By Stephen Anderson. Last Updated 11th August 2022. In this guide, we’ll look at how you could claim compensation for a bicycle accident. An accident on a bike can cause a wide range of different injuries. These injuries can range from minor, such as sprains, strains, and bruising. However, they can also include more serious injuries including things like traumatic brain damage and damage to the spinal cord.
All road users owe a duty of care to one another. When this duty is breached, this is an example of negligence. If you were injured while on your bike as the result of another road user’s negligence, you may be able to claim.
In this article, we explain the law that supports your right to compensation and what to do after a bike accident that was caused by someone else. Our team is on hand to answer any questions you may have and can start a claim for you right now. It’s free and there’s no obligation to proceed just from speaking with us.
- Call us to discuss more on 0800 408 7825
- Write or email us at Public Interest Lawyers
- Use the ‘live support’ option to the bottom right of this screen
Select A Section
- What Are Bicycle Accidents?
- What Are The Most Common Causes Of Bicycle Accidents?
- Common Bicycle Accident Injuries
- Is There A Time Limit For Personal Injury Claims?
- How Do I Claim After A Bicycle Accident?
- Bike Accident Injury – Example Compensation Payouts
- Contact Us About Claiming Compensation For A Bicycle Accident
- Useful Road Traffic Accident Claim Guides
A bicycle accident can cause a wide range of different injuries of varying severities. If you were involved in an accident on your bike and it was caused by the negligence of another road user, you may be able to claim.
Cyclists are classed as vulnerable road users. This is because they don’t have the same protection in collisions as someone travelling in a car, lorry, or another kind of vehicle.
The duty of care that road users owe to one another is outlined in the Highway Code. This also outlines the expectation for cyclists to wear protective clothing. While wearing a helmet and other safety gear is not a legal requirement currently, your claim might be affected if, for instance, you suffer a head injury because you were not wearing a helmet.
In this guide, we’ll look at some of the ways a cycling accident could happen, as well as the injuries you could sustain if involved in one. We’ll also look at the time limits that apply to these kinds of claims.
Also, we’ll talk you through the actions we recommend you take if you end up involved in a bicycle accident and potential compensation payouts for bike accident claims.
If you’d like more information about making a claim for compensation for a bicycle accident, then speak to an advisor from our team today. You could be offered free legal advice and, if your claim is valid, connected with a No Win No Fee solicitor from our panel.
There are a number of different ways that a cycling accident causing injuries could happen. We’ve addressed some of these below:
- A motorist emerging into the path of a cyclist
- A motorist turning across the path of a cyclist
- A cyclist being hit as they cross a toucan crossing
- A rear-end cycle accident where a car or taxi follows
- Road defects like potholes. In these cases, you may be able to claim against the council responsible for maintaining the road.
In some cases, the cyclist might act in a way that causes the accident to happen. For instance, this might happen if the cyclist attempts to cross a junction without looking or if a young or inexperienced driver is travelling too fast.
The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) has provided a factsheet that states that “failure to look properly” was the most common cause of accidents involving a car and another vehicle. In 43% of serious collisions at junctions, the cyclist failed to look properly. In 57% of serious junction collisions, the driver failed to look properly.
17% of serious accidents involving a cyclist and a driver were caused by a poor manoeuvre on the part of the driver. The same percentage of serious injuries involving a bike and a vehicle happened because the driver was careless or hurried.
If the cyclist is found to be fully at fault, they would not be eligible to claim. If they are found to be partly at fault, they may be able to make a split liability claim. This is where the compensation is reduced according to the level of liability you’re deemed to have.
Injuries sustained in bicycle accidents can vary in type and severity. You might also sustain different injuries if you’re involved in an accident with a car than if you’re involved in an accident that was caused by poor road maintenance.
Some of the injuries you could sustain include:
- Fractures. For example, a leg fracture, broken collarbone or fractured skull.
- An injury to the Achilles’ tendon, for example, a tear or rupture.
- Damage to the spinal cord
- Crush injuries, for instance, a crushed arm or leg
- Brain injury
- Soft tissue injuries, including cuts. These could lead to scarring.
- Damage to teeth
- Psychological issues, for example, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, or depression.
Don’t worry if you can’t see your injury type mentioned above. This isn’t an exhaustive list and we may still be able to help you if your injury isn’t included.
Get in touch to discuss your claim with our team and check your eligibility for free today. You could be connected with a No Win No Fee solicitor from our panel.
Generally, there’s a three-year time limit to starting a personal injury claim for compensation for a bicycle accident. This runs either from the date of the accident or the date of knowledge, where you became aware that your injuries resulted from negligence.
However, there are some exceptions to this time limit. These include:
- Child accident claims- Because children cannot legally pursue a claim, the time limit begins on their 18th birthday. Before this, a litigation friend can claim on their behalf and the time limit is suspended. This is an adult who represents them in their claim.
- Claims for those with reduced mental capacity- While the claimant doesn’t have the mental capacity to pursue their own claim, the time limit is suspended and a litigation friend can claim on their behalf. It begins again in the event that they regain the mental capacity to pursue their own claim.
