Bicycle accidents can be devastating, often resulting in serious injuries or death. Unfortunately, these incidents are common, especially in bustling cities like Macon. If you’ve been injured while riding a bike, you may be overwhelmed and unsure of your next steps.
That’s where a Macon bicycle accident lawyer can help. A skilled attorney can help you navigate the legal process and fight for the settlement or verdict you deserve. In addition, hiring an experienced attorney can increase your chances of recovering financial compensation for injuries and other damages.
Contact us today for a free consultation with a personal injury accident lawyer in Macon, GA.
Personal Injury Laws That Protect Bicycle Accident Victims
In Georgia, personal injury laws protect bicycle accident victims. These laws are designed to hold at-fault drivers responsible for their actions and protect victims injured due to their negligence.
- Comparative negligence: Georgia follows a modified comparative negligence rule. This means a bicyclist who is partially at fault for an accident may still recover damages, but their percentage of fault will reduce their recovery.
- Statute of limitations: A two-year statute of limitations exists to file a personal injury lawsuit after a bicycle accident in Georgia. This two-year clock starts running from the date of the accident.
- Right to damages: A bicyclist can recover economic and non-economic damages if successful in a personal injury lawsuit. A full breakdown of the monetary damages that you are eligible for is covered briefly later in this article or can be discussed in depth with your Macon bike accident lawyer.
- No-Fault Insurance: Georgia does not have a no-fault auto insurance system. Fault must be proven, and the at-fault driver’s liability insurance typically pays for damages. Uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage can protect if the at-fault driver lacks sufficient insurance.
- Helmet laws: Georgia requires bicycle helmets for riders under 16. Failure to wear a helmet by a child may be used against them when determining liability and damages. Adult riders should also wear helmets to maximize safety and minimize head injuries.
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What To Do After a Macon Bicycle Accident
Besides broken bones and other severe injuries, bike accidents can cause pain and confusion, and it’s important to know what to do after getting hit. If you fail to take the necessary measures, you could pay for your losses out of pocket.
Here are the steps you should take to facilitate a successful personal injury claim:
Seek Medical Care
Your safety and well-being should be your most important concern after a crash. So always get checked out if you are hurt. Don’t ignore this step because some injuries can be internal and may worsen if left untreated.
Allow a doctor to examine you and provide appropriate medical care. Remember to save all the resulting paperwork and medical bills.
Call the Police
No matter the accident’s severity, you should contact the police immediately after getting hit by a car or other motor vehicle.
Law enforcement will arrive at the accident scene and record statements for their police report. Tell the officers what happened, but avoid talking too much or becoming combative with the driver who hit you since this could work against you.
You can contact the Macon Police Department later about obtaining the official accident report, or we can help you with that step.
While you wait for the police to arrive, exchange information with the other party. Take photos and videos and write down the date, time, location of the collision, and car registration numbers.
Ask the other driver for their name, contact number, and insurance information. If there are eyewitnesses, get their statements and keep that information safe because you can use it when filing a claim against the negligent party.
Speak to an Experienced Lawyer
It is best to contact an experienced lawyer immediately after the accident for guidance. The lawyer will ask you several questions about the collision. You should always provide accurate details so your attorney can advise you appropriately.
Without the support of a qualified attorney, you may face challenges when pursuing a claim since the legal process can be complicated. Our law firm has expertise in dealing with this kind of personal injury case and can explain your options, handle your claim, and fight for fair compensation for your injuries.
How To Determine Fault in a Bicycle Crash in Macon
If you plan to file a claim for compensation after a bike wreck, you must identify the at-fault party and prove they caused your damages.
The court or insurance company expects you to provide concrete evidence to prove fault, so any evidence you have can play a key role in helping you recover what you lost.
That said, gathering enough evidence can be challenging. So, allowing one of our experienced personal injury lawyers to investigate the accident and acquire solid evidence to support your case is best.
