New Jersey Bicycle Accident Lawyers
This is What We Do: We have 25 years of experience handling personal injury claims. We’re here to answer your questions and help in any way we can.
Let Us Deal With Your Claim: You have more important things to worry about. We’ll deal with the insurance company so that you can focus on getting better.
When a bicycle accident turns your life upside down, we can help you get your life back
A Bicycle Accident Story
A sudden impact that threw him from the bike. A few surreal seconds of being airborne – just long enough to flip in midair. Then a devastating crash landing.
Sound familiar? That’s what a client of ours – like you, a bike accident victim in New Jersey – remembers just before fracturing his skull. In some of the bicycle accident cases we’ve handled, victims remembered nothing of the collision. In others, they remembered every terrifying second.
No matter what you remember or how your bike accident happened, you have the right to hold accountable anyone whose reckless behavior caused your accident.
And who better to handle your case than a law firm with plenty of experience pursuing bicycle accident claims and a record of success?
At Console & Associates P.C., we get results.
What to Do After a Bicycle Accident
There’s only so much you can do to prevent an accident from happening.
As a responsible cyclist, you know bicycle safety. You know the importance of maintaining your bike in safe condition, using lamps and reflectors at night, wearing a helmet (especially for minors), and riding in the correct place and direction – as far to the right of the road as possible, in the same direction as traffic.
But even when you follow all of the safety procedures and traffic laws, you’re still at the mercy of the vehicles around you – and their often careless operators.
Our New Jersey bicycle accident lawyers can do a lot to help you after your injury – but we know that in the immediate aftermath of a crash, you’re probably not thinking about your legal rights. You’re panicked. You’re in pain. And you don’t know what to do next.
Here are the most important things you need to do after being hurt in a bicycle accident:
1. Call the police.
Don’t be afraid to get the authorities involved. Even if you don’t want to get the driver in trouble, you need to document what happened with a bicycle accident police report.
Otherwise, if you need medical care or end up missing time at work because of your injuries, you won’t be able to get the compensation you deserve.
2. See a doctor.
Many bicycle accident victims don’t have a choice. Without the protection of safety features like airbags, seat belts, and thousands of pounds of metal surrounding them, cyclists suffer much worse injuries upon impact than they would if they, too, were in a vehicle. Getting the right bike accident first aid care is essential. If necessary, go to the emergency room to get immediate treatment for your most serious injuries.
Even if you have no obvious injuries that require urgent attention, get medical care as soon as possible. Your health is too important to risk.
3. Gather evidence and information.
If you’re too badly hurt, don’t risk your health and safety further by trying to flag down witnesses.
But if you can do so without making the situation worse, gather whatever fresh evidence you can – witness statements, photographs, and of course, the insurance information of the driver who hit you.
4. Talk to a New Jersey bike accident lawyer.
Your legal rights are almost as important as your health. After all, pursuing a claim can often mean the difference between affording first-rate medical care and having to forgo the treatment you need to get better.
Look for a NJ bicycle accident attorney to handle your claim as soon as possible.
Bicycle Accident Statistics
You might be shocked how many people get hurt in a bicycle accident like yours.
- Bicycle accidents sent 494,000 Americans to the emergency room in 2013, the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention.
- Though bicycle accident fatalities have decreased since the 1990s, they still claim more than 700 lives per year, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
- Despite an overall decrease in motor vehicle deaths, bicycle accident deaths went from making up 1.7 percent of all roadway fatalities in 2004 to 2.3 percent of all motor vehicle deaths in 2013.
- All told, bicycle accidents – and the injuries and deaths they cause – cost the United States more than $4,000,000,000 every year, the National Safety Council Even a single non-incapacitating bicycle injury can cost, on average, more than $58,700, according to the Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center.
Unfortunately, a lack of protective bicycle accident laws can put NJ cyclists at a greater than average risk.
Unlike dozens of other states, New Jersey doesn’t require drivers to give cyclists a four-foot berth while passing. Or even a three-foot distance.
In fact, NJ state laws mandate no safe passing distance when drivers overtake cyclists, Asbury Park Press reported. No wonder so many bike crashes happen here in the Garden State.
Bicycle Accident Causes
When you’ve done everything right, it’s beyond frustrating to realize that this injury didn’t have to happen. You’re only hurt because a driver broke traffic safety laws, and you happened to be the one in their path.
Knowing how serious the consequences are makes it difficult to understand the reasons behind bike accidents. Why would any driver, for any reason, take an action that could leave another person this badly hurt?
