Fountain Valley Bicycle Accident Attorneys
Fountain Valley Bicycle Accident Attorneys
Cyclists are among the country’s most vulnerable road users. With just a helmet for protection, a collision with a car or truck can be devastating. Many victims suffer catastrophic injuries such as spinal cord injuries and brain trauma. Often, these conditions can result in a lifetime of complications and medical costs. If you were injured by a motorist while biking, turn to our Fountain Valley bicycle accident attorneys for tailored representation and legal advice. Our lawyers can help guide you through the emotional, challenging, and time-consuming undertaking of filing a claim. We have extensive experience dealing with the area’s insurers and representing injury victims in court. To talk with us about your circumstances and find out how to seek full and fair compensation for your losses, contact us today on our 24/7 phoneline at 1-800-GO-HARRIS.
Common Mistakes to Avoid Throughout Proceedings
You may have played no role in causing the collision, but it’s still possible to make serious errors that will put you in the firing line when negotiations begin. Below are a few common mistakes to avoid while your claim is pending:
- Providing a Recorded Statement: Your insurance adjuster may seem friendly, but they are not on your side. These individuals are tasked with overseeing claims and, ultimately, ensuring the insurer makes a profit. As such, they have a strong incentive to unearth any evidence that could be used to challenge your case. Often, a recorded statement could be the smoking gun they need to reduce or deny your claim. For instance, these “interviews” are often set up to coerce the claimant into making statements that contradict other evidence in their cases.
- Delaying a Medical Assessment: The longer you wait to visit the doctor after a bicycle accident, the greater the risk that you will face disputes when you file your claim. For example, the insurer may dispute the cause of your injuries or assert that you have failed to take sufficient steps to mitigate damages. As a rule, you should seek medical treatment as soon as possible after leaving the accident scene.
- Ignoring Your Doctor’s Instructions: Recovering from a serious injury can be an emotional, exhausting, and immensely painful experience. Sitting at home while those around you are attending social activities and enjoying their hobbies can be downright miserable. However, if your doctor has instructed you to rest, it’s important to stick to the script. Failing to follow through on your doctor’s orders could lead to delays, reductions to your financial award, or the denial of your claim.
- Posting on Social Media: Writing about your injuries, claim, or the accident itself online could hurt your chances of recovering a fair settlement as anything you say could be used as evidence to dispute liability or damages.
What Factors Might Affect the Value of My Case?
There are many factors that could influence the potential recovery in a bicycle accident case. Examples include:
- The Amount of Earnings Lost: Any income you lost because of the collision could be included in your claim. If it’s expected that you will be unable to work after your claim is resolved, you may also be able to include loss of future income and benefits in the settlement estimations. However, approximating the value of lost future wages can be incredibly complicated as you may have to account for your expected career trajectory had the accident not happened, salary raises, and inflation. Our legal team might consult with vocational experts, economists, and other expert witnesses to ensure your claim accounts for all damages you might be owed.
- The Severity of Your Injuries: Typically, more serious injuries tend to warrant a higher financial award than relatively minor conditions. For instance, a claimant who suffered a traumatic brain injury is more likely to receive a significant settlement than someone who only suffered a few cuts and bruises.
- The Ongoing Effects of Your Injuries: There are many victims who never make a full recovery after an accident. They may require ongoing domestic assistance, medical care, home modifications, additional healthcare interventions, and other necessary services. Your bicycle accident claim can account for any damages you are reasonably likely to incur down the line because of the accident.
- The Role You Played in the Accident: The at-fault party will not have to pay for 100 percent of your losses if it can be demonstrated that you were partly responsible for causing the accident or your own negligence contributed to your damages. In California, courts follow a pure comparative negligence rule. As such, you will still be able to seek damages even if you were more than 51 percent responsible for causing the collision, but your financial award will be lowered based on your percentage share of the fault.
- The Nature of the Defendant’s Misconduct: Were the defendant’s actions extremely reckless? Did he or she try cover up their negligence? If so, you may receive a punitive damages award. Unlike other damages, punitive damages aren’t meant to compensate the defendant for their losses but exist instead to penalize the defendant to dissuade others from emulating their behavior. For instance, if you were injury by an intoxicated motorist, the judge may decide to award punitive damages to discourage others from getting behind the wheel while under the influence of drugs or alcohol
Contact Us Today to Speak to a Fountain Valley Bicycle Accident Attorney
Need answers to your questions? Wondering how much your claim might be worth? Want to discuss your claim with a skilled attorney? Call us today at 1-800-GO-HARRIS or click through to our Contact Form to schedule your free initial consultation.