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Bicycle Accident Lawyer Hamilton

Experienced Hamilton Auto Accident Law Firm

Providing Representation for Victims of Auto Accidents.

Experienced Bicycle Accident Lawyer

Just like a car or truck, a bike is considered a vehicle under Ontario’s Highway Traffic Act (HTA). As you can imagine, when there is a vehicle accident that involves a car and a cyclist, it’s the cyclist who will most often be more severely injured. Cyclists in Canada die in bike crashes every year, and the majority of them involve a collision with a motor vehicle.

Bicycle accidents can result in significant pain and suffering loss for cyclists and also for bicycle accident victims and their loved ones. Other types of bicycle accident injuries that could be sustained are head injuries or concussions, catastrophic injuries, spinal cord injuries, fractures and other serious orthopedic injuries, internal injuries, abrasions (road rash), and lacerations, as well as psychological trauma and despair.

Our experienced bicycle accident lawyers have seen it many times – careless vehicle drivers who don’t pay attention to cyclists or drive when distracted. Such drivers cause serious accidents, resulting in preventable catastrophic injuries. Therefore, if you have been hurt in a bicycle accident due to someone else’s negligence, our experienced bicycle accident lawyer can help you file a personal injury claim and recover compensation.

When You Might Need Hamilton Bicycle Accident Lawyers?

Hamilton City releases an annual collision report that details statistics for different types of accidents. According to the city’s 2022 collision report, there were 128 reported bicycle collisions, which is a significant decrease from 139 bicycle accidents reported the previous year. Of all the collisions reported in 2022, only one bicycle accident was fatal.

On average, there was a bicycle-motor vehicle collision once every three days. That means Hamilton experienced approximately 1.1% fewer bicycle accidents than other regions and cities across the province. If you or a family member was involved in a bike accident and suffered mild or serious injuries, our Hamilton bicycle accident lawyers can help.

Common Causes of Bicycle Accidents

Bicycle-motor vehicle accidents can be caused by distracted driving, speeding, hit-and-run, or drunk drivers. Aggressive drivers may try to run cyclists off the road or turn in front of them. Bikers are frequently injured when drivers of parked vehicles open a door in front of a cyclist or pull away from the curb and into an oncoming cyclist’s path.

Common causes of bicycle accidents include:

  • Dooring
  • Poor Raod Conditions
  • Disobeying Road Safety Rules
  • Time of Day

The Dangers of Dooring Accidents in Hamilton

One of the most common causes of cycling accidents in urban areas is “dooring” – when a driver or passenger opens their vehicle door into the path of an approaching cyclist. These accidents can easily cause serious injuries like broken bones, head trauma, and road rash. Drivers and passengers must check for cyclists before opening doors, while cyclists should ride farther from parked cars. Our lawyers investigate dooring incidents to prove negligence. The Ontario Ministry of Transportation has set penalties for dooring offences of $300 upon conviction and three demerit points.

Poor Road Conditions

Your town or city has the responsibility to maintain safe road conditions. Unsafe road conditions such as uneven pavement, improperly installed or maintained sewer covers, potholes, and ice on the road can put the cyclist at risk of a bicycle accident, sustaining serious injury.

Disobeying Road Safety Rules

Both cars and cyclists must follow the rules of the road, which are set out and enforced by the Ministry of Transportation through local police forces. Common offences that result in bicycle accidents and serious injuries can include speeding, distracted driving, not maintaining a one-meter passing distance when passing a cyclist, failing to obey stop or yield signs or failing to look before making turns.

Time of Day

Many bicycle accidents and injuries happen during the late afternoon and evening when commuter traffic is heavier by both motor vehicles and cyclists. This is also a time when visibility is reduced as it’s getting darker outside, resulting in increased cycling accidents.

Derek Wilson is a Bicycle Accident Lawyer Hamilton Who Can Help You Seek Compensation

