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Stressed About Making Your SF Bicycle Accident Claim?
Life in San Francisco is Best on a Bike!
Some of us ride a bike in San Francisco because it’s convenient, affordable, low-impact, or just for fun. Thousands of San Franciscans just like you ride their bikes to work or around the City all week and then over the Golden Gate Bridge on the weekends. The San Francisco bicycle accident lawyers at Sally Morin Law are here to help protect SF Bay cyclists like we've been doing for over 20 years.
If you’ve suffered serious injuries at the hands of a negligent or distracted driver in California, we can help you get the bike injury settlement you deserve so you can get back on two wheels.
If You're Seriously Hurt, You Need to Find the Best San Francisco Bicycle Accident Lawyer!
The expert San Francisco bicycle accident attorney team at Sally Morin Law knows that proving and presenting your claim to an insurance company or a judge in court in California can be challenging when you are dealing with your injuries. We’re here to help. If you’ve got major injuries from a bike accident that required an ambulance, ER treatment, hospitalization and/or surgery we can help you get the solid financial compensation you deserve.
If we take your case, you can get back to what matters most to you, while we provide you an efficient, low-stress resolution of your claim. We do all the legwork, communicate with the parties involved (like the police, medical facilities and the insurance adjusters), and we take care all of the paperwork. You just focus on recovering from your injuries and getting back to your your family, your work and your busy life.
If you've been in a serious bicycle accident and have suffered:
- broken bones
- injuries requiring surgery
- or, traumatic brain injury
Then speaking with a San Francisco bicycle accident lawyer at Sally Morin Law - or completing our FREE online case evaluation - is the first step on the road to recovery.
Bicycle Accidents Are Far too Common in San Francisco
San Francisco is the Worst City in California for Bicycle Accidents
According to the Office of Traffic Safety, San Francisco has more bicycle injuries and deaths than any other large city in California. Even though the City is making numerous improvements to our streets, we sadly still remain #1 for bike accidents.
The Four Most Dangerous Streets for Bicyclists in San Francisco
According to the San Francisco Mass Transit Authority over 70% of severe and fatal traffic accidents in San Francisco occur on just 12% of our city streets. Not coincidentally, many of those same areas are also the most dangerous streets for cyclists in San Francisco as well.
Historically Market Street is one of the most dangerous in the city for cyclists and pedestrians. Recent improvements of Market Street have tried to make things safer for cyclists and pedestrians. Improvements include safety pylons that separate the bike lane and raised bike lanes along certain stretches of Market making collisions less-likely.
Mission Street has become ground zero for a significant number of bicycle accidents in San Francisco. The SFMTA says that bicycle traffic along sections of Mission Street is up 75% in the last 10 years meaning there is a large amount of bicycle traffic in the City. This is obviously a good thing, but when you place more and more vehicles (even pedal-powered) in a stretch of road that wasn’t designed for such volume you’re inviting accidents.
The SFPD responds to dozens of bicycle accidents on Valencia Street each year. The street is so dangerous because, like Mission, it exudes a draw for cyclists in San Francisco. It's nice and flat, and ironically, due to the clearly demarcated bike lanes, it gives a false sense of security to folks riding bikes. Improvements have been made to Valencia Street, but it's still a hotbed of bicycle accident activity in San Francisco.
The main north-south throughway into the heart of the city, Polk Street has also seen a significantly increased volume of bicycle traffic, outpacing ridership increases (roughly 3% per year). It’s not surprising then that it is also the fourth most dangerous street for bicyclists in San Francisco. Although some great road improvements have been made to Polk, it's still such a congested area that bike accidents are still a normal part of the "action" on Polk Street.
The Three Most Dangerous Intersections in San Francisco
Many San Francisco bicycle accidents occur at intersections. Below are the most dangerous intersections in San Francisco.
- South Van Ness Avenue and Mission Street – a sprawling intersection with 17 lanes of traffic and 7 crosswalks.
- Potrero Avenue and 16th Street – Sitting at the periphery of the busy Mission District, 9 lanes of traffic converge here.
- Octavia Boulevard and Market Street – Octavia essentially becomes an on-ramp for the 101 freeway resulting in dozens of annual traffic accidents.
