Rock Hill Bicycle Accident Lawyer

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Bicycle riders typically face life-threatening injuries when they are hit by cars, trucks, or other motor vehicles. They may suffer serious injuries from the initial collision or from being knocked to the ground or thrown from their bikes. These types of catastrophic injuries can lead to expensive medical bills, lost income, and ongoing financial burdens.

If you or a loved one has been hurt in a bicycle accident in Rock Hill, our dedicated personal injury attorneys can help you pursue the full and fair compensation you deserve. Our Rock Hill bicycle accident lawyers have been helping crash victims recover financially and move on with their lives for more than 20 years.

If you were injured in a bicycle accident that someone else caused, our attorneys will fight fiercely to hold the at-fault party accountable and demand compensation for medical bills and other losses you have suffered. Before agreeing to anything an insurance company offers you, discuss your case with us.

Schiller & Hamilton can give you a free consultation. All our personal injury services are provided on a contingency-fee basis, so our representation won’t cost you a cent unless we recover money for you.

What Types of Compensation Are Available After a Cycling Accident?

Our attorneys will investigate your accident and thoroughly assess your injuries to determine what full and fair compensation should be in your case. A bicycle accident claim may seek payment for medical expenses, lost income, property damage, wrongful death damages, pain and suffering, and punitive damages.

  • Medical expenses: Even if you have health insurance for many of your medical bills related to the accident, we can seek the full amount billed by health care providers for all accident-related treatment you receive. This includes expenses since your accident and projected costs for rehabilitation and other anticipated care needs.
  • Lost income: You may not be able to work while you recover after your bicycle accident. We can seek compensation to reimburse you for lost wages and other benefits to help alleviate the financial burden. If you can no longer work because of your injuries or you are forced to take a lesser paying job, we will also seek payment to make up for the reduction in your future earnings.
  • Property damage: We will demand payment for costs to repair or replace your bicycle, which we realize may be an expensive piece of equipment, as well as other gear that was damaged.
  • Wrongful death damages: If you lost a loved one to a bicycle accident, you can seek compensation for funeral expenses, accident-related medical debt accrued before their death, loss of financial support, and loss of parental or spousal companionship.
  • Pain and suffering: You deserve consideration for your physical, emotional, and psychological pain and suffering attributable to the accident. Our team will work with you to document how detrimental your injuries have been to you and your lifestyle and seek appropriate compensation. If bicycling was a significant part of your life and you are no longer able to ride because of your injuries, you deserve to be compensated for this loss, too.
  • Punitive damages: In some cases, we are able to seek compensation as punishment for someone who has acted with intentional or extreme misbehavior that caused an injury. For example, punitive damages may be available if a motorist was driving while drunk and hit a bicyclist.

Medical expenses and lost income typically make up the majority of losses bicyclists suffer in serious accidents. We consult independent doctors, financial planners, and, as needed, life care planning experts to ensure we account for the total economic impact an accident has had and will continue to have on our clients.

Our law firm has a long record of successfully negotiating accident claim settlements and prevailing in jury trials. Our Rock Hill lawyers develop strong cases to fight for the maximum compensation our clients need to properly recover after a bicycle accident. Contact us today for a free consultation, and learn about the legal options available to you.

How Do We Seek Compensation for a Bicycle Accident?

We have a few options for recovering much-needed compensation after your bicycle accident. However, those options depend on how your accident occurred. We can seek compensation through:

  • An at-fault motorist’s auto insurance policy
  • Your own bicycle or auto insurance policy
  • A company’s liability insurance if an on-duty employee caused your accident

A claim against a municipal agency responsible for maintaining the road, bike lane, crossing, and/or trail where your injury occurredAfter we file insurance claims through available policies, we can negotiate a settlement out of court. If we’re not able to secure a just settlement, we can file a lawsuit against the insurance companies to demand compensation that better reflects your needs.

