If a driver hit you on your bicycle and left you hurt, our Atlanta bicycle accident lawyers are here for you. We hold negligent motorists legally responsible for their careless and reckless actions, recovering compensation for our clients. This is the best way to get justice and recover compensation if you suffered injuries in a bicycle versus motor vehicle crash in Atlanta.
Atlanta Personal Injury Law Group provides free case consultations. We can assess your case and explain ways to hold the at-fault driver accountable and recover money for your expenses and losses. You have options after this type of injury accident. Our team can answer your questions and explain how our contingency fees work.
Table of Contents
Building an Atlanta Bicycle Accident Case
While bicycle safety is improving in and around Atlanta, many parts of the car-centric city are still dangerous for cyclists.
Atlanta’s Strategic Transportation Plan reports that most of the city’s accidents occur in just a few areas of town, specifically on these streets:
- Howell Mill Road
- Monroe Drive
- DeKalb Avenue
- Piedmont Road
- Peachtree Street
About 6 percent of the city’s roads contribute to 72 percent of traffic accident-related fatalities and 42 percent of injuries. This includes those listed above. Bicycle and pedestrian accidents are no different. They occur in many of the city’s most congested areas where cyclists must share the road with a lot of vehicle traffic.
Showing the Other Party Acted Negligently
Traffic laws generally protect cyclists from collision injuries. They ensure drivers share the road, giving enough room when passing cyclists and taking care to prevent accidents when possible. When a driver violates one of these laws, state law allows the injured victim to hold the motorist legally responsible for their financial losses, injuries, and related expenses.
To do this, you need a lawyer for your personal injury who can show negligence occurred, and hold the driver liable.
Our lawyers know how to prove four elements to negligence:
- Duty of care, generally created by a traffic law
- Breach of duty, often violating the aforementioned law
For example, drivers have a duty to yield to oncoming traffic when turning left across an interstate. If they fail to see a cyclist or do not yield, their violation of this law can cause a serious injury accident. The victim suffers physical, emotional, and financial harm as a result.
If the At-Fault Party Was an Employee
While the at-fault driver is generally the liable party in these cases, employers may be vicariously liable if their work was behind the wheel of a commercial vehicle when they caused these accidents. This means we sometimes sue corporations, trucking companies, and other businesses to recover compensation in these cases.
Damages Recoverable in an Atlanta Bicycle Vs. Car Accident Case
Even with helmets and other protective gear, bicyclists are at extreme risk of serious injury when hit by a car. The cyclist does not have airbags, a metal frame, crush zones, seatbelts, or other modern protections available in today’s motor vehicles.
They often sustain severe or catastrophic injuries such as:
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Neck and back injuries with spinal cord involvement
- Multiple fractures
- Traumatic amputation
- Crush injuries
- Burns and extensive scarring
- Internal injuries and bleeding
- Severe lacerations
Extensive injuries like those that occur when a motor vehicle strikes a cyclist often take months to heal. Victims of these collisions sometimes need weeks of inpatient treatment and rehabilitation before returning home. Many never return to their previous job or all their activities after this type of accident due to lasting injuries.
The cost of treatment, therapies, missed income, and other expenses add up quickly. We need to document these costs and losses. They are the recoverable damages in the case, and their value informs the fair settlement range of the insurance claim.
Examples of recoverable damages in these cases include:
- Medical treatment, hospitalization, and related expenses
- Future medical care or support costs
- Income losses because of the injuries
- Diminished earning capacity for lasting injuries
- Property damages
- Miscellaneous related expenses
- Pain and suffering
Calculating a Settlement That Reflects Your Damages
After we have documentation bills, receipts, estimates, and other paperwork of our client’s damages, we calculate a fair settlement range for the case. The expenses and losses to date are the easiest to document and estimate. However, we must also consider the future expenses and losses and the client’s intangible losses, primarily pain and suffering.
We work with experts to understand their prognosis, treatment and care needs, and how this will affect their ability to work and earn a living. This allows us to better understand their future expenses and losses. When injuries are serious or catastrophic, this is a key component of the case. Failing to consider the cost of future treatment or ongoing care expenses could mean paying them out of your own pocket.
Wrongful Death in an Atlanta Bicycle Accident
When a bicyclist passes away from their injuries in Atlanta, state law allows those closest to them to seek compensation through a wrongful death action. Our attorneys handle these claims and lawsuits for families like yours. If your loved one died from their injuries, we invite you to reach out to us today to discuss your legal options.
