Cyclists Get Blamed
Bicycles are required to follow the same rules of the road as cars. The vast majority of cyclists follow the rules. And for good reason: cyclists are much more vulnerable to injury than the 4,000 pound automobiles with whom they share the road. Nevertheless, as any cyclist will tell you, many car and truck drivers do not respect the right of cyclists to be on the road.
No matter how careful or defensive you are, accidents can happen. And when they do, the driver of the car that hit you—and their insurance company—frequently will blame you. That’s why it is important to act quickly after an accident to locate and preserve all available evidence establishing who was at fault. Depending on the circumstances, you may need an accident reconstruction expert to help prove your case against the driver that is legally responsible for your injuries.
PIP Covers Medical Bills
If you have an automobile policy, but got hurt riding your bike, you are eligible for Personal Injury Protection (“PIP”) coverage under your policy. PIP provides coverage for certain medical bills and lost wages, regardless of who was at fault. There are time limits and caps on PIP benefits. In Oregon, PIP coverage is limited to $15,000 in necessary medical treatment for up to one year, unless you elect, and pay for, higher limits. PIP coverage generally can be “stacked,” which means that when more than one policy is available the benefits are cumulative. Therefore, if the driver of the car that hit you is insured (PIP coverage is mandatory in Oregon), then you can receive benefits from the driver’s insurance company if you exhaust all the benefits available under your own automobile policy.
Uninsured and Underinsured Motorist Coverage
When a bicyclist is injured in a collision with an uninsured or underinsured motorist, the injured person can make a claim against their own automobile insurance policy. Coverage extends to bicyclists so long as the uninsured or underinsured motorist was at fault for the accident. Learn more about uninsured and underinsured motorists.
If you have been injured in a bike accident, it is important to have a skilled personal injury lawyer evaluate your claims. Rob Kline is available to discuss your injuries and legal rights. Call today or request a confidential, free case evaluation.
What To Do After An Accident
If you have been in a car accident, there are a number of critical steps you should take to protect yourself and your legal rights. Learn More.