The more someone bikes in close proximity to motor vehicles, the greater their chance of eventually ending up in a crash. Cyclists sometimes crash on their own when they hit loose gravel or turn too fast. Minor injuries are likely in such scenarios, and many cyclists get back up and continue going afterwards. When there is a crash between a bicycle and a motor vehicle, just getting up and riding off isn’t always an option.
People can break bones or suffer brain injuries when struck by a motor vehicle as a cyclist. How can a cyclist potentially cover the mass of expenses related to their injury after a crash with a vehicle?
A car insurance claim
Every driver in California needs to have insurance, and so the motorist who hit the cyclist will typically have liability coverage that can pay at least some of their expenses. However, some California drivers let their policies expire or lapse, and others only carry the low coverage amounts required by state law. Cyclists with serious injuries and lost wages may find that the other driver’s insurance isn’t enough.
Coverage carried by the cyclist
There are special bicycle insurance policies that those who commute on their bicycles or who routinely ride on public roads may carry. Such policies can protect them from liability and can also supplement the personal injury coverage available through a car insurance policy from an asphalt driver. If the cyclist also has a motor vehicle and carries an insurance policy on that vehicle, then their policy could help cover some of the expenses after a collision. Uninsured or underinsured motorist protection can apply after a crash even if someone was on a bicycle and not in their motor vehicle in some cases.
California state law allows those harmed by the illegal actions or negligence of someone else to take them to court. A cyclist who broke a leg and an arm because a driver side-swiped them might need to file a civil lawsuit as a means of recouping their lost wages and massive medical bills. Personal injury lawsuits are an option for those who hope to hold someone accountable after a cycling crash when insurance isn’t enough to cover their losses.
Looking at every option for compensation may be necessary if someone gets hurt in a car-bicycle collision and needs to cover their costs. Seeking legal guidance is usually a good place to start.