If you’re a bicyclist, you have probably already encountered drivers who don’t respect your right to share the road. Whether you use a bicycle for transportation or for exercise, you are exposed to hazards every day in the form of drivers who are not paying attention or roads that aren’t safe for cyclists.
If you’ve been hurt while riding your bike, we want to handle your personal injury claim. A competent bicycle accident attorney can help cyclists recover after all types of accidents, including if they were hit by a vehicle’s opening door, by a car, by a trailer or even by a hit-and-run driver.
In collisions between cyclists and motor vehicles, it goes without saying that the cyclist will be in worse shape. Whether your bike was damaged or completely destroyed, or you are suffering serious injuries as a result of an accident, we can help you negotiate with the insurance company for the compensation you need.
Bicyclists should always protect themselves before they hit the road, not just by wearing a helmet and making sure drivers can see them, but also by knowing their biker’s rights. There are legal protections available to you if you’re an injured cyclist, and a bicycle accident attorney can help you exercise them after an unfortunate crash.
WHAT TO DO AFTER A BICYCLE ACCIDENT
You will likely be in shock after a bicycle accident or perhaps even dealing with serious pain, but it will be important to gather all of the information you can to support your claim. In too many cases, police or insurance representatives will be looking to see if you’ve contributed in any way to the crash under “comparative negligence” laws. This bias could be used against you when you seek compensation for your damaged bike and the costs associated with your injuries.
Take these steps to protect yourself and your rights as a cyclist after you’ve been hit
It will be important to get law enforcement to the scene to prevent a driver from fleeing, to record important details about where and how it occurred, and to keep you safe from other vehicles on the road. Police can also get paramedics to the scene to treat and evaluate you if you don’t need to go to the emergency room. After you’ve called authorities, you might also wish to call a trusted friend or relative who can come to the scene to support you and help you gather crucial evidence.
Take note of the vehicle’s information
If you are able, take a picture with your cell phone or memorize the license plate number, make, model and color of the vehicle so you can write it down when possible. Too many drivers who hit cyclists attempt to avoid responsibility by speeding away. If this happens, you’ll need as much information as possible to track down a hit-and-run driver.
Take Pictures of the Accident
You can use your smartphone to document all sorts of important evidence, including damage to your bike, conditions of the road and your injuries.
Look for Witnesses
If anyone saw the crash and you are in a position to make contact with them, take down their names and phone numbers. Don’t record their statements just yet, but don’t lose the information – it could be powerful support for your claim.
Don’t discuss details of the accident with the driver
Stick to the basics by collecting insurance information from the driver, but don’t discuss who was responsible at the scene – insurance claims representatives have been known to twist a simple statement of “I’m sorry” into an admission of guilt to lower your settlement. You should also never agree to accept payment from a driver in exchange for not reporting the accident to the authorities or the insurance company. In such instances, you might get less than you deserve, or the other driver may go back on their word and refuse to pay anything at all by claiming it was your fault.
Go to a Doctor & Have Injuries Evaluated
It’s not unusual for injuries to get worse in the days after a bicycle accident as new symptoms emerge, such as back and neck pain. Be honest with your medical provider, as medical reports may be important to your case.
Consult with a bicycle accident attorney: After a bicycle crash, you’ll want someone by your side who can protect you from settlements that aren’t fair or from parties who might claim the accident was your fault.
Some common ways in which the insurance company may attempt to take advantage of you could include attempting to get you to accept a depreciated value for your bike or a payment that won’t cover your costs if you require additional medical attention later on. An experienced bicycle accident attorney knows the laws that shield you and how to use them to your advantage while you’re recovering from a crash.