Bicycle Hit By Car Injury Lawyer in Chicago, Illinois
Illinois Bicycle Accident Injury Claims: A General Overview
Bicycle accidents often result in serious injuries—and even death. A bicyclist is much more vulnerable than a car while traveling on public roadways. According to the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 1,000 bicyclists were killed in traffic-related accidents in 2015. Additionally, nearly 467,000 bicyclists were injured the same year. In 2010, the fatal and non-fatal injuries of bicyclists resulted in lifetime medical expenses and a loss of productivity amounting to $10 billion. Bicycle accidents are both dangerous and expensive in the United States.
Bicycle accident claims are included in negligence claims. In a negligence claim, the victim must show:
- The at-fault party owed the victim a duty;
- This duty was breached by the at-fault party’s negligence; and
- Due to this breach, the victim was injured and suffered damages.
Each of these three elements must be proven for a victim to prevail in a negligence claim. If the victim cannot prove one of the elements, the claim will fail. Therefore, the victim would be responsible for all expenses associated with the accident.
What is the duty that bicyclists and motorists owe each other? While traveling on public roads, all individuals—no matter what their method of transportation may be—have a duty to be reasonable under the circumstances. What is reasonable depends on a variety of factors, such as the weather and any applicable traffic laws.
Breaches of this duty include violating traffic rules and acting careless—for example, a bicyclist that is texting while biking would certainly be a breach of the duty to act reasonably under the circumstances. A driver who is speeding in icy conditions is another example of negligence.
The damages element also varies significantly from case to case. The purpose of damages is to make the injured victim “whole” again after an accident. Damages commonly include:
- Medical bills
- The cost of future medical care
- Lost wages
- The cost of remodeling a home to accommodate an injury or disability
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Loss of consortium
Other damages may also be available, depending on the nature of the claim. The victim must prove that there is a clear link between the damages sought and the accident. Preexisting conditions, for example, are not compensable in an accident claim.
Depending on the severity of the accident, damages may range from $10,000 to $1 million or more. With an experienced bike accident attorney’s assistance, an accident victim significantly increases the odds of achieving a favorable outcome in the case.
A variety of documents are used to support an injury claim. Medical records, photographs, witness statements, and cell phone records are commonly used in bike accident cases.
If you were injured, call Chicago firm Stein & Shulman, LLC
At Stein & Shulman, LLC, we have represented bike accident victims throughout Illinois and have helped them obtain the money they deserve. To schedule your free consultation with our experienced injury attorneys, call 312.422.0500 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
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