Legalities after Bicycle Accident?
September 7, 2007 1:41 PM Subscribe
I got hit by a car on a bicycle while carrying a laptop. Bicycle & laptop are busted, but thankfully I'm not. What do I do now, legally speaking?
posted by suedehead to Law & Government (19 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
I was riding my bike uptown on an avenue on a green light. A livery cab coming uptown on the same avenue turned to his left, across the avenue, to enter a eastbound street. I saw him coming and tried to brake to avoid him; he was going pretty fast and didn't brake in time, and he hit me on my left, his front/right. I flipped over and landed on my back.
There were quite a few people around, who started calling the police and an ambulance. The police came and got the driver's license number, et cetera, and I went in the ambulance to the ER, where I got checked out and they told me that I'd probably be okay for now. Fortunately, I was wearing a helmet and a messenger bag, and so I don't have any harsh bruises or scrapes. My neck/head seem okay for now.
Problem is: My bike wheels are bent, a pedal is bent, the handlebars are bent sideways, et cetera. On top of that, I had my laptop in my messenger bag. The laptop's LCD screen is cracked, and my laptop won't boot up past the Apple login screen. I went to the police, they gave me an accident report, but told me that they couldn't include any information about any valuables I had in a police accident report.
All I want is to have my bike, my laptop, and any medical fees resulting from this to be covered. I do have medical insurance. I don't think that it was my fault - I was going slower than the cars, it was my green light, I have the right of way because he was turning left, and if the livery cab wasn't going so fast he would have been able to stop in time.
1) What should I do next?
2) How do I prove that the accident caused the damage to my laptop?
3) Should I just contact the driver's insurance company and try to settle it that way? Will they cover my medical fees/bike/laptop?
4) Should I try to find a lawyer specializing in these cases? (I'm in NYC.)
5) The police report doesn't have any info about witnesses - should I try to find one?
6) Does the fact that the car was a livery cab change anything/make anything difficult?
I'm just very confused and frazzled - nobody I've talked to has been able to answer these questions. Thanks!