Car insurance in the United States will typically cover cyclists who are injured in an accident with someone driving a car through uninsured motorist coverage or personal injury protection in no-fault states. Cyclists may also be covered by a personal health insurance policy or carry insurance for the bicycle and liability costs through a homeowner’s or renter’s insurance policy.
If you are involved in an accident with a bicycle, call the police to file a report, and seek immediate medical attention. According to Florida law and the Aaron Cohen Life Protection Act, drivers who hit a cyclist in an accident must stop the vehicle as soon as it happens. It is illegal to drive away after an accident if someone is hurt. Still, handling insurance policies after an accident with a bicycle can be tricky.
Insurance Policy Coverage for Bicycle Accidents
There are several types of insurance policies that may cover damages, injuries, and other losses in the event of a bicycle accident. The following is a non-exhaustive list of common insurance policies that may provide coverage in a bicycle accident:
- Car Insurance: Certain state laws require all drivers to carry Personal Injury Protection (PIP) through a car insurance policy. Florida is a no-fault state, so all drivers must carry a PIP of $10,000 or more. When an accident happens, this ensures that smaller accident claims stay out of court, and the injured file a claim through the insurance policy that covers them. However, the victim may still pursue additional costs and damages from the at-fault party.
- Uninsured Motorist Coverage: Florida has a very high rate for uninsured drivers, so it is a smart choice for drivers to carry Uninsured Motorist Coverage in a car insurance policy. In the event of an accident with a cyclist, the victim may choose to recover the PIP minimum of $10,000, and additional medical fees through their Uninsured Motorist Coverage. In order to claim car insurance policies on cyclist accidents, cyclists must come into contact with the at-fault car, and there must be a police report. Uninsured Motorist Coverage can be especially useful if it was a hit-and-run accident, and you cannot identify the at-fault car, as Florida law stipulates that a driver may not leave the scene of an accident.
- Homeowner’s or Renter’s Insurance: This is one precautionary measure cyclists may take to avoid financial liability for damages ahead of an accident, if they are the at-fault party. This kind of insurance may cover property damage, like the loss of a bike, or damage to a car if the cyclist was at fault.
- Health Insurance: If the victim in the accident has injuries that require medical attention, personal health insurance coverage should cover some initial costs of treatment. However, an uninsured victim, or someone who cannot afford to pay all their own medical costs may choose to pursue additional damages from the at-fault party.
After a bicycle accident, know that there are options for paying for damages through insurance and legal claims. Consulting with a lawyer could help you navigate the process, while protecting your rights and your best interests.
For a free legal consultation, call 800-761-5225
Consider All Costs After a Bicycle Accident
After a bicycle accident, you will need to file a police report if the accident happened with a car. This can ensure accurate and timely reporting of the accident from a non-biased perspective. Having evidence of what happened at the scene of the accident is important when you need to make an insurance or legal claim.
If the cyclist is injured in the accident, medical claims may be made for initial treatment, as well as ongoing treatment. Injuries can range from acute trauma with minimal damage to life-threatening injuries that require long-term aftercare. Common injuries after a bicycle accident range in severity, and commonly include trauma to the head, face, bones, chest, abdomen, and skin. Common medical claims may include the cost of the following:
- Initial treatment.
- Follow-up doctor’s visits.
- Emergency care.
- Prescription medications.
- Medical equipment.
- Loss of work due to a physical disability.
- Loss of future working potential.
This is a non-exhaustive list of medical claims one could make. Each case is unique, and the circumstances of the accident will vary.
Additionally, property damage claims could be made for the damaged bicycle. Cyclists who regularly ride in traffic might have more advanced bicycles, which can cost thousands of dollars.
Discuss Your Claim with an Insurance/Bicycle Accident Lawyer
When you are in an accident with a bicycle, you should not have to worry about being able to pay for your care. Working with a lawyer who is knowledgeable about bicycle laws and stipulations can be helpful.
At Ben Crump Law, PLLC, our lawyers work on a contingency fee basis. That means we do not get paid, until you reach the settlement you deserve. If your case is not settled, we will go to court to defend your rights. Call our offices today for a free consultation: 800-761-5225.