Bicycles are environmentally friendly and accessible alternatives to motor vehicle transportation for many Fort Collins area residents. Some people ride bikes for exercise and pleasure, while others use them to easily move about the area in lieu of driving. While most bicyclists are able to enjoy their rides without any problems, there is always a risk of a bicycle accident happening whenever a bicyclist is riding near motor vehicle traffic.
Representing Victims of Bicycle Accidents in Fort Collins, CO
If you or a family member recently sustained injuries in a bicycle accident and you believe another party is to blame, an experienced Fort Collins bicycle accident attorney is the best resource to consult to determine your options for legal recourse. Your legal team can help you identify the key areas of concern in your case, assist you in gathering the evidence you need to firmly establish liability for your damages, and prepare you for settlement negotiations or trial if necessary.
The Law Firm of Jeremy Rosenthal has years of experience providing detail-oriented legal representation to victims of all types of personal injuries in Fort Collins and the surrounding communities. Bicycle accident claims tend to draw upon legal issues present in most vehicle accident cases but with a higher likelihood of severe injuries and substantial economic losses.
A bicycle offers virtually no physical protection from crash impact forces, so whenever a motor vehicle driver hits a bicyclist, the victim is highly likely to suffer life-changing injuries. If this applies to your situation, our team is ready to guide you through your legal proceedings in the most efficient manner possible.
Common Causes of Bicycle Accidents in Colorado
It’s possible for a bicycle accident to happen for many reasons, and some of the most commonly cited causes of bicycle accidents that lead to personal injury claims in Fort Collins include:
- Distracted driving. Inattentive drivers are the leading cause of all motor vehicle accidents throughout the United States. Any time a driver is not fully paying attention to the road, they put themselves and others at serious risk. This is especially true for bicyclists as they are smaller and harder to see than other passenger cars.
- Driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol or drugs. It is illegal for anyone to operate a vehicle while intoxicated, and the penalties for a DUI conviction typically include fines, jail time, and driver’s license suspension. However, these penalties increase dramatically when the at-fault driver injures or kills another person. It’s important to note that the state’s DUI laws apply to bicycles, so it’s possible for a bicyclist to face a DUI charge if they are caught riding their bike while intoxicated.
- Speeding. Whenever a driver exceeds the speed limit, they significantly reduce the time they have to react to changes in traffic conditions. As a result, accidents that happen at higher speeds are more likely to cause catastrophic or fatal injuries.
- Poor visibility. Bicyclists can make themselves more noticeable to passing motorists by wearing brightly colored clothing and adding reflectors to their bikes. However, riding at night or in any conditions that restrict visibility is inherently dangerous, and all riders and drivers should use extra caution in these situations.
- “Dooring” accidents. Dooring occurs whenever a parked vehicle’s driver opens their door directly in the path of a bicyclist. Most bike lanes in the state are situated next to curbside parking spaces, and it’s important for drivers parked in these spaces to use caution before opening their doors.
No matter how your recent bicycle accident happened, the Law Firm of Jeremy Rosenthal can help you prove liability for your damages and hold the at-fault party accountable for your economic losses and your pain and suffering.
Recovering From Your Bicycle Accident in Fort Collins
A bicycle accident is a form of vehicle accident, and Colorado law requires all drivers to carry auto insurance that provides liability coverage in the event of an accident. This means that if another driver hit you while you were riding your bike, you likely have the right to file an auto insurance claim against them. This may provide some valuable initial compensation for your losses, but if this is not an option or if their insurance cannot fully compensate your damages, you must proceed with filing a personal injury claim.
The state’s personal injury laws allow the victim to claim:
- Compensation for their medical expenses, including both immediate health care costs following the bicycle accident and the long-term costs associated with treatment and rehabilitation for severe injuries. Your Fort Collins bicycle accident attorney can assist you in proving the full scope of the medical expenses you face due to the defendant’s actions.
- Property damage, such as the cost of replacing your bicycle and any personal property lost in the accident.
- Lost wages. Your accident could leave you unable to work until you recover from your injuries, and the defendant is liable for any income lost during this time.
- Lost future earning capacity. Unfortunately, many bicycle accidents result in catastrophic injuries that prevent victims from returning to work in the future. If this applies to your case, your Fort Collins bicycle accident attorney can help you hold the defendant accountable for the future income you are no longer able to earn.
- Pain and suffering. Colorado law allows the plaintiff in a personal injury case to recover pain and suffering compensation, but this is limited. The limit on pain and suffering changes each year to account for inflation, and plaintiffs can secure more pain and suffering compensation when they have clear and convincing evidence of liability.
Many variables can potentially influence the total amount of compensation you receive for your bicycle accident claim in Fort Collins. When you choose the Law Firm of Jeremy Rosenthal to represent you in your recovery efforts, our team will do everything we can to not only streamline your case proceedings but also to maximize your compensation. We have years of experience in personal injury law that we are ready to place at your disposal, and you will have a dedicated legal advocate ready to answer your questions and address your concerns through every stage of your case when you hire our team to represent you in your bicycle accident injury case.
Bicycle Accident Lawyer FAQs
Q: How Do I Prove Fault for a Bicycle Accident in Fort Collins?
A: To succeed with a personal injury claim for a bicycle accident, you must be prepared to prove exactly how your accident happened, who is responsible, and the total damages you sustained in the incident. Your Fort Collins bicycle accident attorney can assist you in this effort and significantly increase your chances of securing as much compensation as state law permits for your damages.
Q: What Happens If I’m Partially at Fault for My Bike Accident?
A: Colorado enforces the modified comparative negligence rule with a 50% plaintiff fault threshold. This means that as long as the plaintiff’s fault for the damages in question is 50% or less, the plaintiff retains the right to claim compensation from the defendant. So, for example, if you are found 30% at fault, you lose 30% of your final case award to reflect this, but you are still able to recover 70% of your total losses from the defendant. However, if your fault exceeds 50%, you lose the right to claim compensation.
Q: How Much Does It Cost to Hire a Fort Collins Bicycle Accident Attorney?
A: The Law Firm of Jeremy Rosenthal uses a contingency fee billing system for personal injury clients. This means that when you choose our firm to represent your claim, you pay nothing upfront and no ongoing legal fees. Instead, you only pay a fee once we win your case, and the fee paid is a percentage of your final case award. This keeps legal counsel accessible to those who need it most, regardless of their financial situation.
Q: Will Hiring a Fort Collins Bicycle Accident Attorney Help Me Secure a Larger Settlement?
A: The average person may be able to identify immediately recognizable losses, but they are likely to struggle when it comes to proving fault for long-term damages. If you want the best chance of maximizing your recovery to the fullest extent possible under state law, it is crucial to hire legal counsel you can trust to guide you through your case proceedings.
Q: Is It Worth Filing a Personal Injury Claim for a Bicyclists Accident?
A: Don’t make the mistake of assuming you cannot win your bicycle accident claim or that the amount you win in compensation would be less than the cost of filing your civil action. The right attorney can streamline your case proceedings significantly and potentially uncover channels of compensation that you did not know were available to you. In addition, you are always more likely to recover as fully as the law allows when you have experienced legal counsel advising you.
The Law Firm of Jeremy Rosenthal has years of experience handling all types of personal injury cases in Fort Collins and the surrounding communities of Colorado. If you know another party is liable for your recent bicycle accident, we can help you hold them accountable and secure maximum compensation for your damages. Contact us today and schedule your free consultation with a Fort Collins bicycle accident attorney you can trust.