At Schiller & Hamilton, we know that you may not want to file a lawsuit. Or, you may not have the time to file a lawsuit before the financial burdens from your accident become too much. That’s why we advise you on all your options and proceed with the one that’s best for your unique situation.

Importance of Seeking Legal Counsel for Your Bicycle Accident

At Schiller & Hamilton, we recognize that, after an accident, calling an attorney is far down the list of things to do. Your priority is getting medical attention, making sure your family’s immediate needs are met, and, perhaps, making arrangements with your employer to be out for an unknown period.

However, speak to an experienced bicycle accident lawyer as soon as possible if your crash was caused by someone else. Schiller & Hamilton can move fast to investigate your accident, protect your right to an insurance claim, and take the pressure off you so you can focus on healing.

Our local cycling injury attorneys and supporting legal team can help you by:

  • Protecting your rights as law enforcement and insurance adjusters investigate your accident
  • Compiling evidence necessary to demonstrate what happened to you, including police reports, witness statements, any available traffic or security camera footage, medical records, bicycle repair estimates, etc.
  • Helping you document your injuries and their impact with video, photographs, statements from you and friends and family, etc.
  • Hiring experts to analyze the physical and financial effects your injury will have on you in the future
  • Calculating what you are due as compensation for your losses
  • Keeping creditors off your back by advising them of your pending legal claim
  • Referring you to appropriate specialized medical care, if needed
  • Finding someone who knows bicycles like yours to assess the damage and what’s required to repair or replace it

Do not rely on an insurance company to look out for you after a bicycle accident. The attorneys at Schiller & Hamilton will have your back. We do not charge legal fees unless and until we have recovered compensation for you. Schedule a free consultation with one of our bike accident attorneys today.

What Are the Common Causes of Bike Accidents?

Motorists are often quick to blame the bicyclist after an accident. However, our lawyers have investigated bicycle accidents across Rock Hill for more than two decades. We know how cyclists are injured in collisions. Most often, bicyclists are simply run down by negligent motorists who have failed to look for a bicyclist in traffic and:

  • Violated right of way
  • Failed to yield
  • Ran a red light or stop sign
  • Sideswiped the bike
  • Opened a door into the path of an oncoming cyclist

Other common causes of bike accidents include:

  • Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • Distracted driving, like texting and driving
  • Driving aggressively
  • Speeding
  • Driving in a designated bike lane
  • Not providing adequate passing distance when overtaking a bicycle
  • Hazards on the road, bike lane, or trail

Unfortunately, bicyclists are often the victims of hit-and-run drivers who realize they have caused a serious accident but want to avoid blame. Even if the driver who hit you has not been caught yet, consult with an attorney about your legal rights.

Common Types of Injuries

Bicycle accidents cause injuries in the initial impact of the crash and the secondary impact as the cyclist is thrown to the ground. We often see catastrophic injuries such as:

  • Fractures of arms, legs, the pelvis, hands, feet, the jaw, facial bones, and teeth
  • Head injuries, including concussions and more serious traumatic brain injury (TBI), even if the rider wore a helmet
  • Back and spine injuries, which can cause paralysis (paraplegia or tetraplegia) if the spinal cord is severed or torn
  • Chest and abdominal injuries, like fractured ribs or ruptured organs, such as the heart, lungs, liver, and bowels
  • Cuts, contusions, abrasions, and occasional “degloving” injuries, in which an extensive section of skin is completely torn from underlying tissue because a bicyclist was dragged by the motor vehicle
  • Road rash

In addition to emergency medical care, the victim of a serious bicycle accident is likely to require hospitalization, surgery, and rehabilitation over a long recovery period. Unfortunately, many bicycle accident injuries are fatal or leave the cyclist permanently disabled. We work with families to pursue personal injury claims or wrongful death claims in catastrophic cases.

