Dave Christensen is the greatest lawyer inside and out.”
- Tashee P. - Oak Park, MI
David made sure all of my medical bills were paid for.”
- Antonio D. - Livonia, MI
Christensen Law is not an ordinary firm, it's exceptional.”
- D.T. - Jackson, MI
They took my case to trial & won me a great settlement.”
- H.H Davidson
July 07, 2020
Detroit Bicycle Accident Lawyer
Getting justice after a bicycle accident injures you isn’t easy. But a Detroit bicycle crash attorney knows how to get you the compensation you need for your recovery.
Bicycle accident fatalities and injuries impact thousands of people across Michigan each year, according to reports by the Michigan State Police. Unfortunately, these statistics are not likely to improve anytime soon. According to studies by the Western Michigan University and the National Safety Council, motor vehicle accidents cause nearly 70 percent of cyclist fatalities each year, and over 90 percent of bicycle crash fatalities occur on streets without bike lanes.
Despite promises by the Michigan government to improve cyclist safety across the state, many neighborhoods and streets throughout the Detroit area still lack dedicated bike lanes. This forces cyclists to drive in regular lanes with much larger vehicles like motorized cars and trucks – an often deadly journey.
Have you been injured or was your loved one killed in a bicycle accident on a street without a dedicated bicycle lane or any other area around Detroit? Are you suffering from medical bills, mental anguish, and other damages caused by your accident? If so, you might be entitled to substantial compensation. Christensen Law is here to help you fight for your rights.
Our dedicated bicycle accident attorneys have been serving Detroit and surrounding areas for more than 25 years. As demonstrated by our positive client testimonials and case results, Christensen Law is committed to helping victims pursue the best possible outcome in their cases. We provide clients with industry-leading legal skills, while also showing them the respect and personalized attention they deserve.
Don’t wait to stand up for your rights after a bicycle accident. Contact Christensen Law today to schedule your free consultation and get on the road to recovery. Call us right away or contact us online.
Do I Have a Bicycle Accident Claim?
To file a claim and recover compensation after a bicycle accident, you must prove that another party was liable for your accident and that their negligent, wrongful, or careless actions caused your injuries. Specifically, you must prove:
The responsible party had a responsibility to protect you. For example, if a careless driver caused your accident, then you must show they had a responsibility to drive carefully and protect others on the road.
The responsible party failed to uphold their duty to protect you by doing something reckless, wrongful, or negligent, such as texting while driving.
Their negligence or wrongdoing caused the accident that led to your injuries.
You have suffered damages because of the negligent or wrongful party’s actions.
How Our Detroit Bicycle Accident Lawyers Fight for You
Christensen Law is a full-service law firm. Some of the ways our compassionate and knowledgeable attorneys can help you after a bicycle accident include:
Evaluate your case for free.
Help you understand your legal options and give you the tools to make the best decisions for your personal situation.
Fully investigate your accident.
Collect evidence to support your claim.
Determine liability for the accident.
Provide deep knowledge and experience on laws, rules, and regulations that might impact your claim.
Build a strong case to prove what caused the accident and the severity of your injuries.
Calculate how much your case is worth.
Negotiate with insurance on your behalf for a fair settlement.
File a bicycle accident claim on your behalf and fight in court to help you recover maximum compensation.
Answer any questions you have related to your case.
Give you the support you need throughout this frightening situation.
How Fault is Determined After a Bicycle Accident
After a bicycle accident involving a motor vehicle, each party’s representatives and insurance companies may launch their own investigation to determine who was at fault for the wreck. They may look at pieces of evidence, such as the official police report, photos from the accident scene, videos, and eyewitness testimony. Investigators might also hire experts, such as traffic specialists who can reconstruct the accident scene.
They could also look at additional pieces of evidence, such as maintenance records, public announcements, and manufacturer recalls to determine what might have caused the collision and who all was liable.
Examples of parties who might be at fault in bicycle accidents include:
A negligent motorist. Distracted, drunk, drowsy, and other types of reckless drivers often cause wrecks when they fail to pay attention to cyclists. These drivers cause serious injuries when they take dangerous actions, such as turning in front of a bike, opening their door in front of an oncoming cyclist, and swerving into the cyclist’s path.
State or local authorities. If a dangerous road condition contributed to the crash, then a government agency might hold some liability. These groups are responsible for ensuring that roads are safe for all travelers, including cyclists.
A bar or restaurant. If a drunk driver hits a bicycle rider after drinking at a bar or restaurant, then the establishment might be partially responsible. Under Michigan’s “dramshop” laws, innocent parties injured in accidents by drunk drivers can sue the restaurant or bar if the driver was a minor or if the establishment overserved a driver who was visibly intoxicated.