Three Most Common Causes of San Francisco Bicycle Accidents
According to San Francisco Police Department data, at least 60% of bicycle accidents in San Francisco are caused by motorists. The top three causes of SF bike crashes are:
- Speeding -- by either or both the motorist or the cyclist is responsible for 14% of all bike accidents and most bicycle fatalities in San Francisco.
- Illegal Turns -- whether right and left also cause 14% of San Francisco's bicycle accidents.
- Dooring -- is a very common cause of SF bicycle accident injuries, such as broken collarbones and wrist, hand and arm fractures.
As an experienced San Francisco bicycle accident law firm we see the results of these horrific crashes every day and know that getting victims the financial support they need is imperative. Check out some of the results we've received on San Francisco bicycle accident cases like these:
- $135,000 settlement for SF bike accident where motorist claimed cyclist was "riding too fast"
- $500,000 settlement for a San Francisco negligent right turn bicycle accident case where motorist claimed cyclist was at fault
- San Francisco bicycle dooring accident sedon'ttlement of $85,000 when the initial offer was only $15k
As you can see from all three of the settlement results above, the cyclist was being "jerked-around" by the other side until they got Sally Morin Law San Francisco on board to put an end to those games. Get Sally and her 5-star rated California bike accident team on your side now before it's too late!
Why You Need a San Francisco Bicycle Accident Lawyer
If you have been involved in a bicycle accident that resulted in serious injury you need to contact a San Francisco bicycle injury attorney to protect your legal rights. Hiring a lawyer is the best way to ensure that you'll get what you deserve from the person or company that caused your injuries.
While bicycles fall under the California Vehicle Code, which essentially gives them the same rights and responsibilities of any other vehicle on the road, bicycle accidents are often difficult to reconstruct. This can lead to inaccurate determination of fault in police reports, which allows insurance companies to use their own interpretation of events to decline or fight a claim. If you want someone to represent your rights and seek a fair injury settlement, who better than an experienced San Francisco bicycle accident lawyer who understands what it's like to ride in the urban SF environment?
Sally and others on her team who ride in the City understand the San Francisco cycling community and the challenges it faces when sharing the road with other vehicles. They can relate to the contentious relationship that can exist between cyclists and a motorists. But perhaps Sally Morin Law's greatest contribution to the cycling community is their intimate knowledge of the law and insurance claims process of bicycle accidents and their ability to use that knowledge to secure fair and full settlements for their SF bike accident clients.
You may not think you need a bicycle accident lawyer.
Perhaps you've opened an claim with the insurance company on your own. And, maybe the responsible party (or their insurance company) has offered to pay for your out of pocket medical costs. It might be tempting to just take the money and move on. Don't be too quick.
If you've suffered major injuries, you may be doing yourself more harm than good by going it alone without a lawyer! You need to at least get a free consultation with a personal injury lawyer who focuses on San Francisco bicycle accident cases before making any decisions on how to resolve your case.
Quick cash is tempting
Motorists will often offer a quick cash payout to cyclists in hopes that they don't have to report the accident to their insurance company. Don't engage in this sort of informal resolution of your bike accident, UNLESS you suffered little or no injury. Even then, you might want to run things by a well-reputed SF bike lawyer. Even if you don't live in California, but you were injured here, you can hire a California bike accident attorney to help you.
Don't get low-balled
If, on the other hand, you make an insurance claim with the motorist's insurance carrier, the adjuster will typically offer you a quick low-ball payment. To receive this payment you'll need to sign a release of all claims, which means you can never open up the claim again. If your injuries are not 100% resolved, you won't know how they might affect you in the future—or what additional medical care you might need. Can you really afford to get a "quick and easy" settlement with an unknown medical future and a likelihood of more missed days at work ahead of you?
Do not just settle for what other people (especially insurance adjusters) say you’re owed. Make sure you get the full compensation you deserve with an experienced San Francisco bicycle accident lawyer by your side.
Let's Get the Settlement You Deserve!
Why risk sabotaging your SF bike accident claim by trying to handle it alone?
Get your no cost, risk-free case evaluation. And get peace of mind.
If at any time within the first 30 days of signing with Sally Morin Law you are not 100% satisfied with the quality and care of service you receive from our attorneys, we will cancel your contract at no cost so that you can seek different representation. No questions asked.
