Bicycle riding is becoming more and more popular in Virginia. Many people now use their bikes as a primary means of transport to and from work. Unfortunately, the infrastructure in many parts of the state has not kept up with this trend and bicyclists must share the road with motorists. Traffic rules and regulations cover both types of transport, and bicycles are treated the same as cars when it comes to rules of the road and other laws.
If you use a bicycle, you should take all precautions necessary to avoid being hit by a car. The use of hand signals and reflective gear at night are mandatory. You should also be obvious and clear in your intended movement and avoid sudden turns and cut-offs in front of a moving vehicle.
If you have followed all the rules and were still struck and injured by a motor vehicle, then you should explore your legal options.
Your Side of the Story
Unfortunately, there are motorists who are hostile to the very idea of sharing the road with bicyclists. Even if their negligence and inattention caused the accident, they will try to blame it on you. That is why you should hire an attorney straight after the accident.
A bicycle accident lawyer will allow you to tell your side of the story. They will sit down with you and ask you to recall the events that led up to the accident and all that happened afterward. Based on the facts, your lawyer will determine whether you have a case. If you do, your story will form the basis of their legal strategy.
The Consequences of a Bicycle Accident
It is rare for a bicyclist to walk away from an accident unscathed. Even a minor bump will usually result in scrapes and bruises. If you took the full force of a speeding car, your injuries are likely to be severe. Such injuries can lead to a long hospital stay, loss of wages, and the accumulation of medical bills, including expenses for rehabilitative treatment and prescription drugs.
A severe bicycle accident may force you into a long period of convalescence in which you may be compelled to reduce the number of hours you work, miss important promotions, and even lose your job. You should not have to face the financial strain of this situation alone, especially if the accident was not your fault.
The Role of Your Lawyer
Your lawyer is there to give you counsel and to take specific actions on your behalf. If the person who hit you and their insurance company are reasonable, then you may not have to file a lawsuit. Indeed, the first thing your attorney will do is reach out to them and try to get an offer that is fair and adequate. If these overtures are rejected, then you will need to file a formal claim. Your lawyer will then set about gathering the evidence necessary to prove the truth of your version of events.
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