboy Experience 2007 gisman Ride Tales 5 Apr 16th, 2008 5:10 pm
Don't shoot the messenger! mconlogue Chit Chat 107 Dec 30th, 2007 2:15 pm
Triple BBG-Ride Report murray Ride Tales 8 Nov 20th, 2005 6:34 pm

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome