Dana Point Bicycle Accident Lawyer

An accident on a bike could be both physically and emotionally devastating. Following a crash, medical bills or lost time from work may create a serious financial burden, while the trauma and injuries of being in such a crash might make life seem bleak.

However, if you were injured in a bicycling crash as the result of someone else’s careless behavior, you have a legal right to retain a seasoned personal injury attorney and seek compensation. An experienced Dana Point bicycle accident lawyer familiar with injury claims might prove to be a valuable ally by helping you negotiate with insurance companies, navigate the legal system, and work tirelessly to build a claim for compensation.

Legal Options for Bringing a Bike Crash Claim in Dana Point

One of the most likely claims an injured person could bring to a California Court is one based on negligence. Legally, these claims are against someone who acted recklessly or carelessly prior to an accident. To prove legal negligence and establish liability, the plaintiff needs to demonstrate on the defendant’s part: a duty of care, a breach of duty, and proximate causation of damages.

For instance, a driver has a legal duty to act as a reasonable person while behind the wheel. If they breach this duty—by not paying attention to the road, for example—and subsequently hit a bicyclist, this might be grounds for a claim based on negligence.

How Does Negligence Per Se Affect a Claim?

As an alternative to traditional negligence, an injured cyclist may bring a claim of negligence per se against a defendant. Negligence per se is similar to a negligence claim, except for the fact that the defendant has violated a legal statute rather than a duty of care. If the violated law was designed to protect a group of individuals, and someone from this group was subsequently injured, the plaintiff may be able to show that the plaintiff acted negligently.

For example, according to the California Vehicle Code §23123.5, drivers are prohibited from holding handheld devices while driving. So, if a driver was using a handheld device behind the wheel and crashed into a bicyclist, that driver may be deemed negligent per se.

Comparative Negligence for Bicyclists

In some cases, a defendant may raise the defense of comparative negligence, which might inhibit a plaintiff from claiming the full value of their damages if they are also partially responsible for the accident. Essentially, if a claimant is determined to be 40 percent at fault, they might still recover 60 percent of the damages.

California also follows a pure comparative negligence system, which means that if a plaintiff is 90 percent at fault, then he or she may still be able to receive ten percent of the damages. A Dana Point bicycle accident attorney could work with a plaintiff to determine whether they may be found partially liable and minimize the amount of liability they bear in the eyes of a civil court.

What Damages Do Victims Stand to Recover?

In California, there are two types of damages that a plaintiff may recover for economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages are losses that are directly measurable, such as medical expenses and lost wages due to missed time at work.

In contrast, non-economic damages are those which are not as easily quantifiable. These are generally more subjective and emotional damages, including pain and suffering and mental anguish. Because these damages might be difficult for an injured claimant in Dana Point to calculate, it may be wise to have a detail-oriented attorney help assess the full extent of their damages for a bicycle accident claim.

Call a Dana Point Bicycle Accident Attorney to Discuss a Claim

If you were injured following a cycling crash, a Dana Point bicycle accident lawyer could help you seek compensation. As time passes, you may be able to recover physically and emotionally from even a traumatic accident. However, you may also be facing financial instability and losses as a result of an injury.

By seeking the services of a compassionate attorney, you could work to hold the liable parties accountable for your suffering. For more information about how legal counsel could help you through each step of the claims process, call today.