Bicycle accidents are a common occurrence in Chicago and the surrounding areas. Unfortunately, many cyclists fail to remember key points that could help them if they ever find themselves in an accident.
This article discusses the importance of understanding relevant laws and regulations when it comes to personal injury cases, as well as:
- How gathering evidence and information can be beneficial for your case
- Why seeking medical attention is important after any kind of accident
- How an experienced Chicago personal injury lawyer can provide invaluable advice on how best to proceed with each of these matters so that you get the compensation you deserve
Understanding the Laws and Regulations
When it comes to bicycle accidents, understanding the laws governing the roadways is extremely important. Knowing and following these laws can help protect cyclists from potential harm while also ensuring that they are not held liable for any damages caused by their actions. In Chicago, there are a number of laws that apply to cyclists. For example, cyclists must follow the same rules as motorists when on the road. This includes obeying traffic signals, yielding right-of-way to pedestrians, and riding with the flow of traffic.
At night, bicycles must be equipped with a white light visible from 500 feet away in the front and red reflectors that are visible from 600 feet away at the rear. Furthermore, both wheels should have side reflectors which can be seen 200 feet away during dark hours. Additionally:
- Brakes on bikes should enable them to skid when applied using normal force either by hand or foot pedal
- No more than two people may ride one bike unless it is designed for multiple riders like a tandem bicycle
It is important to note that cyclists who violate any law may be found partially responsible if an accident occurs due to their negligence. This means that even if another party was primarily responsible for causing the accident – such as a motorist running a stop sign – the cyclist could still be held partially liable if they were breaking any applicable law at the time (for instance: not using proper hand signals). Therefore, it is important for cyclists to understand and follow all relevant laws to minimize their liability in case an accident does occur.
Gathering Evidence and Information
Gathering evidence and information is a critical step in any personal injury case, including taking photos and videos of the scene of the accident. Eyewitness testimony can also be extremely helpful in providing an accurate account of what happened leading up to and during the incident.
If there were witnesses present at the time of your accident, it is important to get their contact information so that they can provide statements or testify on your behalf at a later date, if needed. Additionally, preserving physical evidence from the accident is essential for building a strong case. This includes collecting items such as clothing you were wearing at the time or broken pieces from vehicles involved in a car crash.
Seeking Medical Attention
When you have been injured in an accident, it is essential to seek medical attention as soon as possible. Not only will this help ensure that your injuries are properly treated and documented, but it can also be a key factor when filing insurance claims or pursuing legal action.
It is also important to document any medical expenses related to the injury. This includes doctor visits, hospital stays, medications, physical therapy sessions, and other treatments. Keep all receipts and records of these expenses for use in any potential legal proceedings or insurance claims.
In addition to documenting your injuries and associated costs for future reference, seeking medical treatment after an accident is critical for ensuring that your health is not further compromised by neglecting proper care. Depending on the severity of the injury sustained during the incident, immediate treatment may be necessary to prevent long-term damage or disability from occurring due to lack of intervention.
If you fail to seek medical attention right away after an accident, even if you do not think that your injuries are serious, it could have implications for any potential insurance claims or legal proceedings. Insurance companies often consider whether victims sought prompt medical care following their accidents. If they did not, the company may deny coverage altogether or offer significantly lower compensation than would otherwise be provided had treatment been received soon after the incident occurred.
Filing an Insurance Claim
Filing an insurance claim after a personal injury can be a complex process, which is why it is critical to understand your coverage and the implications of filing a claim before you begin. Knowing what to expect from the process can help ensure that you are adequately compensated for any losses or damages incurred as a result of your accident.
For starters, you need to file an insurance claim as soon as possible following an accident. This will give you more time to gather evidence and information about the incident, which could prove invaluable in obtaining compensation for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, or other damages associated with the accident.
Additionally, it is important to remember that many states have statutes of limitations on how long you have to file an insurance claim after an incident has occurred. In Illinois, most personal injury claims must be filed within two years from when the incident occurred or when it was discovered, whichever comes first. If a claim is not filed within this timeframe, then legal action cannot be taken against those responsible for causing harm or damage. As such, time truly is of the essence.
When preparing documents related to your insurance claim, make sure they are accurate and complete. Supporting documentation such as police reports, medical records detailing injuries sustained during the incident, and witness statements verifying facts surrounding what happened leading up until after impact occurred should be included.
Also gather copies of all receipts for expenses incurred directly resulting from being injured such as ambulance rides or hospital visits. And lastly, make sure all paperwork submitted includes dates, times and locations so there is no confusion regarding when and where exactly everything took place. This will help establish liability and responsibility more easily.
How a Chicago Personal Injury Attorney Can Help
A bicycle injury attorney can be instrumental in helping victims navigate their way through this often-complex process. An experienced lawyer understands the laws governing these types of cases and knows how best to present them to maximize potential settlements or awards from insurers or other parties involved in the case. A qualified attorney will also know when it may be necessary for additional legal action such as litigation against another party who may be responsible for causing harm or damage due to negligence or intentional wrongdoing.
Knowing the laws and regulations that apply to personal injury cases can help ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve. An experienced attorney can be a valuable asset in protecting your rights throughout the process of pursuing compensation for your injuries.
If you or a loved one has been injured due to someone else’s negligence, Drake and Collopy is here for you. Our experienced Chicago personal injury lawyers have the knowledge and resources necessary to help protect your rights and secure maximum compensation for medical bills, lost wages, pain & suffering, emotional distress, punitive damages and more. Do not wait any longer – contact us today so that we can provide you with the legal guidance needed in these challenging times. We are committed to providing our clients with quality representation while delivering results they deserve.
WILL COUNTY PERSONAL INJURY LAWYERS