Bicycling is a popular way to spend leisure hours and get exercise in California, as well as a practical means of commuter transportation. However, cyclists are vulnerable to serious injuries from collisions with cars or crashes due to improperly maintained roadways or bike paths.
If someone else’s negligence contributed to your cycling accident injuries, you might be able to seek compensation for your losses. Consulting a Moreno Valley bicycle accident lawyer is a smart first step back onto the road of wellness following a crash.
Compensation for Losses After a Bicycle Accident in Moreno Valley
A person who suffers physical injuries, emotional injury, or property damage because of someone else’s negligence may seek financial compensation from the negligent person according to CA Civ §3281. Although money cannot restore a seriously injured person to their former state, it could help them deal with their new reality and offer some security to their family.
In California, damages are available for:
- All out-of-pocket medical expenses, including any future medical costs related to the accident
- Wages if the cyclist missed work while recovering from the injury
- Lost future income opportunities if the cyclist is unable to return to work or must seek different employment because of the injury
- Property damage, such as the cost of a destroyed bike, helmet, clothing, or other equipment
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress if the bicycle accident caused sleeplessness, anxiety, depression, PTSD, or other psychological symptoms
- Loss of enjoyment of life, if the plaintiff is unable to engage in pursuits they enjoyed prior to the accident
- Loss of consortium, if the accident impaired the plaintiff’s ability to participate in family life as fully as before
People who have been in bicycle accidents sometimes do not realize the full extent of the toll the crash took on them and their families. Consulting with a Moreno Valley injury attorney might offer insight into the specific damages a plaintiff could seek in a bicycle accident claim.
Injured Cyclists Must Show Negligence to Recover Damages
Damages are available only if someone else’s negligence was a contributory factor in causing the accident that led to the injury. If a cyclist fails to steer around a marked hazard on a municipal bike path, for example, there is no negligence unless the marking was insufficient. However, if the hazard was not marked and the municipality knew or should have known the hazard was there, the cyclist may have a cause of action against the municipality if the hazard caused the cyclist to suffer an injury.
What is Pure Comparative Negligence?
California’s pure comparative negligence standard holds each party responsible for their portion of the blame for an accident. If a cyclist and a motorist both had a role in causing a collision, any award the cyclist gets from the motorist will be reduced by an amount proportionate to the cyclist’s responsibility. A Moreno Valley injury attorney could present the facts of the case in the way that best supports the cyclist’s claim for damages.
Statute of Limitations for Bike Accident Claims
California CCP §335.1 sets the statute of limitations for personal injury actions at two years from the date of the accident that caused the injury. That means that a plaintiff must file a lawsuit seeking damages within two years, with some very limited exceptions.
If a municipality or the state is a defendant in the lawsuit, the time limits are stricter. The plaintiff must file a Notice of Claim with the governmental defendant within six months of the injury, and failure to do so means a claim cannot proceed. A savvy bicycle accident attorney could ensure the appropriate notices are filed in Moreno Valley.
Speak with a Moreno Valley Bicycle Accident Attorney
If you have suffered physical injuries, property damage, or emotional trauma in a bicycle accident, you need a compassionate attorney who understands what you have been through. You also need a lawyer who could aggressively pursue all available damages from anyone whose negligence contributed to your accident.
To get started on discussing the details of your case, reach out to a Moreno Valley bicycle accident lawyer to schedule an appointment.