Those injured in a bicycle accident could be entitled to accident benefits and medical and rehabilitation benefits. As an experienced Hamilton bicycle accident lawyer, I can help you with your claim under your own insurance plan or the driver’s insurance plan. Note that accident benefits are meant to provide an immediate source of relief and recovery available for those involved in any type of motor vehicle accident regardless of fault and include compensation for:
  • Home attendant and nursing care benefits;
  • Medical care and rehabilitation services, including physical therapy and other types of therapy, equipment, and vocational training
  • Home accessibility modifications and vehicle modifications;
  • Income replacement benefits (IRB) if you are unable to work;
  • Non-earner benefits;
  • Housekeeping, home maintenance, and caregiver expenses if you sustained catastrophic injuries or you have purchased this coverage;
  • Funeral and death benefits.
If your bicycle accident was not the cyclist’s fault, a bicycle accident law firm can help injured cyclists seek compensation for their medical expenses and financial losses from at-fault parties, including:
  • Medical and rehabilitation expenses not covered by your own insurance;
  • Financial losses such as lost income and benefits, lost earning capacity, and loss of opportunity;
  • Pain and suffering, and loss of enjoyment of life; and
  • Compensation for family members affected by your injuries.
My priority is to ensure that you get the proper medical treatment necessary to recover after traumatic brain injuries from a bicycle accident, and I pursue fair compensation for my clients’ damages. Whenever you need a Hamilton bicycle accident injury lawyer you can trust, don’t hesitate to contact us. Remember, motor vehicle-bike accidents can cause serious injuries. These include head trauma or brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, broken bones, and more. In some cases, head injuries, such as brain injuries and spine injuries from bike crashes, can lead to permanent disability. Proper medical treatment for these injuries, especially traumatic brain injuries, can be costly. Unfortunately, your insurance company will try to get your claim denied or reduced. That’s why motor vehicle accident and bicycle accident victims must consult experienced personal injury lawyers to calculate their accident benefits and ensure proper compensation. Your lawyer in personal injury law firm will consider your physical pain, lost wages, pain and suffering, loss of earning capacity, and other relevant damages.

What I’m Responsible for the Bike Accident?

According to the Ontario personal injury law, you can still get compensation even if you are partially to blame for the motor vehicle-bike accident that caused serious injuries. Our Hamilton bicycle accident lawyer can determine whether you can use ‘no-fault’ insurance coverage even when you are the one who caused the bike accident. Regarding a potential lawsuit against the at-fault party, Ontario Province often addresses contributory by assessing and assigning fault percentages to each party responsible for the bicycle accident. That means your compensation may be reduced based on the fault percentage assigned to you. For instance, if you’re found to be 20% responsible for your bicycle crash, your compensation may be reduced by 20%. In this case, our experienced Hamilton bicycle accident lawyer can assess the details of your motor vehicle-bike accident, ensure you are assigned the lowest possible percentage of fault (if you are partially to blame), and help in recovering compensation. Remember, all our Hamilton bicycle accident lawyers and other personal injury lawyers have a wealth of knowledge and decades of experience. Schedule a free consultation if you need our help.

Information to Obtain After a Bicycle Accident

Many cyclists in accidents don’t end up getting the information they need to either file an insurance claim or a lawsuit. So first off, if there are any injuries (even minor ones), call the police. You are more likely to get all the necessary information about the driver of the vehicle if the police attend. For minor collisions, the police may instruct you to report to a collision reporting centre (CRC), rather than attending the scene themselves. This makes it even more important to record all the necessary information.

Get the Necessary Accident Information from the driver:

  1. Full name and driver’s license number.
  2. Telephone number for the driver.
  3. Driver’s insurance company and policy number – if you don’t have car insurance of your own, any injury claims for accident benefits might be filed under the driver’s policy.
  4. Witness information. This one is particularly important. If someone saw what happened, get their name and phone number in the event that follow-up interviews will be needed with police or your bike accident lawyer.
If you have a phone, photograph the documents and the scene and jot down any details that you might forget. If you have been involved in a hit and run, and the driver is leaving the scene, get their license plate number.

Securing Evidence After a Bike Crash

Preserving evidence is crucial for a successful bicycle accident claim. This includes getting contact/insurance details from the driver, witness statements, photographs/videos of the scene and injuries, and a police report. We recommend seeking medical attention immediately, even for seemingly minor injuries which could have delayed symptoms. Prompt documentation strengthens your case substantially.

Avoid Filing Your Own Insurance Claims

Filing an insurance claim for injuries is not an easy thing at the best of times, particularly as an injured cyclist. Under Ontario’s no-fault insurance system, if you have car insurance, you will claim first under that. If you don’t, you can claim under the insurance policy of the driver who hit you. It gets more complicated if you have no car insurance and the motor vehicle driver doesn’t remain at the scene and is not discovered later. A hit and run or a collision where there is no available insurance means you may have recourse for injury claims to the Motor Vehicle Accident Fund (MVACF), but there is a cap on these claims. As such, the more information you have about the accident and the driver of the vehicle, the better. All injured bicyclists and victims of any motor vehicle accident should understand that there’s a time limit for filing an injury claim in Ontario. If you file your claim too late or against the wrong insurer, you will be unable to pursue your accident benefits successfully. Therefore, it’s in your best interest to work with an experienced personal injury lawyer to file your claim for accident benefits within the right timeframe – which is two years. At my law firm, a team of reliable bike accident lawyers will work tirelessly to evaluate your case details. The lawyers will also gather all necessary pieces of evidence to support your accident benefits claim and negotiate fair compensation with the right insurer. If a fair settlement is reached, our Hamilton bicycle accident lawyer will take your case to court and fight for your right to fair compensation. Schedule a free consultation and learn more about how we can help.

