Bicycle Accident Compensation: What to Expect (2024)

Sarah Edwards


Reviewed By Adam Ramirez, J.D.


Read in 4 mins

A bicycle accident can cause severe injuries. Bicycles have no passenger compartment to protect you in a crash. As a result, you may get injured in the initial vehicle collision or the subsequent impact on the ground. These forces can cause brain trauma or serious injuries even at low speeds.

Bicycle accident compensation after a crash should cover both the financial and human costs of these injuries. This compensation helps you pay your medical bills and living expenses while you recover from your injuries. However, you must fight for this compensation from the at-fault driver and their auto insurer.

Process for Recovering Bicycle Accident Compensation

The process for seeking cycling accident compensation is the same as that for car accidents. You will gather the driver’s insurance information at the accident scene. Your lawyer will use this information to file an insurance claim.

The claim describes the crash and the driver’s role in causing it. It will also describe the losses you incurred due to your injuries. Your lawyer will include supporting evidence. These documents will either prove liability or your losses. Examples of the documents you may need include the following:

  • Crash report
  • Medical records
  • Medical bills
  • Wage records

A claims adjuster will investigate the claim for the insurer. The claims adjuster’s role is to represent the insurer’s interests. Your lawyer will represent your interests. If the adjuster denies the claim, your lawyer will present evidence and arguments to try to overcome the denial. If the adjuster accepts the claim, the lawyer will negotiate for a fair settlement.

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Factors That Affect Bicycle Accident Claim Payouts

There is no average settlement for bicycle accidents. Your settlement or damage award takes into account your unique losses and how your injuries affected you. As a result, your settlement could differ significantly from that received by another cyclist.

You are entitled to seek compensation for your economic and non-economic losses. Economic losses encompass all the financial costs associated with your injuries. Non-economic losses cover how your injuries impacted your quality and enjoyment of life. Several factors go into determining your compensation, including the following:

Proof of Liability

Before you receive compensation, you must prove liability. The insurer calculates the value of your case using the likelihood that you will win. If you have a weak case, the insurer can use the uncertainty to offer less. For example, if your losses equal $10,000 but the insurer thinks you only have a 60% chance of winning, it values your case at $6,000.

The more evidence you have to establish liability, the better your chances of recovering full compensation for your injuries. You want a crash report that favors your version of the story. Traffic or security camera footage showing the crash can also help you show that you deserve compensation for your injuries.

Medical Costs

The amount of your past and future medical costs will make up a large portion of your personal injury claim. Your costs can include amounts you paid or will pay for the following:

  • Doctor’s visits
  • Surgery
  • Diagnostic tests, such as X-rays
  • Physical therapy

You can also pursue the expenses you incur when seeking medical care. For example, if you must pay for parking at your doctor’s office, you can include your parking fees.

Income Losses

Another large component of your compensation will come from your income losses. These losses include the money you could not earn due to missing work and the diminishment in your future earnings because of any disabilities you suffered.

Thus, if your bike crash injured your back, you might need to quit your job as a truck driver or significantly reduce your hours. Your compensation can include the difference between the money you earn and the amount you could have earned without your injuries.

Effects of Your Injuries

Your non-economic losses depend heavily on the effects of your injuries on your life. Some examples of non-economic losses include:

  • Physical pain
  • Mental suffering
  • Disability
  • Dismemberment
  • Disfigurement

Injuries of greater severity will justify greater compensation because they have a greater effect on your life. Thus, an amputated finger will justify greater non-economic damages than a broken finger. Many fatal bike accidents happen each year. When someone else is to blame for the death, a wrongful death claim can be filed on behalf of the deceased party.

Learn More About Bicycle Accidents From ConsumerShield

ConsumerSource is dedicated to educating accident victims about their legal rights. After a bicycle accident, we can evaluate your case for free and provide resources so you understand your options. We can also connect you with a lawyer who can advise and represent you in your pursuit of injury compensation. Fill out the contact form on our website to request your free case evaluation.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • You will likely suffer an injury after you get hit on your bike. You should get the driver’s auto insurance information and contact the police and an ambulance if you need one. You will use the information you gathered from the driver to file an insurance claim.

  • You and your lawyer will file a bike accident claim with the at-fault driver’s insurer. It describes your crash and why the driver was at fault. If the insurer denies your claim, your lawyer can file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver. Many claims are settled once you prove liability.

  • If you prove liability, you can seek a hit-by-car-on-bike personal injury settlement that covers your economic and non-economic losses. Economic losses include financial costs like past and future medical bills, income losses, and out-of-pocket expenses. Non-economic losses cover the diminishment in your quality of life due to disability, pain, and suffering.

  • Studies are mixed about who is more likely to be at fault for a collision between bicycles and motor vehicles. Some studies suggest that drivers are at fault anywhere from 51% to 83.5% of the time. Other studies show cyclists are more likely to be at fault than drivers.

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