Given the rush hour traffic on freeways, it is no wonder more people are opting to get where they need to go by bike. Cyclists save money and aggravation while keeping themselves healthy. Unfortunately, accidents happen, and sharing the road with cars can lead to dangerous consequences.
Just because you ride in the bike lane does not mean you are safe from serious injuries. The truth is, not everyone follows the rules of the road, and you could pay for their negligence with your life.
If you were injured in a bicycle accident, you might be wondering what to do now. Who pays for your bicycle accident in Los Angeles, and what are your rights?
To navigate the legal system and get the compensation you deserve, you need a bicycle accident attorney. Our team of experienced personal injury attorneys at Adamson Ahdoot LLP has the knowledge you need to build your case. Call for a free consultation today.
Who is Liable for a Bicycle Accident?
When riding your bike around Los Angeles, you take a risk. Cyclists are completely unprotected on the road, so when an accident happens, injuries are almost guaranteed. Motorists aren’t always to blame for bike accidents, though. Sometimes it’s the cyclist or even a third party. However, no matter what or who causes the accident, you need to know who is liable for the damages.
In the case of an accident with a motorist, perhaps they drifted over into your lane. Maybe they were texting and driving, or maybe they failed to yield you the right of way. In those cases, it’s not hard to see who is to blame and so liable for the accident, but what if a motorist is not to blame? Who is liable then? What if hitting uneven pavement or debris in the road caused the driver to swerve? In those cases, it is less clear who to name in your suit.
That is why it’s essential to hire an accident lawyer who is an expert in bicycle accidents. They can help you find the responsible party and get the justice you deserve.
Cyclist’s Rights in California
To avoid being involved in a bicycle accident, it is helpful to know your rights when you hit the road. It might surprise you to know that bicyclists in California have the same rights as anyone else driving in a car. Motorists must show cyclists the same courtesy they would to any other driver.
If they fail to do so, and a bicycle accident occurs, that driver is responsible for any injuries.
Keep in mind that bicyclists also carry that same responsibility to obey the rules of the road, and the burden of proof is on the injured party to prove fault. That is why it is important to contact a bicycle accident lawyer in Los Angeles to handle your case as soon as possible.
At Adamson Ahdoot LLP, our skilled bicycle accident attorneys will help you determine fault, gather evidence, and build a rock-solid case to ensure you aren’t left footing the bill for your injuries. Contact us today to discuss your case.
What Can I Claim?
According to California law, if you or a loved one are injured in a bicycle accident, you can file a personal injury claim and potentially receive compensation for:
- Personal injuries
- Damage to your bicycle
- Lost wages due to injuries
- Medical bills, including ongoing physical therapy
- Lost earning capacity
- Loss of companionship or moral support between partners
- Pain and suffering
- Punitive damages
The severity of your accident and injuries will determine how much compensation you could receive–as does the skill of your bicycle accident lawyer. Los Angeles has no shortage of law firms, but at Adamson Ahdoot LLP, we have a proven track record of helping clients who have been involved in a bicycle accident maximize their settlement and get justice for their injuries.
Even if you weren’t severely injured, you might have other damages. Bicycle accidents can leave you with scratches and abrasions, but also make you afraid of riding on the road ever again. On the other hand, your accident could leave you with physical scarring.
Here are some additional bike injuries that are common in accidents:
- Broken bones
- Head injuries
- Neck injuries
- Tooth trauma
- Injuries to the eye
- Strains, sprains, or dislocations
- Internal bleeding
Your injury might be on that list, or you might have a combination of a few. The bottom line is each case is different. The best course of action is to contact a Los Angeles bicycle attorney or law firm that can help you find out where you stand.
Bicycle Accident Statistics
Bicycle accident statistics in California are startling. Bicycle deaths in California account for 4 percent of all automobile accident deaths–double the national average.
Los Angeles, in particular, has many dangerous intersections where bicycle accidents are more likely to occur.
Across the United States, over 450,000 bicyclists sustained accident-related injuries in 2015. Plus, medical costs and job loss compensation per year in the U.S. show costs in the billions.
Common Causes of Bicycle Accidents
There are just as many causes of bicycle accidents as there are accidents. Some are motorists’ fault, and some are the cyclists’ fault. Often, the fault lies somewhere in the middle, which is a good reason to have the right law firm on your side.
No matter who is at fault, the resulting injuries can devastate your everyday life, both financially and mentally.
The more prepared you are to ride your bike throughout the day, the safer you will be. Here are some common causes of Los Angeles bicycle accident incidents.
- Driving while distracted (texting, eating, drinking, talking with passengers, playing with the radio, talking on the phone)
- Driving drunk or high
- Not following traffic laws (changing lanes improperly, failing to stop at stoplights, improper turns)
- Aggressive driving
- Reckless driving
- Drivers without a lot of experience
- Inclement weather
- Car problems
When riding your bike, pay attention to drivers on the road the same way you would if you were driving. It only takes a second for a bicycle accident to happen. Stay aware of your surroundings.
If you are injured in a bicycle crash, there are actionable steps you can take that will help your bicycle accident lawyer build your case.
What to Do After a Bicycle Accident
The first thing you want to do if you are in a bicycle accident is to call the police. Your injuries may be serious, and you need a medical opinion on your physical and mental state. Besides, police reports and medical reports from the scene are valuable to your personal injury case.
Even if you are not sure if you have a case, you want a complete record of the incident just in case.
If you are able, the next call you want to make is to Adamson Ahdoot LLP. Our team of bicycle accident attorneys will guide you through the accident process. Your initial free consultation will allow you to collect vital information critical to the success of your claim.
An experienced bicycle accident attorney from our team will also help you talk to your insurance company, the police, witnesses, and the other party involved.
Even if you think you do not have serious injuries today, you do not know the long-term effects of your accident. Having a quality law firm on your side is a smart move.
Other Important Steps
While you are at the scene, if a medical professional clears you, take pictures or video of the scene. Gather contact information from witnesses and write down your account of the accident while it is still fresh.
Include as many details about the incident as you possibly can.
Collect the insurance information from the other person involved in the accident. Include their name, address, and contact information on your list.
Above all, remember not to admit fault to anyone. Even if you are not sure what happened, admitting fault without having all the facts could affect your settlement.
Instead, get in touch with our office to speak to a Los Angeles bicycle accident lawyer before you make any formal statements related to blame.
Avoid These Costly Mistakes
When you are in the throes of an accident, it is sometimes difficult to think straight. Having a list of things to avoid in mind beforehand will help you avoid costly errors in judgment.
Here’s what not to do after a bicycle accident:
- Admit you are at fault
- Flee the scene
- Reject medical treatment
- Avoid calling the police
- Fail to follow your doctor’s recommendations
- Take a settlement without speaking to your attorney
- Post on social media
- Talk to your insurance company without advice from a bike accident law firm
- Miss crucial evidence at the scene
Why Choose Adamson Ahdoot
Hiring a Los Angeles bicycle accident attorney is an easy step to take, and the choice is clear. Our experienced bicycle accident lawyers offer a combined 100 years of service in personal injury cases like yours.
These experts know the legal steps following a bicycle accident and will guide you or your loved one every step of the way. We even offer a free consultation, so there is no out-of-pocket expense for you.
We proudly serve the residents of California with headquarters in Los Angeles. We are on your side. When you call the law firm of Adamson Ahdoot LLP, you can count on having a compassionate, knowledgeable bicycle accident attorney in your corner. Call (800) 310-1606 to discuss your options today!