Bicycle Accident Attorneys in Morristown, New Jersey
Bicycle accidents are an unfortunate and serious part of life in New Jersey. By mid-December of 2021, 22 cyclists were killed that year on New Jersey roads. That’s 22 families who suffered devastating losses. Families of injured or deceased cyclists have the right to seek justice and fair compensation for these unfortunate events.
At The Law Offices of Gold, Albanese & Barletti, LLC, we know what it takes to help our clients obtain the compensation they deserve. We take the time to study every case carefully, leaving nothing to chance. Our decades of experience help clients across the Morristown, New Jersey, area who need personal injury and wrongful death legal counsel. We also put in the hours to help our clients throughout New Jersey, New York, and Boston, Massachusetts.
What to Do After a Bicycle Accident
A bicycle accident is no minor mishap. It is crucial to take it seriously. Take the following steps immediately after a bicycle accident:
Get Medical Attention
Seek medical attention immediately, even if injuries aren’t immediately visible. Some injuries, such as whiplash or a concussion, may become apparent later. Call 911 to get medical attention at the emergency room in case of serious injuries.
Call the Police
Even when an accident seems minor, bicycle accident victims should call the police to report the incident. The police will create a report that will be important for insurance and legal purposes.
Exchange information with the other parties involved, including their name, phone number, insurance information, and driver’s license number. If there were any witnesses, get their contact information as well.
Document the Scene
Take photos of the accident scene, including any bicycle damage and injuries sustained. Write down what happened as soon as possible to avoid forgetting important details later.
Contact insurance as soon as possible to report the accident. The insurance company will likely ask for a copy of the police report and any other relevant documentation, such as photos or videos.
Consult With a Personal Injury Attorney
A good rule of thumb is to consult with a professional personal injury attorney. Speaking with one will help you determine your options, one of which might be pursuing a personal injury lawsuit. Additionally, an attorney can help victims navigate the personal injury claims process, including negotiating with the insurance company.
New Jersey Laws Affecting Bicycle Riders
New Jersey has specific laws that affect bicycle riders. It’s important to be aware of these laws to stay safe and avoid legal issues. The following are the most important laws affecting bicycle riders in New Jersey:
In New Jersey, all bicycle riders under the age of 17 are required to wear a helmet. Failure to do so can result in a fine.
Rules of the Road
Bicyclists must obey the same traffic laws as motorists. This rule includes stopping at stop signs and red lights, yielding to pedestrians, using hand signals to indicate turns, and riding with traffic flow.
Lights and Reflectors
Bicycles must have a white headlight visible from at least 500 feet away and a red taillight at least 500 feet away when riding at night.
Bicyclists are required to use bike lanes when they are available. They should ride as far to the right as possible if there is no bike lane.
Bicyclists can be charged with DUI in New Jersey if caught riding while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
New Jersey has specific laws regarding electric bicycles. Electric bikes with a motor of 750 watts or less are considered “pedal-assist” bicycles and can be ridden on bike paths and bike lanes. Electric bikes with a motor that is more than 750 watts are considered mopeds and must be registered and insured.
Rules for Motor Vehicles
As for motor vehicles, the following rules apply to them concerning bicyclists:
When passing a bicyclist, a motor vehicle must leave at least three feet of space between the vehicle and the bicycle. If it is unsafe to pass with that distance, the vehicle must wait until it is safe.
Bicyclists have the same right-of-way as other vehicles on the road. Cars must yield to bicyclists when they have the right of way.
When turning right, a driver must yield to any bicyclist traveling straight through the intersection. When turning left, a driver must yield to any bicyclist approaching from the opposite direction.
A driver must not open a door on the side of a vehicle facing traffic unless it is reasonably safe to do so and does not interfere with the movement of other vehicles, including bicycles.
Drivers are not allowed to honk at bicyclists unless it is necessary to warn them of the driver’s presence.
Drivers must follow posted speed limits and adjust their speed according to road and weather conditions, including the presence of bicyclists.
Filing a Claim in New Jersey
In a no-fault state like New Jersey, injured parties usually turn to their insurance companies to cover medical expenses, regardless of who was at fault for the accident. However, this rule has some exceptions, particularly in cases of serious injuries or when the injured person’s medical bills exceed a certain threshold.
Injured parties wishing to pursue a personal injury claim against another party may be subject to New Jersey’s comparative fault rule. This rule means that compensation may be reduced by the party’s percentage of fault for causing the accident. For example, if the injured party was determined to be 10% liable for the accident, their compensation could be reduced by 10%.
It’s also important to note that New Jersey has a statute of limitations for personal injury claims. This situation means there is a specific time limit within which victims must file their claim in court to seek compensation for injuries. In New Jersey, the statute of limitations for personal injury claims is generally two years from the accident date.
If a loved one has passed away due to an accident caused by another party’s negligence or wrongdoing, family members may be able to pursue a wrongful death claim in New Jersey. It’s important to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney when filing a wrongful death claim, as the process can be complex and time-sensitive.
Bicycle Accident Attorneys Serving Morristown, New Jersey
At The Law Offices of Gold, Albanese & Barletti, LLC, we work hard to protect our clients’ rights to fair financial compensation. We collaborate with our clients to find the best solutions for their needs. Call today to speak with an experienced bicycle accident attorney who has your best interests in mind. Don’t delay.