Although they are not powered by motors, state law treats bicycles very similarly to automobiles in terms of the rules and restrictions applicable to their operators. Unfortunately, not every car driver understands and respects the rights that bicyclists have on the road, which could result in collisions with financial, physical, and psychological losses.
Crashes involving motor vehicles hitting a cyclist can serve as grounds for civil litigation, as a knowledgeable personal injury attorney at The Kryder Law Group could explain during a private initial meeting. If you suffered damages while riding your bike because a driver acted irresponsibly around you, contacting an Elgin bicycle accident lawyer should be your top priority.
Duty of Care to Bicyclists on Elgin Roads
Negligence is the legal principle most injury claims are based on, and it is almost always the centerpiece of a successful bicycle wreck case. Put simply, a person can be held negligent—and therefore financially accountable for ensuing damages—if they violate a duty they owe someone else to act in a reasonable way under certain circumstances and, in doing so, directly cause that other person to sustain a physical injury requiring professional medical treatment.
The duty drivers in owe bicyclists is the same one they owe other drivers, motorcyclists, pedestrians, and everyone else on or near public roads. They must obey traffic regulations, watch out for other people, and generally react reasonably to anything that happens around them. Accordingly, violations of this duty that may justify a civil claim can take various forms, as an Elgin bike collision attorney could further explain.
Damages in Cycling Wreck Cases
Whatever specific form a defendant’s negligence takes, a person who proves them at fault for a crash can demand all economic and non-economic damages that incident caused, including:
- Emergency medical bills as well as future care costs
- Lost earning capacity and/or short-term wages
- Personal property damage
- Physical pain from injuries
- Psychological and emotional trauma
- Lost enjoyment/quality of life due to long-term disability
Support from an Elgin bicycle accident attorney can be vital to understanding how state law governs claims like these and to proactively pursuing the best possible resolution.
How Comparative Fault Could Impact Recovery
Proving someone else at fault for a crash is not the only thing a plaintiff may need to do to secure maximum compensation. In many cases, it is also necessary to establish that the plaintiff is not partially at fault for their own damages based on their own “comparative negligence.”
As a cycling wreck attorney in Elgin could further explain, 735 Illinois Compiled Statutes §5/2-1116 allows courts to reduce the value of someone’s damage award by whatever percentage of overall fault for the incident the court assigns to that plaintiff. Any plaintiff who bears more total fault than all defendants in their case combined is ineligible under this statute to recover any compensation at all.
Speak with an Elgin Bicycle Accident Attorney Today
Riding a bike can be a great way to travel short distances in a healthy and environmentally conscious way. However, it can also be dangerous if the drivers with whom you share the road do not give you the space and respect you deserve. If a careless driver struck you, recovering compensation from them may be your best means of protecting your future financial security and personal prospects.
An Elgin bicycle accident lawyer could work diligently on your behalf to secure the recovery you deserve for your injuries and losses. Call The Kryder Law Group today for a private consultation.