Bicycle Accident Lawyer FAQs
Getting hit by a motor vehicle while riding your bike is an unfortunate reality many bicycle riders face in Southern California. Whether commuting to work or exercising, many more Californians are biking as a way to get healthy and lower their expenses. However, just one bicycle accident could leave you seriously injured and out of work for months.
A California bicycle accident lawyer can work with you to protect your legal rights and fight for maximum compensation. Arrowhead Accident Attorneys is a top personal injury law firm in San Bernardino with a 99% success rate. Call us risk-free at (909) 663-9019 or reach out to us online.
When Should I Hire a Bicycle Accident Lawyer?
It is best to consult with bicycle accident lawyers as soon as possible. The negligent driver or their auto insurance may try to settle with you, but be wary of accepting the first offer you get.
Insurance companies are always looking for ways to reduce a victim’s settlement by any means necessary. Unfortunately, this is completely legal and happens frequently. Having bicycle accident lawyers representing you can protect you from their tactics.
Additionally, you should also act quickly because there is a clock ticking on your case. Like car accident victims, victims of bike accidents have two years from the date of their accident to file a personal injury claim against the at-fault party. Beyond this timeframe, victims will no longer be able to pursue compensation in a bicycle accident case.
How a Bike Accident Lawyer Can Help
California has its own bicycle laws that dictate where you can ride your bike, how to equip your bike, and how to operate your bike. These laws make it challenging for an injured cyclist to understand the bicycle accident claims process.
When you work with an experienced bicycle accident attorney, you will have an expert in cycling law and a legal advocate on your side. A California bike accident lawyer can thoroughly investigate your case to determine the liable party and outline a plan of action to seek compensation. Oftentimes, victims are not aware of the extent of their losses, which can include medical bills, lost wages, and emotional distress.
Furthermore, bicycle accident attorneys will be on your side if the insurance company treats you unfairly or offers you a lowball settlement. Consult with a few different lawyers to determine who is the best fit for your case and schedule a free consultation with them.
Causes of Bike Accidents and Common Injuries
Driver-related factors cause many bike accidents, but no two accidents are exactly alike. Common causes of bicycle accidents include reckless driving, distracted drivers, and unsafe lane changes.
Serious injuries abound in the cycling community. Many bicycle accidents result in severe injuries such as spinal cord injuries, broken bones, knee injuries, and wrongful death. Psychological injuries, such as PTSD, can also result from a California bicycle accident.
Compensation for Bicycle Accident Victims
If you are filing a bicycle accident claim for the first time, you may be unaware of the types of compensation you can recover. Every state has different laws regarding what and how much compensation someone can obtain after an accident. In California, personal injury victims can recover monetary compensation according to their degree of fault. This law is known as “pure comparative negligence.”
For example, if the driver who hit you is found 100% at fault, you would recover 100% of the damages. If the driver is 80% at fault and the cyclist is 20% at fault, then the cyclist can claim 80% of the damages.
When you work with a California bicycle accident attorney, they will determine fault in an accident. They will also tell you what damages you may be eligible to receive for your bike accident injuries. Some examples include:
- Current and future medical bills
- Pain and suffering
- Lost income and future loss of earning capacity
- Property damage
What Not to Do After a Bicycle Accident
A bike accident in San Bernardino is a scary and traumatic event. You may not have time to react or avoid a collision.
After a bike accident, avoid these common pitfalls that can reduce your compensation in a bicycle accident case:
- Leave the accident scene: NEVER leave the accident scene until law enforcement arrives. Leaving can be a sign of guilt and considered a hit-and-run under certain circumstances.
- Not call the police: You are required by California law to report a serious accident involving an injury or vehicle damage exceeding $1,000. The police report will be an important piece of evidence in personal injury claims.
- Apologize or admit fault: Do not apologize to the other party or admit some kind of fault by saying “I should have slowed down.”
- Post on social media: The insurance adjusters will be monitoring your accounts for any admission of fault.
- Skip medical treatment: Seeing medical professionals after a bicycle crash is one of the most important things you can do after a bike accident. If you don’t seek medical attention, the insurance company may try to deny or reduce your bicycle accident claim.
- Negotiate with the insurance company: This is one of the most common mistakes people make after an accident. Try to keep your statements as short as possible until you seek legal advice.
Speak With an Experienced Bicycle Accident Lawyer
Arrowhead Accident Attorneys is dedicated to protecting the rights of injured cyclists of bicycle accidents, as well as pedestrian accidents, car accidents, and workplace accidents. With our compassionate legal support, our clients receive top medical treatment for their injuries and their peace of mind back.
We never collect upfront legal fees, and will only receive a percentage of your settlement if we win your case. If we are not successful in winning your case, you are not responsible for paying us. Call our San Bernardino County personal injury lawyer to schedule a free consultation at (909) 663-9019 today.