Bicycle Accidents Involving Children
Bicycle accidents involving children are unfortunately common in California. For children, cycling is often the only way to get around, and it is a fun outdoor activity all year round. Sadly, not all rides end well or without injury. Injuries resulting from bicycle accidents are usually severe, but when the accident victim is a child, the injuries can be even worse. When an accident is caused by a negligent driver, parents of an injured child can hold the driver liable for those injuries. Personal injury lawsuits involving children work slightly differently than those involving adults. A San Francisco child bicycle accident lawyer can help your family seek the compensation to which you are entitled.Duty of Care Around Children
Drivers always have a duty of care when they are on the road. They must watch for other motorists, pedestrians, and cyclists. Drivers owe a duty of care to children, too, but that duty of care is increased when children are present. Drivers are expected to drive slowly around children and to take greater caution in areas where children may be present. This does not only include school zones, which have mandatory lower speed limits, but also residential roads and areas near parks.
Drivers are expected to understand that children are unpredictable. Children on bicycles may swerve unexpectedly into the road or lose their balance and fall into the street. Motorists have to be prepared to stop suddenly or turn, if needed.
Of course, this does not mean that drivers are considered negligent every time they collide with a child. It does mean, however, that their increased duty of care makes it easier to prove negligence in bicycle accidents involving children. This is where the help of a child bicycle accident attorney in San Francisco can make a big difference.A Child’s Contributory Negligence
Under California’s contributory negligence laws, accident victims can be held liable if they were partly at fault for the accident. When a court finds an accident victim contributed to the accident, any compensation the victim is awarded is then reduced by his or her percentage of fault.
In bicycle accidents involving children, the standard for contributory negligence is lowered. The law recognizes that children do not have the same capacity to understand bicycle laws and do not always understand the consequences of certain actions, such as moving slightly away from the shoulder of the road.
Generally speaking, the courts deem that children are incapable of exercising due care and so, cannot be held partly to blame for the accident. Defendants can argue that another reasonable child would have acted differently to raise the contributory negligence defense.Call a San Francisco Child Bicycle Accident Lawyer
If your child has been in a bicycle accident, it is important to know you might be eligible for compensation. This can help pay for medical bills and other expenses related to the accident. You should not file these claims on your own, though. At Willoughby Brod, LLP, we are the child bicycle accident attorney in San Francisco who can help. We have extensive experience handling bicycle accidents involving children, and we want to put that experience to work for your family. Call us today at (800) 427-7020 or fill out our online form for your free consultation.