How Much Is a Bicycle Accident Claim Worth?

Nice weather, increased exercise, or trying to avoid rising gas prices all may contribute to your desire to use your bicycle to travel across your city. If you share the road with drivers, motorcyclists, and pedestrians, there is a risk that you will suffer an injury in an accident.

If you have been in a bicycle accident, you have the right to pursue compensation for your injuries. An experienced bicycle accident attorney in your area can help you pursue litigation and protect your legal rights. If you have suffered an injury in a bicycle accident, call an accident lawyer immediately.

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How Common are Bicycle Accidents?

Every year more people are choosing to travel on bicycles. However, the number of bicyclists does not correlate to the increase in accidents with drivers. The number of accidents that happen across the country has decreased across the country, but there has been an increase in the number of fatalities. If you or a loved one have suffered an injury in a bicycle accident, call a local bicycle accident lawyer.

What Kinds of Harm Do Bicycle Accident Victims Face?

Like any other traffic accident, the harm a bicycle accident victim faces depends on the facts of the case. Every personal injury accident is unique, and there is no way to predict what injuries you will suffer. Whatever injuries you sustained, you need an attorney to protect your rights and ensure you receive the compensation you deserve.

A bicycle accident victim may face:

  • Scarring
  • Amputation
  • Physical pain
  • Emotional and mental distress
  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Medical bills (current and future medical costs)
  • Physical therapy
  • Rehabilitation costs
  • Prescription medical costs
  • Permanent disability
  • Lost income
  • Loss of earning capacity
  • Death

This list is not exhaustive. If you or a loved one suffered an injury in a bicycle accident, call an experienced personal injury lawyer in your area today.

How are Bicycle Accidents Claims Calculated?How Much is My Bicycle Accident Claim Worth?

Damages in bicycle accidents may be tangible and intangible. Whether you incurred economic or non-economic damages, you deserve compensation. The injuries you suffered in the accident, how much treatment costs, and the short-term and long-term effects of the injury are all accounted for when calculating a final settlement amount.

Economic Damages

Economic damages are tangible, and we can determine their value objectively. Since economic damages are objective, it is easy to calculate the estimated settlement value of these injuries.

Examples of economic damages include:

  • Medical bills
  • Lost income
  • Loss of earning capacity
  • The cost of future medical care

Although proving economic damages is straightforward, bicycle accident victims must keep track of their medical records and medical bills. Similarly, to prove lost income, an accident victim must keep track of hours of work missed and how much money they lost in their paycheck since the accident.

To prove loss of earning capacity and other losses like future medical bills and loss of future earnings, you will need an attorney to help you show an insurance company that you have suffered harm in this way.

For example, an accident attorney can call on doctors with which they have a relationship to help prove the causation and extent of your physical injuries. If you have suffered an injury in a bicycle accident, call an experienced personal injury attorney in your area to discuss your legal rights.

Non-economic Damages

Non-economic damages are intangible losses that an accident victim sustains. Examples of non-economic damages include emotional and mental trauma and pain and suffering. These damages are hard to prove. To receive compensation for non-economic damages, talk to an experienced bicycle accident attorney in your area.

Punitive Damages

You may recover punitive damages depending on the state where you suffered an injury and the circumstances that caused it. Courts award punitive damages to punish the defendant and deter future outrageous behavior. Some jurisdictions limit the dollar amount a court can award an injured plaintiff. Punitive damages may increase the value of your bicycle accident settlement. An experienced bicycle accident attorney in your area can help you pursue punitive damages if your lawsuit calls for them.

What Factors Increase the Value of My Bicycle Accident Claim?

Every personal injury case is unique, and the facts of the case ultimately determine the final dollar value. Typically, settlement amounts increase depending on the harm done to the injured party, the severity of the harm, and how long the accident victim must live with the consequences of the injury.

One example is the type of injury that the plaintiff suffered. If the injured party lost a limb in an accident, the overall settlement amount would likely be more than if they just suffered cuts and bruises. Some injuries can develop over time, and you may realize that you are more badly hurt than you initially thought. That is why you must avoid settling your bicycle accident claim until you reach maximum medical improvement.

An injury that can seem unimportant, like a strain or sprain, can lead to the need for long-term medical care. If you sprain a ligament or a tendon in a bicycle accident, it can take months or years to fully recover, if you do fully recover. You deserve compensation when you suffer an injury that leaves you in need of long-term medical care.

