Do you need to find out more about cycle accident compensation? Did you collide with another road user and sustain injuries because of their negligence? Did the other road user breach their duty of care? And perhaps you have lost valuable income while needing to recover?
This article looks at the scenarios where cyclists can be hurt by other vehicles or road users and the sort of injuries they could suffer as a consequence. It explains what a cyclist needs in order to construct a strong case for compensation from the liable party. Public Interest Lawyers are here to help:
- Call our team on 0800 408 7825
- Email us at Public Interest Lawyers with any questions
- Or access the ‘live support’ option to the bottom right of this screen for immediate help.
Select A Section
- When To Claim Cycle Accident Compensation?
- What Injuries Could Be Caused?
- What Could Impact My Ability To Claim?
- Do I Need A Lawyer To Make A Claim?
- Cycle Accident Compensation Calculator
- Why Make A No Win No Fee Cycle Accident Compensation Claim?
Are you eligible to claim cycle accident compensation? There is a duty of care applied to all road users that they must adhere to a standard of skill and care that is in line with the average motorist. The Highway Code along with the Road Traffic Act 1988 provides a set of rules that road users must follow in order not to cause harm to others. When this duty of care is breached and harm results it is possible for those injured and not at fault to claim compensation.
Showing care and consideration to others who could be reasonably affected by your actions is a crucial part of road safety. Therefore, as an injured cyclist, you could have a valid claim for compensation if you are able to prove the other road user breached this important duty.
There is a time limit for starting a personal injury claim like this of three years. This is known as the ‘limitation period’ and can commence either from the date of the accident or the ‘date of knowledge’ of your injuries.
Cycle injuries can be acquired in a number of different ways and to varying degrees of severity. Typically they can happen on public roads or cycle paths and can be the result of an accidental collision with another vehicle, poor road surfaces (such as potholes and uneven pavements) or adverse weather conditions as well as pedestrians.
The speed of the cycle and car involved, as well as the possibility of other motorists being implicated, may mean that cyclists could suffer any or all of the injuries below:
- Grazes, cuts and lacerations
- Torn ligaments or Achilles heel injuries
- Soft tissue tears
- Breaks and fractures
- Head and brain injuries
The risk of traumatic head injuries can be particularly concerning as it can cause life-altering or long term health concerns for the cyclist. Unprotected by the steel casing of a vehicle, cyclists are much more at risk of physical harm in collisions.
As you set out on a claim for cycle accident compensation, it is important to be aware of factors that could impact your ability to claim.
Road traffic accidents may not always be clear-cut and it can be possible for both parties to be at fault. In cases like this, you and the other party may come to a shared or “split liability” agreement. Under terms such as this, you could receive a compensation settlement that is slightly reduced based on your level of responsibility in the accident.
So for example, a 25% level of responsibility on your part may result in a 25% reduction of the amount you receive. It all depends on the evidence presented and the agreement you come to with the other side. Other factors can have a bearing on your claim:
What If I Wasn’t Wearing A Helmet?
It is not compulsory in this country to wear a cycle helmet but the Highway Code urges it. Also, the research from Headway about the safety advantages would always recommend wearing one. It’s important to research a properly fitted helmet and to ensure it is fastened properly when riding. The helmet should also conform to safety standards according to RoSPA.
During a cycle accident compensation claim, the defendant may argue that not wearing a helmet was ‘contributory negligence’ on the part of the claimant. Because of this, it can assist a claim to prove that one was being worn at the time.
It is still possible for people who chose not to wear a safety helmet to be awarded cycle accident compensation. The strength of their claim would depend on being able to prove that their injuries were still directly caused by a breach of duty on the part of the other road user.
Do I Have To Wear High Viz Clothing?
Rule 59 of the Highway Code also advises the wearing of high visibility clothing. This can be fluorescent or reflective jackets, vests or sashes and arm or ankle bands. It’s also important to wear appropriate regular clothing that will not get tangled in the bike or contribute towards hazards for the cyclist.
Cyclists should also apply reflective accessories to their bikes. Furthermore, it’s always a good idea to check brakes, tyre pressure and general roadworthiness of your bike before setting off.
Do I Have To Have Bicycle Lights?
Rule 60 of the Highway Code states that a bicycle MUST have white front lights and red rear lights lit when riding at night. They must also be fitted with a red rear reflector. If manufactured after 01/10/85, amber pedal reflectors must be fitted. Flashing lights are permitted but a steady light is recommended for cyclists riding in rural areas without street lights.
What If I Was Riding 2 Abreast?
Current Highway guidance is that cyclists should never ride in excess of two people abreast and should always drop down to single file on narrow, or busy roads.
