Claim Value and Duration

Value: There is no set formula for determining how much a claim is worth. Your claim has a value based upon many factors including:

  1. If liability is disputed,
  2. The amount of your medical bills,
  3. The type of injuries suffered and the lasting effect of those injuries/disabilities,
  4. The length of treatment,
  5. The amount of lost wages,
  6. The venue. (Juries in conservative counties award less than juries in more compassionate counties.),
  7. Aggravating factors (texting, DWI, aggressive driving, etc),
  8. The people involved (jury appeal of the parties), and
  9. The amount of insurance available.

Certainly the more severe the injuries, the greater the value of the claim, but with so many factors to consider, no attorney can tell you what your claim is worth a few days after it happens.  Even if damages are obviously large, the amount you may be able to collect might be only $30,000 (the minimum liability limits in Texas).

Duration: Assuming liability is not disputed, we resolve the property damage claim first, but even that can take a few weeks or longer. Insurers are sometimes confused by bike damage claims, and adjusters are often amazed that a bike is worth more than a few hundred dollars.

After resolving the property damage claim, your personal injury claim goes into hibernation while you are getting the medical care you need. That may be a few weeks, months or longer.

Once treatment is completed, we obtain all medical records and supporting documents, and send a settlement package to the driver’s insurance company. An offer is then usually made, and if it’s reasonable, a settlement can usually be negotiated with little delay.

If the offer is unreasonable, then a lawsuit is filed, which can sometimes resolve quickly, but can often take time. It has been my experience that claims involving cyclists tend to resolve sooner than other personal injury claims after medical treatment is completed.

In summary, a bike claim can take anywhere from a couple of months to a couple of years. It all depends upon a variety of factors, but mostly on the length of treatment and severity of the injuries.

How to Handle a Bicycle Accident Claim

Where do I file my arbitration statement of claim?

When looking to file arbitration statement of claim, one should head to small claims court in order to put in their documentation. Before doing so, you should consider the overall matter of the dispute, especially whether or not it is worth the time, effort, and potential expense required to effectively assert your claim in a timely manner. You should also take into consideration the chances of actually winning the lawsuit once your statement of claim has been filed in the correct manner.

Should you decide to pursue this lawsuit, your first step is to file a small claims action by obtaining and completing the necessary forms. Where possible, collect all possible information beforehand to ensure you are completely prepared for the inevitable questioning when the lawsuit does begin. Depending on the small claims court, the exact procedure may be different. It would be best to contact a lawyer in this regard.

How long after my accident do I have to make a claim?

When it comes to filing a claim following a serious accident while on the road or biking, there is almost zero downside in filing the claim as soon as possible if you have suffered any type of damage during the accident and may have trouble paying for any damages that were a direct result of the accident itself. That said, most insurance companies will not put any specific time limit on filing a claim after the accident has occurred. Most insurance policies will clearly state that a claim should be filed “promptly,” which can be interpreted in different ways by different people. It would not be an issue to wait a week or a month.

When it comes to a personal injury protection claim, however, there is generally a 2 to 3 year limit to file a claim as an injured party. Medical payments also have a similar limit of 3 years, so you should be aware of those limits when making any type of a claim.

Can I request attorney fees in my statement of claim?

When filing a statement of claim, many attorney fees are requested in the arbitration. During the whole process, arbitrators may consider rewarding attorney fees, though the procedure and the law vary depending on the state where you file. The arbitrator will consider each and every case where attorney fees have been requested by the filing party and then make a decision. It is quite common for those filing a claim to request their attorney fees in the whole process.

The cost of an attorney can be quite a large amount, depending on the situation. Following a serious accident, not everyone has the capabilities to repay the full amount for an attorney’s services, unfortunately. This is why attorney fees are often requested in a statement of claim. The potential to have these fees reimbursed is important to many individuals.