Claims for Cycling Accidents in Birmingham
Motor vehicles and public forms of transport are frequently driven without proper care or consideration for other road uses, and are a major cause of accidents – particularly to cyclists.
This coupled with a rise in people using bicycles as their choice of transport in Birmingham, has led to an increase in accidents on the road.
No Win, No Fee* Cyling Accident Injury Claims in Birmingham & West Midlands
The law surrounding personal injury and cycling injuries can be difficult to understand, with the common law supplement by statutory acts to ensure the safety of cyclists and their ability to receive compensation.
However, we want to make sure making your claim is as simple as possible. Read the information below to find out whether you have a claim, and what steps you will need to take next.
What is the standard of care owed to other road users?
Before a cyclist is able to bring a personal injury claim, they must prove that there was a breach of the duty of care owed by the other road user. Generally, this means that the party that caused the injury, did not conduct themselves in a way that could be expected of a reasonable driver in that situation and was, therefore, negligent.
This is assisted in cycling accidents by the standard set by the Highway Code. Although a breach of the Highway Codes does not in itself establish negligence, this will be highly persuasive in establishing the defender did not take reasonable care.
What must I prove in order to make a claim?
Cyclists can make a claim that are caused by a driver’s:
- deliberate behaviour intended to harm the victim or the victim’s property; and
- unintentional, but careless, behaviour that has harmed the victim or the victim’s property.
The most important element in understanding what kinds of injuries are actionable is the concept of duty of care. A duty of care is only owed to a person whom the defender caused injury due to their careless conduct. Where an act is deliberate, the pursuer is the person that the defender intended to harm by their conduct and there is no need to invoke the duty of care.
How will my injuries be assessed?
If you have been injured following a cycling accident, you can make a road traffic accident claim for loss and injuries where another person or party was responsible or partially responsible for the accident. The owner of the bicycle may be entitled to the cost of the bike if it is destroyed, or the cost of any repairs. This can arise from the intentional actions of another road user, or because of of the negligent or careless actions of a third party. For example, if the frame of the bike was improperly manufactured, and this caused injury to the user then a personal injury claim may be brought against the supplier of the producer of the bike.
Compensation is obtained from motorists by mandating that all owners of vehicles are obligated to take out insurance. This creates a compensatory fund that cyclists are able to draw upon should motorists be the cause of damage to person or property.
What if my actions contributed to my injuries?
If a cyclist is found to have contributed to their injuries through their own actions, they may still make a successful claim. That courts may hold that the pursuer’s conduct was a contributory cause to the injury, which will reduce the damages which would otherwise have been awarded.
Contributory negligence may extent to cover negligent as well as deliberate acts by the pursuer, provided they fall below the standard of the reasonable person in that situation.
For example, if a cyclist was injured due to the negligent actions of a bus driver they would be able to make a claim for compensation. However, if the injuries were exacerbated because they had not been wearing a helmet at the time, the rider will receive less compensation. This reduction can range from as little as five per cent to as much as eighty.
What if I didn’t get the information of the vehicle that caused my injuries?
There are cases in which motorists don’t stop when they have injured a cyclist or, indeed, the extent of the cyclist’s injuries are not discovered till sometime after the incident. If the driver failed to stop or the registration number of the vehicle wasn’t obtained, a claim may still be initiated against the Motorists Insurance Bureau (MIB) under the “Untraced Drivers Agreement”. The MIB’s liability includes any element of interest or expenses determined by the court and may include legal fees.
To bring a claim against an unidentified driver, the accident must be reported to the police within five days of the accident if claiming for damage to property, or fourteen days if claiming for personal injuries.
What kind of compensation am I entitled to?
The extent of the compensation is dependent on the severity of the injuries caused by the person responsible and the ability of the cyclist and their legal representative to prove their negligence. This compensation is determined through medical reports and recent awards made by the courts regarding similar cycling accidents.
Damages may be claimed for those losses that arise directly out of the breach of duty of care and those that are not ‘too remote’. For example, should a motorist knock down a cyclist, the pursuer may recover compensation for his or her pain and suffering and damages for their financial loss.
Financial loss may include loss of wages between the date of the accident and the decision by the court; future loss of earnings; medical treatment and any cost of adjustments necessary because of such injuries. The purpose of this award is intended, in so far as money is able, to put the pursuer in the financial position they would have been in had the accident not occurred.
Due to mandatory motoring insurance, it is commonplace for the insurer to ‘step into the shoes’ of the insured party if the action is disputed. It is also commonplace for insurers to reach a settlement for compensation in order to reduce the cost of court and legal fees.
Therefore, in order to be in the most advantageous position possible, it is important for those that have been victims of cycling accidents to document injuries and expenditure arises from these. This provides evidence to present the other party or the court and increases the likelihood of more substantial compensation.
Call Our Cycling Accident Solicitors for Birmingham Today
The process of making a claim for compensation can be complex, however, an expert solicitor** can make it much simpler. If you have been involved in a cycling accident in Birmingham that was not your fault, you should not have to suffer financially as well as physically. There are time limits imposed on claims for compensation, so contact Friends Legal Birmingham Birmingham today to start your claim. Our solicitors** can make the compensation process easy for you and ensure you receive the compensation you are entitled to.
If you have been injured whilst cycling and weren’t to blame our expert Cycling Accident solicitors** can help you claim compensation through our No Win, No Fee* service.
Call our Cycling Accident Lawyers on 0800 083 8358 or contact us online.