If you are a bicyclist who was recently injured in a collision with a motor vehicle, such as a car or truck, you might be entitled to collect compensation from the at-fault party or liable party. This compensation may cover any damages you incurred from the bicycle accident, such as medical bills and income loss.
Our bicycle accident lawyers in Dublin, OH, at Bressman Law can help you build your case. Our law firm has been serving clients for over 25 years, and we would love to extend our legal services to you as our client. We offer free initial consultations, and there is no obligation to sign on.
What Kinds of Damages You Could Recover After a Bicycle Accident
After suffering from a bicycle accident, you can choose to file an insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit to pursue compensation for the expenses and losses you sustained in the collision. If successful, you will receive financial awards for your damages, which may have a monetary value already or may need to be assigned one.
You may be able to recover your monetary and non-monetary damages, which may include:
- Medical and rehabilitation costs
- Loss of wages or work benefits
- Reduced earning potential, including loss of job opportunities
- Temporary or permanent disability
- Scarring and disfigurement
- The cost of bike repairs (or the cash value of your bicycle if it was destroyed beyond repair)
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
If someone you love passed away due to their bicycle accident injuries, you may be able to recover damages related to their death if you qualify to file a wrongful death claim or lawsuit. These damages may include funeral expenses and loss of financial support from your loved one.
Calculate Your Damages Before Accepting any Settlement Offer
Be forewarned that the other party’s insurer might offer you a quick settlement shortly after your accident. However, this initial offer might be much lower than what you are entitled to receive. If you agree to an offer before the extent of your injuries is clear, you could wind up losing out on thousands to hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Our team can review your case to identify which damages you may demand compensation for and can help you calculate their values. Calculating your damages is crucial, as it can gauge how much compensation to which you may be entitled. This will be useful when measuring how fair a settlement offer is from an insurance company.
Does Auto Insurance Cover Bicycle Accident Injuries?
In many cases, yes. If a driver caused your accident, the driver’s liability insurance should cover your medical bills and other losses.
According to the Ohio Department of Insurance (DOI), Ohio’s Financial Responsibility Law mandates that registered drivers in the state must carry at least $25,000 in liability coverage. You can recover up to that amount for your losses, but you will need to prove that the driver’s negligence is what caused your accident.
Negligence can stem from various improper or illegal driving behaviors, including:
- Speeding and aggressive driving
- Distracted driving (e.g., texting, talking on the phone, daydreaming, etc.)
- Driving while intoxicated
- Running red lights
- Not using turn signals
If the driver who hit you was uninsured, you have two options: file an accident claim with your own auto insurance or sue the at-fault driver directly. In either case, one of our bicycle accident lawyers serving Dublin, OH, can help you.
What If Both Parties Were at Fault for the Bicycle Accident?
Sometimes, one party is plainly at fault. For instance, if a drunk driver swerved into the bike path and struck you, they may be found clearly at fault since they were driving while intoxicated and riding in the bicycle lane when they struck you.
Other cases might be more complex, though. When fault is unclear or arguable, the insurance company might try to pin you with total or partial blame. Legally speaking, you may be considered comparatively negligent in the accident despite being the injured party (if the opposing party can prove that your actions also contributed to the accident).
Comparative Negligence can Affect How Much Compensation You can Receive
According to Ohio Revised Code (ORC) §2315.33, if the opposing party succeeds in proving you were partially at fault for the accident, your compensation award may be reduced by your degree of fault. For example, if you were 30 percent at fault, you will only recover 70 percent of your compensation award. If you won $100,000, then you would collect $70,000.
At Bressman Law, one of our bicycle accident attorneys in Dublin, OH, can review your case and help you fight for the compensation you deserve. Our legal team can counsel you throughout the litigation process and help you prepare a case that establishes how the other party was at fault for the accident.
What Steps You can Take If You Were Hurt in a Bicycle Accident in Dublin, OH
If you were involved in a bicycle accident, tending to your injuries and seeking medical care is your main priority. Get a medical evaluation as soon as possible. This assures your injuries are treated properly, and it also creates a paper trail that we can use as evidence for your case.
Other steps you can take to start building your bicycle accident case include:
Getting a Copy of the Crash Report
If you called the police to the accident scene, obtain a copy of the police report about the bicycle accident.
Put all information regarding the accident in a folder. Important information may include:
- The driver’s name and contact information
- The make and model of the vehicle that hit you
- The driver’s insurance information
- Photos of the accident scene, damage to your bike, and any cars involved
- Photos of your injuries
- Contact information and statements from witnesses
Do not Admit Fault or Accuse the Driver of Anything
Discuss liability with your lawyer first. A bicycle accident lawyer at our firm can counsel you on making statements about your case—preferably before you speak with an insurance adjuster. Even better, our legal team can handle communications on your behalf and make official statements for you.
We will also interview any witnesses who were at the scene to get a better idea of how the accident occurred.
Continue with Your Medical Care and Save Your Medical Documents
Collect any invoices you receive at hospitals, doctors’ offices, or clinics.
Start an injury journal to document your daily pain levels, progress, treatments, and how your injuries impact your life. Share the journal with your case manager so that we can make your story and injuries clear to the insurer or court.
Call Bressman Law to Hire a Bicycle Accident Lawyer Serving Dublin, OH
At Bressman Law, we provide free legal consultations to injured cyclists in Dublin, OH. We also work on a contingency-fee policy, so there are no upfront attorney’s fees on your part.
Our legal team can help with all aspects of your bicycle accident case, negotiate with the insurance company, prove liability and damages, and get you the highest settlement possible. Call us today to get a free consultation.