It's easy to get confused after getting involved in a bike accident. However, the immediate aftermath of the accident will determine whether the victim gets the compensation they deserve for their injuries.
Even if the bicycle rider is doing everything they can to be safe on the road, that won't stop drivers of motor vehicles from causing a crash. An accident involving a bicycle can result in many different injuries for everyone involved, so knowing what to do at the accident scene will make or break the case.
This article covers the most essential information to know about cycling accidents. Those interested in getting the right guidance for their case should also consider calling bicycle accident lawyers in Houston TX to build a legal case.
Why Is a Bike Accident Dangerous?
Bicycle riders are often more exposed to accidents than car drivers, as they're less protected. Even if they wear all the protective gear necessary (helmet, pads, etc.), they could still get minor injuries after getting involved in a crash. Contact Schuerger Shunnarah Trial Attorneys for questions such as, "Can you get whiplash from a bike accident?"
Depending on the accident, the bicycle rider could get:
Spinal cord injuries
Even a minor injury can lead to complications in the victim's life, so it's essential to get medical attention and legal support right after a bike accident. The sooner the victim acts, the better the chance of getting compensated properly. Schuerger Shunnarah Trial Attorneys has more information on questions like, "What is a common injury from a bike accident?"
What Victims Should Do After Getting into a Bike Crash
Most bike accidents are different, but there are steps everyone should follow if they want to follow the law and get the highest chance of getting money to cover their damages.
Seeking Immediate Medical Attention
Everyone involved in a bike accident must seek medical attention immediately; this is the most important thing to do.
Getting medical help will prevent the injuries from worsening later. Also, depending on the accident, the physician may discover internal injuries that weren't present at the time of the bike accident.
Gathering Evidence to Support the Case
Victims who can move should start getting the evidence necessary to build their cases. At first, it helps to take photos and videos of the accident scene, as well as any visible injuries.
The more evidence the victim has available, the higher the chance of proving the other person's fault in the accident and getting compensated properly.
Calling the Police
Both the victim and the at-fault driver are legally required to stay at the scene whether there was property damage or personal injuries involved.
It's in everyone's best interest to wait until the police arrive and file an accident report.
Without a police report, the victim may not be able to contact the other driver later, and that document can also serve as important evidence in the future alongside medical records.
Taking Note of the Other Driver's License Number
The key to fighting most insurance companies is never to admit fault or try to negotiate with the other driver. Some drivers may even accept the blame or apologize, but it's important to keep in mind that, due to the nature of these accidents, it may be hard to tell how severe the damage was right away.
Moreover, the other driver may deny the accident was their fault later, so if the victim negotiated with them before, they could miss out on further compensation from insurance companies.
The first thing to do instead is to take note of the driver's license number, as that will help when building a case.
Getting the Other Driver's Insurance Company and Contact Information
Next, the victim must gather the rest of the other driver's information, including their insurance company information, contacts, address, name, license plate number, model and make of the car, etc.
Talking to Witnesses
If there were any witnesses at the time of the bicycle accident, the victim should try to get their contact information, as that could help when building the case with a professional lawyer.
Preserving the Evidence
Preserving evidence goes beyond saving reports, photos, and videos. To get a higher chance of getting compensated, the victim should also keep damaged bike parts, damaged clothing, and anything else that may help the case.
If the victim needs to repair their bike for any reason, they must first document the damages it got.
Getting in Touch with a Lawyer
Talking to a lawyer before an insurance company can be of excellent help. Most of the time, these companies will try to lowball the victim or get them to say something they will use against them later.
Thankfully, an experienced lawyer can negotiate with insurance companies on the victim's behalf, and if they can't agree, they'll help them file a lawsuit and represent them in court.
An insurance company will almost always try to settle before the victim builds a stronger case, so even if its settlement offer is attractive enough for the victim, they should first get legal advice; they may get more money for their damages.
What Compensation Can Victims Get After a Bicycle Accident?
Doing all of the steps mentioned above will give the victim a better chance of getting justice and proper compensation. Depending on the case and the legal representation the person gets, they could recover compensation to cover the following damages:
Pain and suffering
Traumatic physical injuries
Physical therapy bills
Mental health treatment bills
Loss of quality of life
If a family member lost a loved one due to a bike accident, they could also sue for wrongful death, loss of companionship/consortium, etc.
Why Should People Hire an Attorney After Bike Accidents?
There are many reasons why hiring a lawyer is in the victim's best interest. Here are some of them:
They understand the law and can guide the victim through it.
They'll gather evidence to build a stronger case against insurance companies.
They'll represent the victim if the case goes to trial.
They won't stop until the victim gets the compensation they deserve.
Fight the Insurance Company the Right Way
The legal experts at Schuerger Shunnarah are ready to go to war for bike accident victims. Thanks to the efforts of the team, everyone's trained to use insurance companies' best tricks against them, ensuring a positive case outcome.
Those interested in getting legal advice from this law firm can schedule a free case evaluation today to get started.