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What happens after a cyclist gets hit by a vehicle?

On Behalf of | Apr 2, 2023 | Personal Injury

Cyclists have to share the Kentucky roads with motor vehicles, which makes biking a riskier undertaking than one might prefer. Even when someone is perfectly competent on a bicycle, they could end up severely hurt if they cross paths with a driver who is distracted at the wheel or who is under the influence of alcohol.

Cyclists often wear special gear, including helmets and brightly-colored clothing, to help them avoid a crash caused by a motor vehicle. Unfortunately, such collisions do still occur, often resulting in severe injuries for the cyclist. What happens when a cyclist gets hit by a motor vehicle in Kentucky?

They can often file an insurance claim

Maintaining liability insurance is one of the basic requirements for drivers in Kentucky. The state requires that every driver carry at least $25,000 in property damage coverage. A policy should also provide $25,000 of bodily injury coverage when someone gets hurt and up to $50,000 per collision in case multiple people get hurt at one time.

For a cyclist suffering major injuries after a crash, $25,000 could be far less than the cost of their medical care. That same amount of insurance also has to theoretically cover their lost wages and other injury-related expenses. The good news is that if someone carries underinsured or uninsured motorist protection, their policy could also help after a crash.

Cyclists may need to go to court

When the total costs of a crash are over what someone’s insurance can pay, going to court might be the best option available. In theory, a judge can award compensation to a cyclist injured by the negligence or misconduct of a driver who caused a crash. Unlike insurance, which is subject to specific policy limits, personal injury lawsuits can more fully compensate someone severely injured in a wreck.

Of course, even negotiating an insurance claim can be a challenge, to say nothing of building a case in civil court. Most cyclists struggle to handle the fallout of a crash on their own. Speaking with a legal professional after a bicycle-car crash can help cyclists to prepare to respond effectively under challenging circumstances.