Have you been seriously injured in a bicycle crash? The other driver’s insurance company is probably calling you, hoping they can settle your case quickly and cheaply. Before you decide to settle, here’s what you need to know:
Your Job is to Be a Good Patient
Your primary job after your bike crash is to be a good patient. One of the best ways to prove your case is through medical records. Attending doctor appointments and physical therapy appointments will show that you are committed to getting better.
You need to treat your injuries however your doctor says is best. This can involve rest, physical therapy, or both. It may also involve surgeries or seeing any specialists the doctor requires. You need to follow your doctor’s instructions.
Don’t Settle Your Iowa Bike Crash Case Until You’re Healed
One thing that’s important to remember is that you don’t settle your claim until you’re completely healed, or as healed as your doctor says you will get. This may take months or even years. Be aware that if you settle your claim before you are completely healed, you will not receive any more money from the insurance company. Settlement can only happen once. That means any medical bills or other expenses that are still coming in will need to be paid out of your own pocket.
Because you only have a certain amount of time to get compensation for your injuries, you may need to file a lawsuit. This time limit is known as the statute of limitations, and in Iowa it is generally two years from the date of the accident. If the statute is coming up on your claim and you are not completely healed, filing a lawsuit will “stop the clock” and let you recover on your own time without losing your right to compensation.
Damages You Could Claim After an Iowa Bicycle Accident
There are a variety of damages you could get compensation for after your bike accident. These could include:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Loss of income if you weren’t able to work while recovering from your injuries
- Loss of future earning capacity if you aren’t able to do the job you did before the crash
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of function
Hire a Bicycle Crash Lawyer Before You Settle Your Case
If you were seriously injured in a bike crash, we recommend hiring an experienced Iowa bicycle accident lawyer. Trying to negotiate with the insurance company on your own after a life-changing injury is not a good idea. The insurance company is not likely to take you seriously and may offer you a lowball settlement. They could also try to get you to admit fault or change your story so they don’t have to pay you at all. An experienced attorney knows the insurance company’s tricks and will protect your rights.
It’s also important that you hire an attorney who has litigated bike crash claims in the past. Bike crashes are different than “regular” car accident claims – so you need a personal injury attorney who has experience with bicycle accident cases to get you fair compensation for your injuries.
If you would like more information about Iowa bike crash cases, download a free copy of the Law Guide to Iowa Bicycle Accident Claims today.