Sometimes the drivers who cause bike crashes are distracted or inattentive. They “don’t see” a cyclist, often because their eyes are on something other than the roadway around them – a smartphone, a GPS, the radio, the mirror, a passenger.
Other times, drivers are aggressive. They see the bicycle, but they would rather put your life at risk driving faster and closer than they should than slow down and wait for an opportunity to pass you safely.
Bicycle Accident Injuries
The force of the collision, the direction of the impact, and any number of other factors can affect what injuries you suffer.
But one thing is common across the bicycle injury claims our NJ bike accident lawyers have handled. The injuries are very often severe.
Common Bike Accident Injuries
Among the most common injuries suffered in bicycle accidents are:
- Head or brain injuries
- Broken bones, especially legs and arms
- Neck and back injuries, from painful herniated discs to devastating spinal cord injuries
- Internal injuries
- Cuts and lacerations
- Injuries to the knees, elbows, and joints
Bike Accident Recovery
Getting better after a bicycle accident is no easy task. Depending on your injuries, you could spend weeks or even months hospitalized.
Rehabilitation can require months of physical, occupational, speech-language, and other types of therapy. Perhaps you will need to relearn how to walk, or become adept at using mobility devices like canes. You may need to strengthen muscles that were injured by the accident and the lack of use that occurred during the most critical moments of your injury.
You might spend time in an in-patient facility, if you can’t care for yourself at home yet. Even once you go home, you may need ongoing physical therapy to increase your range of motion, decrease your pain, and work toward recovery.
The journey to recovery is hard work. You can’t afford to let anything – medical bills, insurance adjusters, being out of work, anything – distract you from your goals.
That’s why our bicycle accident lawyers in New Jersey step in to handle every aspect of our clients’ legal claims. We make sure you can focus fully on getting better, because that’s what matters most right now.
Bicycle Accident Insurance Claims
One thing that makes bicycle accidents so confusing is not knowing where the coverage for a claim comes from. Bike injury insurance coverage can be complicated, but it doesn’t have to be – not when you have our bicycle accident lawyers in NJ to guide you through it.
No-Fault Auto Insurance and Bicycle Accidents
Does the person who hit you have car insurance? Do you have an auto insurance policy of your own, or does another household member who is related to you? If so, what options did you or the policyholder choose?
As crazy as it may sound, these factors can have a huge impact on your claim. They determine:
- Who pays for your medical bills
- How much money is available to you
- Whether you have the right to sue at all for things like pain and suffering
That’s because New Jersey is a no-fault state when it comes to auto insurance coverage. Regardless of who caused the crash, every person injured in an accident that involves a motor vehicle must go through his or her own auto insurance policy to pay the bills. Yes, even if you weren’t even in a car at the time of the collision.
If You Have Auto Insurance
You should be covered by an auto insurance policy if:
- You own and insure a car yourself, or
- A relative who lives in your household owns and insures a car.
The good news is that this policy covers your medical expenses. You don’t have to shoulder the full responsibility of paying tens, even hundreds of thousands of dollars in medical bills yourself.
The bad news is that there are limits.
Your Out-of-Pocket Costs
For one thing, some of the medical costs are your responsibility. Depending on what deductible you – or the policyholder, if someone else’s policy – chose, you could owe thousands of dollars.
In addition to a $250 to $2,500 deductible, you’re on the hook for copays of 20 percent, at least up to the first $5,000. These costs can add up quickly.
PIP Coverage Limits
The total amount of personal injury protection (PIP) coverage is limited, too.
In New Jersey, drivers can buy just $15,000 in PIP coverage.
If you (or the policyholder) skimped on PIP coverage to cut premium costs, it won’t take much to exhaust these benefits.
Limitations on Lawsuits
NJ auto insurance policies make the policyholder choose a “limitation on lawsuit” option. If the auto insurance policy that covers you happens to be subject to the “verbal threshold,” you could have a hard time getting the money you truly deserve.
Choosing verbal threshold means you can’t sue for pain and suffering unless your injuries meet very specific, and somewhat arbitrary, requirements. You might have serious injuries, but not the right kind of injuries to pursue a claim for pain and suffering.
What If You’re Not Covered by an Auto Insurance Policy?
If neither you nor any family member who lives with you happens to own a vehicle, you might not have an auto insurance company to pay your medical bills. That can make the situation harder.
Don’t wait to get medical care, no matter what. If you’re worried about how you will pay for your medical bills, give our NJ bicycle accident lawyers a call right away. We will review your unique situation and help you figure out who will pay the bills so that nothing stands between you and the treatment you need.
