People ride bicycles for many different reasons. Bicycling is a viable transportation option for commuting, getting exercise, and leisure activity. Athens continues to encourage bicycling, such as by establishing bicycle lanes, but there are potential safety concerns. Cyclists are exposed to devastating harm in the event of a collision with a motor vehicle.
If you or a loved one were struck by a vehicle while riding your bike, you could benefit from speaking with an Athens bicycle accident lawyer. An experienced injury attorney could review your case and determine if you have a viable claim for damages.
Accidents involving bicyclists occur for various reasons. Some of the most common causes of bike wrecks include:
A cyclist that is involved in these or other dangerous collisions with vehicles is encouraged to quickly seek medical treatment and then contact a qualified attorney in Athens. A legal professional could gather any physical evidence or reconstruct the event to establish driver negligence.
Bicycles are classified as vehicles when operating on the road and are generally subject to the same privileges and responsibilities, under O.C.G.A. Section 40-6-290. Cyclists are required to comply with all traffic laws. People that are driving on Georgia roads are assuming a duty to operate their vehicle responsibly. This duty applies to motorists, bicyclists, and pedestrians.
When establishing liability, it is necessary for a claimant to prove that a defendant breached their duty and that breach resulted in an injury. Even if a claimant is partially at fault, they are often still eligible to recover damages. A court will proportionately allocate blame among the parties and reduce a claimant’s recovery by their percentage of fault. For example, assume the defendant’s degree of error is 80 percent, with the claimant bearing 20 percent of the responsibility. In this scenario, the claimant could recover up to 80 percent of any award for damages.
Due to the severity of many bike crash cases, it is important to enlist the guidance of an experienced Athens attorney. Legal counsel could help a claimant minimize their percentage of fault in order to maximize their recovery.
A well-practiced lawyer could assess the types of damages that might be recoverable. An injured cyclist may be eligible to recover economic damages for hospital treatment, doctor visits, losses of earnings from missing work, and other out-of-pocket expenses. Various types of non-economic damages are also potentially recoverable, including those for emotional hardship or impaired quality of life.
Getting the help of an Athens bicycle accident lawyer could improve your chances of a successful recovery. Experienced counsel could carefully review the details of your accident, including police reports and statements from witnesses. An attorney could also negotiate with the insurance company representing a negligent driver to seek a reasonable settlement. Call today and set up your initial case consultation.