Passengers on bikes
Importantly, unless the bike is manufactured as a tandem or intended to have a purpose-fitted seat at the front or back for a small child, the Highway Code say you must not carry a passenger unless your bicycle has been built to carry one. This is regardless of where the passenger is positioned (either on the front bars or seated behind the rider).
Anyone is free to initiate a claim for cycle accident compensation, either independently or with the help of a personal injury solicitor such as those on our specialist panel. It is a good idea to get expert legal advice after an accident as promptly as possible. Our team are on hand to help you start when you get in touch.
The advantage of appointing a personal injury lawyer is that they can help calculate the maximum compensation you could be owed. They can also ensure that you accept the right amount at the right time in your claim.
A personal injury solicitor can guide your claim through the various stages from getting medical proof to collecting evidence and knowing when to accept an offer. They can also assist with interim payments to you if the other side admits liability and you need urgent funds to attend to medical needs. Speak to our team to see how a cycle accident compensation expert could help you with this today.
Bicycle accident personal injury claim payouts are calculated using two heads of damages called ‘general’ and ‘special’. General damages often reflect amounts from a publication called the Judicial College guidelines that lists financial brackets for various types of injury based on degrees of severity. These are complied from past court cases. Aimed at acknowledging pain, suffering or loss of amenity, these figures represent guidance only and are not intended to be guaranteed compensation amounts.
When making a personal injury claim you will be asked to attend a medical appointment. This is with an independent specialist who will create medical notes. These medical notes can detail the injuries caused in your cycle accident and help substantiate your claim. Their findings can also be used by a personal injury solicitor to cross-reference with similar injuries listed in the JC Guidelines. The excerpt below gives a brief example:
|injury||severity||JC Guidelines award bracket||notes|
|head||(d) less severe brain damage||£14,380 to £40,410||although the person makes a good recovery there can be some issues with memory, mood and concentration that persist. This could interfere with enjoyment levels or normal life|
|back||(b) moderate (i)||£26,050 to £36,390||crush fractures in the lumbar part of the back that cause constant pain and increased risk of osteoarthritis. May also require surgery to improve|
|chest||(d)||£11,820 to £16,860||this can be an injury caused by a single puncturing wound that could be the result of collision wreckage from the bike or car involved|
|knee||(b) moderate (i)||£13,920 to £24,580||injuries in this bracket could include torn cartilage, meniscus (knee cartilage) that creates weakness or instability in that joint|
|leg||(c) less serious (i)||£16,860 to £26,050||Recovery may happen but a risk of impaired gait ,loss of sensation or instability may continue|
|ankle||(d) modest injuries||Up to £12,900||sprains, minor and undisplaced fractures, or ligament damage as well as on going discomfort. This level of award can also be given for scarring, loss of movement or increased risk of osteoarthritis|
In addition to these amounts, it’s possible to include damage to personal items or other related expenses. For example, you could not work and your income suffered, loss of earnings could be reimbursed.
Special damages may also include:
- The cost of medical needs (not available on the NHS)
- Travel expenses to and from hospital appointments or work.
- A new helmet or clothing
- Damage to your bike
- Any electronic devices fitted on your bike that was broken
- Other out-of-pocket costs that you can prove are directly related to the injuries you sustained.
Cycling accident compensation calculator amounts will always vary according to specific circumstances. With this in mind, it’s important to retain and collect all the relevant and related proof such as:
- Receipts for expenses you paid out
- Your medical bills
- Invoices (paid or due) for essential items
- Bank statements that show outgoing amounts
They can be included in your claim and reimbursed to you if your case wins.
You could start your cycle accident compensation claim right now when you contact our advisors. Our panel of personal injury specialists offer legal representation on a No Win No Fee (or ‘Conditional Fee’) basis. Agreements such as this mean that there are no upfront fees to be paid to the lawyers.
If your case fails, there are no fees to pay your solicitors at all. In successful cases, the Conditional Fee Agreement Act 2013 states a maximum of 25% of the total settlement can be requested by the No Win No Fee solicitor. Therefore, the claimant would always receive the bulk of the payout. Find out how a No Win No Fee agreement could help you by:
- Calling Public Interest Lawyers on 0800 408 7825
- Emailing us at Public Interest Lawyers with any questions
- You can also use the ‘live support’ option to the bottom right of this screen for immediate help with cycle accident compensation.
Cycle Accident Compensation References
In conclusion, thank you for reading our cycle accident compensation guide. You can access further resources on this topic such as:
- Personal injury claims for a bicycle crash
- Claiming for a bicycle accident
- More information about special damages and what you could claim for after an accident
- And advice for cyclists about safety
- More details about a government initiative to offer children bicycle training
- And lastly, some walking and cycling statistics for 2020