With miles of open roads and favorable weather most of the year, cycling the countryside around Harker Heights is a great activity for families and fitness enthusiasts. Cycling is healthy, environmentally friendly, and can be an inexpensive way to stay in shape and enjoy the outdoors.
The downside of cycling is that bicycles offer no protection in the event of an accident. When accidents occur, cyclists often suffer serious injuries. About 20 cyclists die every year in road accidents in Texas.
When someone else’s negligence contributes to a bicycling accident, the negligent party might be liable to the cyclist for damages. Discussing the options with a personal injury lawyer soon after an accident protects an injured cyclist’s rights and gives them a road map to move forward.
An injured cyclist seeking compensation must prove that the party they are trying to hold liable negligently caused an accident that injured the plaintiff. Proving negligence requires a plaintiff to show that the defendant behaved in an unreasonably careless way, resulting in the plaintiff’s injuries. The plaintiff’s lawyer might reconstruct the accident to show how and why it occurred and prove that the outcome could have been different if the defendant had exercised a reasonable degree of caution.
Motorists often are inattentive to cyclists, and some motorists resent sharing the roads with bikes. Many common causes of collisions between bicycles and motor vehicles involve actions that demonstrate that a motorist was negligent. For example, an accident might occur if a motor vehicle driver:
Some bicycle accidents happen because a bicycle part was defective. In that case, an injured cyclist might seek damages from the manufacturer. When poorly maintained or marked roadways lead to an accident, the cyclist could hold the responsible municipality liable.
When someone’s negligence causes someone else harm, the negligent person could be liable to pay damages to the injured person. The amount and type of damages a plaintiff might receive depends on the specifics of the case, but compensatory damages are always available to a plaintiff who proves the liable party’s negligence.
Economic damages are expenses that have a known price or value. These could include medical expenses, property damage, lost wages, rehabilitation costs, and any other expenses the plaintiff has incurred or will incur because of their injury.
Non-economic damages offer payment for subjective and intangible losses. Plaintiffs could receive non-economic damages for pain and suffering, embarrassment and humiliation, loss of enjoyment of life, loss of companionship, and loss of consortium.
Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code §41.003 allows a plaintiff to seek exemplary damages if the defendant’s conduct was especially egregious. A bicycle accident victim might pursue exemplary damages if they were in a collision with a motorist who was drunk, or who was violating the law in some other way that was recklessly indifferent to others’ safety. A plaintiff’s lawyer could advise whether seeking exemplary damages is appropriate in a particular case.
Claims against the government are complicated, with shorter and more stringent notice provisions and restrictions on the damages a plaintiff could collect. Texas caps the damages a plaintiff might receive from a unit of government like a county or municipality. These defendants’ liability is limited to $250,000 for personal injuries and $100,000 for property damage per incident.
Recovering from serious injuries is difficult enough without the added stress of fighting with insurance companies to get the compensation you deserve. A wise accident victim will concentrate on regaining their health and leave the negotiations to a professional.
A Harker Heights bicycle accident lawyer could advise you throughout the process and help you obtain a fair and reasonable settlement. Call today to get started on your case.