Fullerton Bicycle Accident Attorney
Many people living in the Fullerton, CA area enjoy riding bicycles. Some ride for exercise while others enjoy the local scenery during their leisure time. Some people use their bicycles as alternative transportation to and from work. Whatever reasons you may have for riding a bike in Fullerton, it is important to know the risks you face when you take your bike on busy streets.
While California allows bicycles to use many of the same roads as motor vehicles and in many ways considers cyclists the same as drivers, there are unique risks facing bicyclists in Fullerton, and it’s vital to acknowledge these risks.
When a bicycle accident occurs, the cyclist is likely to suffer severe injuries, some of which can cause life-changing medical complications or even put the victim’s life at risk. If you or a loved one recently suffered injuries in a bicycle accident that someone else caused, it’s vital to find a Fullerton bicycle accident lawyer you can trust to help you recover your damages. The right attorney can potentially make a tremendous positive impact on the outcome of your bicycle accident case, helping you recover more compensation than you may have initially expected.
Chris and Frank are a team of experienced Fullerton personal injury lawyers who have years of experience handling a wide range of cases on behalf of our clients. We know the life-changing effects that any personal injury can have on the victim and their family and the complex legal proceedings that bicycle accidents often generate. Our goal in every case we accept is to help our clients understand the legal statutes that pertain to their case, assess the full scope of their damages, and guide them through the process of securing compensation for those losses.
Why Do I Need a Fullerton Bicycle Accident Lawyer?
Fault for your recent bicycle accident may seem perfectly clear, and you might assume that you will have minimal difficulty calculating your claimable damages. However, it is vital to understand that any personal injury claim can be far more complex than it seems at first, and even an apparently straightforward case can be extremely challenging to win without an attorney. The average person would have tremendous difficulty in attempting to handle their bicycle accident claim alone, especially when they are struggling in recovery from very painful injuries and facing economic uncertainty from their inability to work.
You can rest and recover with peace of mind when you have an experienced Fullerton bicycle accident lawyer handling your claim. Your legal team can handle court filings and other procedural requirements of your case on your behalf, and they can also assist you in gathering the evidence you will need to prove the full scope of your claimable damages. Whatever your unique situation may entail, you will be far better equipped to approach the situation with confidence with an experienced legal team representing you.
Chris and Frank believe in client-focused legal counsel in every case we accept. Our team will get to know you and your situation to provide truly individualized legal counsel through all phases of your case. We’ll help you identify the party responsible for your injury and gather the evidence you will need to hold them accountable. We’ll also help you gather whatever evidence is necessary to prove the full scope of your claimable damages. Ultimately, our goal in every case we take is to maximize our client’s recovery to the fullest possible extent.
Proving Fault for a Bicycle Accident
If a negligent driver hit you while you were riding your bike, you should prepare for a difficult series of legal proceedings if you intend to hold them accountable. Even if their fault for the incident is clear, you must still meet several procedural requirements to hold them accountable.
Most personal injury claims revolve around the legal concept of “negligence,” or a failure to exercise reasonable care in a given situation. Negligence takes many forms, and your attorney will help you gather the evidence you will need to prove the essential elements of negligence and succeed with your claim:
- You must prove the defendant owed you a duty of care. All drivers have a legal duty of care to avoid collisions with bicyclists and other motorists and to operate their vehicles responsibly at all times.
- You must show the court how the defendant breached this duty of care. Bicycle accidents often occur because of distracted driving, speeding, and other reckless actions. Your attorney can help you gather the evidence necessary for proving exactly how the defendant in your claim breached their duty of care.
- You must provide evidence of the full scope of damages you are seeking in the claim. You only have grounds for a personal injury claim if you suffered actual harm from the defendant’s actions.
- The final component of your case is proving causation between the defendant’s negligence or intentional misconduct and your damages. You must be able to prove your damages are the direct results of the defendant’s actions and not some other cause.
If you successfully establish these foundational elements of your case, success with the claim is likely. However, you should know what damages you can claim and what you can expect in terms of your overall recovery.
Damages in a Bicycle Accident Claim
California’s personal injury laws allow plaintiffs to seek full compensation for any and all economic damages they incur due to a defendant’s actions. In a bicycle accident claim, these economic damages are likely to include:
- Property losses. Potential losses include the cost of repairing or replacing the plaintiff’s bike and other personal belongings damaged in the accident.
- Medical expenses. Bicycle accidents often result in devastating injuries that will demand extensive medical care. The defendant is responsible for any medical treatment costs the plaintiff incurs due to their actions. These expenses are likely to include hospital bills, emergency transportation costs, prescription costs, and any other costs associated with necessary ongoing treatment the victim requires.
- Lost income. A bicycle accident can prevent the victim from working until they recover, and the defendant would be liable for their lost income during this time. Additionally, if the victim develops any permanent medical condition from the accident that prevents them from returning to work in the future, the defendant is responsible for their lost future earning capacity as well.
