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Bicycle Accidents

Bicycle Accident Attorneys in Northern California

At the Law Offices of Larry S. Buckley, we have extensive experience handling bicycle accident cases. Located in a college town, our primary office sees and handles bicycle-related claims frequently as for many people in our community, biking is a primary means of transportation. If you have been injured in a bicycle or pedestrian accident, or a loved one has suffered serious injury, please allow us to help. You have legal rights and we can ensure that those rights are protected.

To arrange a free, no-obligation consultation with Mr. Larry Buckley or another member of our staff, please contact us at (530) 413-0245.

Financial Recovery for Bicycle Accident Victims

If you were struck by a car while riding a bicycle, you may be eligible to recover financial compensation for damages.

Potential damages include compensation for:

  • Medical bills
  • Lost wages
  • Pain and suffering
  • Future loss of income relating to your injury
  • Future medical expenses relating to your injury

Unfortunately, individuals who are involved in bicycle accidents with motor vehicles often suffer disproportionately severe injuries due to their lack of external protection. For this reason, we work hard to ensure our clients receive just and fair compensation for their suffering. For our clients who lack health insurance, we work with a network of area doctors, therapists, and healthcare providers to ensure they receive the treatment they need.

Bicycle accidents often result in brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, broken bones, internal injuries, and even death. If you have lost a loved one in an accident, we can help you file a wrongful death lawsuit on your loved one's behalf.

Proving Fault in Bicycle Accident Claims

If a motor vehicle was involved in the accident, the driver may be liable if they were negligent, violated traffic laws, or failed to yield the right of way to the cyclist.

But in some cases, the cyclist may be partially or fully liable for the accident if they were violating traffic laws, cycling recklessly, or not following road safety guidelines.

The Northern California bicycle accident lawyers at the Law Offices of Larry S. Buckley work with experts to establish liability in bicycle accident cases. Successfully recovering damages on behalf of our clients is entirely dependent on determining fault. By working with only top experts in the fields of biomechanical engineering, physics, accident reconstruction, accident investigation, psychology, and economics, we can both establish liability and determine appropriate compensation. By taking these steps and going to great effort to put our clients' cases up, we drastically improve our chances of obtaining a fair and just settlement or verdict.

Bicyclist Rights and Motorist Accountability

Bicyclists have rights. Unfortunately, many motorists believe that they don't have to share the road or are woefully negligent of what is around them and fail to show proper care for bicyclists.

Though there is a multitude of laws governing bicycling, it would be impossible to discuss them in detail here, as there are many instances in which a bicyclist has the right of way over a motorist. If a motorist strikes and injures a bicyclist because he or she failed to yield to the right of way or as a result of recklessness or negligence, then it's possible to hold him or her accountable.

post bicycle accident with damage

Leading Causes of Bicycle Collisions

There are a multitude of circumstances that can lead to a bicycle accident, including, but not limited to:

  • Right Hook: This occurs when a vehicle, usually turning right, cuts off a cyclist traveling straight ahead or to the right of the vehicle.
  • Left Hook: Opposite to the right hook, this happens when a vehicle turning left crosses the path of an oncoming cyclist.
  • Dooring: When a parked vehicle's door is opened suddenly into the path of an oncoming cyclist, causing a collision.
  • Rear-End Collision: A vehicle colliding into the back of a cyclist, often due to the driver's failure to maintain a safe following distance or not paying attention.
  • Side Swipe: A vehicle passing too closely to a cyclist or changing lanes without proper awareness, resulting in a collision or the cyclist being forced off the road.
  • Failure to Yield: Drivers failing to yield to cyclists at intersections, crosswalks, or when merging, leading to collisions.
  • Distracted Driving: Drivers not paying attention to the road, often due to smartphone use, eating, or other distractions, resulting in accidents involving cyclists.
  • Speeding: Excessive speed by drivers increases the risk of accidents, especially when passing cyclists without adequate clearance.
  • Impaired Driving: Drivers under the influence of alcohol or drugs have impaired judgment and reaction times, significantly increasing the risk of accidents involving cyclists.

Through a scientific, objective approach to accident investigation, we can determine the cause of a bicycle accident and establish liability. Motorists have a legal duty to show due care for pedestrians and bicyclists; like truck accident and motorcycle accident cases, there exists the potential for disproportionate damage in the event of an accident. The bicycle accident attorneys at our firm can file personal injury suit on your behalf if they've failed by this duty.

