California is a seemingly ideal place to a be a bicyclist. Not only is the weather nice year-round, meaning that cyclists never have to worry about snow or ice during their commutes, but the state of California and the city of Los Angeles have also invested in bicycle infrastructure designed to keep cyclists safe. For those who want to do their part to protect the earth and improve their health, cycling may seem like an easy choice.
But despite good weather and bike lanes, biking in California is incredibly dangerous. Indeed, California leads the nation in the number of bicyclist fatalities, and Los Angeles is one of the major cities that contributes to the high number of bicyclists’ deaths.
If you are involved in a bicycling accident in Los Angeles, it is important that you retain the counsel of an experienced Los Angeles bicycle accident lawyer who can help you to understand your options and how to recover compensation for your harm. Call our team at the Dolan Law Firm today for a free consultation.
Who Pays for Injuries and Damages after a Bicycle Accident?
Liability for a bicycle accident in Los Angeles is based on fault; the at-fault party pays for damages sustained by the not-at-fault party. If you were in an accident caused by another driver, you can file a claim against that driver’s liability insurance policy, or file a lawsuit directly against the other driver. Examples of driver error that cause bicycle accidents include:
- Driving while intoxicated or impaired;
- Driving while distracted;
- Speeding or driving at an unsafe speed;
- Failing to yield;
- Failing to look before making a right- or left-hand turn; and
- Otherwise breaching traffic safety laws.
Keep in mind that not all accidents are caused solely by the actions of another driver; if you are found to be partially at-fault for the accident, your damages award can be reduced in proportion to your degree of fault. This is one of the primary reasons why hiring an attorney who can disprove allegations of fault that are made against you is so important.
Types of Damages Recoverable after a Bicycle Accident
You have the right to seek compensation for the full extent of harm that you have suffered. Our lawyers understand that your injuries and losses may extend well beyond the obvious. For example, if you have suffered a traumatic brain injury, bone fracture injury, or another serious injury type, you may be coping with the injury as well as a disability, disfigurement, loss of quality of life, loss of earning capacity and wages, and even psychological injuries, such as depression, anxiety, or post-traumatic stress disorder. Rather than just fighting for your right to recover compensation for your medical expenses, our lawyers work hard to improve your chances of recovering every cent you deserve for your economic and noneconomic losses.
Steps to Take after a Bicycle Accident and How Our Lawyers Help
Knowing what to do immediately after a bicycle accident improves your chances of recovering your full compensation amount. We strongly recommend that you:
- Seek medical care immediately. If you are hit by a car while riding your bike, one of the first things that you should do, even if you don’t think that your injuries are serious, is to seek medical care. Creating a link between any injuries suffered and the accident is important; going to the hospital helps to do that.
- File an accident report. In addition to getting medical care, you should also file an accident report with the authorities as soon as you are able. Request a copy of the report for your records.
- Document your injuries. In the days and weeks following your accident, pay attention to your injuries and your healing. Take note of the amount of pain you experience, your limitations, your feelings about any disability you’ve suffered, etc.
- Notify an insurance adjuster. If you have car insurance, you should contact your insurance company within 24 hours of your accident to file a claim. If you do not have car insurance and are pursuing a claim against the at-fault party’s insurance company, you will need to get the driver’s insurance information at the scene of the accident, and follow up with this company immediately.
- Open an investigation. Remember, liability for a bicycle accident is based on fault, which means that in order to recover the full compensation award that you deserve, you will need to prove the fault of the other party. This will likely require an investigation into your accident an a collection of various evidence types.
- Call a lawyer. To assist you in opening an investigation, determining liability, filing a claim, calculating your damages, and negotiating a compensation award, working with an attorney is a wise idea. You should contact an attorney as soon as you are able to after an accident to start the investigatory process as early as possible.
The Los Angeles Bicycle Accident Lawyers at the Dolan Law Firm Can Help
Being in a bicycle accident is a terrifying experience, and if you don’t have insurance, you may be wondering whether or not there is any way that you will be able to recover monetary damages to pay for the economic and noneconomic losses you’ve suffered. If your bicycle crash was caused by the actions of another driver, you maintain the right to file a claim for compensation against this driver or their insurance company.
When you call our law office, our lawyers will immediately get to work building your case. We know what you’re going through, and empathize with the shock and frustration you may be experiencing.
To schedule a free, no-obligation with our compassionate bicycle accident lawyers in Los Angeles, please send us a message today, or call our offices directly. We work on a contingency fee basis, collecting no fee unless we win.