What Are My Rights as a Bicyclist in Los Angeles?
Banafshe Law Firm PC January 8, 2021
With California’s year-round sunny disposition, more and more commuters are taking to bicycling to get around town in Los Angeles. However, the influx of cyclists on the road, coupled with an increase in traffic from automobiles and other transit like scooters and buses, means accidents are increasingly likely to happen. Knowing your rights as a cyclist – both before and once a bike accident occurs – can be beneficial in helping you recover after an injury. An experienced Los Angeles bicycle accident attorney can advise what your rights would entitle you to and help you navigate a personal injury lawsuit after a bicycle accident.
Knowing your rights as a cyclist who has been involved in an accident will give you a sense of how much compensation you are entitled to pursue from the at-fault driver. Along with covering property damage to your bike, medical expenses, and lost earnings, you may be able to sue for pain and suffering and punitive damages if the accident left you with a serious or catastrophic injury.
How Will You Know the Driver Was At Fault in Your Bike Crash?
One of the crucial components of a successful personal injury claim after a bike accident is proving that the driver caused the bike accident to occur. There are certain things that drivers must do when they’re driving near a cyclist, and failure to do so would undoubtedly prove they were negligent, and therefore at fault for the accident. For example, drivers are required to maintain a safe distance from bicycles. Even if a cyclist makes a sudden turn that led to a collision, the driver would be considered at fault if it were found they were riding too close to the cyclist.
That said, there are certain rules that bicyclists must remember to keep in mind – namely, that they are not able to take over the entire lane of the road when it’s a car-designated lane unless there is a special circumstance, such as an obstruction in the middle of the road.
There are some instances where the court may find that you, as a cyclist, played a small role in the accident and are therefore partly to blame for it. In California, you would still be able to recover damages for your injuries under the comparative negligence rule, which would simply reduce the amount of damages you’re entitled to receive based on the percentage of blame you hold for the accident. For example, if the court found that you were 20 percent to blame for the accident, your damages award would be reduced by 20 percent. That’s why it’s so crucial to have a Los Angeles bicycle accident attorney on your side when dealing with the aftermath of a bike accident. They will argue that you played little or no role in the accident and therefore are entitled to recover the full extent of your damages.
Speak to a Los Angeles Bicycle Accident Attorney About Your Injuries Today
Getting into a bicycle accident can be a harrowing experience, and getting through it is much easier when you have an experienced Los Angeles bicycle accident attorney going to battle on your behalf. If you’re eager to recover compensation for your injuries, contact our offices today.