Let Us Pursue Compensation in Your Atlanta Bicycle Vs. Car Collision
Our attorneys investigate what happened and what caused the crash. We gather evidence to show negligence and liability.
After developing strong support for our client’s case, we usually have two options for what comes next:
- Demand compensation from the at-fault driver’s auto insurance company and attempt to negotiate a fair settlement; or
- Sue the at-fault driver, prepare the case for trial, and ask the judge or jury for a fair payout
Per state law, injured cyclists usually have up to two years to begin a lawsuit. Exceptions to this law could offer more or less time than this. We recommend calling us as soon as your injuries allow. This helps us develop a plan and gather the strongest evidence possible before time runs out.
These cases usually end in a negotiated settlement. When we win for our clients, it is because we used strong evidence to show the insurer how much the case was worth. Some cases go to trial, and we win a payout from the court, but this is not as common.
Hit-and-Run Bicycle Accidents
Unfortunately, bicycle versus car collisions have an increased likelihood of also being hit-and-run crashes. When this occurs, the police could identify the driver, and we can hold them legally responsible.
If their identity remains unknown, we can build a case and file a claim based on your own uninsured motorist policy. For those with car insurance, carrying this type of policy is common in Atlanta. However, it is not required. Our team can review your options with you during your free case consultation.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for Our Atlanta Bicycle Accident Lawyer
We included some of the most common questions our clients ask about their bicycle accident cases. You can learn more by reviewing these answers. We also provide free consultations for those wanting answers based on the unique circumstances of their case.
When Should I Agree to a Settlement Offer?
If the at-fault driver’s insurer recognizes you have a strong case against their policyholder, it could make a settlement offer before you approach them and demand fair compensation. When this happens, your best option is to contact our team. You want to discuss any possible settlement with your personal injury lawyer before accepting.
When an insurance company makes an early offer, the adjuster hopes you do not have an attorney and do not realize how expensive your injuries and other damages will be. They hope to save money on your case by making a lowball offer that sounds like a lot of money. We do not recommend accepting any offer until you have a fair settlement range estimated for your case.
How Will I Know My Settlement Will Cover My Future Needs?
When you have serious or catastrophic injuries, you must ensure your settlement will cover your medical bills to date as well as future care and support costs. This could include further treatment, therapy, rehabilitation, mobility devices, and more. You do not want to have to pay this out of your pocket later.
We work with a network of experts to help us estimate these costs based on your medical records and treatment plan. We speak with doctors, specialists, and others who know your needs and how your injuries will affect your life in the future.
What if My Loved One Cannot Act on Their Own? What if They Passed Away?
If your loved one suffered catastrophic injuries that prevent them from making their own decisions about their legal case, reach out to our team. We know how to help your family seek and recover compensation when this occurs. Your family has been through enough. You should not have to pay for their ongoing care and support out of pocket. We can pursue fair compensation and hold the at-fault driver accountable.
We also represent families in wrongful death cases. When a bicycle accident victim dies from their injuries, our attorneys can represent those closest to them and seek fair compensation.
What Are My Options for Pursuing Compensation in a Bicycle Accident Case?
There are generally two ways to recover compensation in an Atlanta bicycle accident case. This includes negotiating a fair settlement with the liable driver’s insurer or taking the case to trial and asking the judge or jury to award a fair payout. Which of these is a better option in your case depends on the circumstances.
Most cases end with a settlement when we win the case for our clients. Only rarely do cases need to go to trial. Even when we sue, the case usually settles outside of court with a negotiated settlement with the insurer.
What if I Didn’t Wear a Helmet or Other Safety Gear?
When a driver violates the law and hits you on your bicycle, they are legally liable for your injuries. You have a right to pursue and recover compensation even if you were not wearing the recommended safety gear while bicycling.
In Atlanta, there is no required safety gear for adults riding bicycles. Only riders under 16 must wear helmets, although they are recommended for all riders and could present more severe injuries in some crashes.
Discuss Your Legal Options With Our Atlanta Bicycle Accident Team for Free
Learn more about your rights and options today. Atlanta Personal Injury Law Group provides free case assessments for victims hurt in bicycle versus car crashes. We help clients hold the at-fault driver accountable and recover fair compensation.