If you suffered injuries while riding your bike because of a negligent driver, you may be dealing with a variety of injuries and losses. More than just bills for short-term medical treatment, you also may be dealing with charges for property repair, lost wages from missed work, pain and suffering, and numerous other economic and noneconomic losses.
However, proving another person is liable for your crash can be tricky without knowledge of how the legal system handles these cases. Therefore, you may struggle to recover sufficient compensation without help from a personal injury attorney. Once retained, a Marlborough bicycle accident lawyer could help you take stock of all your injuries and losses, conclusively prove how someone else’s careless or reckless actions caused them, and seek appropriate compensation through a private settlement or court trial.
Filing a Bicycle Accident Lawsuit in Marlborough
If an injured bicyclist wants to hold someone else responsible for the collision that hurt them, they generally do so by alleging legal negligence. To successfully file suit based on negligence, a plaintiff must demonstrate that:
- The defendant owed a duty of reasonable care to the plaintiff
- The defendant breached their duty of care by acting recklessly or irresponsibly
- Directly because of the defendant’s breach of duty, an accident occurred
- Directly because of the accident, the plaintiff suffered an injury
The standard of proof for civil cases is “based on a preponderance of the evidence,” which is less strict than the standard of “beyond a reasonable doubt” applicable to criminal cases. However, like criminal cases, civil cases are beholden to a statute of limitations, which establishes when a lawsuit can be filed.
Specifically, Connecticut General Statutes §52-584 sets a filing deadline of two years from the date a plaintiff discovers their injury, and/or three years from when the injury occurred. Among other services, a dedicated Marlborough bike accident attorney could help a claimant meet all legal deadlines and establish legal negligence.
How Does Comparative Fault Apply to Bike Accident Cases?
Another obstacle to potential recovery following a bicycle crash is the possibility of comparative fault. According to state law, a civil court may proportionately reduce the value of any civil damage award a plaintiff receives if this person is partially liable for their own damages. This statute also allows the court to bar recovery completely if the plaintiff’s percentage of fault exceeds 50 percent.
As experienced bicycle wreck lawyers in Marlborough know, a variety of actions may lead to allegations of comparative fault, not all of which are overtly illegal or negligent behaviors. For example, although state law only requires bicycle helmets for children under the age of 15, failure to wear a helmet may be construed as careless on a cyclist’s part if they suffer a head injury in a crash, leading to a court decreasing their financial recovery.
Get Help from a Marlborough Bicycle Accident Attorney Today
A bike crash can have a grave impact on your physical and financial wellbeing, as can failing to effectively utilize your legal rights following a wreck someone else caused. If you suspect another person is responsible for the accident that harmed you, speak with a Marlborough bicycle accident lawyer and determine what compensation you could potentially recover. Call today to learn more.