How Do I Claim Compensation For A Cycling Accident?
With the warmer weather here and summer just around the corner, more people than ever will be opting to cycle to work or for leisure, instead of taking a car or public transport. After all, is there anything better than a nice bike ride in the sun? Now while we hate to be party poopers, it is our job to help out those who are unfortunately involved in accidents at no fault of their own. Often, these individuals are cyclists. Riding a bike on busy roads leaves you open to collisions of all sorts, some of which can be serious, and lead to you being unable to work and carry out your normal life for some time or even permanently. In this article, we will explain what to do if you are involved in a bike accident and need to claim compensation.
Help! I’ve just been knocked off my bike. What do I do now?
First thing’s first, get off the road. Remain calm and try not to panic. Get yourself to a safe position (away from traffic), if possible. Make sure you are safe. Call the police and ambulance, if required. It is always a good idea to have an ICE (in case of emergency) contact in your mobile phone, should you be unconscious, so the emergency services know who to contact.
If you are able, ask for details or get a witness to do so for you (you may be surprised how helpful people are in this type of situation). You should collect all information available about the accident (e.g. the registration number of the vehicle, the driver’s contact information, and the contact details of any witnesses including full name, phone number and address). It can be helpful to ask the driver if you can take a photograph of their driving license or ID. Photographs of the accident scene, your bicycle and any visible injuries you have obtained are also invaluable. Smartphone photos are perfectly fine. Collecting as much evidence as possible is advised. You’ll need to send this supporting evidence to your insurance provided immediately and keep it all in a safe place. Checking for CCTV footage (private or public) can also be useful.
Even if you don’t feel as though you have any visible or noticeable injuries, visit your GP, out-of-hours medical service or hospital right away for a check up. Keep records of your visit and everything that is said.
After you’ve been checked over and feel safe and well, call your insurance company to provide them with the above information.
If you are injured and feel you are entitled to compensation, get in touch with a reputable and specialised personal injury solicitor as soon as possible.
Please note that it is never a good idea to take money from the driver who has hit you, as this could be considered ‘settling the case’. There is also no point into getting into discussions about whose fault the accident was.
Types of Cycling Accidents
It is possible to claim compensation for a range of different cycling accidents, not just your typical ‘car hits bike’ situation. These include:
- Accidents due to a defect in the road (e.g. a pothole)
- Hit and run incidents
- Accidents with a motorised vehicle such as cars, motorcycles, trucks and buses (road traffic accident)
Regardless of the type of accident you are involved in, it is imperative you collect as much evidence as possible.
How Much Compensation Can I Claim?
The amount of compensation you can claim depends upon the injuries you have sustained, how long it will take for them to recover and how they have affected your life. When any offer of settlement is made, we will let you know the amount and give you advice as to whether this amount is too low or just right. While there are no fixed amounts for injuries, our team use their vast experience and knowledge as well as past reported cases and judicial guidelines, which we consult to give us a good idea of what you should receive.
What Will The Compensation Cover?
- Compensation for your personal injuries.
- Your bike repair costs and replacement mode of transport.
- Compensation for damaged belongings, clothing and medical expenses.
- Compensation for any loss of earnings whilst you are unable to work. Please note we will require documentation for proof of the above such as payslips and bank statements.
- Compensation for care and assistance for jobs/tasks you would normally do yourself.
- Compensation for any recommended treatment to assist in your recovery.
How Long Will The Claim Take?
A straightforward claim can be settled within four to six months, but others may take a lot longer. A claim can take longer to settle if liability is disputed or if you have suffered complicated injuries. If your claim has to go to court, it will probably be listed for a final hearing within nine months of us issuing court proceedings.
Then, it usually takes up to six weeks for the other side to pay your damages from the date you accept their offer, although it often arrives sooner than this.. It may be possible for interim payments to be made sooner, e.g. for repair costs, write off values, medical treatment.
How Long Do I Have To Make A Claim?
Personal injury claims must be settled or issued at court within three years from the date of your accident. If you have not suffered a personal injury but have sustained other losses, then your claim must be issued at court within six years from the date of your accident.
If you are under 18 years old when you have the accident, court proceedings must be started before your 21st birthday. If these periods are missed, it will mean that you will lose your right to claim damages and you will receive no compensation from the other side for your injuries and losses.
We would advise you to make your claim as soon as possible, to enhance your chances of success.
Who Will Look After My Claim?
If you decide to instruct GWlegal, your dedicated team will include:
Claire, Alex, Sam Kev, Sheena, Nina and Julie. Assisted by Jake and Deanna.
In the event that you have suffered from a serious injury, your claim will be dealt with by Hayley, David, Kelly, Corrine and Olivia.
Who are GWlegal?
If you have a legal matter you wish to discuss don’t hesitate to get in touch. You can call us on 0345 373 3737 or email us email@example.com with your question.
Who are GWlegal? We’re a national firm with local values.