All You Need to Know: Bike vs. Car Accidents

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On July 30, 2023
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Bicycle accidents and car accidents share some similarities in terms of the physical harm they can cause, but when it comes to the legal and insurance aspects, these two types of accidents differ significantly. In this blog post, we’ll explore the key distinctions between bike accidents and car accidents, shedding light on how these differences impact the claims process, liability, and insurance coverage.

Liability in Bike and Car Accidents

  • Bicycle Accidents: In bicycle accidents, determining liability can be complex. Liability is often assigned based on factors such as the cyclist’s actions, road conditions, and the behavior of other road users. Cyclists can be partially or entirely at fault, depending on the circumstances.
  • Car Accidents: Car accidents typically involve a clearer liability assessment. Laws governing road use often place the responsibility on the driver who violated traffic laws or acted negligently. Insurance companies and courts frequently focus on the driver’s actions when determining fault.

insurance coverage

  • Bicycle Accidents: Cyclists injured in accidents may have coverage options through their health insurance, if they have it. However, the at-fault party’s insurance may also come into play, especially if they were driving a motor vehicle involved in the incident. In some cases, uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage (UIM) on the cyclist’s auto insurance policy can provide additional protection.
  • Car Accidents: Drivers typically have auto insurance policies that cover injuries to themselves, their passengers, and other parties involved in the accident. The insurance coverage available depends on the policy limits and the at-fault driver’s coverage.

compensation and damages

  • Bicycle Accidents: Cyclists injured in accidents can seek compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and property damage. However, recovering these damages may be more challenging, as cyclists often lack the same level of insurance coverage as drivers.
  • Car Accidents: In car accidents, injured parties have access to more substantial insurance coverage. This makes it easier to recover compensation for medical bills, lost income, property damage, and pain and suffering. The coverage provided by auto insurance policies is typically more comprehensive.

types of injuries

  • Bicycle Accidents: In bicycle accidents, the severity of injuries can vary widely, but cyclists are at a higher risk of suffering head injuries, fractures, and road rash due to their relative lack of protection compared to car occupants.
  • Car Accidents: Car accidents can result in a wide range of injuries, from minor to severe. Drivers and passengers benefit from the protective features of vehicles, unlike bikes. They can still sustain injuries such as whiplash, fractures, traumatic brain injuries, and spinal cord injuries.

legal considerations bike vs. Car Accidents

  • Bicycle Accidents: Bicycle accidents often involve municipal laws and local regulations related to cycling. These can influence liability and the ability to recover damages. Additionally, some states have no-fault insurance systems that may apply to bicycle accidents.
  • Car Accidents: Car accidents are typically governed by state traffic laws and insurance regulations. Understanding the specific laws and insurance requirements in your state is crucial in car accident cases.

While bicycle accidents and car accidents share similarities in terms of the physical harm they can cause, they differ significantly in terms of liability determination, insurance coverage, compensation options, and legal considerations. If you’re involved in an accident, regardless of whether you were on a bicycle or in a car, it’s crucial to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney. They can navigate the complexities of your case and help you pursue the compensation you deserve. Understanding these differences is key to making informed decisions and protecting your legal rights. Gosdis Law is well versed in bike and car accidents. To schedule a free consultation call (385) 429-9960 or email today.

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