Whether or not you’re covered by an auto insurance policy, you shouldn’t have to investigate the different insurance coverages at play. You shouldn’t have to figure out what exceptions could affect your claim.
Leave that to our New Jersey bicycle accident lawyers. You should focus on what really matters: getting better.
What If the Driver Left the Scene?
It’s alarming how many bike accidents are also hit-and-runs. You’d think that after striking an unprotected cyclist with a two-ton vehicle, a driver would at least have the sense – and the compassion – to stop and help the victim.
But we’ve seen even victims with life-threatening injuries – some of them children – left callously on the side of the road.
Sometimes the perpetrators of hit-and-run bicycle accidents flee the scene only to later feel bad enough to turn themselves in.
Other times, they try to cover up the crime. It takes a thorough police investigation or an accident reconstruction specialist to discover the truth.
Even if the driver who hit you fled the scene, don’t lose hope. Our New Jersey bicycle accident lawyers have handled cases like this before.
If at all possible, we’ll try to find and hold accountable the driver who hit you.
If not, we’ll search meticulously for any other coverage available to you, like uninsured motorist coverage through your own or a family member’s auto insurance policy. You deserve someone on your side who won’t give up until they have exhausted every possible avenue.
Types of Bicycle Accidents
No two bike accident stories are alike. But most of the cases our bicycle accident attorneys in New Jersey have seen fall into the category of collisions with motor vehicles. These include:
- Bicycle accidents with cars
- Bike accidents with trucks
- Bicycle accidents with buses
- Bike accidents with motorcycles
Bicycle Premises Liability Claims
Of course, not every bicycle accident involves a motor vehicle. Our firm has seen negligent property owners cause devastating injuries to unsuspecting cyclists.
In one case, a cyclist riding in a Willingboro, NJ, parking lot encountered a two-foot-deep hole, covered by water that hid it from sight. He was thrown from his bike. When he hit the ground, his shoulders and spine suffered irreparable damage.
If your bicycle accident involved a dangerous property instead of a reckless driver, don’t make the mistake of believing that there’s no one to hold responsible. Sure, cases like these – called premises liability claims – might be more complicated than a typical crash between a bike and car. But you still have legal rights, including the right to pursue a claim to get the money you deserve. You just need a lawyer willing to go the extra mile.
We helped this Willingboro bicycle accident victim hold the property owner accountable, and we can help you, too.
If your bicycle accident involved a dangerous property instead of a reckless driver, don’t make the mistake of believing that there’s no one to hold responsible. Sure, cases like these – called premises liability claims – might be more complicated than a typical crash between a bike and car . But you still have legal rights, including the right to pursue a claim to get the money you deserve. You just need a lawyer willing to go the extra mile.
Bicycle Accident Lawsuits
What can you expect when you pursue a bicycle accident lawsuit?
First of all, we’ll investigate your accident. We’ll take a look at your bike accident report. If necessary, we will call upon forensic engineers and other bicycle accident reconstruction specialists to serve as expert witnesses. We can get to the bottom of how your accident occurred, even if you can’t remember it clearly.
Our bike accident lawyers in NJ will find out exactly what insurance coverage applies to you. If your accident was a hit and run, we’ll look for any uninsured motorist coverage that could be available.
We want to get you maximum compensation for your injuries. That means we’ll have to explore every possible source of insurance coverage.
Throughout your case, we’ll handle everything:
- Getting your medical bills paid
- Gathering and organizing evidence
- Building your case
- Interacting with the insurers
- Demanding the money you deserve
- Negotiating a bicycle accident settlement that fully compensates you
- Preparing your case for court, if that’s what we have to do
Console & Associates P.C. has experience handling bike accidents from Gloucester to Burlington, from Medford, NJ, to Willingboro, and across the state. Whether your crash occurred in the northern or southern region of the state, our New Jersey personal injury attorneys are ready to fight for you.
Why Choose Console & Associates P.C. for Your Bicycle Accident Claim?
At Console & Associates P.C., your bicycle accident isn’t just a case number. It’s personal.
We take bicycle accidents seriously. After all, our founder and managing partner, Richard P. Console, Jr., is himself an avid cyclist.
He rides his bicycle around his own South Jersey home on a daily basis, so he sees the safety risks cyclists face even in their own neighborhoods. As a lawyer, he has seen just how much destruction collisions between cars and bicycles cause. That’s why he has helped severely injured cyclists get the compensation they deserve.
Think you have to sacrifice experience and results to get that personal attention? You don’t.
Call Console & Associates P.C. today at (856) 778-5500 for your free consultation.