Unfortunately, no matter how careful a rider you are, when you get into an accident with a car, or worse, a truck, you are almost guaranteed to come out of the incident worse off than the other party.
Even when wearing the right safety gear and hi-visibility clothing, and when following the rules of the road, all it takes is a distracted driver to cause a serious accident that isn’t your fault. Clearwater, like the rest of Florida, is governed by the same set of laws when it comes to road use. You have as much right as any other road user, and everyone has a duty of care to act in a safe and reasonable manner to every other road user.
If you have been involved in an accident with another road user and it wasn’t your fault, you deserve compensation for your injuries and any damages caused. Even when the other driver receives criminal punishment, you will still need to seek compensation through their insurance company out, or inside of court.
Here at The Law Place, we have dealt with numerous cases involving cyclists in the Clearwater area and all across the state. Each and every member of our team has dealt with bicycle accident incidents as well as dealing with numerous other personal injury accident accidents.
We offer a free consultation, and our phone lines are manned 24 hours a day, seven days a week, so give us a call at any time. Our number is (941) 444-4444.
We understand that drivers often fail to pay enough attention to bicycle riders on the road. Don’t let their moment of misjudgment cause you any more stress then it needs too, let us help you to shoulder the load.
Why Should You Hire a Clearwater Bicycle Accident Lawyer?
When bicycle accident incidents happen, it can be a chaotic and stressful time for the victim. You may be injured and dealing with health complications, as well as dealing with mental trauma. With all of this going on, it can feel like you are facing a huge challenge when you look at seeking compensation.
Insurance companies did not get to be the size that they are by paying out the fair and reasonable sums that they should to anyone who makes a claim over a bicycle accident. They usually use aggressive and unfair tactics to encourage early settlement acceptance. They know that offering an amount of money lower than what they should quickly and directly to the victim often entice them into accepting the offer.
By accepting this offer, you forgo any chances of seeking compensation for things like future medical bills, loss of earnings or pain, and suffering. This is the main reason we highly advise speaking to a Clearwater bicycle accident lawyer as soon as possible.
As soon as you have agreed to representation, your lawyer will take over all of the liaising with the insurance company. They will usually be told to speak to your lawyer, not to you. This means that your lawyer will be able to spot any attempts to trick you into a settlement that is not in your best interests to take.
This isn’t the only thing your Clearwater bicycle accident lawyer will do. They will be able to investigate on your behalf, speak to first responders and the police and obtain their reports. They will get in touch with your witnesses and may even bring in expert witnesses such as car crash reconstructors.
The end goal will be to establish the liable parties and to effectively judge where the blame lies in terms of your specific case. We can do all of this whilst you deal with the more important things, like recovering, both mentally and physically, or the heavy burden of arranging a funeral for your loved one.
Being able to focus on these things whilst you know a competent and skilled accident lawyer is handling your case is the second reason why we highly recommend getting in touch with a skilled Clearwater bicycle accident lawyer as soon as possible after the accident.
As we work on a free consultation and contingency-fee-basis, you do not have to find any up-front money for fees unless we win a compensation sum for you.
The Most Common Reason for a Bicycle Accident
There are a huge number of reasons and factors that can lead up to a bicycle accident. Over 30% of accidents involve a vehicle, and the majority of those involve a car.
Collisions with vehicles are usually the most serious, and most of the cases to seek compensation for damages are due to these accidents.
Here are the most common causes of accidents involving a bicycle and a vehicle:
- Driving distracted – Drivers who are distracted make up a huge proportion of accident cases involving a bicycle. They are defined by anyone who takes their eyes from the road, takes their hands away from the wheel, or does something that takes their mind off driving. The biggest culprits are texting while driving or eating while driving; both of these can constitute as all 3.
- Driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol – Everybody knows the dangers of Driving Under the Influence (DUI), and despite the many efforts and campaigns that have been led over the years, people still commit these crimes daily. Drugs and alcohol seriously impair your ability to drive and puts bicycle riders at serious risk.
- Driving aggressively – Road rage, speeding, running red lights, and throwing items are all forms of aggressive driving. More severe cases involve purposeful impact and running bicycle riders off the road. Aggressive driving, like driving while under the influence, puts bicycle riders at risk of serious injury and danger.
These are the most common reasons for bicycle accidents in Clearwater. Unfortunately, in our position as attorneys, a personal injury bicycle accident lawyer will see more of this than the average pedestrian. This is a serious problem in Clearwater, FL, and across the whole of Florida.
There are an unusually high number of DUI cases and aggressive driving cases in our state. Making it one of the most dangerous places to be a road user in the entire country.
Nearly 80% of drivers admitted to engaging in some kind of aggressive driving in the last year alone. This is a scary statistic, especially as a bicycle rider who has little to no control over their fate when a driver decides to become aggressive.
Dodging thrown items and drunken drivers should not be a common occurrence for any bicycle rider, and those who engage in this behavior should pay for their crimes. Both criminally and financially.
What to Do After a Bicycle Accident in Clearwater, FL?
The first thing you should do if you are able is to call 911 to ensure that emergency help is coming right away. The sooner you contact the local Clearwater law enforcement and ambulance service, the sooner they can get out to you.
After dangerous driving accidents or accidents caused by people drinking under the influence, you will want the police to be there to ensure your safety and to ensure there is someone to deal with the other driver.
As soon as you are able, contact a skilled Clearwater bicycle lawyer, like those here at The Law Place. The sooner you seek legal advice, the sooner we can send our own investigators and do our own evidence collection. We can get in touch with the police and first responders who were at the scene of the crime. We can get in touch with witnesses, securing their statements early on.
We can then start to go on the offensive, seeking the other driver’s insurance company and pushing for admission of liability early on using a strong and aggressive case that we build. All of this is a lot easier to do if you get in touch with us immediately after the crash.
We will take over everything from the point that you call us, but there are still a couple of things you can do immediately after an accident to enhance the chances of a successful claim:
- Evidence – Start collecting evidence as soon as you possibly can. Take photos and draw sketches. Note down the badge numbers of police and first responders. Document as much as you possibly can about the other driver if they have driven off. Doing this while your memory is fresh is a good idea. If they have stayed on the scene, make sure you obtain as much personal information as you can from them.
- Document losses – From this point onwards, if you have to pay for anything as a result of the accident, make a note of it and keep the receipts if possible. This means medical bills, transport bills, loss of earnings, as well as replacing your bicycle or repairing your bicycle.
- Document pain and suffering – It is also a really good idea to document all of the pain and suffering you go through as a result of the bike accident. Write down how you are feeling every day, how the accident is affecting your life, how much pain you are in, both physically and mentally. These will all be massively instrumental in securing pain and suffering payouts.
Contact a Clearwater Bicycle Accident Lawyer
Nobody gets onto their bicycle in the morning and expects to have an accident that could change their life forever, especially when that accident isn’t their fault.
In these cases, it isn’t fair that you be left out of pocket due to someone else’s mistake. They should have to pay, both by serving any criminal sentence and paying any criminal fines. They should also have to pay for your losses.
A skilled Clearwater bicycle lawyer, like the ones found at The Law Place, will be able to help you through your ordeal. We have dealt with cases like yours before and have sought financial compensation for people just like you after their bicycle accident. We offer a free consultation service and often work on a contingency fee agreement, taking the stress away from you while you recover.
Don’t let a bicycle accident ruin your life. Give us a call today on (941) 444-4444. We are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.