Bicycle Safety Tips to Avoid Accidents

  • Wear bright clothing when riding
  • Wear your helmet
  • Understand and know the rules of the road
  • Signal when your turn or brake

Get Help from Our Skilled Bicycle Accident Lawyers

Our team of attorneys is committed to providing our clients with exceptional, honest, and informative legal counsel. If your claim goes to court, you can rest assured that we will aggressively represent your interests and defend your rights. We guide our clients through every step of their case because we believe that customer satisfaction is of the utmost importance.

If you have questions not answered here and would like to arrange a consultation with one of our Northern California bicycle accident attorneys, please contact us today.

Related Reading

Bicycle Accident Legal FAQs

Is there a statute of limitations for bicycle injury claims?

Yes, there is a statute of limitations (or filing deadline) on bicycle accident and injury lawsuits. In California, the statute of limitations on these cases is two years. This means that you have two years from the date of the accident or injury to file your lawsuit. If you wait until the statute of limitations has expired, you will almost certainly lose your right to sue the liable party for damages. Note that the statute of limitations applies specifically to bicycle injury lawsuits, not insurance claims. In fact, if you wish to file a claim with the at-fault party’s insurance provider, you likely have even less time to do so. It is always important that you act quickly so that you don’t lose your right to receive fair compensation for your damages.

What kind of damages can I recover from a bike accident?

While every case is different, there are certain types of damages available to most bicycle accident victims. These include compensation for all medical expenses related to your bike accident injury, as well as lost income/wages and other incurred losses/costs. You can also seek compensation for non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering, lost earning capacity, and emotional distress. Many factors affect the types of damages you can recover and the overall value of your claim, including the severity of your injuries, the cost of your medical care, whether you were permanently disabled, whether you contributed to the accident, the amount of available insurance coverage, and more.

My accident was caused by a roadway defect (such as a drainage screen, uneven surface, pothole, crack, etc.) Do I still have a case?

You might! It is possible to bring a claim against a corporate or municipal entity, such as a city, when a bicycle accident results from a roadway defect. These cases are similar to product liability cases, in which manufacturers and distributors of defective products are held accountable for injuries and damages caused by those products. If you were injured in a bike accident caused by a pothole, uneven surface, or another roadway defect, you could bring a claim against the party responsible for designing, constructing, and/or maintaining the road. We recommend that you reach out to an attorney at our firm, as these cases are generally even more complex than standard personal injury claims.

What if I was partially at fault for the bicycle accident in California?

California follows a comparative negligence system, meaning that even if you were partially at fault for the bicycle accident, you may still be able to recover damages. However, your compensation may be reduced by your percentage of fault for the accident. For example, if you were found to be 20% at fault for the accident, your total compensation would be reduced by 20%. It's essential to consult with our knowledgeable attorney to understand how comparative negligence laws may affect your case.

What should I do if I'm involved in a hit-and-run bicycle accident in California?

If you're involved in a hit-and-run bicycle accident in California, prioritize your safety and seek medical attention for any injuries. Try to gather as much information as possible about the fleeing vehicle, such as its make, model, color, license plate number (if visible), and the direction it was headed. Contact the police immediately to report the incident and provide them with the details you've gathered. Additionally, notify your insurance company about the hit-and-run accident as soon as possible.

Can I still recover compensation if the driver who hit me doesn't have insurance in California?

Yes, you may still be able to recover compensation for your injuries and damages through uninsured motorist (UM) coverage or underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage if the driver who hit you doesn't have insurance or doesn't have enough insurance to cover your losses. UM/UIM coverage is optional in California, but it's highly recommended for cyclists to protect themselves in the event of accidents involving uninsured or underinsured drivers. Contact your insurance company to determine if you have UM/UIM coverage and to initiate the claims process.

Why Choose Law Offices of Larry S. Buckley?

  • We Are Experienced

    We have handled almost every type of personal injury case and have recovered millions of dollars.

  • We Are Available 24/7

    We understand that accidents can happen at any time and we're here for you day and night.

  • We Are Committed

    We are focused on providing our clients an exceptional customer service and legal experience.

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