If you were hit by a car while you were riding your bicycle, you may be wondering how you are going to pay your mounting medical expenses and other bills while you are physically unable to work.
These are just a couple of reasons it is to your benefit to talk with a Weatherford bicycle accident lawyer. An experienced attorney may able to deal with the driver's insurance company on your behalf to negotiate fair compensation for your damages.
Schedule a free, no obligation legal consultation with a Weatherford bicycle accident lawyer at Stephens, Anderson & Cummings today. Our goal is to help you obtain all of the compensation you deserve, and we will not charge legal fees unless we are successful.
Our firm has recovered millions in compensation for victims of a variety of auto accidents. Founding partner Jason Stephens is a native Texan who has recovered some of the largest verdicts and settlements in the state. These accomplishments have earned him recognition as a Texas Super Lawyer® by Thomson Reuters Service every year from 2004 to the present.
Schedule a free legal consultation today by calling (877) 920-9009.
Common Types of Bicycle Accidents
You may be entitled to compensation after many different types of bicycle accidents. Below, we have compiled a list of some of the most common accidents where bicyclists could be entitled to compensation:
- Side-Street/Parking Lot Crashes – These occur when a car pulls out of a parking lot or a side street and hits a bicyclist who is crossing the street.
- Car-Door Accidents – These are accidents where a driver opens his or her car door, causing a cyclist to crash into it. These often occur when a car is parallel parked and there is a lane of active traffic next to the parking spot.
- Passing Accidents – These are accidents where a car hits a bicyclist who is traveling in the same direction as the car.
- Left-Turn Accidents – These types of collisions occur when a driver and a bicyclist approach an intersection from opposite directions and the driver turns left into the cyclist. Common reasons for these crashes are that the driver did not see the cyclist or the driver misjudged how fast or slow the cyclist was traveling.
- Right-Turn Accidents – There are a few different types of right-turn crashes. One example is when a car passes a cyclist and turns right at an intersection, cutting the cyclist off. Another type occurs when a cyclist passes a car but the driver turns right at the upcoming intersection. A third type happens when a driver and cyclist are waiting at a light and the driver makes a right turn as the cyclist attempts to cross the intersection.
These crashes can cause many severe injuries, even if you are wearing a helmet and other safety equipment. Common bicycle accident injuries include:
- Severe bruising
- Broken bones
- Road rash
- Spinal cord injuries
- Damage to internal organs
The trusted Weatherford bicycle accident attorneys at our firm take cases involving these and other injuries from many types of bicycle accidents. If you were injured in a bicycle accident, contact our firm so we can determine if you have a viable claim.
Fill out a Free Case Evaluation form today.
What Can a Lawyer Do for Me After an Accident?
Many people do not understand the many ways a Weatherford bicycle accident attorney can help them after they have been injured in an accident.
The lawyers at our firm have created a list of some of the ways we can assist you with pursuing compensation after your bicycle accident:
Reviewing Your Case in a Free Consultation
The first thing our staff will do when you contact us is schedule a free, no obligation legal consultation with one of our trusted attorneys.
The bicycle accident attorney in Weatherford you meet with will review your accident and injuries to determine if you may be entitled to compensation. He or she will also determine if it is in your best interest to pursue a claim for compensation.
Conducting a Detailed Investigation
If you have grounds for an insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit, and you decide to move forward, we will conduct an investigation to begin building your case. We will attempt to collect all of the evidence we need, including:
- Pictures from the scene
- Pictures and medical records documenting your injuries
- Your medical bills
- Statements from eyewitnesses
- The police report
This will help us determine the cause of the accident and the ways the driver who hit you acted negligently. We cannot recover compensation unless we prove the driver who hit you was negligent.
Identifying the Laws that Apply to Your Case
As we investigate, we will try to determine if the driver violated any traffic laws in the moments before the crash:
- Maybe the driver did not yield the right-of-way to you when the law says he or she should have. According to the Texas Transportation Code, a person riding a bike has the same rights as a driver operating a vehicle. This includes right-of-way rules.
- The transportation code also says that bicyclists are required to ride as near as possible to the right curb or edge of the roadway. However, the law also says cyclists have the right to take the lane when it is necessary for safety. If you were hit while you were taking the lane for safety, the driver may have been in violation of traffic laws.
We will also work to make sure important laws are applied correctly to your case, such as the modified comparative fault law. This law mandates that an injury victim's compensation award be reduced by his or her percentage of fault in the accident.
This means that if the insurance company or a jury finds that you were 30 percent at fault for the bicycle accident, your total compensation award would be reduced by 30 percent. However, you will be barred from recovering any compensation if you more than 50 percent at fault for the crash.
Our goal is to help ensure you are not assigned a higher percentage of fault than you deserve. This will help ensure you receive all of the compensation you deserve.
Negotiating Fair Compensation
This is one of the primary jobs of a Weatherford bicycle accident attorney. The lawyers at our firm have many years of combined experience negotiating with insurance companies and obtaining fair compensation for our clients.
