Published on July 6th, 2022 | by Sumit Bhowal0
Who Is Guilty In Bike Vs Car Accident?
When there is a collision between a car and a bike, people automatically blame the person behind the wheel for the accident. Generally, this is because the person riding the bike is likely to sustain more severe injuries when compared to the person driving. However, just because this is true, it does not mean the person driving is always the one to blame. Several factors determine who is guilty in a bike vs. car accident. Understanding the stakes and knowing who is at fault is essential for insurance and, occasionally, for a legal case.
The determining factors to note in a bike vs. car accident
Regardless of who is liable in this case, it is essential first to address other issues once there is a collision. Checking for injuries is crucial before determining who is at fault. Generally, cyclists are more likely to suffer injuries because there is nothing to protect them. However, drivers can be hurt if the airbag opens or they are shocked. No matter who is at fault, all parties will likely be upset by the collision, and sometimes medical assistance is required. If the people involved show severe injuries, it is best to call an ambulance. In such cases, the police must also be called to draw up a report of the accident.
Once the parties address the injuries, it is time to determine who caused the accident. When you are making an overview of car versus bicycle accident, there are specific questions you must be able to answer to determine who is at fault. The following are the questions to remember when you are involved in an accident.
Did the cyclist or the driver disregard road rules?
Being on a bike does not excuse you from following general road rules. So when there is a collision between a motorcycle and a car, ask yourself if the cyclist was following road rules. Cyclists may not stop when there is a stop sign or a red light. The cyclist may have been going between lanes to avoid traffic, cycling on the sidewalk, and crossing the road without warning.
The same is true for the person driving the car. Was the driver using the phone while on the road? Making phone calls without the assistance of Bluetooth or texting are ways to increase the risk of accidents. Sometimes cyclists experience drivers passing dangerously close to their bikes or not following general road rules that ensure the safety of everyone there. Once you have answered the questions, it is easier to determine who is at fault.
What to do if the cyclist is at fault?
If the cyclist is the one who caused the accident, the person must take responsibility for any damage to the driver’s car. In this case, the cyclist can use insurance to pay for any damages. If the person does not have insurance, the money will come out of pocket. Even if it is clear who is at fault, the cyclist might wish to consider consulting with a lawyer specialized in this field to ensure they only pay what is expected of them.
What to do if the driver is at fault?
When drivers are liable for a collision, their insurance company will deal with the damages. The cyclist will most likely discuss injuries with the driver’s insurance company, and the latter will use their lawyers to build a case to pay the minimum amount possible. For this reason, hiring a lawyer to deal with the driver’s insurance is necessary, so you get what you are due. If you do suffer injuries, you must document everything as evidence. Even if you have no apparent injuries, it is best to visit a doctor soon after and get evaluated.
Some bicycle injuries do not show up right after the accident. In some cases, cyclists end up in the surgery or have to seek medical treatment months or years after the accident. This is why insurance companies prefer to settle the case fast. For this reason, it is best not to decide too soon with the insurance company. Even if you settle and an injury transpires down the road, it is not too late to get compensation. If you seek medical treatment months or years later and have proof it was caused by accident; you can speak to a specialized lawyer to determine if you have a case.
It is good to remember that all cases are different, and insurance companies can use a long list of exceptions to avoid paying for damages. For example, if the road had debris or a damaged pothole, the blame might fall on the locality rather than the driver for causing the accident. Moreover, if the cyclist was not wearing visible clothing or there was no bicycle lane, these can also play a role in determining blame.
If you are in pain due to an accident and are worried about work, it is not always best to accept the first offer from the insurance company. In such cases, it is a good idea to visit a bicycle lawyer to determine whether you have a solid chance in court to bring you the compensation you deserve for your injuries and the work you miss. Specialized lawyers will listen to your story as you can explain what happened and show all of the medical documents, photos of the accident, possible names of witnesses, and other data and build a case for you.