Bicycle accidents are stressful times and you may have questions regarding your rights. The lawyers at Mike Agruss Law compiled some of the most frequently asked questions regarding bicycle accidents to help you in this difficult time. As always, if you have any further questions, feel free to contact our office to discuss your case.
At Mike Agruss Law, we represent clients in Illinois who have suffered personal injuries from a bicycle accident, as well as family members who have lost a loved one in a road accident caused by negligent or reckless conduct of another person. We know that when a bicycle collides with a vehicle weighing at least 2,000 pounds, the odds are not in the cyclist’s favor and the results can be tragic.
Questions and Answers
- If I was injured in a bicycle accident, can I sue the driver?
Yes, provided that the driver is responsible for your accident. If more than one party was responsible for your accident you can also seek recovery from those parties as well under the comparative negligence doctrine. It is important to remember, though, that this doctrine also allows for the amount of your damages to be reduced with the amount of negligence you contributed to the accident as determined by a jury or trier-of-fact. If, for example, the jury determines that you were at-fault for 30% of the accident, your damage award will be reduced by this amount, with you receiving 70%.
- What damages am I entitled to in a bicycle accident?
Bicycle accident damages are similar to other personal injury cases. The type of damages you may be entitled to will vary with the specific circumstances of your particular case, but could include:
- Economic losses-Such as medical bills, property damage, and lost income
- Non-economic losses-Pain and suffering, disfigurement and disability, pain and suffering, and emotional distress.
- Wrongful death-If a loved one was killed in a bicycle accident, their next of kin can sue for the medical bills, pain and suffering, and funeral and burial expenses their loved one incurred. They may also receive compensation for how their life will be forever changed by losing their loved one.
- Punitive damages-If a jury finds that the defendant acted in a particularly egregious manner, they may award punitive damages to punish the defendant and make an example of them.
- Am I obligated to discuss my bicycle accident with the insurance company?
No, under Illinois law you are not required to discuss your case with the insurance company or their agents. Insurance companies rarely have your best interests at heart, and they are often looking to settle a case for as cheaply as possible. If you were involved in a bicycle accident and were injured, contact a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible to discuss your case. Once you have hired a lawyer, all calls from the insurance company can then be directed to them.
- Can I sue the employer of the person who hit me?
Possibly. If the person who hit you was considered under the scope of employment at the time, their employer could be found liable under the Respondeat Superior doctrine. There are certain parameters that must be met for this doctrine to apply, and an experienced personal injury lawyer can determine if your accident meets these requirements.
- Can I recover compensation following a bicycle hit-and-run accident?
Yes, it is still possible to receive compensation even if you are unsure who caused your accident. First, never assume the police will be unable to find who is responsible for your accident. Contact the police as soon as it is safe for you to do so and inform them of as much as you can remember regarding the accident. The police have many tools at their disposal and rarely does anyone get away with a crime in today’s world.
In the unlikely event that the police do not find the person responsible for your accident, or until they do, you can usually file a claim with your auto insurance provider under your uninsured driver policy. Again, the insurance company will attempt to find loopholes in your coverage or pay you as little as possible, so it is best to contact a personal injury lawyer immediately following your accident to discuss your options.
- I had my bicycle repaired prior to my accident. Can the repair shop be liable for my accident?
Possibly, if it can be shown that the shop provided faulty repairs or used faulty products in the repair of your bicycle. You may also be able to recover damages against the parts manufacturer if their product was found faulty.
- Is there a statute of limitations on bicycle accidents?
Yes, in Illinois there is a five-year statute of limitations on property damage-only bicycle accidents and a two-year statute of limitations in bicycle injury cases. Generally, this begins at the time of the accident, but may be extended under certain circumstances.
- What type of documentation do I need for a bicycle accident?
After any accident, it is important to collect as much documentation as you possibly can. This should include pictures of the accident scene, picture of your damages and injuries, witness contact information, contact information of the driver involved, pictures of the damages to the vehicle(s) involved, as well as medical bills, documentation of your lost wages, a journal of how your injuries have affected your life, and notes on what you remember regarding the accident.
The more information you have available, the better your chances of getting a recovery for your damages.
- What options do I have if my child was injured or killed in a bicycle accident?
As a parent, you are legally permitted to sue on behalf of your child for their damages, injuries, and if they tragically passed away, for their wrongful death. You are also legally permitted to receive compensation for the damages and suffering you sustained due to their injuries or loss.
Bicycle accidents can happen in the blink of an eye. No matter how safe of a cyclist you are, you are still at a distinct disadvantage each time you take to Illinois’ roadways. If you or a loved one has been injured in a bicycle accident, it can be devastating. Let an experienced personal injury lawyer help you navigate the legal system and get you the compensation you deserve.
It’s important to consult with an experienced Chicago bicycle accident attorney as soon as possible to protect your rights and determine if you have a valid personal injury claim or wrongful death claim against a reckless or negligent driver. If you were injured in a bicycle accident, contact Mike Agruss Law, for a free consultation.
We see you as a person, not just a client – and that makes us better at work we do. We listen. We learn your story. And, as we help you get the money you deserve, we go above and beyond in a way most law firms never could and never would. Because we’re not just lawyers. And you’re not just a client. We’re friends, neighbors, family. We’re all people and here at Mike Agruss Law, we put People, First.
Helping our clients is about counseling, advocating, and ultimately solving problems. With years of experience successfully representing the people, not the powerful, we will take care of the insurance adjusters, your medical bills, your property damage, your lost wages, and monitor your treatment so you can focus on healing and getting your life back to normal. Our unique formula has earned us over 900 outstanding client reviews on our website, an A+ BBB rating, and over 120 five-star reviews on Google. Call 888-572-0176, e-mail us at [email protected], or schedule meeting with us here. We’re here 24/7.