Once you add up all of these economic damages, you may be surprised to learn your claim is worth more than you expected. However, you also have the right to seek compensation for your pain and suffering under California state law. There is no limit to the amount you can seek in pain and suffering compensation, and your Fullerton bicycle accident lawyer will be an invaluable resource when it comes to determining an acceptable figure to include in your claim.
California personal injury attorneys typically use two methods to determine pain and suffering compensation for their clients. The “per diem” method is usually used when the plaintiff is expected to recover completely within a relatively short time. This method will seek a specific amount of compensation for each day the victim spends in recovery, ceasing once the victim reaches maximum medical improvement.
The multiplier method is more often used when a plaintiff has suffered catastrophic injuries likely to result in permanent damage. The attorney will multiply the client’s claimed economic damages by a factor representative of the severity of their experience, sometimes as much as five times the amount claimed in economic damages. For example, if your bicycle accident case entails $200,000 in economic losses, but you face a permanent disability due to the incident, your attorney may seek up to $1 million or more in pain and suffering compensation to reflect the seriousness of your situation.
Comparative Fault in Bicycle Accident Claims
It’s important to note that it is possible for a bicyclist to bear partial fault for a bicycle accident. While the majority of bicyclists are careful and attentive while riding their bikes near motor vehicle traffic, some bicyclists take unnecessary risks or fail to uphold their own duties of care on the road. In the event a bicyclist bears partial responsibility for an accident, the driver who hit them is still likely to bear greater liability for the incident. However, California’s pure comparative negligence law dictates that the bicyclist must lose a percentage of their case award to reflect their shared fault.
Under the pure comparative negligence rule, a plaintiff who is partially at fault for causing their claimed damages will lose a percentage of their case award equal to their fault percentage. For example, if an investigation determines the bicyclist is 25% at fault, the bicyclist loses 25% of their case award. Depending on the total value of the claim and the level of fault assigned to the plaintiff, comparative negligence can effectively take away a sizeable portion of the plaintiff’s total recovery.
If you have any concerns about bearing partial fault for your recent bicycle accident, it is crucial to discuss your case with an experienced Fullerton bicycle accident lawyer as soon as possible. Defendants in personal injury claims often attempt to assert comparative fault to diminish liability for plaintiff’s damages, and it is essential to fight such allegations if you know you did nothing wrong to preserve your case award.
What to Expect From Your Fullerton Bicycle Accident Lawyer
When you choose Chris and Frank to represent you in a bicycle accident claim, we will work diligently to help you gather whatever evidence you need to establish liability for your accident. We can assist you in securing traffic camera recordings, cell phone records, and eyewitness statements that can all support your claim. Our team will also assist in exploring every avenue of compensation available to you to maximize your case award.
The majority of personal injury claims filed in California end in private settlement negotiations, and we can guide you through this process to secure an acceptable settlement offer for your losses. However, if settlement does not prove fruitful, we can take your case to trial if necessary.
Q: How Long Will My Bicycle Accident Claim Take?
A: Legal proceedings can be lengthy, and the time required to complete your bicycle accident claim will hinge on several factors. The willingness of the defendant to accept liability, the extent of the damages sought by the plaintiff, and the availability of evidence are just a few factors that can significantly influence your case’s timetable.
Q: What Happens If a Bicyclist Dies in an Accident?
A: If a driver causes a fatal bike accident, the bicyclist’s surviving family would likely have the right to file a wrongful death claim against the driver. Depending on how the driver caused the accident, they may face criminal charges for vehicular manslaughter or other offenses, such as DUI.
Q: Will My Case Go to Trial?
A: It’s relatively uncommon for personal injury cases to proceed to litigation, but this may happen in very complex cases or whenever a defendant refuses to accept liability. Litigation can take much longer than settlement, and it’s vital to have legal counsel you can trust representing you if your case goes to court.
Q: How Much Will My Legal Fees Cost?
A: It’s natural to have concerns about the cost of your legal representation. However, Chris and Frank offer Fullerton, CA clients contingency fee billing. With a contingency fee, the client pays nothing upfront for our legal services and only pays a fee once we win their case. Our fee will be a percentage of the final case award, ensuring the client receives an appropriate recovery for their damages.
Chris and Frank have extensive experience handling a wide range of personal injury claims on behalf of Fullerton, CA clients, and we are ready to put this experience to work in your case. The sooner you secure reliable legal counsel to represent you, the easier time you will have securing the compensation you need to recover from your bicycle accident. If you are ready to discuss your case with an experienced and responsive Fullerton bicycle accident lawyer, contact us today to schedule your free consultation with our team.
Fullerton Practice Areas
- Fullerton Personal Injury Lawyer
- Fullerton Car Accident Lawyer
- Fullerton Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
- Fullerton Truck Accident Lawyer
- Fullerton Wrongful Death Lawyer
- Fullerton Dog Bite Lawyer
- Fullerton Slip and Fall Lawyer
- Fullerton Pedestrian Accident Lawyer
- Fullerton Bicycle Accident Lawyer
- Fullerton Rideshare Accident Lawyer
- Fullerton Traumatic Brain Injury Lawyer
Actual Client Testimonials
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