Who Is at Fault If a Biker Is Hit by a Car in NYC?
New York City is a very busy place. Many New Yorkers take public transportation, walk, or use bikes to get around the city. Bikers often find themselves riding alongside cars on the road, and accidents with bikers have been known to happen.
When a biker is hit by a car, it might be difficult to tell who is at fault. You can often determine who is to blame by looking at how the accident happened. Signs that the driver in the car was being reckless or inattentive may help prove that they are the ones at fault.
If you were riding your bike when you were hit by a car, you can often hold the driver liable for your injuries. Talk to our NYC bike accident attorneys for help with your case. Call us at The Carrion Law Firm at (718) 841-0083 for a free case review.
How Is Fault Determined When a Biker Is Hit by a Car in NYC?
Fault in a bike accident is determined using evidence. Exactly what kind of evidence you need depends on how your accident occurred. If you are not sure how your accident happened and need help proving the driver in your case is at fault, call our NYC personal injury lawyers for assistance.
A good place to begin is to figure out if anyone broke any laws. Cars and bikes must both adhere to traffic laws, and a violation of the law could cause an accident. For example, bikers must signal turns as drivers would, and drivers must yield to bikers when necessary.
If you believe the other person in your case broke the law, thus causing your accident, you need evidence to back up your allegations. Eyewitnesses, photos, or videos recordings of the accident scene may be crucial to proving fault.
Proving fault for insurance might be a bit different than proving fault in a courtroom. Insurance providers are not bound by evidentiary standards and may accept evidence that a court would not. Additionally, insurance companies tend to follow their own rules and might deny your claims for reasons you might believe are unfair. A bike accident attorney can fight these kinds of insurance denials in court.
Who Broke the Law in an Accident Between a Biker and a Car in NYC?
Traffic laws are often designed to prevent accidents. If traffic laws are broken, accidents become more likely. If the defendant in your case broke traffic laws, they might be at fault for the accident. However, simply having proof that a traffic violation occurred is not always definitive proof of fault. Our Brooklyn bicycle accident attorneys can help you use this evidence to support your claims.
Determining who had the right of way in your case may help determine who is at fault for the collision. For example, at some intersections, drivers must yield to people crossing the street, including bikers. At other places, bikes and pedestrians must yield to traffic before crossing. If you had the right of way, your defendant might be at fault for the accident.
Other traffic violations might also be indicative of fault. For example, if the defendant in your case ran a red light, ran a stop sign, made an illegal turn, or failed to use a turn signal before crashing into you, they might be at fault.
Evidence You Can Use to Prove Fault After a Biker Is Hit by a Car in NYC
It is not enough to allege that the defendant is responsible for your accident and injuries; you must also have evidence. Evidence may be a mix of physical and testimonial evidence. While no single piece of evidence will be 100% definitive, stronger evidence will be better for your case.
A police report may be very useful. Police reports contain a plethora of information about the accident. Some reports even include the likely cause of the accident if the officers at the scene have enough information to make such a determination. However, accident reports cannot usually be introduced as evidence in a lawsuit. Instead, they will be used to lead you to other useful information, like the names of possible witnesses. Insurance companies might also require a police report.
Immediately after an accident involving a biker, you should take as many photos as you can of the accident scene. You should also record videos of the crash site and surrounding area. Photos and videos help preserve the scene as it was at the time of the collision and can shed light on how an accident happened or who is at fault.
Even without a police report or physical evidence, we may still rely on eyewitness testimony. People who saw your accident may be called upon to tell their stories. If multiple witnesses provide testimony backing up your claims, we might convince a court that the defendant is at fault and should be held liable for the accident.
Filing Insurance Claims Against the Right Parties in a NYC Bike Accident Case
New York is a no-fault state for insurance claims for auto accidents. As such, people usually must turn to their own insurance for coverage after an accident and do not need to prove who was at fault. When car accidents involve bikers, things might get trickier. Our Queens bicycle accident attorneys can help you figure out the insurance claims process.
The biggest problem in these kinds of cases is knowing how to file an insurance claim. Bikers can file a claim with their own auto insurance if they have it, but many bikers in NYC do not have cars or auto insurance. In that case, a biker can file a claim with the driver’s insurance for coverage. However, that claim might not be enough to cover their injuries, and they may need to file a lawsuit.