Paine Edmonds LLP - Blog
Tips On Injury Claims After A Bicycle Accident In Vancouver
Bicycle accidents in Vancouver, unfortunately, occur too often. Frequently the cause is distracted driving and failing to yield the right of way. Sometimes a person isn’t even aware of causing an injury to a cyclist. Insurance Corporation British Columbia (ICBC) reports that at least 670 cyclists are injured and six die each year from car accidents.
At Paine Edmonds LLP, a Vancouver personal injury lawyer can assist you with ICBC injury claims. Some tips about these possible injury claims are outlined here below.
Be Careful How You React At The Accident Scene
How you respond when the accident occurs can impact your case significantly. If you are injured, it’s best to ask for medical assistance, but don’t discuss the accident details. Don’t discuss fault or payment and don’t dismiss the accident because of the plea from the driver, however sincere the driver may be. Remember that what you say could be later used against you. For example, in Aberdeen v. Township of Langley, 2006 BCSC 2066 (CanLII), much attention was paid to the cyclist’s spontaneous utterance, which luckily Justice Groves ruled it should not be allowed into the jury’s evidence.
Call the police immediately to ensure that the accident is properly investigated and recorded.
Look for witnesses if you can and take note of their statements and the environmental factors.
Take photographs of the vehicle that hit you, the accident scene, your injuries, and your damaged property. Ask someone else to take these photos for you if you can’t or else go back as soon as possible to do so.
See your family physician as soon as possible for medical attention and documentation of your injuries. Do this even if you think your injuries might shortly resolve on their own.
Retain A Personal Injury Lawyer
Your next step is to consider hiring a personal injury lawyer. At our Vancouver law firm, a lawyer will assess what happened in the accident and explain which laws apply to your situation. If it was a car that hit you, then the applicable statute is the Insurance (Vehicle) Act and the accompanying regulations.
At Paine Edmonds LLP, your initial consultation if free. We charge fees on a contingency fee basis, which means that you only pay legal fees if and when we recover compensation for you. We don’t ask for a retainer when you have a car accident and our fees are based on a percentage of your total compensation.
These arrangements work to your advantage because you don’t have to pay anything up front and your lawyer has incentive to work the hardest for the best settlement for you.
Allow Your Lawyer To Lead The Case
Once hired, your lawyer will take care of your legal interests for you. You just need to follow your lawyer’s instructions. You may be eligible for Part 7 accident benefits from your own auto insurance policy or the driver’s insurance as part of your personal injury protection. Your lawyer can also
file a tort claim against the driver if he or she has some liability for the accident. Cyclists are not mandated to carry motor vehicle insurance, but all motorists must purchase at least $200,000 in third party liability protection from ICBC, which means you should have insurance coverage for
If ICBC accepts liability, then your lawyer will need send a list of all your financial losses with supporting documents. These can include pay slips for loss of earnings, invoices for out-of-pocket medical expenses, and an invoice or estimate for the repair or replacement of your bicycle and record of any other property that was damaged (e.g., sunglasses, helmet, clothing). If ICBC denies liability, then they must provide valid reasons and your lawyer will determine if the denial should be disputed.
You medical records will also be disclosed to both sides and a rehabilitation cost may be drafted by an expert. If ICBC, after considering all the records (including all your proven uninsured costs) assents to the claim and the expenses provided, then there is an opportunity for ICBC to offer a settlement.
Probably the best tip for your bicycle accident injury claim is to trust your lawyer’s advice. Your lawyer at Paine Edmonds LLP has the training and experience to know if a settlement offer is reasonable and if any apportionment of fault for damages to you under the Negligence Act is fair.
Once your claim is settled you will not be entitled to any further money or assistance from ICBC in relation to the injuries. This is why it is important not to rush to settle the case. Your lawyer will want to be certain how your injuries will impact you long-term, including your ability to earn a living.
Contact Paine Edmonds LLP For Your Bicycle Accident Lawyer In Vancouver
At Paine Edmonds LLP, we deal with ICBC injury lawyers in Vancouver routinely. We have extensive experience with filing ICBC car accident claims in Vancouver, including car-bicycle accidents. Our lawyers will work hard within the law to get fair and full compensation for you. Contact us at 604-683-1211.