Renton Bicycle Accident Lawyer
Washington Bicycle Accident Attorney Assisting Plaintiffs in Renton
Bicycle accidents happen much more often than they should in Renton, and in the Seattle area more generally. While many Renton residents enjoy riding bicycles for pleasure, exercise, and as a means of transportation, there are numerous motorists on the road who engage in careless and reckless behaviors. When a car strikes a bicyclist, the resulting injuries can be devastating.
If you or someone you love was injured in a collision with a motor vehicle, you should discuss your options with an aggressive Renton bicycle accident lawyer at the Khan Injury Law PLLC. An advocate at our firm can get started on your case as soon as you contact us.
Getting the Facts About Renton Bicycle Accidents
How often do bicycle accidents happen in Renton, WA, and what causes them? The following are some facts and figures on bicycle accidents from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center:
- 840 bicyclists suffered fatal injuries in accidents in 2016;
- Total number of bicycle accident fatalities has risen in recent years;
- Approximately 45,000 nonfatal bicycle accident injuries occurred in 2015;
- Bicycle accidents end up costing more than $4 billion each year in medical bills and lost wages;
- Average age of cyclists killed in accidents is 46;
- About 88 percent of bicyclists who sustain fatal injuries in collisions are male;
- More than 70 percent of all deadly bicycle crashes happen in urban areas;
- About 35 percent of all fatal bicycle collisions involve either a bicyclist or a driver with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 percent or higher;
- Approximately 30 percent of bicycle accidents happen because a bicyclist is struck by a car;
- Around 17 percent of all bicycle accident injuries occur because the bicyclist fell; and
- About 13 percent of bicycle accidents happen because of poor road conditions.
Common Injuries in Bicycle Accidents in Renton
At the Khan Injury Law PLLC, we regularly assist clients with cases involving many different types of bicycle accident injuries, including but not limited to:
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), including concussions;
- Back and neck injuries;
- Broken bones or fractures;
- Internal bleeding;
- Organ damage;
- Cuts and lacerations;
- Road rash;
- Scarring and disfigurement; and
- Emotional trauma.
We are Here to Help
Seeking Damages in a Renton Bicycle Accident
When you file a bicycle accident lawsuit in Renton, you can seek both economic and noneconomic damages. Both types of damages are known as compensatory damages under Washington law because they are both designed to compensate a victim for losses. Economic damages are intended to compensate a victim for “objectively verifiable monetary losses,” while noneconomic damages are intended to compensate a plaintiff for “subjective, non monetary losses” according to the statute.
Common examples of damages in a Renton bicycle accident claim include but are not limited to:
- Medical expenses;
- Lost wages;
- Property damage;
- Mental anguish;
- Disfigurement; and
- Emotional distress.
A bicycle accident lawyer in Renton can say more about filing a claim for compensation.
We Know How to Recover Damages
How Contributory Fault Can Impact a Renton Bicycle Accident Claim
We often work with clients who are concerned that they may be partially to blame for the accident, or who plaintiffs who want to know what happens if it turns out they are partially at fault for the bicycle accident. For example, can a plaintiff still obtain damages if she or he was not obeying all traffic rules when the accident happened even if a distracted driver was the primary cause of the accident? Or, for instance, can an injured bicyclist receive compensation by filing a lawsuit even if she waited too long to seek medical treatment after the accident, and her injuries worsened as a result?
The answers to these questions concern Washington law on contributory fault. The statute clarifies that, when a plaintiff files a personal injury lawsuit seeking damages, “any contributory fault chargeable to the claimant diminishes proportionately the amount awarded as compensatory damages for an injury attributable to the claimant’s contributory fault, but does not bar recovery.” What does that mean? In short, even if a plaintiff is partially to blame—whether the plaintiff is 1 percent or 99 percent at fault—that plaintiff is still eligible to receive damages. However, the total damages the plaintiff receives will be reduced by her own percentage of fault.
How does this work in practice? Take one of the examples we gave above in which a bicyclist was not obeying the rules of the road at the time of the collision or waited too long to seek medical attention. Imagine that bicyclist files a personal injury lawsuit seeking compensation from the negligent driver who caused the crash. The court determines that the bicyclist is 50 percent responsible. If the court initially awards $500,000, that amount will be reduced by the bicyclist’s own contributory fault (50 percent of $500,000, or $250,000). Accordingly, the bicyclist will receive $250,000.
How Much Time Do I Have to File a Renton Bicycle Accident Lawsuit?
Every type of personal injury case has a statute of limitations, which outlines the amount of time from the date of the injury that a claimant has to file a lawsuit. Under Washington law, the statute of limitations for most personal injury claims is three years. To clarify, anyone who is injured in a bicycle accident usually will have three years from the date of the accident and injuries to file a lawsuit. If the injured bicyclist fails to file a claim within that three-year window, the law can bar that person from bringing a lawsuit to seek compensation.
Contact a Renton Bicycle Accident Attorney As Soon As Possible
Were you injured in a bicycle accident involving a negligent motorist? Was your spouse or child injured in a collision with a distracted or drunk driver? Bicyclists should not have to suffer the consequences of a negligent motorist’s behavior. By speaking with a Renton bicycle accident attorney, you can learn more about your options for filing a claim for compensation. Contact the Khan Injury Law PLLC for more information about the services we provide to clients throughout the Seattle region.