Visitor Question

Is it too late to file a claim?

Submitted By: Charles (Fullerton, CA)

A man hit me while I was riding my Bicycle on Nov 13th 2014. I was checked by a paramedic, but due to the adrenaline I didn’t see fit to go to a hospital. I had sustained a minor injury to the spine and a minor injury to the upper right shoulder – noted in their report, but untreated.

I didn’t want to cry about it, but I recently received a claim report from this man’s insurance carrier insisting that I pay for the damage to his vehicle. He was by all means at fault, there’s no question as to that.

My questions are, What steps do I need to take in order to not pay for the “damages” to his vehicle? Would I be entitled to some sort of reimbursement based on my previous injuries related to the accident? Thank you.

Disclaimer: Our response is not formal legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. It is generic legal information based on the very limited information provided. Do not rely upon the information in our response, or anywhere else on this site, when deciding the proper course of a legal matter. Always get a personalized case review from a local attorney.

Answer

Dear Charles,

Your first action is to obtain a copy of the paramedic report. There may be important information in it about the circumstances surrounding the accident, including witness statements, angle of crash, position of your bike and that of the car, and whether or not you were in the designated bicycle lane when struck.

Next, take a look at your homeowners insurance policy (if you have one). Often, accidents occurring away from home are covered. If you have homeowners insurance, contact them and let them know what happened. There’s a chance you’ll be covered and they may intercede on your behalf and fight the claim for you.

If you are uninsured, you’re in a precarious position. You can refuse to pay the claim, but you may be sued. You can retain an attorney to represent your interests, but if the amount claimed by the driver is a few thousand dollars or less, the costs to retain an attorney may be in excess of the amount claimed.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from a licensed attorney. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here , or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Published: March 19, 2015

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