But hiring a San Francisco bicycle accident attorney can be confusing (and sort of a pain).
How do you know if you really need a lawyer? What can a bike accident attorney do that I can't do myself? Do I have to sue someone if I hire a personal injury firm? Does getting a lawyer automatically mean my case goes to court? It's these questions and others that keep seriously injured bicyclists from getting the legal help they really need.
But, as a specialized bicycle accident law firm in the San Francisco Bay Area with over 20 years of experience helping cyclists just like you, we can assure you that your recovery from your injuries and getting the financial payout you deserve will be much easier with the backing of an experienced SF bike accident lawyer. In fact, the Insurance Research Council found that:
- 85% of the money paid out by insurance companies for injury claims are paid to claimants represented by a lawyer
- People who have an attorney receive an average of 3.5 times more for their settlement than unrepresented folks
This vast disparity isn't because personal injury attorneys inflate the value of your claim. It's because insurance companies are experts at taking advantage of unrepresented parties to pay the least amount possible.
Not only will having an attorney increase your settlement, it will also increase your peace of mind!
"I was hit by a car while on my bike and they helped me put my life back together."
Need more time to make a decision about your San Francisco bicycle accident representation?
If you aren't ready to move forward with hiring a lawyer? Want to do a little more research about how to find the best San Francisco bike accident lawyer? Well, we have some things you should be doing in the meantime to help your case.
7 things you can do now to ensure you build a solid bicycle accident case.
#1. Get Medical Care Right Away
If you were seriously injured, you were probably hauled off by ambulance to San Francisco General Hospital for emergency treatment. If not, get checked out now! This is important not only for your health, but It will also help you prove your injuries if you ending making a bike accident claim.
Don't be too worried about the cost of treatment if you are truly injured. In California, reasonable and necessary medical care that arises from injuries caused by an at-fault driver will be paid by their auto insurance once you make a successful claim.
#2. Preserve and Collect Evidence
Hopefully when you were at the scene of the accident, you took photos, got the driver's contact info, insurance and registration and you had SFPD come out and file a traffic collision report.
Assuming you are no longer at the scene, let's talk about what you can do now to help build the evidence in your case.
- Take photos of your injuries to show any physical signs of cuts, bruising, deformity or scarring (take these periodically as things begin to heal.) Photos of any medical gear like casts, slings, wheelchairs, canes, etc. can also be helpful.
- Save all of your medical records. You'll have to get an "official" copy of everything later from your medical providers to present a proper claim, but save what they give you as you go through treatment.
- Keep track of all medical costs you spend and those covered by your health insurance. Both of these figures will be used to calculate the value of your claim. Just because your health insurance covers some expenses, that doesn't mean they aren't reimbursable.
- Track all other related out-of-pocket expenses (like Uber rides, bus fare, co-pay's, other costs you incur that are related to your accident.)
Having solid evidence will make it that much easier to get a good settlement when the time comes. If you end up hiring a San Francisco bike accident attorney, they'll be able to help you gather and track all the necessary evidence.
#3. Open a Claim with the Driver's Insurance
Contact the driver's car insurance carrier (usual via a 1-800 number) to open a bicycle accident claim. Be careful! Anything you say can and WILL be used against you! You probably want to get some advice from an experienced San Francisco bicycle accident lawyer before giving the insurance carrier anything other than the basics like your name and contact information. Whatever you do... do NOT give them your Social Security Number. That is something they'll definitely use against you.
#4. Do NOT Post about your Bicycle Accident on Social Media
We get it. A serious bike accident isn't an everyday event for you. You probably want to let your family and friends know what happened and get their support. But you really should NOT post about your bike accident on social media! It could be detrimental to your case.
The driver who caused the accident, their attorney or insurance company will scour your social media accounts to find anything they can to make your case look weak.
Don't post about your bike accident or your injuries on social media until after you consult with a qualified San Francisco bicycle accident lawyer. They'll probably instruct you to stay off social too.
#5. Keep Your Bike
Don't repair or get rid of your bike until your bike accident case has been fully resolved, or until your bike accident lawyer says it's okay to do so. Your bike is a crucial piece of evidence in the case. Also, repairing/replacing it will likely be paid for by the insurance company. If you absolutely need to get back on your bike, take a bunch of photos of it, have it repaired and save the repair documentation for your case.