If you’d like more information on how long you have to start your claim, get in touch with an advisor today. You could be connected with a No Win No Fee lawyer from our panel to work on your case.
A claim for compensation after an accident that was not your fault can be made against the insurance of the driver at fault. In some cases, you may be able to claim against the local council or the body responsible for maintaining the roads, provided the accident happened because of poor road conditions.
If the driver was uninsured or it was a ‘hit and run’ accident, you could still be awarded compensation through the Motor Insurer’s Bureau (MIB). This organisation compensates those who’ve been in accidents with drivers who don’t have insurance or who cannot be traced.
Below, we’ve included a list of some of the steps you should take if involved in an accident:
- Seek medical attention.
- Collect relevant details from the other driver including their license plate number and name and address
- Collect evidence. If someone else saw the accident happen, you could collect their details so that they can give a statement later on. You could also request dashcam footage or CCTV that showed the accident taking place.
After the accident, you may also wish to seek legal advice from a solicitor. While this isn’t required, expert representation could help you get the compensation you deserve from your claim. What’s more, you may find that the process of claiming is less stressful and goes more smoothly if you do so.
In successful bicycle accident claims, there are up to two heads of claim you could receive compensation through.
The primary head of claim is called general damages. This relates to the suffering, pain and loss of amenity caused by the injury. As part of the claims process, you may need to take part in an independent medical assessment to evaluate your injuries. This is performed by a medical professional.
Legal professionals use the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG) to give clients a clearer idea of their potential compensation amount. The figures below are from the most up-to-date guidelines, published in 2022. Please remember that these figures are only designed to give you a rough idea of what you could receive.
Personal injury claims are complex with many aspects potentially determining the final payout, should it be successful. As such, your compensation figure could differ to the ones shown below.
|Back||Severe (i)||£91,090 to £160,980||Where the spinal cord and nerve roots have been damaged which leads to complications that don't usually arise as a result of back injuries. For example, partial paralysis and impairment of bladder, bowel and sexual function.|
|Back||Severe (iii)||£38,780 to £69,730||Disc lesions or fractures to vertebral bodies leading to chronic conditions where disabilities remain despite treatment (usually surgery) being performed.|
|Neck||Severe (i)||In the region of|
|Where the injured person still has little or no movement in their neck, despite the wearing of a collar for 24 hours a day over a period of years.|
|Neck||Moderate (i)||£24,990 to £38,490||Dislocations or fractures that could lead to spinal fusion being required.|
|Knee||Severe (ii)||£52,120 to £69,730||Leg fracture that extends to the knee joint leading to constant pain and severe movement limitation.|
|Knee||Moderate (i)||£14,840 to £26,190||Where the joint is dislocated or cartilage is torn, causing weakness, instability or future disability that is mild.|
|Ankle||Very Severe||£50,060 to £69,700||Injuries in this bracket include a transmalleolar ankle fracture resulting in deformity due to extensive soft tissue injury.|
|Ankle||Severe||£31,310 to £50,060||Where an extensive period of treatment needed involving a period in plaster, the insertion of pins and rehabilitation|
|Wrist||(a)||£47,620 to £59,860||Injuries involving complete loss of function in wrist|
|Shoulder||Severe||£19,200 to £48,030||Where damage to the brachial plexus has caused significant injury.|
As part of claiming for a bike accident injury, you could also receive special damages compensation. This relates to any financial losses caused by the injury. Losses you could claim for include:
- Adjustments to your home
- Travel expenses
- Loss of earnings
- Care costs
- Medical expenses
You would need financial evidence (such as invoices and receipts) to be able to successfully claim for these losses.
You do not have to have legal representation, but if you decide to work with a personal injury solicitor, you may be concerned about the costs that could arise/ We can help connect you with a No Win No Fee lawyer from our panel with expertise in this area.
No Win No Fee agreements have many advantages. When you claim on this basis, your lawyer won’t ask you for payment before the claim starts or while it’s ongoing. In the event of a successful claim, you won’t be asked to pay them anything at all.
If you win when making your claim with a No Win No Fee solicitor, they will deduct a percentage from your compensation payout to cover their success fee. The details of how this payment works will be set out in the agreement made with your solicitor before your claim begins. You should be able to review this information before signing the agreement.
The percentage the solicitor can take for their success fee after successful bicycle accident claims will be legally capped, so you’ll receive the majority of your settlement.
If you’d like to know more about making a claim for compensation for a bicycle accident on a No Win No Fee basis, get in touch today. You can:
- Call on 0800 408 7825
- Write or email us using our online form
- Use the ‘live support’ option to the bottom right of this screen
Below, we’ve included some additional internal and external guides that you might find useful:
- Claiming against the local council
- Broken pelvis compensation claims
- Making a cycle claim against a motorist
- THINK! Road safety campaigns
- Claiming Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) for the time taken off work
- When should I go to a minor injuries unit? NHS guidance
We hope this guide on claiming compensation for a bicycle accident has proven useful. If you still have any queries about cyclist accident claims or you’re looking for support in starting such a claim, then you can get in touch with Public Interest Lawyers today. You can contact our advisors on the phone or online using the contact details included in this guide.
Article by EA