Car insurance does cover bicycle accidents in Florida when a vehicle is involved. An individual involved in a bike vs. car collision is usually covered through no-fault insurance or other kinds of coverage. However, these policies may only cover a portion of the actual damages, so some accident victims will need to find additional avenues of recovery.
For example, significant damages can qualify you to step outside of the no-fault insurance system after a bike accident. In this scenario, you could file a claim against the at-fault driver and seek damages from their insurer or in court. Our attorneys can review all your potential recovery options.
Policies You Could Receive Coverage From After a Bicycle Accident
Depending on the circumstances, you could file a bicycle accident claim under the following policies:
- The bicyclist’s personal injury protection (PIP) policy – State law requires all drivers to maintain a PIP policy. Even if you were riding a bicycle rather than driving, your no-fault PIP insurance should cover your medical expenses and lost wages (Florida Statutes § 627.736).
- A family member’s PIP policy – If you don’t have PIP coverage, you could file a claim under a family member’s PIP policy. When a member of your household has valid car insurance, that coverage could extend to a bicycle accident.
- The driver’s bodily injury liability (BIL) policy – When a driver has BIL insurance, a bicyclist can file a fault-based claim if they can prove that the driver was at fault in the accident. BIL coverage is optional, but the coverage limits are typically higher than the $10,000 PIP minimum.
- Your (or a family member’s) uninsured/underinsured motorist (UM/UIM) policy – UM/UIM insurance applies when an at-fault driver doesn’t have insurance, or their policy is insufficient for covering losses. With this coverage, a bicyclist can file a claim based upon their bicycle accident.
- Homeowner’s or renter’s insurance – Homeowner’s or renter’s insurance could cover property damage, such as the loss of a bike or damage to a car if the bicyclist was at fault.
- Health insurance – Personal health insurance coverage could cover some costs of treatment.
Navigating the different kinds of applicable insurance policies can be complicated and time-consuming. An attorney can help you sort through this potential coverage and determine where to file your claim or claims.
In addition, they can discuss the possibility of filing a personal injury lawsuit against the liable party. A bicycle accident could lead to appearances in traffic court, criminal court, or civil court. All three venues involve strict time limits and involve different considerations. A bicycle accident lawyer can explain how to proceed in all three kinds of courts.
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What to Do After a Bicycle Accident
You can take several steps after a bicycle accident to prepare to seek compensation, whether from your insurer or the at-fault party.
Report the Accident to Law Enforcement
Florida law requires you to report any crash resulting in injuries, death, or property damage exceeding $500. When officers arrive at the scene, they will document important facts about your case, such as:
- The involved parties’ contact information
- Road conditions
- The weather
- Statements from eyewitnesses to the crash
- Visible injuries and property damage
- Whether they issued any citations
Document and Seek Treatment for Your Injuries
If possible, take pictures of all your injuries before they begin to heal – there is a chance you could recover significantly by the time your case settles or makes it to court. It can also be beneficial to keep a diary documenting the struggles you experience because of your injuries.
You also want to have a doctor examine your injuries as soon as possible after the bike crash. The longer you wait, the more difficult it may be to prove your injuries are from the collision and not another incident. A doctor can document your injuries, connect them to the accident, and provide documents outlining your treatment and recovery timeline. These are critical details in any bicycle accident case.
Preserve Any Evidence You Can
Do not go right to the shop to have your bike fixed. Insurance companies and your legal team may want to have the bike inspected for evidence and to assess the damage. These details will help determine who should pay for any repair or replacement.
Photograph the damaged bike in its post-accident condition and keep it in a safe place. You can also take pictures of the location of the crash.
Avoid Speculating or Posting About What Happened
Keep in mind that there are several risks to making comments about the accident, so you should never apologize or accept any blame. However, if the driver admits fault, you should definitely note that.
Call the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine Today
You may have several options for seeking compensation since Florida car insurance covers bicycle collisions. If you or a loved one suffered injuries in a bicycle accident, our attorneys are here to offer resources, support, and guidance.
We serve accident victims from our offices in Fort Lauderdale, Naples, Jacksonville, West Palm Beach, Orlando, Tampa, and Fort Myers. Reach out to the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine for a complimentary case review today: 1-800-747-3733.
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