These days more people are using their bicycles to commute. Not only is it cheaper and healthier, it’s also more sustainable. One of these individuals is George, 26. Since he lives only a couple of blocks from his office, he prefers to ride his bicycle, especially when he’s already running late.
It’s during one of his late-for-office sprees that he met an accident. A car, for some reason, suddenly veered right and took his lane, bumping into his bicycle. He was thrown over, broke his shoulders and hips, then missed his work for a month.
He decided to file a bicycle accident claim because of that.
Why do you need to file a claim?
Is it mandatory to file for a claim when you meet a bicycle accident? The answer is no. Any type of claim is voluntary. However, you may want to consider getting one if the accident leads to:
- Loss of job or income: Some bicycle accidents can be so severe they prevent you from doing your duties more effectively. Even if the company would still like to keep you, they may have to let you go due to your present health or circumstance. The compensation can be used to recoup your loss of income during the accident as well as in the future years. It may not totally cover everything you need, but it can be sufficient to lessen the financial burden.
- Treatment and other health care expenses: When you’re injured, you can expect to spend a lot of money for your treatment and medication. These medications or treatments may go on for a period of a few months to even a lifetime. You can then use the compensation to help to pay off the expenses or cover future ones.
- Significant pain and suffering: The law recognizes certain types of damages that can be associated with pain and suffering. This means you can put a monetary value to it. Definitely, no amount of money can remove them entirely, but you can at least increase your claim and make sure you and your family will have less financial worries in the future.
How does it work?
When you want to file a claim, the first thing you should do is to approach a solicitor who specialises in bicycle accidents. Even if you can represent yourself for the claim, it’s best to work with a professional since new road accident claims are already in place. They can be hard to understand for a layperson.
The solicitor then assesses your claim. If it’s relevant, then he takes it and the defendant receives a notice, explaining what the claim is about. He has around 3 months to investigate and reply. If he admits to the liability, it may be settled out of court.
The time limit for filing a bicycle accident claim is within 3 years from the date of the accident. For children, however, the countdown begins when they have already turned 18. The parent or the guardian may file on their behalf as long as the person is a litigation friend, which means the parent or the guardian is not the defendant or the one responsible for the accident.