You May Have a Limited Time to Seek Compensation for a Bicycle Accident

If you’ve been injured in a bike accident, you have three years from the date of your accident to file a personal injury lawsuit (S.C. Ann. §15-3-530). If you lost a child, spouse, or parent in a bicycle accident, you may be eligible to file a wrongful death lawsuit (S.C. Code § 15-51-20). You also have three years to file this lawsuit and recover compensation.

Failing to file a lawsuit by the deadline can jeopardize your ability to seek compensation and hold negligent parties accountable. A bicycle accident lawyer from our firm can apply the statute of limitations to your case to determine how much time you have to file.

Bike Laws in South Carolina

Know your rights as a bicyclist in Rock Hill and other South Carolina towns. The South Carolina Department of Transportation (SCDOT) has laws to help keep you safe while sharing the road with motorists.

  • A bike is not considered a vehicle in South Carolina, but you still have the same rights and responsibilities as motorists.
  • Motorists are not allowed to use bike lanes unless they are making legal turns. They’re also not allowed to block bike lanes and must yield to bike traffic when entering a bike lane to merge or make a turn (S.C. Ann. §56-5-3425).
  • Bicyclists must ride as far to the right-hand side of the road or bike lane as possible (S.C. Ann. §56-5-3430).
  • Motorists must always maintain a safe distance from a bicycle, especially when passing (S.C. Ann. §56-5-3435).
  • It is illegal for anyone to “harass, taunt, or maliciously throw” objects at or toward a bicyclist (S.C. Ann. §56-5-3445).
  • Bicyclists must use clear, universal signals to indicate turns (S.C. Ann. §56-5-3480).

While South Carolina does not require bicyclists of any age to wear a helmet, this safety equipment can help protect riders from concussions and brain injuries during an accident.

Frequently Asked Questions About Bike Accidents

We’re happy to answer specific questions about your case during your free case review. In the meantime, we can answer some general questions you may have about bicycle accidents.

Who Can I Sue for My Bike Accident?

Depending on how and where your accident occurred, we may be able to hold the following parties accountable for your bike accident injuries:

  • A motorist
  • Another bicyclist
  • A pedestrian
  • A private company
  • A public municipal agency

How Much Is My Bike Accident Case Worth?

We can’t give you an accurate estimate of how much compensation you may be entitled to until we’re able to review your case ourselves. Plus, no two bike accidents are the same. Some of the factors that can impact how much compensation you may be able to recover include:

  • Your age at the time of the accident
  • The severity of your injuries
  • How your injuries have impacted our life
  • The amount of damages you have
  • How many liable parties are involved in your accident

Can I Still Seek Compensation If I Contributed to the Accident?

Yes, you can still seek compensation if you are found partially at fault for your bicycle accident. That’s because South Carolina follows the rule of comparative negligence. This law allows accident victims who are found less than 50% at fault for their accident to recover partial compensation (S.C. Code § 15-38-15). 

The other party and their insurance company may try to blame you for the accident. We can investigate the true cause of your accident, determine whether you contributed, and apply comparative negligence to your case, as necessary, to understand how much compensation you may be able to recover.

What If I’ve Been in a Hit-and-Run Accident?

We know that a hit-and-run accident can be scary and confusing, especially if you’re on a bike when it happens. We can explore legal options for seeking compensation through an uninsured or underinsured motorist (UM/UIM) policy if you have one. If the driver is caught, we can also pursue compensation through their auto insurance policy, too.

Get Help From a Rock Hill Bicycle Injury Attorney

If you have suffered injuries in a bicycle accident, talk to a skilled injury attorney as soon as possible about your legal rights. Our Rock Hill bicycle accident lawyers can begin investigating your accident immediately while the evidence is still available and before South Carolina’s strict statute of limitations on personal injury claims becomes an issue.

Schedule a free, no-obligation legal consultation with one of our attorneys in Rock Hill today. We can meet with you at our law offices, in your home, or at the hospital—wherever is best for you. Contact us today for a prompt response.

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