A third party. Depending on the nature of the accident, a third party might also hold some responsibility. Examples of these parties include the vehicle’s manufacturer, the bicycle’s manufacturer, or the person or company responsible for maintaining or loading the vehicle involved in the crash. For commercial drivers, their employer might also be liable if the accident occurred while the driver was working.
Cyclists themselves. Michigan law requires bicyclists to follow the same rules of the road as motorists. For example, they must obey all traffic signs and signal, use lights on their bike at night, avoid talking on the phone while cycling, and ride in the same direction a vehicle traffic. When cyclists fail to follow these laws or act negligently in some other way, they might be partially responsible for accidents that result.
Compensation You Could Recover After a Bike Accident
Cyclists who are involved in a motor vehicle accident through no fault of their own can recover compensation through two primary avenues. First, injured cyclists may recover benefits through their own no-fault insurance policy. If the cyclist does not have no-fault policy, they will be covered by the Michigan Assigned Claims Plan, and there will be a limit of $250,000 for medical expenses. Michigan law requires all drivers to carry at least a no-fault insurance policy with minimum limits, which typically helps cover:
All necessary medical care and expenses
Up to 85% of lost income for up to three years
Up to $20 per day in replacement services for housework that the cyclist can’t perform because of their injuries
Secondly, cyclists who suffer serious injuries in accidents caused by negligent drivers could also file a bicycle accident lawsuit to recover additional compensation for things like:
Pain and suffering
Lost wages and loss of earning protentional
Loss of quality of life
If your loved one was killed in a bicycle accident, you might be to file a wrongful death lawsuit. These types of suits help provide victims’ eligible family members with compensation to cover damages and losses from tragic bicycle accidents.
If the cyclist contributed to the accident by doing something like riding while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, they may also have a degree of fault for the accident. Exceptions to this rule include the “tender years” doctrine, which states that young children cannot reasonably be held liable for actions expected of adults.
For adult riders who are liable in crashes, the cyclist might still be able to recover compensation under Michigan’s comparative negligence rules, but only if they were less than 50 percent at fault for the accident. If a bike rider was partially to blame, then the courts or insurance will typically reduce amount of compensation they will be able to receive according to their percentage of fault.
Statute of Limitations on Bicycle Accident Lawsuits
Michigan’s statute of limitations limits the amount of time victims have to file any type of personal injury claim. For bicycle accidents, victims typically have up to three years from the date of the accident to file a lawsuit. There are some narrow exceptions to this rule that might shorten or lengthen the timeline.
An experienced bicycle accident attorney can help determine which laws and exceptions apply to your case, and they can help you file a claim before it’s too late.
What Should I Do After a Bicycle Accident?
Get medical assistance. Call 911 for immediate assistance. Bicycle accidents typically lead to serious and sometimes life-threatening injuries. First responders can help provide critical care for accident victims.
If you didn’t receive medical assistance at the time of your accident, visit a medical professional as soon as possible to have your injuries evaluated. Many injuries in bicycle accidents aren’t immediately obvious, but left untreated, these injuries can cause serious issues.
When you see a physician, they can evaluate you for any visible or hidden injuries, treat your injuries, and help reduce the chance that your wounds will cause you problems in the future. They can also provide a medical report that will be a crucial piece of evidence if you file a claim for your accident.
Collect evidence. As soon as possible after the accident, take photographs of the accident scene, your injuries, and damages to your bicycle or protective gear. Capture pictures traffic signals, skid marks, property damages, and other physical evidence.
Get the at-fault driver’s name, license number, insurance information, and contact information. If there were witnesses, ask them to write down or record what they saw. Witness accounts are particularly helpful if you were in a hit and run accident. They might be able to provide the vehicle’s license plate number or a description of the driver. Keep a journal of the names, contact information, and notes on anyone you speak with about the accident.
Also write down anything you can remember about the accident, including what you saw or things the driver said after the accident. Even if the driver apologizes or says something simple like “I didn’t see you,” then the court might consider this as an admission of fault for the accident. Additionally, if police responded to your accident, request a copy of their official accident report.
Avoid talking to insurance. Many insurance companies try to take advantage of bicycle accident victims by approaching them at the scene of the accident or contacting them soon after the accident while they are still in shock. Insurers want to pay out as little money as possible, so they often try to trick victims into saying things that they can use to reject or reduce their claim, convince them to make a written or recorded statement, or persuade victims to give them full access to their medical records.
A skilled bicycle accident attorney can speak with insurance on your behalf, so you don’t have to risk mistakenly saying something that could jeopardize your claim. Additionally, insurance companies often try to talk victims into accepting lowball offers that won’t cover their total expenses. However, your attorney can negotiate with insurance to seek the maximum compensation you deserve.
Contact a lawyer. An experienced lawyer can protect your rights after a bicycle accident and fight for the justice and full compensation that you’re owed.
Common Injuries Caused by Bicycle Accidents
Some of the most common injuries in bicycle accidents include: