A bicycle accident can change your life, as they often result in serious injuries. Cyclists usually have no protection beyond a helmet, if even that. Recovery can be a long journey. Sometimes the path to compensation is even longer. The good news is, you don’t have to go it alone.
If you’ve been injured, we can help get you the compensation you need to move forward. Our bicycle accident attorneys in Charleston are here to help if you have suffered an injury as the result of a bicycle accident. We will work hard to get you the compensation you deserve.
Get a Free Consultation With a Bicycle Accident Attorney
At Miller, Dawson, Sigal & Ward Injury Attorneys, we believe that all accident victims should have access to superior legal representation. That’s why, along with working on a contingency basis, our bicycle accident lawyers in Charleston also offer free consultations.
Our no-risk consultations give you an opportunity to have the strength of your case assessed by an expert attorney. Since we work on a contingency basis, you can also be assured that if we take your case, it is because we believe we can win.
Who Is at Fault for Causing a Bicycle Accident?
Anyone who regularly rides a ride in Charleston knows that it’s one of the worst cities for cyclists. The infrastructure leaves something to be desired, and today’s drivers have more distractions than ever pulling their attention away from the road. However, that doesn’t mean bicycle accidents are automatically the driver’s fault.
A person riding a bike is practically as vulnerable to injury in a car crash as a pedestrian. You are not legally required to wear a bike helmet in South Carolina. However, the law treats cyclists more like cars. A cyclist must obey traffic signals, and they may be found liable for causing accidents on the road.
If you were issued a ticket from a responding police officer, you might be declared at fault for the accident. You should enlist the help of a Charleston bicycle accident attorney if you are blamed for causing the accident.
How Long Do I Have To Take Legal Action After a Bicycle Accident?
Even though a bicycle crash could leave you with life-altering injuries, you have a short window of time to take action. In South Carolina, the statute of limitations for personal injury cases gives you only three years from the date of your accident to file a claim per S.C. Code Ann. section 15-3-530.
It’s essential to initiate your bicycle accident lawsuit within this time limit because failing to do so could cause your case to be dismissed outright. Some bike accident injuries, such as traumatic brain injuries, are known to worsen over time. Don’t let your chance to reclaim damages pass you by.
What Does a Bicycle Accident Attorney Do?
When you hire a bicycle accident lawyer, we will take over every aspect of your legal and financial recovery. After hiring a bicycle accident attorney in Charleston, you can tell the insurance company that you now have legal representation.
From that point on, all further communications from insurance will have to go through your lawyer. The insurance company will no longer be able to contact you directly to try pressuring you into taking an unfair settlement offer.
Your bicycle accident lawyer will gather evidence regarding your case and file a lawsuit with the court. We will talk to expert witnesses and prepare your case for trial. At the same time, we will negotiate on your behalf in an attempt to reach a fair settlement agreement. If a settlement agreement can not be reached, we’ll take your case to court.
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What Damages Can I Seek After a Bicycle Accident?
If the driver of the vehicle that hit you was negligent, you may be eligible to recover compensation for the injuries and expenses you incurred. This could include:
Because you didn’t have the advantage of a car’s advanced safety features like a seatbelt or airbags, it’s unlikely that you walked away from your bicycle accident unharmed. Whether your injuries were minor or serious, you may still be able to get a settlement. Your Charleston bicycle accident lawyer can seek repayment for your medical costs.
If you had major injuries requiring surgery, follow-up doctor visits, or physical therapy, then you probably missed work during your recovery. Some injuries may leave you unable to work for weeks or months.
In addition to your cost of medical treatment, you can seek repayment for the wages you would have earned if you had not been injured in a bicycle accident. If the accident left you so severely injured that you can no longer perform your regular duties, or you missed too much work and lost your job, you could seek compensation for lost future income.
After a bicycle accident, you may suffer additional financial loss outside of injuries sustained. For example, your $800 Trek bike may have been damaged beyond repair. An accident can also cause you to lose your cell phone or glasses. You can seek repayment for any property damage suffered as a result of your accident.
Beyond the possibility of receiving compensation to cover all of these damages, you could also receive additional money for punitive damages. Punitive damages are related more to the at-fault driver than to the injured party. They are meant as a punishment for the at-fault party if the accident resulted from reckless driving.
Is Hiring a Bicycle Accident Attorney Worth the Money?
Fighting your own legal battles rarely works out well. Even lawyers tend to hire other lawyers when they need legal representation. When trying to recover compensation after a bicycle accident, you will typically find yourself facing off against the at-fault driver’s insurance company.
Trying to take on a large insurance company on your own is a recipe for disaster. Insurance companies are well known for doing everything in their power to deny a claim. They know all of the tricks to get out of paying you what you deserve. If they can’t find a reason to dismiss your claim outright, they will do everything they can to undervalue the claim instead.
Our Charleston bicycle injury attorneys know all the tricks that the insurance company will try to use against you, and we know how to combat them. With our help, it’s possible that you could receive a much larger settlement than you’d get on your own.
How Much Does a Bicycle Injury Lawyer Cost?
Personal injury lawyers work on a contingency fee basis, which means we get a percentage of your settlement after your case’s conclusion. Typically, the fee is around 33% of your settlement or court award.
Since our attorneys work on a contingency fee basis, you won’t be paying any money out of pocket. Instead, your attorney fees will be paid as a percentage of the money you receive through settlement or ruling. If your lawyer fails to win you any money, you pay nothing.
On average, the amount that people with lawyers take home after paying their attorney is far more than what people who represent themselves receive in compensation. Even though you have to pay a personal injury lawyer if you win, you will still likely come out well on top.
Do I Need a South Carolina Bicycle Accident Lawyer?
After suffering an injury in an accident where someone else is at fault, one of the biggest questions people often have is whether or not to hire an attorney. Aside from misconceptions about the cost of hiring an attorney, there are other reasons people are wary of bringing in legal representation.
One of the main concerns people have is that hiring legal counsel may result in a lengthy process that will delay compensation. It is often true that accident victims can receive a settlement payment quickly without a lawyer. However, the chances of that compensation being anywhere near the level needed to cover the costs associated with the injury are next to nil.
In order to receive fair compensation for your bicycle accident, hiring a bicycle injury attorney is always the best move. A Charleston, SC, bicycle accident lawyer knows all the ins and out of the legal system. We can use our knowledge and experience to help ensure that you receive a deal that fully covers your costs.
Our Charleston Bicycle Accident Lawyers Have Your Best Interests at Heart
If you have been hurt in a bicycle accident, your road to recovery could be long and difficult. You are dealing with pain and likely facing stress and worry over how you will continue working, paying your bills, and supporting your family while you recover. On top of everything, the pressures of filing a lawsuit may seem too difficult to bear.
After a bicycle accident, it is important to have someone knowledgeable on your side with your best interests at heart. Let our Charleston bicycle accident lawyers compassionately walk you through every step of the legal process. We can help ensure that you receive fair treatment while you recuperate.
What Evidence Will My Bicycle Accident Lawyer Need to Gather?
Your attorney will need to gather as much evidence as possible to create the strongest case. Some of the evidence your lawyer will likely be looking to compile includes:
- Hospital bills
- Medical records
- Statements from your doctor and physical therapist
- Receipts for all accident-related expenses
- Expert testimony
- Witness testimony
- Documents from your employer
- Photos from the scene
The more evidence that your bicycle accident attorney is able to gather, the better positioned we will be to get you the money you deserve.
Filing a Bicycle Accident Lawsuit in Charleston, South Carolina
Following a bicycle accident, the first thing you want to do is to receive medical attention. The next thing you do should be to contact a bicycle accident attorney. The quicker you hire an attorney, the sooner they can begin to build your case.
Our personal injury lawyers in Charleston are here to answer all of your questions and advise you on the best course of action. Together, we can help you get your life back under control after an injury.