Orlando Bicycle Accident Attorneys Helps Injured Cyclists Recover Compensation After an Accident
Any accident on the road holds a certain amount of risk for injury. However, when an accident involves one party in a motor vehicle and another on a bicycle, the risk of injury to the cyclist jumps up considerably. Because of the difference in speed and size of the vehicles, as well as the lack of protection from not being in an enclosed vehicle, cyclists are some of the most vulnerable people on the road.
That’s why it’s important to know your rights in the event of an accident that leads to an injury. It’s also why you should consider contacting a skilled Orlando personal injury attorney with experience handling bicycle accidents. You never want to suffer a bicycle accident, but if you do, you definitely don’t want to deal with it alone.
Should You Contact the Police After a Bicycle Accident?
The short answer is yes, you should always report a bike accident to the police. This applies even when you think you or your bicycle have not sustained much damage. The reason for this is simple: A police report is evidence that an incident took place. Without it, it could be your word against a driver’s word.
Having an official report is key for getting certain facts established at the scene. This is important if you do end up with injuries that need treatment. With a police report, you have proof of where your injuries came from and the circumstances that caused them. No matter what the other party in the accident says about exchanging information and settling it on your own later, it’s important to not leave the accident scene without calling the police and getting a report.
What Types of Compensation Are Possible to Recover After Bicycle Accident Injuries?
After a bicycle accident that has caused an injury, you may be entitled to make a claim for certain types of compensation from the responsible party.
Keep in mind the following four categories of compensation:
- Medical Costs – This may seem like the most obvious compensation you would seek, but there are some hidden factors at work here. With an insurance claim, you would likely include costs that have been incurred from ambulances, hospital stays, medications, doctor’s visits, physical therapy, etc. But what you may not think of is any continuing medical costs that have come about as a result of the injury, such as wheelchairs, home conversions, specialized medical equipment, skilled in-home care, and other expenses.
- Lost Wages – If you were forced to miss work as a result of the injuries you sustained, then you deserve to recoup that money because the loss comes about as a direct result of the accident that caused your injury. Keep in mind, if a permanent injury prevents you from working in the future, the amount you will lose moving forward should also be factored into your claim.
- Pain and Suffering – Unlike medical costs and lost wages, in which a clear and simple calculation can be made for what was lost, pain and suffering is more complicated to consider for compensation. Physical and emotional damage can manifest in many ways, from the loss of certain abilities to psychological trauma to difficulty navigating society because of disfigurement. These issues are more difficult to prove than medical issues but are equally as important and deserving of compensation.
- Punitive Damages – Punitive damages can be levied against the responsible party who maliciously caused the accident through gross negligence or by not following established safety rules and guidelines. These are more rare than other types of damages, but when they are awarded in court, they can be substantial.
How Are the Amounts of Damages Determined if You Are in a Bicycle Accident?
The truth is, there isn’t a single, simple formula for calculating the amount of money that a bicycle accident victim is entitled to when they are struck by a vehicle. Several factors are taken into consideration when deciding on the amount of damages, such as:
Who Is at Fault
While a bicyclist may have sustained serious injuries in an accident with a car, that doesn’t mean the cyclist is always without fault. There can be different percentages of fault in an accident, and that percentage can affect the amount of damages that the cyclist would be eligible to claim.
The Severity of Injuries
One of the most important factors is the number and severity of the injuries sustained. The more serious and long-lasting the injury, the higher the dollar amount of damages. Some injuries that seem serious but get better over time may not have as high an amount of damages as something that seems less serious but will be permanent for the rest of a person’s life.
Cost of Treatment
A large part of the discussion of damages revolves around how much treatment will cost. There is the number that the hospital or doctor’s bill indicates, and then there is the number that insurance companies actually have to pay. Because they are often different numbers, it makes figuring out damages more complicated for an injury victim with no training in this field. It’s best to discuss damages with an experienced personal injury attorney.
Future Medical Planning
It’s always possible that the injuries sustained in a bicycle accident could lead to medical costs down the road, such as continuous physical therapy, repeat medication refills and diagnostic testing, and even additional surgeries. It’s extremely difficult to get an insurance company to pay for a needed surgery or continous medical treatment months or years after an accident, so if a doctor says that the injured person will need surgery or future medical treatment down the road, those costs often can be factored into the damage claim.
What Type of Insurance the Parties Possess
No matter what kind of injuries are sustained and who is at fault, the question of how much and what kind of insurance the involved parties have is always the most powerful factor. The reason for this is because, if the at-fault driver has no insurance or doesn’t have enough, they usually don’t have the resources to pay damages out of their own pocket. If the cyclist is in that situation and does not have uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage, then it can have a big effect on the final amount of damages that can be won.
How Can a Bicycle Accident Attorney Help You with Your Injury Claim?
When you are struggling to get back your physical and emotional health and well-being after an accident, dealing with hours of paperwork, countless questions from the insurance company, and the financial and legal ramifications you now face can not only be overwhelming but likely impossible to take on without help. That’s where RTRLAW comes in.
The bicycle accident attorneys at RTRLAW will fight to protect your rights and get you the compensation you deserve for your injuries, so you can recover quickly and get on with your life. We truly believe your best chance at a successful case and recovery comes with having a local, experienced, and compassionate Orlando bicycle accident attorney who knows the law and can help you get the best outcome possible for your case. Give us a call at (407) 343-5152 or toll free at 1-833-HIRE-RTR, and our experienced and dedicated bicycle accident attorneys will stand by you every step of the way.