Especially in the Philadelphia area, you may have noticed that bicycle accidents have been on the rise. In fact, there was even a local civil litigation attorney who was killed in June 2016 after he was struck by a vehicle while riding his bicycle. As bicycling becomes a more popular method of transportation and leisure activity, the number of severe accidents that occur will only increase as well.
If you or a loved one suffered serious injuries in a bicycle accident, it is important to understand your rights when it comes to seeking legal justice.
Do I have a case for a personal injury lawsuit?
In order to pursue any type of legal action against the driver of an automobile, you must be able to prove that the cyclist’s injuries were caused by the driver’s negligence. To put it simply, the driver of the automobile must be at fault, and the accident should have been preventable.
Additionally, you have to take things one step further when it comes to bicycle accidents. It must also be determined that the cyclist did not exhibit any negligence. If the cyclist caused the accident, then the possibility of recovering any damages resulting from the accident become highly unlikely.
How is negligence determined in a bicycle accident?
In any type of accident involving automobiles, there is a basic understanding that drivers have a duty to operate their vehicles properly and exhibit safe driving behavior in order to keep those around them safe. When that simple code of conduct is violated, negligence has occurred. This can take the form of speeding, running a red light, driving under the influence, texting while driving, failing to follow traffic signs, driving into a bike lane, and more. Eyewitness testimony, traffic cameras, and other evidence play an important role in proving without a doubt that negligence and/or recklessness did in fact occur.
What types of benefits can I receive from a personal injury lawsuit?
Victims involved in bicycle accidents often face severe injuries. Even while wearing helmets, riding cautiously, and abiding by all of the traffic laws, a bicycle is no match for an automobile. From brain injuries to spinal cord injuries, the types of repercussions that cyclists face after an accident can be very serious.
Fortunately, those who are successful in filing a personal injury lawsuit are entitled to compensation for several different types of damages. These include:
- Current medical expenses
- Future medical expenses
- Current lost wages
- Future lost wages, if you are unable to return to work
- Rehabilitation expenses
- Long-term medical and nursing care
- Pain and suffering
Since no two accidents or injuries are exactly the same, the amount of compensation received will be different in each case. Obviously, the more severe the injury, the greater the amount of financial benefits tend to be.
How soon do I need to file a personal injury lawsuit after my bicycle accident?
When it comes to the statute of limitations on personal injury accidents, each state has its own laws. In Pennsylvania, bicycle accident victims have two years from the date the injury occurred to file a personal injury lawsuit in the civil court system. While this may seem like plenty of time, the weeks and months can fly by when you or a loved one are coping with a severe injury. Additionally, the longer you wait to file a lawsuit, the more difficult it can become to find and present sufficient evidence to prove negligence on behalf of the automobile driver. Plus, the sooner you take legal action, the sooner you will reach a resolution.
If you or a loved one sustained severe injuries in a bicycle accident, the attorneys at Ross Feller Casey are here to help. Contact us today for your free case evaluation.