#6. Don't Give Recorded Statements
Insurance adjusters will use all sorts of tactics - including recording every conversation with you - to get you to say something that could minimize your injuries, admit fault or share responsibility for the accident. Here are a few things you can do to avoid damaging your claim:
- Don't talk with the insurance adjusters until you speak with a San Francisco bicycle accident lawyer.
- Do not allow them to record your conversations.
- Don't admit fault or apologize for the accident.
- Don't minimize your injuries by being polite or saying things such as "I'm doing better." (They will just manipulate these statements.)
The San Francisco bicycle accident team at Sally Morin Law recently got a Bay Area cyclist $500,000 in a case where the motorist tried to claim the cyclist was at fault for the accident.
#7. Hire a San Francisco Bicycle Accident Attorney
Ok, so we said this was a list of things you should be doing while you are figuring out which lawyer to hire for your bike accident, but now you really need hire someone to help do the heavy lifting and get you a good settlement.
You've suffered serious injuries from a SF Bay Area bicycle crash and hiring a San Francisco bicycle accident attorney is not on the top of your list. But, as time goes by and things get more complicated, you'll start to understand why it's a smart idea to get a good lawyer on board.
- Insurance adjusters will either undercut you or ignore you. (They either call you non-stop to "play nice" and offer you a quick low-ball offer, or they never call you back at all. Either way, it's stressful!)
- The paperwork... oh, all the paperwork! (Once you hire an SF bike accident lawyer, you can just forward all paper their way.)
- The driver's insurance may not be enough to cover you. (Your lawyer may be able to help uncover other insurance coverage or sources of payment.)
- You don't know if you have to (or how to) sue someone or go to court. (Having the right bike accident attorney take on your case will lower your chances of having to do this, and if you do have to, they'll know exactly what they are doing. Did you know you have 2 years to resolve your bicycle accident claim - unless the at-fault party is a governmental entity - before you have to file a lawsuit in California?)
- You don't know what your case is worth. (It takes time and skill to build solid case, and your attorney will know how to do this to maximize what your case is worth.)
Hiring a good San Francisco bicycle accident lawyer will allow you to bypass all of these complications, because they are not new to this. This is what they do. Isn't it time you handed your case over to an expert, so you can get back to what it is you do best?
You Get Action On Your Case
Most law firms sign up a bunch of clients and then forget about them until there's a deadline in the case. Not us! At Sally Morin Law, we get started on your SF Bay Area bike accident case the day you sign up and we don't stop until you get the result you deserve!
Get the Best San Francisco Bike Accident Lawyer on Your Claim Now
You can probably tell by now that the difficulty of handling your own bike injury claim can be overwhelming and discouraging. Rather than stress about handling your own case, just get the best from the start. Our team of San Francisco bicycle accident lawyers at Sally Morin Law has been helping people seriously injured in bike accidents in the Bay Area for over twenty years. We have settled some substantial bicycle accident cases without even having to go to court, but we have also litigated several of these cases across California very successfully.
Here's what you can expect with Sally Morin Law
- We keep it real -- and won’t over-estimate the value of your case just to get your business.
- We stay in touch -- by returning your calls and emails promptly.
- We won't leave you in the dark -- we discuss the big decisions with you and collaborate with you on how to best resolve your case.
- We fight against aggressive insurance adjusters to get the maximum amount possible for your settlement.
- We prepare and send the most comprehensive demand letter to give your case the best chance at settling.
- We work with your medical providers so your bills are lower and you get to keep more of your settlement.
- We make sure to get you a solid financial result as quickly as possible
You can verify all of this by checking out:
Sally Morin Law's San Francisco Client Reviews and Testimonials
Don't waste any more time, contact Sally and her San Francisco bike accident team now! Get a FREE online case evaluation now to find out if we’re the right match for you, or give Sally Morin Law: San Francisco Personal Injury Attorneys a call at (415) 413-0033.
Still not sure? Learn more here about whether we are the right San Francisco bicycle accident law firm for you.
You can also learn more here about how the process works if you choose Sally Morin Law to guide you through the bicycle accident process.