Denver Bicycle Accident Lawyer
Cycling is a healthy and enjoyable way to experience Denver.
The surrounding suburbs have a sophisticated network of urban bike paths, and there are endless mountain trails to explore.
With such widespread bike culture, Denver is also home to a growing number of bike accidents.
At Zaner Harden Law, LLP we handle all Denver personal injury cases and have years of experience representing clients in cases involving car accidents, Denver motorcycle injuries, Denver truck accidents, slip and fall cases, wrongful death claims, brain injury cases, and more.
Bicycle accidents are more frequent and more dangerous
Bicycling is a popular form of transportation and exercise in Denver, but it’s not without risks. Bicyclists are often forced to share the road with motor vehicles, putting them in a vulnerable position.
The smaller size and speed of bicycles compared to other road users often means that drivers fail to take notice of them, leading to accidents. Then, when an accident does occur, bicyclists are more likely to suffer severe injuries due to their lack of protection.
Common bicycle accident injuries in Denver, CO
Although most responsible bicyclists wear helmets and other protective gear, the human body is still at risk of serious injury in a bicycle accident. Common injuries suffered by bicyclists include:
- Head and brain injuries
- Broken bones
- Lacerations, bruises, and road rash
- Neck and spinal cord injuries
- Internal organ damage
- Soft tissue injuries
- Psychological trauma
These injuries can have a significant impact on your physical, emotional, and financial well-being. They often require substantial medical care and treatment, both in the short-term and long-term, and they may leave you unable to work and earn an income.
Steps to take after being in a bicycle accident
If you’ve been in a bicycle accident, there are certain steps you should take to ensure you’re health and the best outcome for your case.
1. Get to a safer location
Remaining at the accident site can leave you vulnerable to further harm. If you’re able, move to a safer location away from traffic or other hazards.
2. Keep on your safety gear
It may be tempting to remove your helmet and gloves, but it’s important that you keep them on until authorities arrive. This can help prove that you were wearing appropriate safety gear at the time of your accident and could prevent further injury.
3. Call 911 and ask for police and an ambulance
As soon as you’re able, call 911, inform the dispatcher of your location, and request police and medical help. Even if you don’t think you’re injured, you could’ve sustained injuries that aren’t visible to the eye, and someone else who was involved in the accident could be. Additionally, a police report can be a crucial piece of evidence for your case.
4. Tell your side of the story to the responding police officer
Be honest and accurate. Give details of the events of the accident, but don’t admit fault or speculate on what happened. Anything you say to the officer will be noted in the police report, which can be used as evidence for or against you later on.
5. Gather evidence at the scene
If you can safely do so, take photos and videos of the scene. Include the bike, other vehicles involved, any visible injuries, and any road factors that may have contributed to the accident. It’s also important to get the contact information of any bystanders who witnessed the accident.
6. Notify your insurance company
Bicyclists are sometimes covered by insurance. If you have an insurance policy that covers your bicycle, be sure to contact your insurer soon after the accident. Inform them of the incident and provide basic details such as time, date, location, and other involved parties.
7. Visit urgent care or your primary care physician
Prompt medical attention can identify any hidden injuries and document your physical condition shortly after the accident. Be sure to hold on to all of your medical records and bills as they can be used as evidence in a bicycle accident claim.
8. Meet with a bicycle accident attorney to understand your legal options
Once you’ve attended to your immediate needs, it’s time to consult an attorney. A bicycle accident lawyer can help you understand your rights, determine the best course of action, and do the heavy lifting of filing a claim.
Know your rights
Unbeknownst to many cyclists and motorists, the law sees bicycles as “vehicles” on the roads of Colorado. This means that both cyclists and motorists are obliged to obey traffic laws, are subject to tickets for driving offenses, and have the same rights and obligations as any other driver on the road.
To make sure officials never see you at fault for poor cycling behavior, in the event of an accident, follow all posted traffic signs and guidelines defined by Colorado law. This includes stopping at intersections, riding with the flow of traffic, and obeying street lights. Additionally, lawful cyclists must use lights when riding between sunset and sunrise and have reflectors on the front, left, right, and rear of the bicycle and a light on the front.
Make sure you file a claim on time
Each state has a statute of limitations that sets the deadline for filing a personal injury claim after an accident. In Colorado, this deadline is two years for accidents that don’t involve a motor vehicle (such as a collision with another bicyclist) and three years for accidents that involve a motor vehicle.