Road Rules for Cyclists

People of all ages can ride a bike, and bikes do not require a driver’s license or insurance to operate them. However, as a cyclist you do need to be aware of some of the cycling laws. For instance, you must share the road with others (e.g., cars, buses, trucks, motorcycles, etc.). Under Ontario’s Highway Traffic Act (HTA), a bicycle is a vehicle, just like a car or truck and cyclists must obey all traffic laws and you have the same rights and responsibilities as drivers. Helmets Helmets can greatly reduce the risk of permanent injury or death if you fall or collide. By law:
  • Every cyclist under the age of 18 must wear an approved safety helmet;
  • Riders under the age of 16, a parent or guardian must make sure their child wears a helmet;
  • Adults over 18 years of age, helmets are not compulsory

Tips for Cyclists on Staying Safe

The Ontario Cycling Association wrote an article on How to Stay Safe As Daylight Dwindles. This article speaks in depth about some common sense tips that you can put into place to reduce your risk of an injury. These include:
  • Plan the safest route/trail
  • Get a front light and a rear light
  • Wear reflective items
  • Make a route plan and stick to it
  • Share your location permanently
  • Bring the right gear
  • Be aware of the street and vehicles around you

Seeking Compensation From Municipal Entities

In some bicycle accidents, poor road design or maintenance contributed to the crash and injuries. Examples include lack of bike lanes, potholes, debris, overgrown vegetation, and more. When a municipal entity is negligent in their duty to maintain safe roads, they can be pursued for damages as well. We have experience holding cities and towns accountable when their negligence causes preventable injuries.

Motor-Assisted Bikes: Electric Bicycles, Scooters and Mopeds

An electric bicycle, known as an e-bike, is a bicycle equipped with an electric motor powered by a rechargeable battery. What’s the difference between an e-bike and an electric scooter or a moped? E-bikes, like mopeds and electric scooters, provide economical transportation. But, e-bikes require you to pedal. In Ontario, an e-bike can not have an electric motor exceeding 500 Watts, a maximum speed of 32 km/hour, a maximum weight of 120 kg. In Ontario, it’s illegal to modify your e-bike’s motor to make it more powerful or to increase its speed. You do not need a license or vehicle permit to ride an e-bike, but you must be 16 years or older, wear an approved bicycle or motorcycle helmet, and keep your e-bike in good repair. You also need to follow the same rules of the road as cyclists. Scooters and Mopeds in Ontario are classified as Limited-Speed Motorcycles which will require you to have a driver’s license and insurance to drive them. Does a cyclist need vehicle insurance to sue for injuries? No, if you do not have vehicle insurance then under Ontario’s insurance system you can sue for benefits and compensation under the insurance policy of the driver who hit you. What is Ontario’s statute of limitations for bike accidents? Ontario has a two-year statute of limitations for bicycle injuries. This is the time in which your case must filed in court. Even though you may have plenty of time before your time limit is up, it’s important to speak to an experienced personal injury lawyer who can help guide you through the process from day one, helping to ensure that the proper groundwork is laid out for your claim.

Working With Accident Reconstruction Experts

In many bicycle vs. vehicle collisions, the driver disputes fault or claims the cyclist was negligent. Our legal team utilizes accident reconstruction analysts who use scientific methods and computer modeling to determine exactly how the crash occurred based on vehicle damage, debris fields, sight lines and other evidence. Their expert testimony can counter biased witness accounts.

Contact a Bicycle Accident Lawyer Hamilton

Suppose you have been injured or seriously injured in a bicycle accident, due to a motorist’s negligence by car, truck, bus, or motorcycle, etc. In that case, you may be entitled to fair compensation for lost wages, pain and suffering, as well as treatment for the injuries you suffered. For a consultation with an experienced bicycle accident lawyer in Hamilton, call Derek Wilson Personal Injury Law at 905-769-0418 or fill out a free Consultation Form. As an established Hamilton bicycle accident lawyer with a dedicated legal team of personal injury lawyers whose focus is to help you and your family recover fair compensation, I will always have your best interest in mind. We will work hard so you and your family members can receive the help you need. Our practice focuses only on injury claims, including slip and fallscar accidents including accident benefitsbrain injury/concussionspedestrian accidentsspinal cord injurieswrongful death, dog attacks, and denied long-term disability claims. At my law office, I can help you navigate your injury case with the insurance company because it’s all I do. My personal injury practice truly cares about your well-being and I understand that the road to recovery is often long and filled with pain and suffering. Any insurance company in Canada can be difficult to deal with on your own, which is why my bicycle injury law firm is prepared to take all reasonable steps to proceed with your claim and get you the compensation you deserve. My team and I are passionate about what we do and have assisted many individuals across Ontario in recovering fair settlements. Don’t suffer in silence – call my law office today for your free consultation.

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