Bicycle Accident Lawyer - Anaheim, CA
Like most personal injury accidents, bicycle accidents can devastate victims’ lives, causing long-term pain and suffering, expensive medical bills, and lost wages. Even when a maximum settlement is rightfully owed, insurance companies do not always compensate victims fairly.
With a 99% success rate, Katella Injury Attorneys specializes in helping clients recover the maximum compensation for personal injuries that another party caused. We understand the challenges bike accident victims face, which is why our compassionate legal team is dedicated to holding the liable party accountable.
You Do Not Have Much Time to File a Claim
Even when wronged by a negligent party, victims of bicycle accidents are limited in the amount of time they have to file a claim. In California, if legal action is not taken within the allotted time frame, which is typically two years (but sometimes less time is given), victims risk losing the opportunity to recover financial compensation.
To avoid jeopardizing your case, schedule a free consultation with an experienced Anaheim bicycle accident attorney and discover how we can assist you obtain the compensation you deserve. The case evaluation is confidential and completely free.CALL NOW
Claimable Damages in an Anaheim Bicycle Accident Claim
Those who have not experienced filing a personal injury claim may be unaware of the various damages that can be recovered through a successful claim. Severe injuries can lead to expensive medical bills and lost income, which can put victims and their families on a major financial hold.
However, a successful personal injury claim can offset these financial strains, compensating families for the following.
- Medical expenses: The cost of immediate medical treatment and ongoing treatment, such as ambulance fees, hospital bills, prescription medications, and physical therapy
- Lost wages: Income lost during the recovery period or the loss of future earning capacity if the victim suffered devastating injuries that interfere with returning to work
- Property damage: Personal property that requires repair or replacement, including a bike, cell phone, or other personal belongings
- Pain and suffering: A form of non-economic damages, accounting for emotional distress or physical pain
Punitive Damages for Bicycle Accidents
These damages are separate from the financial compensation that can be recovered through economic losses and non-economic losses. Punitive damages are designed to punish the at-fault party for egregiously negligent actions.
Common Types of Bicycle Accident Injuries
Bicycle accidents can result in minor injuries to serious injuries. Even if injuries appear minimal, always seek medical attention. Only a doctor can accurately diagnose and treat life-threatening injuries. The most common types of bike injuries include:
- Head injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBI)
- Internal injuries and bleeding
- Spinal cord injuries
- Back injuries
- Bone breaks and fractures
- Permanent scarring
- Dental damage
Most Common Causes of Southern California Bicycle Accidents
While fatal bicycle accidents in California have decreased in recent years, the state average is still higher than the national average, which is 2%. Most Anaheim bicycle accidents have been linked to the following types of negligent behavior from drivers of motor vehicles:
- Drunk driving
- Running traffic lights or stop signs
- Making illegal turns
- Switching lanes without signaling
- Aggressive driving and tailgating
- Distracted driving (texting, eating, talking on the phone)
- Failing to yield the right of way
- Backing out of a parking lot or driveway
- Swerving into bike lanes
According to the Federal Highway Administration, 62% of California’s roadways are considered to be in “poor condition,” including the city of Anaheim.
Driver negligence is often exhibited on some of these commonly frequented roadways, such as Beach Blvd., Lincoln Ave. Ball Rd. and Katella Ave. Popular freeways that border the city also cause much congestion that affects surface streets, like State Route 55 (SR 55) which connects to Interstate 5 (I-5) and State Route 91 (SR-91).
Do I Have a Case for My Bicycle Accident if I Was Also At Fault?
Some personal injury cases may involve multiple parties being at fault, including the bicyclists. For instance, if the bicycle accident was a result of poor visibility because the cyclist was not wearing bright clothing, did not have bike reflectors, or was not wearing a bike helmet, he or she may be deemed partially at fault for injuries.
An Anaheim bicycle accident lawyer can still assist clients recover damages from the insurance company. Even when fault is shared between a cyclist and the driver of a motor vehicle, California’s comparative negligence laws still allow the plaintiff to collect partial compensation.
