There are several obstacles you will encounter when making a recovery for an injury on your bicycle. Understanding the source of each and the reasons why they should be overcome/ignored are important.
After an injury from a bicycle, you can feel frustrated by all the obstacles to recovery- monetary and physical. Here are the ones I have found most common to all bicycle injury cases.
First, the biggest problem is you. Yes, you. People who ride bicycles are usually individualists and enjoy the company of other bicycle riders but because the independence bestowed by the operation of a bicycle, those injured on their bicycles are their own worst enemies. First, there is the initial embarrassment. You feel that somehow you may be at fault for getting knocked off your bicycle by the car or that road obstacle. As my mom used to say about teenage sex: “It takes two to tango.” It may be that somehow you may have contributed to the incident (or not at all). That is highly unlikely. No person goes out on their bikes with the thought: “I’m to go see if I can get into a crash today.” We have more to lose in a crash with a car. It is always my experience the person riding a bicycle did everything possible to avoid the crash.
The Second obstacle is embarrassment. This one is based on irrational, not legally based idea of “I’m not equal to cars.” The law says that you are. So please get over your embarrassment. The thought you might be at fault is reasonable, however, unless you talk to a personal injury trial lawyer who rides bicycles, you may not realize that you are “really-and-truly” not at fault. Some folks, who commute exclusively on bicycles, feel like “lesser entitled” users of the road. That’s not reality. The law is very clear: you are out there with every single right (and then some) to be on that road.
Third is an obstacle when you may be unaware of your full rights as a lawful vehicle. The reason for your injury is (-most likely in my 34 years of experience) the at-fault motorist does not know you are a vehicle and fails to give you the rights to which you are entitled. As a vehicle on the roads of Florida (under Florida Statutes §316.2065(1)(2019)) or as a “pedestrian” on a sidewalk (under Florida Statutes §316.2065(9)(2019) to rights whether you are a kid or an adult. If you fall because of a road hazard, it is highly likely a road construction crew disregarded the rule people on bicycles are entitled to road conditions that are “favorable for bicycling, with smooth pavement and limited changes in elevation along the edge lines.” (The Florida DOT Green Book 2016 Chapter 9, section B)
Fourth, the problem with people in bicycle crashes is they don’t acknowledge 1. They are hurt, or 2. The extent of their injuries to which they are entitled for reimbursement. All too often people riding bicycles think they pick themselves up and just keep going like in the Tour de France. Sorry, not the Tour, you’re not Egan Bernal. Every fall, even ones you may have caused will injure you. If you do it, it’s your fault so you pay. So, it’s the same if a car/truck hits you. In that case someone else has injured you, it’s their fault. They pay the doctors and fix your bike. It’s best to just admit you’re hurt, seek treatment start your recovery and hold the person who injured you responsible. That’s what the law is there for.
Florida Standard Jury Instruction 501 is read to a jury by a judge and instructs what the jury can award the injured bicycle rider can recover after an injury. You are entitled to get repayment for “Any bodily injury… and any resulting pain and suffering, disability or physical impairment, disfigurement, mental anguish, inconvenience, loss of capacity for the enjoyment of life.” This is what the Florida Supreme Court tells Judges to read to juries in every trial. If you’re hurt, you get these damages. Not only that, but your bike gets fixed completeln or you get a new one in what you think about this new wealth is a deal she basically is here to help you should help me in everyone’s logyou get the labor to fix it, so you don’t have to.
Fourth, insurance adjusters are prejudiced against bicyclists. They’ve been trained by managers, team leaders and regional managers that people on bicycles aren’t going fast so they “don’t get hurt” or “don’t get hurt very much.” I have two cases right now where the insurance companies area about to learn very painful lessons because of their refusal to pull their heads out of [the sand] and compensate my clients for exactly the extremely painful injuries he sustained.
Fifth, Property damage is difficult with people who ride bicycles because a lot of times they pay cash and fix their own bicycles so the documentation is lacking to prove the damages. There are several ways around this an experienced bicycle lawyer can help you with. It’s not that difficult.
Sixth, there’s a broad lack of understanding among people who ride bicycles how personal injury works. Believe it or not, if you don’t own a car you are entitled to have your medical bills paid for by car insurance. Think about that.
Finally, the worst thing you can do after a bicycle injury is assume somebody else is going to take care of the claim. If it’s the at-fault motor vehicle insurance company, the adjuster is doing everything possible to minimize or defeat your claim. Assuming that adjuster is out to protect you instead of the company’s insured is a serious mistake.
After crash, your best bet is talk to a personal injury lawyer (not one on a billboard/TV though). We all work on commission, so the consultations are free. Make sure you talk to one who is also a person who rides bicycles. All the TV/billboard settlement lawyers want your injury case, but unless they been out on the roads with you, you are hiring the wrong lawyer.
After crash, your best bet is talk to a personal injury lawyer. We all work on commission, so the consultations are free. Make sure you talk to one who is also a person who rides. All the billboard/TV settlement lawyers want your injury case, but unless they been out on the roads with you, you are hiring the wrong lawyer.
Stop clicking now if you are injured and searching for an attorney.
I am a full-service personalized, personal injury lawyer with a statewide practice in all 67 counties. I have 31 years of experience to put to work for you. Call me so I can answer your questions: 1-800 – 535 – 3002. Email: [email protected] Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JSteeleLaw/ Twitter: @JSteeleOlmstead or @FlaBicyleLawyr Whatsapp: J. Steele Olmstead Instagram: jsteeleolmstead.
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