Have you suffered a serious injury in a bicycle accident in Florida? Check out these 3 bicycle accident tips, then call our Orlando lawyers to get started.
1. Bicycle Accident Insurance Investigation
Just yesterday, we were speaking to a client who’s a cyclist struck by an automobile. Almost immediately after the accident, she was receiving calls from that driver’s insurance company. Fortunately, in her case, she didn’t speak with them, but it’s critically important that anyone who’s involved in an accident on their bicycle not speak with insurance company until you’ve spoken with an attorney. Insurance companies will often try to resolve your claim for pennies on the dollar or they will try to solicit a statement from you that will hurt your case and allow them to defend their insured driver. If you’re a cyclist who’s been injured here in central Florida by the negligence of a driver and you’ve received a call from an insurance company, you’re under no obligation to speak to them and you absolutely should not until you’ve spoken with an attorney. Please reach out to the Victory law firm. We are attorneys who are very skilled and experienced at handling bicycle claims. We’re here to help you.
2. Mistakes To Avoid After a Bicycle Accident
Having represented many injured cyclists, we begin to see a pattern of some mistakes that are often made right after the accident. Unfortunately, the most common one is to get up, brush it off, and go home. For more minor bicycle accident injuries, sometimes people aren’t aware of the injuries that they sustained inside. Sometimes they’re even embarrassed. It’s critically important that you see medical assistance right away. You need to get evaluated. We don’t know what we don’t know until a doctor has made that evaluation. One of the most common mistakes we see if people brushing it off and saying let me ice it off, let me put a heat pad when I get home.
Now, for your more severe injury cases, which unfortunately, bicycle accidents tend to be extremely severe. A common mistake is to not gather as much information as possible. A lack of information creates a fog of war where the defendant can claim that you were crossing the road, or they had the right of way. There’s any number of defenses that they can bring up after the fact but if a cyclist is armed with facts from the moment of the incident, it makes things a lot easier. The best thing to do, if possible, is to take photographs, take videos, if there’s any witnesses, get their names, get their numbers, record as much as possible right at the scene of the accident. Again, bicycle accidents tend to be devastating. A lot of times, an ambulance is rushed in and the cyclist is rushed out but there still are things that can be done.
Now, another common mistake is to say something that might damage your case. Maybe speaking with an insurance company or admitting liability or anything along those lines that could damage your case long-term. Again, if you’re involved in an accident as a cyclist, it’s critically important that you contact us right away. We are experienced attorneys specifically of handling bicycle accident. Please reach out to the Victory law firm right away.
Sometimes clients call and tell us they were injured in an accident due to somebody else’s fault; either they forgot, they were in a hurry, or some people are just opposed to it still. What we tell those clients is you are able to receive compensation for injuries sustained in that car accident as long as the seat belt would not have prevented them. For example, if you’re struck from the side and you break your arm against the door, you have a valid claim for that injury. However, if by wearing a seat belt you would not have struck your head on the steering wheel, for example, then you are not protected. It’s called the seat belt defense. What would happen is, although we would claim all of the injuries that were caused by the accident, the defendants are allowed to assert as a defense that because you weren’t wearing a seat belt those injuries should be either precluded or diminished because of your failure to wear that device.
3. Bicycle Accident Case Value
Just this week, we had a client who was riding her bicycle and she was struck by a vehicle. One of her first questions is what the value of her case is and how is that determined. Now, the value of a case is going to be different from every other case. The specific facts and the injuries are going to determine what the value of a case is. As a jumping off point, we normally tell clients that the medical bills are where we start out to determine what the value of your case might be. The less the medical bills, the lower the value of the case. The more severe the injuries, then the higher the medical bills, the higher the value of the case tends to be.
Now, that’s just a starting off point. From there, an experienced attorney will raise the value of the case based on other factors. Those factors include pain and suffering, which is to say how much has this case affected you, how has it affected your family, in the short-term and in the long-term, also have you missed time from work, have you lost the ability to earn wages in the future, loss of earning capacity, have you had to make personal accommodations, are you out of pocket for anything, medications. There are many things that factor into determining what the value of your case is. It’s important that you speak with an attorney who is experienced in bicycle accidents specifically, not just motor vehicle accidents or any type of other personal injury, but bicycle accidents specifically. If you’re a cyclist who’s been injured, please reach out to us at the Victory law firm.
Have you suffered a serious injury in a bicycle accident in Florida and have questions about your bicycle accident case value? Contact our experienced Orlando bicycle accident lawyers today for a free consultation and case evaluation.