The final settlement amount is reduced by the plaintiff's percentage of fault. Therefore, if the bicyclist is awarded $10,000 in damages, but is found 10% at fault, the final award would be reduced to $9,000.
Liability for Bicycle Manufacturing Defects
In some personal injury cases, the bike manufacturer may be found liable for producing defective parts. In order to obtain financial compensation for these types of bike accidents, it must be proven that the product was reasonably dangerous.
When it comes to product liability, a "defect" is considered to be a flaw in the design or construction of a product. When it comes to bicycle defects, a faulty part could include a bad brake system, a defective frame, or another poorly-designed component.
Victims who were injured in a bicycle accident that is believed to be related to a manufacturing defect must seek medical attention. The bicycle will also need to be examined, so it’s important to store it in a safe place to maintain its current condition and preserve evidence.
Then, contact a personal injury lawyer who specializes in bike accident cases, so the bicycle can be accurately investigated and a claim can be filed against the manufacturing company.
How an Anaheim Bicycle Accident Lawyer Proves Negligence
Fault in a personal injury case is not always as obvious as it may initially appear and it is unlikely that the other party will admit fault. Ultimately, an Anaheim bicycle accident lawyer will need to investigate the case and prove the other party was negligent.
Negligence is when one party failed to exercise reasonable care, ultimately causing an accident that caused another party to suffer severe injuries and other damages. Negligence can be indicated by the following four elements:
1. Duty of Care
The defendant owed the plaintiff (bicyclist) a legal obligation to act in a way that would not put the plaintiff at risk of harm. Ex: A driver of a motor vehicle owes a duty of care to drive in a safe manner and prevent a car accident from occurring.
2. Breach of Duty
The defendant breached the duty of care by failing to act in a way that a reasonable person would have acted in the same or similar circumstances. Ex: A driver of a motor vehicle who tailgates a bicyclist is exhibiting reckless driving.
The defendant's breach of duty caused the plaintiff's injuries, which would not have been sustained if not for the defendant’s actions. Ex: A driver of a motor vehicle who collided with a bicyclist due to tailgating could be found responsible for causing the collision.
The plaintiff suffered damages as a result of the bicycle accident. Ex: A driver of a motor vehicle who caused the bicycle accident may be liable for the bicyclist's financial losses related to the injuries and other damages.
Do I Need to Hire an Anaheim Bicycle Accident Attorney to File a Claim?
No, but it can be risky not to.
An attorney’s role in a bicycle accident case is to help clients recover compensation in its entirety, that not only accounts for immediate losses but all anticipated losses, as well. Working with an Anaheim bicycle accident lawyer is also beneficial in the following areas.
- Handling the administrative side of the case: A bike accident attorney can handle all of the paperwork and legal procedures involved in the case, such as filing a personal injury lawsuit, serving the defendant with a summons, and negotiating with insurance companies for maximum compensation.
- Aggressively pushing for maximum recovery: A lawyer can identify all of the potential sources of compensation the insurance company owes, such as current medical bills as well as future medical expenses to cover physical therapy and corrective surgery.
- Consulting with expert witnesses: For complex cases where liability is unclear, an Anaheim bicycle accident attorney can work with expert witnesses to prove fault. This includes consulting with medical professionals, accident reconstructionists, and other experts in their fields.
- Providing compassionate and responsive legal representation: Attorneys who are truly invested in their clients’ best interests will provide compassionate and responsive legal representation. They will be there to answer questions honestly and provide guidance through the whole legal process.
What to Do After an Accident
At Katella Injury Attorneys, our personal injury law firm maintains a 99% success rate for securing maximum settlements for bicycle accident victims. We understand that being injured in a bicycle accident can be a difficult and overwhelming experience. That is why our legal team makes it our priority to provide clients with compassionate and personalized legal representation.
We will work tirelessly to protect your rights and get you the compensation you deserve. Additionally, our firm works on a contingency fee basis, which means that you do not pay anything unless we recover compensation on your behalf.
To schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced bicycle accident attorneys, please contact us.