Contact Us Today 505-226-3205

Blog

What Are the Key Factors in Proving Fault in a Bicycle Accident Claim?

Posted by Shane Maier | Jun 25, 2024 | 0 Comments

 

How Do Bike Crashes Happen?

Cyclists face several hazards both on and off the roadways. Perhaps the most dangerous area for cyclists is when they share the roads with motorists, pedestrians, and other potential dangers. In New Mexico, the majority of bike accidents are caused by the negligence or recklessness of other drivers on the road.

Common causes of bike accidents in New Mexico include the following:

·         Aggressive driving

·         Dangerous lane changes

·         Distracted driving

·         Dooring, which is the act of striking a cyclist with a car door

·         Driving or cycling under the influence of drugs

·         Drowsy driving and driver fatigue

·         Drunk driving

·         Entering traffic directly in front of a bicyclist

·         Failure to stop

·         Failure to yield to the right of way

·         Road rage

·         Running a stop sign or red light or disregarding other traffic signals

·         Speeding

·         Tailgating and not providing enough room for cyclists

·         Talking on a cell phone without hands-free technology while driving

·         Texting while driving or cycling

However, other motorists are not the only parties who could be responsible for a bike crash. Even though you might have been hit by an automobile, defective car parts, inadequate maintenance, road debris, inclement weather, and dangerous roadways can also cause an accident.

Bicycle accidents can often result in severe injuries, including broken bones, traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, internal bleeding, organ damage, ruptured discs, post-traumatic stress disorder, paralysis, and death.

What Should You Do After a Bicycle Accident in New Mexico?

If you are involved in a bike collision in New Mexico, you must seek immediate medical attention. You should get medical care from professionals even if you believe your injuries to be minor or insignificant. Many injuries may not be readily apparent until much later. Additionally, by taking immediate action and seeking medical care, you develop a timeline of events with valuable evidence, like medical records, to support your personal injury claim.

When law enforcement arrives at the accident scene, fill out a thorough police report with the officers. Be sure to identify the vehicle or other responsible parties involved in the bicycle collision.

While you're still at the accident scene, identify any potential eyewitnesses and attempt to obtain statements from them. Additionally, take photographs and video of your injuries, the state of your bike and the other vehicle, and other relevant factors to your bike crash. All of this will become valuable evidence for a personal injury attorney.

If you have not done so already, now is the time to contact personal injury lawyers at our law firm to represent your case. Our experienced bicycle accident attorneys would proudly represent your legal rights in pursuit of compensation from the at-fault parties. To learn more about our legal services, we encourage prospective new clients to contact our New Mexico law offices for an initial consultation.

Who is Held Liable for Bicycle Accidents in NM?

Under New Mexico personal injury law, it is possible for multiple parties to hold some level of accountability and liability for causing an accident and the resulting injuries. Depending on the unique facts surrounding your bicycle accident case, liable parties may include the following:

·         Another cyclist. Bicyclists owe a duty of care to everyone around them to maintain their safety and not act recklessly. If another cyclist forgets this duty of care, they may be held accountable

·         Manufacturers. Perhaps your bicycle crash occurred because of defective parts in the design of your bike or the manufacturing of an automobile involved in the accident. In such cases, manufacturers can be held liable for damages

·         Other drivers. If a motorist drives off the road or strikes a cyclist in the streets, their behavior should be punished if they are negligent or reckless

·         Property owners. In New Mexico, property owners are responsible for keeping their property and land safe for lawful visitors. If you get injured due to a poorly maintained trail or sidewalk or because of a lack of signage, a property owner may be held legally accountable

What is the Importance of Establishing Fault or Negligence in a Bike Crash Case?

Most bicycle accidents result from the negligent actions of other motorists who share the roadways with cyclists. To hold a party accountable for a bicycle accident, you need to prove fault or negligence.

This involves proving four basic elements:

·         The defendant owes a duty of care to you, the victim

·         The defendant breached that duty of care

·         As a result of this breach, you suffered an injury

·         You suffered real losses and damages because of your injury.

For legal assistance proving these elements in a court of law, it is highly encouraged that you retain professional legal representation from experienced bicycle accident lawyers.

Can Injured Bicyclists Sue Negligent Drivers to Hold Them Accountable for Damages?

Yes. With the help of a personal injury lawyer, it is possible to file a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault party for your injuries and other losses.

To do so, you are highly encouraged to retain professional legal counsel from the attorneys at our New Mexico law firm. We have years of experience helping clients hold negligent parties accountable for their actions (or inactions) in pursuit of justice and financial recovery.

How to Prove Fault in Your Bicycle Accident Claim?

As the victim of a bicycle accident, you must prove that the accused was responsible for your injuries. Essentially, the burden of proof falls to the victim. This includes showing that the liable party owed you a duty of care to act carefully, that they neglected this duty, and that, as a result, you suffered injuries and damages.

The most surefire way to protect your legal rights and strengthen your personal injury claim is to retain the representation of experienced bicycle accident lawyers.

But you can take steps to help strengthen your case before your attorney ever gets involved. This can be accomplished by taking videos of the accident scene and your injuries, seeking immediate medical attention, requesting copies of police reports, documenting any exchange information with other parties involved in the accident, and writing down witness information and testimonies.

Can a Personal Injury Lawyer Help You Maximize Your Financial Compensation?

With the help of our law firm, we are confident that we can help you recover a fair settlement for your injuries and other losses. This settlement may come in the form of economic or non-economic damages.

Economic damages may include:

·         Past medical bills and future medical expenses

·         Lost wages and lost income earning capacity

·         Property damage

·         Physical therapy expenses

·         Funeral, burial, and memorial expenses in the event of a fatal accident.

Non-economic damages may include the following:

·         Disfigurement, dismemberment, or disability

·         Emotional distress and mental anguish

·         Physical pain and suffering

·         Lost quality of life

·         Loss of companionship or consortium

·         Wrongful death.

What is Pure Comparative Negligence?

New Mexico law follows a pure comparative negligence understanding of the law for personal injury cases. Under these laws, New Mexico's civil courts can reduce the maximum compensation you stand to recover for your bicycle collision claim if it is determined that you share a percentage of fault for the accident.

For example, if the courts find that you were 20% responsible for your accident and the resulting injuries, your settlement will be reduced by 20%.

Injured victims must work with aggressive personal injury lawyers to fight back against liable parties attempting to shift the blame onto Their shoulders.

Contact Us Today to Schedule an In-Depth Case Evaluation with Experienced Bicycle Accident Attorneys

As your personal injury attorneys, we can help review your case, examine the evidence, and attempt to prove negligence on the part of the others involved in your accident. Please do not delay contacting our law firm to discuss your case in more detail.

To schedule a case evaluation, please contact our legal team at 505-226-3205.

About the Author

Shane Maier

Attorney Shane Maier has been a successful attorney as a prior defense attorney and for the last few years representing injured parties. His experience includes obtaining successful results at trial for personal injury cases and providing great results for his clients. Mr. Maier takes on some of ...

Comments

There are no comments for this post. Be the first and Add your Comment below.

Leave a Comment

Contact Us Today

Gauthier & Maier Law Firm is committed to answering your questions about Motor Vehicle Accidents, Medical Malpractice and Civil Rights law issues in New Mexico.

We'll gladly discuss your case with you at your convenience. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.

Menu

--