Even the safest cyclists run the risk of coming to contact with automobile drivers who aren’t paying attention or being respectful of bicycles on the road. If this leads to an accident while riding your bike on a Lawrenceville road, you should know the law is on your side.
Just like anyone who is victim to a vehicle accident, you as a bike rider have protections under personal injury laws. If the accident wasn’t your fault, you can probably recover money for any injuries or damages you suffered. But in order to be taken seriously with insurance companies and local law enforcement, you need to speak with a Lawrenceville bicycle accident lawyer.
Our attorneys have more than 20 years of experience assisting victims of personal injury—such as cyclists injured in accidents—win the fair settlement they deserve. We always take your side, even when the system holds bias towards the drivers, and we know what it takes to help victims win cases. Plus, working with us is risk-free because we charge nothing unless you get the money. And we offer you a FREE consultation call to discuss your case. Call us at (404) 341-6555 or complete the form to the right for your FREE consultation today.
I was hit by a car on my bike. What are my rights?
Most bicycle accidents occur because the cyclist was hit by a motor vehicle OR hit an obstacle in the road. If you were hit on your bicycle on Lawrenceville roads, you have the same rights as victims who were riding or driving a car. Just like car drivers, you can file an insurance claim to recover money.
However, cyclists can often feel like they aren’t taken as seriously as motorists on the road, so it’s important to remind others you hold the same rights.
After you’re hit by a car or other motor vehicle, there are several things you want to do:
- First, call the police—whether the driver pulls over or not. If the driver does stop after the accident, always exchange insurance information with them. If they didn’t pull over, try to get their license plate number and as many details as possible.
- Tell the police officers what happened. Give them as many details as possible and make sure they file a police report. Remind them that cyclists have the same right to be on the road, even if there was no bike lane available. Cars are required to share the road with you and treat you as any other vehicle—unless biking was specifically prohibited on the road, which is rare.
- File a claim with the car driver’s insurance company. The insurance company will often look at the police report and determine who was at fault. However, what they decide is not the final verdict and working with a Lawrenceville bicycle lawyer can help you negotiate and compile evidence in your favor.
- Don’t settle for the first offer. If the driver in your accident was at fault, the insurance company will probably offer you a settlement. But this initial offer is hardly ever the amount of money you deserve. You attorney can help with the negotiation for a more fair settlement.
Who is at fault when a car hits a bicycle?
Georgia is a fault state, which means if the driver caused the accident, they’re responsible for the costs. If any of these scenarios happen, the driver can be deemed “at fault”:
- Driving drunk or on drugs
- Violating a traffic law, causing to the accident
- Being negligent (careless) in any way, causing the accident
- Driving while distracted, such as while eating or being on their phone
And even if the driver didn’t break the law before/while the accident occurred, they can still be “at fault” if the accident was caused by their carelessness.
This is why it’s important to never apologize or accept blame if the accident was the driver’s fault—even if their insurance company tries to place blame on you.
Will the driver’s insurance pay for my injuries?
Under Georgia law, you are able to recover ALL of your costs, including injuries, if the bicycle accident wasn’t your fault. This includes injury-related costs like:
- Medication expenses
- Long-term care or rehabilitation costs
- Money to replace lost wages or time missed from work due to your injuries/treatment
- Other medical costs
If you suffered a permanent disability, extreme pain, wrongful death, or some other type of serious loss from the car accident, you have the right to a lot more—perhaps as much as double or triple the usual recovery. While money can never make up for these types of losses, we’ve found it can help you and your family remain financially stable and offer a little more peace of mind.
Remember that insurance companies are for-profit, meaning they’ll unfortunately try to pay you the smallest amount they can, even if your claim is valid. If the driver’s insurers offers you money, it’s probably an amount much less than you actually deserve. And if you accept it, you’re signing away your right to more money.
Here are some ways insurance companies can try to underpay you by offering you money for your injuries:
- Only paying your current medical bill costs without taking into account future care costs (which may be steep)
- Not including money for missed work time
- Delaying the claim so that when you finally get an offer, you’re desperate to take what you can get
- Trying to shift the blame to you or using what you say to them against you
When dealing with insurers in this way, it can feel lonely and intimidating. Don’t do at it alone. Speak with a bicycle accident lawyer who can stand by your side and recover what you’re actually entitled to under law.
Can I still recover money if I wasn’t wearing a helmet?
Yes, you can still potentially recover money even if you weren’t wearing a helmet. But if the court believes you suffered an injury that could have been prevented with the helmet, it might be less money.
Talk to a Lawrenceville Bicycle Accident Lawyer for Free
Don’t suffer through the confusing process of a bicycle accident case alone. Our attorneys are ready to assist you in the process and make sure you get the money you need and deserve as a cyclist. And we’d love to give you a FREE consultation that can help you decide what’s best for you to move forward. Call us today at (404) 341-6555 or fill out the form to your right for your FREE consultation today.