Drivers have a legal obligation to share the road; when they don’t meet that obligation, cyclists can be seriously hurt. Your life may be changed for a long time due to the injuries you’ve sustained.

The personal injury attorneys at D’Amico & Pettinicchi, LLC will advocate for your legal rights. If you were hurt in a collision while riding your bike, contacting a Watertown bicycle accident lawyer from our team should be a top priority.

When Motorists Cause Bicycle Accidents, They Must Be Held Accountable

“I didn’t see him or her” is not an excuse when people are severely injured or lives are lost. It is the responsibility of every driver to watch the road carefully and look out for others, particularly vulnerable road users, such as cyclists. We represent cyclists injured in all types of accidents. Some examples are:

  • Doorings;
  • Left cross;
  • Right hook; and
  • Rear-end.

Since a person on a bicycle has very little protection from impact, a bicycle accident can cause serious injuries, including brain injury, spinal cord injury, permanent scarring, fractures, and internal injuries. That’s why it’s so important to seek full compensation and accountability.

Making a Legal Case Against a “Negligent” Driver

When filing a lawsuit against a driver who hit you, the important thing is whether the driver was “negligent.” Legal negligence has four components, all of which must be present for a personal injury case to proceed:

  • A “duty of care” owed by the driver being sued to the injured cyclist filing suit;
  • A “breach” of duty, usually taking the form of a specific reckless, careless, or illegal act by the driver;
  • “Causation” or proof that the driver’s irresponsible act was a substantial factor in causing the accident; and
  • “Compensable losses” stemming from the injury suffered by the cyclist, such as medical bills.

Support from our attorneys in Watertown can be crucial when collecting evidence of “negligence” in your bicycle accident case. It can also be key to factoring that evidence into a strong legal claim for compensation.

Recovering for All Available Damages

A civil lawsuit over a bicycle wreck can demand money for both the economic and non-economic impacts of the accident. It can also seek payments for both past and future losses. On the economic side of things, “compensable losses” typically center around medical expenses but can also include:

  • Lost work income;
  • Lost future working capacity; and
  • Personal property damage, including the costs of repairing or replacing a damaged bicycle.

Non-economic losses are more subjective and may include, but are not limited to:

  • Physical pain from injuries
  • Emotional and psychological distress from the accident as a whole
  • Lost long-term enjoyment and quality of life.

In cases involving extreme negligence or a malicious criminal act, the court or jury may impose additional punitive damages to punish the driver.

Overcoming Legal Obstacles to Your Recovery

Being injured in a bike accident caused mostly by another person’s negligence doesn’t make you immune from all responsibility. The court could decide that you hold some of the fault for causing your own injuries. Under Connecticut General Statutes § 52-572h, the court could assign you a “percentage of fault.” Based on that percentage, it could either reduce the total compensation you can be awarded or prevent you from collecting any payments at all if you are found to be more than 50 percent at fault.

C.G.S. § 52-584 gives most people injured through someone else’s misconduct two years after sustaining harm to file suit. Failing to start a claim within this deadline will almost certainly lead to your claim being thrown out of court forever. This is another reason why help from a bicycle accident lawyer in Watertown is so important.

Our Watertown Bicycle Accident Attorneys Fight Hard for Injured Cyclists

When you contact us, we’ll listen empathetically to your side of the story and seek to understand the full impact the accident has had on your life. We’ll launch our own investigation to get to the bottom of what happened and gather the evidence needed to prove your claim. The insurance companies take bicycle accidents seriously, and so do we because we understand it’s not a case; it’s your life.

Throughout the process, we’ll deal with the insurance company on your behalf, keeping you informed and giving you space to heal. We’re often able to settle these cases out of court, but we’re always prepared to go before a judge and jury, including preparing for trial in our in-house courtroom. You can depend on us to be your relentless advocates from start to finish.

Remember, you need to act quickly to protect your rights in the wake of a bicycle accident before evidence disappears and important legal deadlines expire. Contact us today for a free, confidential consultation with a Watertown bicycle accident lawyer.