Some accident cases involve a severely injured victim. If an accident causes a permanent condition like limb amputation, paralysis, or death, then the value of that claim may skyrocket. If you or a loved one has suffered from a severe injury after a bicycle accident, call a personal injury lawyer in your area.

The mental and emotional harm you suffer from the accident can increase the settlement value. Mental and emotional scars can stay with the victim long after the physical wounds have healed.

You deserve compensation for the psychological trauma that you suffered in an accident. Since these damages tend to be intangible, you should rely on an experienced attorney to prepare you for how to tell your story and to prepare your witnesses to testify about how you have changed since the accident.

Your attorney may ask family members, friends, and coworkers to comment on your emotional state since the accident. They may also want to prepare you to tell your story in your own words to a jury. Expressing how an accident and injury has affected your life clearly to a jury goes a long way to increasing the overall value of your bicycle accident claim.

The attorney you choose to represent you may also increase the value of your settlement. Complete research on the attorney you want to hire, and do not be shy about meeting with multiple attorneys before you choose one. An attorney’s reputation in the community alone can increase your chances of a positive outcome. Further, you want an attorney with experience winning cases involving injuries like yours.

During an initial consultation, ask the attorney about their experience with bicycle accident lawsuits and their success record. This is your case, and properly vetting an attorney is one way you can work to increase the value of your bicycle accident claim.

What Factors Decrease the Value of My Bicycle Accident Claim?

Insurance companies and defense attorneys will work overtime to avoid paying your claim. To justify paying a lowball settlement or not offering a settlement at all, the insurance company will attempt to prove that they are not liable for your injuries.

Some tactics that the insurance company will use to avoid payment include:

  • Deny your injuries
  • Deny the cause of your injuries
  • Claim that your injuries are as severe as you claim

If the insurance company can prove any of the above, you may receive a low offer to settle the case.

In addition to insurance company tomfoolery, some other factors that can decrease the value of your bicycle accident claim include:

  • Prior illnesses or injuries, especially to the affected area
  • Your age
  • Whether you are able or plan to return to work
  • Your occupation before the accident

Despite what the insurance company claims, you deserve compensation for your injuries. If you have suffered an injury in an accident, contact an experienced bicycle accident attorney in your area immediately to learn the proper next steps to protect your legal rights.

How Can an Attorney Help Me?

It is wise to take advantage of the experience a seasoned personal injury attorney has after an accident. Unrepresented accident victims typically have an uphill battle when trying to get the compensation that they need to recover fully.

Some ways that an accident lawyer in your area can make it easier to receive the money that you deserve include:

  • Negotiating on your behalf with the insurance company
  • Helping you get access to medical care
  • Complying with all applicable procedural rules so that you can focus solely on recovery
  • Fielding calls from debt collectors
  • Representing you at trial

What if I Cannot Afford an Attorney?

If you cannot afford an attorney, it is not the end of your case. You can work with a local attorney and discuss using a contingency fee payment arrangement. A contingency fee payment arrangement is an agreement between a client and an attorney where the attorney agrees to perform the legal services required in your case and to defer payment until after the case reaches its conclusion.

You may have heard some variation of “We don’t get paid unless you do.” That refers to a contingency fee arrangement. Contingency fee agreements are a great way for accident victims to pursue justice without fear of major legal fees upfront.

The ethical rules that all attorneys in the United States must follow require that the terms of a contingency fee agreement be reduced to writing and signed by both the client and the attorney. Examples of common terms included in a contingency fee contract are payment of litigation costs and the percentage of the final settlement the attorney receives as payment.

Litigation costs are expenses that arise during a lawsuit. Examples of litigation costs include filing fees, copying and postage fees, and payment for expert witness testimony. Sometimes an attorney’s firm will agree to pay these costs upfront and get reimbursement from the client after the case is closed. However, a client is free to pay these costs as the litigation continues.

Your agreement can include more terms than those listed here. You must understand the terms of the agreement before signing it. Keep a copy of the agreement for your records.

Contact a Bicycle Accident Attorney Today

After you suffered an injury in a bicycle accident, you need an attorney to represent your interests. Hiring a personal injury attorney is the best way to increase the overall value of your bicycle accident claim. Your attorney will protect your rights to compensation. They will fight to ensure you receive maximum benefits.

There is no need to fight against insurance companies and insurance defense lawyers without someone in your corner. If you or a loved one have suffered an injury in a bicycle accident, contact a local bicycle accident lawyer immediately.

August 26, 2022

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