Examples of Negligence in a Bicycle Accident Case
Negligence is the primary factor that allows vehicle accident victims to sue responsible parties for their devastating injuries or damages. Proof of the following examples of negligence will solidify your claim:
- Driving under the influence
- Disobeying traffic laws
- Unsafe lane switching
- Following a cyclist too closely
- Fatigued or distracted driving
To hold someone liable for your losses, an experienced injury attorney can prove that their negligence caused your injuries by requesting traffic footage, hiring an accident reconstructionist, or speaking to witnesses.
Injuries Sustained in Bike Accidents
Bicycle accidents can cause a range of injuries, from minor scrapes and bruises to more severe conditions that have long-lasting effects on your daily life.
Common injuries sustained in bicycle crashes include:
- Head injuries: Head injuries are among the most severe injuries cyclists can sustain, including skull fractures and traumatic brain injuries (TBIs).
- Fractures: Bones can break during a bicycle accident, including the collarbone, arms, legs, or pelvis.
- Road rash: These wounds occur when the skin scrapes against the ground, causing abrasions, cuts, and bruises.
- Soft tissue injuries: These injuries include sprains, strains, and contusions, which can cause pain, swelling, and restricted movement.
- Facial injuries can lead to disfigurement, scarring, and even vision problems.
- Internal injuries: These may not be immediately apparent but can include damage to internal organs such as the spleen or liver.
- Spinal cord injuries: Injuries to your spine can be life-altering, resulting in partial or complete paralysis, loss of sensation, and other complications.
Recoverable Damages After a Bicycle Accident in Macon
A bicycle accident survivor can file for the damage incurred in a crash and obtain compensation.
Below are the damages you can recover from a bicycle accident in Macon:
- Medical expenses: You are entitled to compensation for the medical bills you incurred for your treatment. These medical costs include laboratory fees, surgery, ambulance, pain management, and medication therapy. Keep all the receipts from your incurred expenses to be fully compensated.
- Lost income and wages: A bicycle accident can leave you with severe injuries that keep you from working. This means that you may no longer receive a salary or run your business as you did before the crash. This compensation is crucial if you cannot work due to your injuries.
- Property damage: If your bicycle is damaged, you might also file for compensation for the repairs or replacement cost. The defendant’s insurance company will examine the damage, analyze the cost, and compensate you.
- Loss of quality of life: After a bicycle accident, you may no longer enjoy life as you did before. As a result, you should file for compensation to recover this profound loss.
- Pain and suffering: Emotional, physical, and psychological pain are common after a bicycle accident. You can file for compensation for damages associated with the pain and suffering you experienced during and after the accident.
- Wrongful death: When a bicycle accident results in the death of a loved one, surviving family members may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit. This compensation typically includes expenses such as medical bills, funeral costs, lost wages, and loss of companionship.
Why Should You Hire a Bicycle Accident Attorney in Macon, GA?
Pursuing a claim after a bike accident in Macon can be complicated, especially if you lack experience. This is why hiring one of our attorneys to handle the process for you is best. Here is what our lawyers can do:
- Conduct a thorough investigation into the accident to gather evidence and establish liability.
- Calculate the full extent of your damages, including medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other accident-related expenses.
- Negotiate with the insurance company for maximum compensation for your injuries.
- Represent you in court (if necessary) to fight for your rights and secure a fair settlement or verdict.
- Provide legal advice and guidance throughout the claims process so you know what to expect and can make informed decisions.
- Help you navigate the complexities of Georgia’s bicycle accident laws and regulations to help you get justice and compensation.
Whether or not you shared fault in the accident, you will likely benefit from working with an experienced lawyer. Knowing your lawyer has what it takes to win your case will give you peace of mind so you can relax and focus on your recovery.
Contact a Macon Bicycle Accident Attorney Today
Have you or your loved one been involved in a bicycle accident in Macon? We can help. At John Foy & Associates, we understand the pain and losses that come with getting hit while on a bike, and we will do what it takes to help you obtain a fair settlement.
Don’t let an insurance company settle for less than your claim is worth. Instead, contact us today for a free consultation.