3 Ways to Boost Bicycle Accident Claim Compensation
Going out on the road on a bicycle can be a smart decision for your health, your wallet, and the environment. Unfortunately, it’s also a big act of trust. Many drivers still have not learned to respectfully share the road with bike riders. Even if you’re doing everything you can to stay alert and follow traffic laws, there’s always a chance that a driver may fail to notice you and cause a collision.
Bicycle accidents may not seem like as big of a deal as a car collision, and some insurance companies may not take it very seriously, but the resulting costs and health risks for the rider can be significant. Bike riders who suffer injuries in such cases deserve fair compensation. Here are a few smart things to remember to help you get adequate compensation when you’re a victim in a bicycle accident.
The first thing you want to do after a bicycle accident, once you make sure you’re physically okay, is record as much as you can about the incident itself. Get personal and insurance information from the other driver, take pictures of the damage to your bicycle and the scene of the accident and get a copy of the police report. Police reports or other witnesses will be instrumental in proving that you were not at fault in an accident.
Make sure you record exactly where the incident was, and document any other causes for the accident like obstacles or debris in the road. Take detailed notes after the accident and try to approach witnesses to get signed statements from them as well about what happened.
Take pictures of everything you can, and be very careful what you say to the police or the driver if it was a collision with a car. While it may seem polite to apologize, that can be recorded as an admission of guilt. If the other driver or the insurance company can show that you weren’t following all applicable traffic laws or were otherwise riding your bike irresponsibly, you won’t be able to get as much compensation.
Document Your Costs
Another essential step in securing your valid damages for the accident is thoroughly documenting all of your expenses and injuries related to the accident. Take pictures of the damage to your bike, and keep all of your receipts for any repairs. Don’t forget to include any other costs you incur as a result of not having an usable bike, such as lost wages, rideshare or taxi fares, public transportation costs, and/or gas purchases.
The most significant costs you’ll need to document are injury-related costs, especially if you suffered a serious injury with long-term effects. Some insurance companies may try to resolve a case quickly with an offer of compensation shortly after an accident. However, the full cost of the accident might not be apparent until some time after the crash itself. Don’t be afraid to refuse a deal until you are finished receiving all the medical care you need.
Your damages eligible for compensation will include all of your medical expenses, wages or jobs lost because of your injury, pain and suffering, and even work that you had to pay for your family or around your house that you would have otherwise done for yourself.
Stand Up for Yourself
The most important thing you can do to ensure you get proper compensation is to speak up for yourself and your rights. A collision with a bike is no different in this respect than a car accident, and it can be even more damaging in terms of personal injury. Don’t let insurance adjusters dismiss your claim, and don’t let the driver do it either. If they brush it off and keep driving, that’s a hit-and-run, and you should report it immediately.