Skip to Content

What to Do After a Bicycle Accident – The Legal Process Explained

Bicycle Accidents

Being involved in any kind of accident can be a scary and stressful experience. When you’re on a bicycle, accidents can result in serious injuries that require extensive medical treatment and time off work. Knowing what to do after a bicycle accident is crucial for getting the help you need and receiving fair compensation if the accident wasn’t your fault. This guide will walk you through the key steps to take after a bicycle accident.

At the Scene of the Accident

Your actions at the scene of the accident can impact any potential injury claim you make. Here’s what you need to do immediately after a bicycle accident:

  • Check for injuries and call 911 if anyone needs emergency medical assistance. Your health should be your top concern.
  • Gather information. If possible, take down the driver’s name, contact details, license plate number, and insurance information. Get contact details for any witnesses, too.
  • If you can, take photos of the scene, damage to vehicles, and injuries. These will help document what happened.
  • File a police report. Wait at the scene for the police to arrive and file an official report. The report will be valuable evidence later.
  • Don’t admit fault or sign anything. What you say at the scene could be used against you later. Wait until you’ve spoken to a lawyer before accepting any blame.

Getting as much information as possible at the scene will help your injury claim later if the accident wasn’t your fault. Don’t leave without the other driver’s details if possible.

Seek Medical Attention

Even if your injuries seem minor at first, it’s important to get checked out by a doctor after any bicycle accident. Some injuries like concussions, soft tissue damage, or internal bleeding may not be obvious at the scene.

Seeking prompt medical care shows you’re taking your injuries seriously and documents evidence that could support an injury claim. Make sure to:

  • Get checked out at the emergency room or see your doctor as soon as possible after the accident.
  • Describe all your symptoms and pains to medical staff and discuss how the accident happened.
  • Follow all recommendations for tests, treatments, and medications. Noncompliance could weaken your claim.
  • Keep notes of diagnosis details, treatment plans, and expenses. This paperwork will help your case.

Don’t downplay your injuries or delay treatment, as this could negatively impact your claim. Complying with medical advice will lead to the best recovery possible.

Document Everything Related to Your Injuries

Thorough documentation and evidence will bolster an injury claim following your bicycle accident. Be sure to:

  • Keep notes of all accident details, including the date, time, location, weather conditions, speed, injuries sustained, and where you received medical care.
  • Take photos of injuries, bicycle damage, accident scene, etc. if you haven’t already.
  • Save all medical paperwork – bills, treatment notes, tests, therapy recommendations, and pharmacy receipts.
  • Keep a diary detailing symptoms, doctor appointments, medications, and how injuries impact your daily activities.
  • Hold onto communications related to the accident, such as insurance letters and police reports.
  • Keep receipts for accident-related costs like medical bills, bicycle repairs, and transportation to appointments.

Detailed records prove the validity of your claim and help determine fair compensation if the other party was at fault.

Consult a Bicycle Accident Attorney

Speaking with an experienced bicycle accident lawyer is highly recommended after you’ve been injured. An attorney can handle the legal complexities and negotiate maximal compensation for you. Benefits of hiring a lawyer include:

  • Legal expertise guiding the claims process and protecting your rights.
  • Investigation into factors that caused the accident.
  • Communication with insurance companies and at-fault parties.
  • Assessment of compensation you deserve for medical bills, lost income, pain, and suffering.
  • Representation if your claim goes to court.

An adept lawyer deals with insurers and applies pressure to obtain fair settlements for accident victims. They take the legal burden off you while you focus on recovery.

Notify Your Insurance Company

With an attorney by your side, contact your insurance provider if you have one. This starts the claims process moving forward.

  • Inform them of the date, location, and circumstances of the accident. Provide the other driver’s details if known.
  • Note if you plan to file an injury or property damage claim regarding your bicycle, helmet, or other cycling gear.
  • Ask about claim procedures, paperwork needed, and timeframes for resolution.
  • Discuss whether they will seek compensation from the at-fault driver’s insurer on your behalf.

Prompt notification and cooperation with your insurance company will help ensure you receive any compensation you’re entitled to in a timely manner.

Be Prepared for Settlement Negotiations and Court

Settlements are usually negotiated out of court, but your attorney may recommend going to trial if a reasonable settlement can’t be reached. Things that help secure a strong settlement/court outcome are:

  • Documented evidence proving the severity of injuries and financial losses.
  • Police reports confirming the other party’s fault.
  • Witness statements supporting your version of events.
  • Expert testimony verifying long-term impacts of injuries.
  • Ongoing medical care and compliance with treatment.
  • Records of lost income and impact on career/education.

With an experienced lawyer and evidence supporting an appropriate level of damages, you can obtain fair compensation without going to court in most cases. But a lawyer can take your case to trial and advocate for justice there if needed.

Think About the Future After Resolution

The claims process can be lengthy, but eventually, your bicycle accident case will be resolved through settlement or court decision. Once it concludes:

  • Use compensation to cover any unpaid medical bills, lost income, and other expenses stemming from the accident.
  • Adhere to all ongoing treatment plans so you can recover as fully as possible.
  • Take action to prevent future accidents, like taking safety courses, buying lights/reflective gear, and reviewing road laws.
  • Consider hiring a financial advisor if you receive a large settlement. They can help invest it wisely.
  • Focus on getting your life back on track and moving forward from the difficult experience.

Though the claims process is trying, compensation allows you to heal, regain stability, and prevent further accidents down the road.

If you or a loved one have suffered an injury in a bicycle accident caused by a negligent driver or unsafe conditions, contact our office today to explore your legal options and protect your rights. Our dedicated bicycle accident lawyers will fight to obtain the maximum compensation you deserve so you can move past this challenge. You can visit our offices at:

  • Astoria – 32-72 Steinway St, Astoria, NY 11103
  • Brooklyn – 7113 5th Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11209
  • Syosset – 175 Jericho Turnpike, Syosset, NY 11791

Or call now for a free consultation on (347) 472-5080.