If someone else caused your bicycle accident, you can bring a lawsuit against them. However, you might not need to sue the driver personally.
A personal injury lawsuit seeks compensation for the costs of an injury (Georgia Code Section 51-12-4). It’s essential to understand when suing is the best option and how it might end. We also highly recommend talking to a bicycle accident lawyer.
If you have questions about your bicycle accident, John Foy & Associates can help. Our firm brings 20-plus years to the table. We know what it takes to win cases. To get a FREE consultation, call (404) 400-4000, or contact us online.
Do You Have to Sue Someone for Compensation After a Bike Accident?
Suing someone is never a requirement. You decide whether you want to sue someone personally after your accident. In most cases, you won’t have to sue to get compensation.
Drivers must carry auto insurance in case they cause an accident. When the driver is at fault, their insurance company must cover the damages. Most of the time, you can file a personal injury claim with the insurer after your accident.
Before filing a claim, you’ll want to:
- Gather evidence from your accident
- Talk to any witnesses
- Compile proof of your damages
- Document all treatment for your injuries
- Consult with a bicycle accident lawyer
Experienced bicycle accident lawyers know how to build a strong insurance claim. A lawyer can help you develop and file your claim with the at-fault party’s insurer.
After you file the claim, the insurance company will respond. Most insurers offer a lowball settlement and hope that you’ll take it. Be careful never to accept the first settlement offer. If you have a lawyer, they can begin negotiating for a fair settlement.
Most bicycle accident cases resolve after negotiation. If you reach an agreement with the insurer, you won’t have to sue anyone for compensation.
What if the Insurance Company Won’t Settle?
Sometimes, insurance companies will not offer what you deserve. If you cannot settle, your next step might be a lawsuit. You can sue the driver personally for your damages.
If you’re thinking about suing, make sure you have an experienced lawyer. Lawsuits are lengthy and expensive. You’ll want to ensure you have a strong case before filing a lawsuit.
Cyclists have unique challenges when it comes to injury cases. Contact a bicycle accident lawyer to determine the best choice for you. If you decide to sue, your lawyer can help you every step of the way.
What Damages Can You Recover if You Sue Someone?
You can seek compensation for any losses from the accident. Your damages might include:
- Doctor bills
- Hospital bills
- Lost wages
- Loss of earning capacity
- Bike repair or replacement costs
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
Like with an injury insurance claim, you will need to know the value of your damages. If your case goes to trial and you win, your compensation could be much higher than a claim.
You will also have opportunities to settle before trial. Your lawyer will work to negotiate a settlement along the way. If you can settle, you’ll avoid many of the expenses and stressors of a court case.
If a loved one died in a bicycle accident, you might have a wrongful death case. You could bring a lawsuit on your loved one’s behalf. Talk to a bicycle accident lawyer to learn more.
What if the Accident Was a Hit and Run?
Sadly, drivers do not always treat cyclists as equals on the road. If someone hits you on your bike, they might flee the scene. This situation is a hit and run accident, and it is dangerous.
If your injuries are from a hit and run, contact a lawyer immediately. You will have more limited options. However, you might still be able to seek compensation. If you can identify the driver, you can sue for damages.
How Long Do You Have to Sue Someone for a Bicycle Accident?
You must file your bicycle accident lawsuit within the statute of limitations. In Georgia and many other states, the deadline is two years from the accident date (Georgia Code Section 9-3-33). If you miss the statute of limitations, you will not be able to bring a case.
In legal terms, two years is not very long. You will need time to build your case and heal from your injuries. It’s best to get started as soon as possible. Contact a trusted bicycle accident lawyer who can help you.
Talk to a Bicycle Accident Lawyer for Free Today
At John Foy & Associates, we aim to make the legal process as stress-free as we can. We will handle the legal side of things so that you can focus on healing. Plus, we do not charge a fee unless we win you compensation.
There are no upfront or out-of-pocket costs before working with us. We’ll start with a FREE, no-obligation consultation. During the first meeting, you can ask us questions and learn more about your options.
To schedule your FREE consultation, call (404) 400-4000, or contact us online.