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It is often a convenient form of transportation to use your bicycle to get around, but it can also come with some hazards. The roads aren’t easily shareable with cars, and this can lead to some serious crashes and injuries. If you have been seriously injured in a bicycle accident in the Tampa Bay area, we are here to guide you through your bike accident claim every step of the way. Our St. Petersburg bicycle accident attorneys are available for free consultations. Call us anytime and we will review your case with you.
Bicycle accidents can occur for several reasons. Dangerous road conditions, inclement weather, and defective bicycle parts can contribute to serious collisions. In many cases, however, negligent and reckless driving behaviors are responsible.
Some of the most common causes of bicycle crashes include the following.
If you are injured in a St. Petersburg, FL bicycle accident, you may be eligible for financial compensation. Your pathway to recovery will depend on the cause of your accident. For example, if your bicycle has a defective part that malfunctions and causes a collision, you could file a lawsuit against the part’s manufacturer. If a dangerous or defective road condition leads to your accident, you could file a claim against the agency responsible for maintaining that road.
In cases involving negligent drivers, recovering compensation is slightly more complex. Florida is a no-fault insurance state and requires all drivers to carry personal injury protection (PIP) coverage. If you have PIP coverage for your vehicle and are struck while riding your bike, you can recover compensation for your financial losses under your own insurance policy. You could file a third-party insurance claim or lawsuit against the other driver if your injuries meet certain severity thresholds.
If you do not have PIP insurance and are injured by a negligent driver, you could still file a claim against the at-fault driver. Speak to a St. Petersburg bicycle accident lawyer at Salter, Healy, Rivera & Heptner to identify your appropriate path to compensation.
Through a bicycle accident claim, you may be eligible to recover compensation for the economic and non-economic losses you sustained in your accident. Economic damages involve your financial losses, such as medical expenses or property damage. On the other hand, non-economic damages involve your physical and emotional pain and suffering.
Common types of damages available to bicycle accident victims include the following.
The damages you are eligible to recover depend on the type of claim you are filing, as well as the circumstances surrounding your accident. Your bicycle accident attorney at Salter, Healy, Rivera & Heptner can evaluate your claim and identify your optimal path to maximum compensation.
In Florida, you can actually receive compensation for your injuries even if you are found to be mostly at fault for the accident. If you swerved into the road and got hit, you could still receive an award – however, if you do share any fault, you will receive reduced compensation. So if you were to be deemed to be 10% at fault for causing the accident, you will have to have your award reduced by 10%. Let’s say you were awarded $10,000. You would be able to collect $9,000. If you are deemed 100% at fault for causing the accident, then you will be barred from receiving compensation. Our goal is to prevent you from being blamed for causing the accident.
The people who will try to blame you for the accident include the liable party and the insurance company that represents them. The insurance company will reach out to you shortly after the accident and ask you to give them a recorded statement. It is in your best interest not to give them one and to let your attorney take over all communications. They will take advantage of the fact that you are still recovering from injuries and they will do whatever they can to reduce what they owe or get the case thrown out.
One of the biggest mistakes would be to take an insurance compensation check before determining the full extent of your damages. Our St. Petersburg bicycle accident attorneys will make sure that you get the facts before you accept a check:
Our St. Petersburg bicycle accident attorneys are invested in each and every case we take on. As reputable winners, we will work day and night to make sure that you get the compensation that you deserve.
The most important thing to do after the accident is to seek medical attention. Injuries from an accident like this can be very serious. Possible injuries include broken bones, spinal cord damage, a traumatic brain injury, and more. Immediately after the collision, you may have a ton of adrenaline that will temporarily mask the pain, but you should still see a doctor.
At the scene, if you are able to wait for the police to show up, there are a few steps you should take to get evidence. Speak to witnesses and get their contact information, collect the other driver’s insurance information, and take pictures of everything at the scene that seems relevant. It is also extremely important that you do not admit fault, regardless of whether or not you think you caused the accident. If you are unable to stay at the scene or had to leave in an ambulance, you can have a friend or family member come gather evidence for you. You should also consider hiring a bicycle accident lawyer right away who can step on the scene and collect the evidence.
To ensure that your case will have the best possible chance of success, you will need to get everything done on time. Florida law states that you must have filed your claim within four years from the date of your bicycle accident. That means if you wait four years and one day to file a claim, you will be prohibited from receiving any compensation. You’ll need to act quickly after your accident so that you don’t risk losing precious evidence or witness statements. The sooner you hire an attorney, the better off you will be.
The St. Petersburg bicycle accident attorneys of Salter, Healy, Rivera & Heptner are board certified trial lawyers, meaning that if court appearances are necessary for your case, our lawyers have the skills to fight on your behalf and achieve positive results. Because we understand that every case is unique and important to the people involved, we strive to provide you with the personal attention you deserve as the victim of a bicycle accident.
We focus on a number of issues that concern victims of bike accidents and argue your case based on these factors:
Our St. Petersburg injury attorneys have a reputation for successfully litigating accident & injury cases. We stand up to insurance companies on your behalf while you concentrate on getting back on your feet after an accident.
If you want strong, dedicated, and experienced St. Petersburg bicycle accident attorneys, please do not hesitate to call our office in the Tampa Bay area and set up a free consultation. We will make your case a priority and won’t give up until we have the best possible result for you. Call us today to discuss your bike accident claim.