Were you injured on a bike and have questions about whether you can recover compensation if you were partially at fault for a bike accident? Read this article to learn more.
Can I be partially at fault for a bike accident and still receive compensation?
Occasionally, I’m asked, “If I’m partially at fault as a bicycle operator in a collision, do I still have a valid cause of action for injuries from that collision?” The simple answer in Virginia is, no. The reason is because Virginia is one of only four states in the United States that has the doctrine of contributory negligence as a complete bar to any recovery from your injury claim. In those cases where you’re partly at fault, there is no basis for recovering under Virginia law.
Here are the most common reasons why a bike accident happens:
Bicycle accidents generally happen because drivers aren’t devoting their full attention to the road. However, you should also know that bicyclists are held to the same standard as drivers. The most common reasons bicycle accidents occur are:
- A car makes a left turn into the path of a bicyclist who is going straight while the bicyclist has the right of way. This is the most common cause of bicycle accidents.
- A car makes a right turn into the path of a bicyclist who is going straight while the bicyclist has the right of way. Many drivers don’t think that bicyclists ever have the right of way or that bicyclists must always yield for vehicles on the road.
- A bicyclist collides with the door of a vehicle. This happens when the occupant of a vehicle opens their door directly in front of a bicyclist.
- A bicyclist is hit when a vehicle backs out of a driveway. In this instance, drivers are generally not paying enough attention to the road.
- A bicyclist is hit from behind by a vehicle. These don’t happen as often as the accidents listed above, but they often cause permanent injury or death.
Negligence means that someone is responsible for hurting another person. There is a duty of care that was violated. That violation caused the actual injury. Of course, that’s summarizing what can be a very complex process. Virginia is a state that relies on contributory negligence. This means that, despite the fact that you’re a victim, if you’re found 1% or more at fault for the bicycle accident, you will not be able to recover any financial compensation. To learn more about negligence, schedule your free consultation with our Virginia bicycle accident lawyer. We’ll be happy to discuss the specifics of your potential case with you.
Were you or a loved one involved in a serious wreck and have questions about being partially at fault for a bike accident? Contact a Virginia bicycle accident lawyer at The Strong Law Firm today for a free confidential consultation and case evaluation. Let our experience work for you.