The clock begins ticking on the day the accident occurs. Once the deadline passes, you’ll no longer be able to file a claim and seek damages for your losses.
Possible damages you can claim in a bicycle accident
The main goal of any personal injury claim is to seek monetary compensation. This compensation, called damages, is designed to make up for the losses suffered as a result of the accident.
Any out-of-pocket expenses incurred or expected to be incurred as a result of the accident can be recovered in a claim and are classified as economic damages. This includes medical bills, lost wages, and lost earning capacity, among others.
You may also be able to recover non-economic damages that are designed to compensate for losses that can’t be easily quantified with a dollar amount. Examples of non-economic damages include pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment of life.
Parties who may be liable for your injury
To successfully recover damages on your behalf, we will need to prove that another party is liable for your injuries. Potentially liable parties include:
- One or more motor vehicle drivers
- Another bicyclist
- A pedestrian
- The employer of a motorist
- The manufacturer or distributor of a defective bicycle or bicycle part
- A government agency responsible for maintaining the roads, sidewalks, and bike lanes
More than one party may be liable for a bicycle accident, depending on the circumstances. When we assess your case, we will seek to uncover all liable parties to maximize your potential recovery.
How our Denver attorneys prove negligence
Once we’ve determined who may be liable for your injuries, we’ll need to prove that the party was negligent. This requires us to show that the party had a duty of care toward you, breached this duty in some way, caused your injury, and that you suffered financial damages.
We will use evidence such as police reports, medical records, security footage, photographs of the accident scene, and witness statements to prove negligence. We will also use the testimony of expert witnesses when appropriate.
We fight the insurance company to get you the maximum compensation
At Zaner Harden Law, we don’t just strive for a positive outcome — we aim for the maximum possible compensation. To achieve this, we must be prepared to push back against the insurance company and their lawyers.
Our Denver personal injury lawyers are skilled negotiators who don’t back down from a challenge. If the liable party’s insurance company refuses to offer a reasonable settlement, we won’t hesitate to take them to trial.
“Dos” and “don’ts” of dealing with insurance after a crash
Our attorneys will be responsible for communicating with the insurance company. However, that won’t always stop them from attempting to contact you. If they do, be sure to keep the following tips in mind.
- Keep records of all communication and documents related to the accident
- Be polite and professional
- Remain honest, but refer all requests for information to your attorney
- Agree to a settlement or sign any documents before consulting with an attorney
- Discuss the accident or your injuries in detail
- Admit fault or apologize for the accident
- Accept the first offer presented to you
When in doubt about the insurance company’s motives, don’t hesitate to call our team for guidance. We’ll provide you with the support you need to ensure your rights are protected.
Cost of hiring a bicycle accident attorney
Financial hardship shouldn’t prevent you from seeking justice for your bicycle accident injuries. That’s why we work on a contingency fee basis.
This means that you won’t pay us anything upfront — we only get paid once we win your case, then our fees are calculated as a portion of the settlement or award. As a result, you can get the quality legal representation you need without fear of further financial strain.
Why you should visit a doctor as soon as possible
If your injuries seem minor, you may be tempted to skip a medical evaluation. However, it’s important to get checked out as soon as possible after an accident. Injuries that seem minor at first can worsen over time if left untreated, leading to more serious medical problems down the line.
In addition, getting a medical evaluation shortly after the accident will help strengthen your case. Since it establishes a record of your injuries, it provides evidence of the harm you suffered and increases the chances that you’ll be able to recover maximum compensation.
Why work with Zaner Harden Law
When dealing with the stress, uncertainty, and legal complexities of a bicycle accident case, not just any attorney will do — you need Zaner Harden Law on your side. Our proven Denver personal injury lawyers have secured record-breaking verdicts and settlements in Colorado, and our commitment to client service is second to none.
We take on a limited number of cases at a time to ensure our clients receive the personalized attention they deserve. It’s this close attention to detail that sets us apart from other firms and makes us a top choice for injured people throughout Colorado.
Our Denver bicycle accident lawyers are here to help
If you’ve been injured in a bicycle accident, don’t wait to take action. The sooner you contact our team, the closer you’ll be to a brighter future. An attorney at Zaner Harden Law can protect your rights and fight for your full and fair benefits. Call Zaner Harden Law at (720) 734-8335 for a confidential free consultation.
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