We will do a detailed review of all of the damages you have suffered so we know how much your claim is worth. Our Weatherford bicycle accident lawyers will not accept any lowball offers and are prepared to go back and forth with the insurance company until we agree on an acceptable settlement. However, if we are unable to negotiate a fair deal, we are ready to file a lawsuit to attempt to recover fair compensation.
Contact a bicycle accident lawyer in Weatherford to learn more about how we can help you after a bicycle crash.
Compensation for a Bicycle Accident
Texas uses a fault-based system to determine financial responsibility after a traffic accident. This means that the driver who is deemed to be at-fault for the accident is required to pay for the victim's medical expenses and other damages.
Under the no-fault system, every driver in Texas is required to purchase the following amounts of liability coverage to compensate victims of accidents they cause:
- $30,000 for medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering of each person injured in an accident
- $60,000 per accident for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering
- $25,000 for repair or replacement of the car the victim was driving
These are the minimum amounts of coverage required by law. The driver who hit you may have more coverage on his or her policy. If your Weatherford bicycle accident lawyer proves the driver is at fault, you should be able to recover compensation up to the limits of his or her policy.
What if the Other Driver is Uninsured?
Unfortunately, some drivers break the law and do not purchase the required insurance coverage. There are also cases where the driver does not have enough coverage to pay for your damages.
In these situations, you can file a claim with your own insurance and attempt to obtain compensation from your uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage, if you have this coverage.
There are two types of uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage:
- Bodily injury – This covers medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, disfigurement, and permanent or partial disability.
- Property damage – This covers repairs to the vehicle of the victim, damage to items in the car and rental car coverage.
Another option for obtaining compensation is to file a claim under your personal injury protection (PIP) coverage. If you purchased this form of insurance, it covers medical expenses, 80 percent of your lost income and the cost of hiring a caregiver if you need one.
Insurance companies are required to offer at least $2,500 in PIP coverage when you purchase insurance, but you can choose to buy more.
Compensation from a Personal Injury Lawsuit
Another option for obtaining compensation is to file a lawsuit against the driver. There are forms of compensation you can recover in a lawsuit that are not available from an insurance claim, including:
- Lost earning capacity if your injuries force you to change careers or work fewer hours and have fewer responsibilities than you did before
- Future medical expenses
- Loss of household services, which covers the cost of hiring someone to perform household tasks you used to perform, such as cleaning the house or taking your children to school
- Loss of companionship, which covers the effect of your injuries on your relationship with your spouse
Schedule a free, no obligation legal consultation with our attorneys today.
Can I Still Recover Compensation if I Was Not Wearing a Helmet?
The main roadblock to obtaining compensation after a bicycle accident is Texas' modified comparative fault law. Some people assume that they will be assigned 50 percent or more of the responsibility for the crash if they were not wearing a helmet.
However, Texas does not have any statewide law on bicycle helmets. This means that failing to wear a bicycle helmet is not considered a violation of state law. This would make it difficult for a jury or insurance company to assert that not wearing a helmet caused your injuries.
While there is no statewide law, some cities have laws requiring minors to wear a helmet when riding a bicycle. If the accident occurred in one of these cities, not wearing a helmet could affect your ability to recover compensation.
If your child was hit by a car on his or her bicycle while not wearing a helmet, our experienced Weatherford bicycle accident lawyers will research the location where the crash occurred to determine if there is a helmet law.
Contact us right away to schedule a free legal consultation.
How Long Should I Wait to Contact a Lawyer?
You should contact a Weatherford bicycle accident lawyer as soon as possible after your bicycle accident. This way we can begin an investigation and deal with the insurance company on your behalf, making sure to defend your rights every step of the way.
Another reason to contact us is that we might not be able to recover fair compensation through an insurance claim. If this happens, our only option will be to file a lawsuit and there is a limited amount of time to file a lawsuit because of the statute of limitations.
The statute of limitations sets a timeframe for filing a personal injury lawsuit, including a bicycle accident lawsuit. This timeframe begins on the date of your injury and ends two years from that date. Once the two years are up, you lose the right to file a claim.
Even though two years seems far away, it can arrive faster than you think, particularly because part of that time will be spent on your insurance claim. We may not attempt to negotiate a settlement until you reach the point of maximum medical improvement from your injuries. This helps to ensure you receive all of the compensation you deserve.
The faster you contact our attorneys, the faster we can go to work for you, attempting to obtain compensation. It will also give us the time we need to be able to file a lawsuit before the statute of limitations expires.
Call (877) 920-9009 right away to discuss your legal options.
Contact a Weatherford Bicycle Accident Lawyer Today
Riding a bicycle is a great way to get exercise and enjoy the outdoors. Unfortunately, these vehicles do not offer the protection of cars, which means getting hit by a car could result in severe, potentially life-threatening injuries.
If this happens, you may have options for obtaining compensation for medical expenses and other damages, such as lost wages and pain and suffering.
Schedule a free, no obligation legal consultation with our Weatherford bicycle accident attorneys to discuss your potential legal options. We take cases on contingency so there is no fee unless we obtain the compensation you deserve.