Bicycle Accident With Wrongful Death
Bicycle accidents often result in wrongful death. With only a helmet and a few pieces of protective gear, there is little to protect a cyclist during a collision with a motor vehicle. After a crash, cyclists sustain the most serious injuries and tragically, do not always survive them. When this is the case, family members of the deceased may wish to file a wrongful death lawsuit. When they do, a San Francisco wrongful death attorney can help them with their claim.Negligence and Bicycle Accidents Resulting in Wrongful Death
Not every fatal bicycle accident provides valid basis for a lawsuit. Only when someone was negligent and caused the accident that resulted in death are family members eligible for compensation.
In California, everyone is expected to act in a manner that keeps themselves and those around them safe. This includes cyclists and motorists. When anyone fails to act in a reasonable and safe manner and causes an accident, the courts may find that person negligent. This can provide the basis for a bicycle accident wrongful death lawsuit.Motorists and Bicycle Accidents with Wrongful Death
In San Francisco, motorists and bicyclists are considered to have the same rights and responsibilities on the road. Unfortunately, motorists often look for other vehicles and pedestrians, but fail to see bicyclists. This can easily result in an accident.
Any crash with a vehicle can be potentially fatal for the cyclist. There are some types of accidents between motorists and bikes that are more common than others.
When a motorist is making a turn, they often look straight ahead to ensure there is no oncoming traffic. Unfortunately, they often fail to look in the direction they are turning. Cyclists are often right at that point of the turn, and drivers do not see them until it is too late.
Motorists fail to see cyclists more often than just when they are turning, though. Failing to properly check blind spots could result in a vehicle sideswiping a cyclist. Drivers who travel over the speed limit may also approach a cyclist too quickly, and not have enough time to completely stop, rear-ending the cyclist in the process.Filing a Wrongful Death Claim
In most cases, family members who have lost a loved one due to a bicycle accident simply want to mourn their loss. Filing a wrongful death lawsuit is often the last thing they want to do. However, these civil suits can provide compensation that can help ease the financial burden of the death. This is particularly true when the accident victim brought an income into the household.
The types of damages available in a wrongful death lawsuit include:
- Medical bills incurred before death
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Loss of income
- Mental anguish or emotional distress from the suffering the death has caused
- Loss of companionship, guidance, and consortium
In California, surviving family members have only two years from the date of the bicycle accident or death to file a wrongful death lawsuit. When the lawsuit is being filed against a government entity, such as a city bus, that time is reduced to just six months. Family members wishing to seek compensation for their loss should not wait to speak to a wrongful death bicycle accident attorney in San Francisco.
No one should lose a loved one due to someone else’s negligence. If you have, contact Willoughby Brod, LLP today at (800) 427-7020. We know what a difficult time this is, and we just want to help make it a little easier. Call us today for your free consultation and learn more about your options.