How Comparative Negligence Can Affect Your Florida Bicycle Accident Claim
If you were in a Florida bicycle accident with a motor vehicle and you believe you did something that caused your accident, you may be wondering whether you can still file a personal injury claim and recover damages from the driver of the motor vehicle. The reality is that even bicyclists engage in negligent behavior that sometimes results in accidents. But, does the fact that you did something that caused your bicycle accident automatically disqualify you from filing a personal injury claim? Fortunately, even if you did something that resulted in your Florida bicycle accident, you may still be qualified to file a personal injury claim and recover compensation. Whether or not you qualify to file a claim depends on your percentage of fault.
Comparative Negligence in Florida Bicycle Accident Claims
Whether or not you can file a Florida bicycle accident claim against another party and recover compensation depends on whether you are partially or wholly to blame for your accident. In Florida, if a bicyclist is solely to blame for their accident, they cannot file a claim against another party to recover damages. Therefore, if you are wholly to blame for your bicycle accident, you cannot file a claim against the motor vehicle driver.
On the other hand, if you are only partially to blame for your bicycle accident, you are allowed to file a claim against the driver and recover compensation for your injuries and damages. The comparative negligence rule, which Florida follows, allows a plaintiff to recover compensation from a defendant even if they (the plaintiff) are also to blame for their accident. Nevertheless, if you are partially to blame for your bicycle accident, your compensation will be reduced by your percentage of fault.
Fortunately, Florida follows the pure comparative negligence rule. This rule allows you to recover compensation for your injuries and damages even if your percentage of fault is higher than that of the defendant. In other words, because Florida follows the pure comparative negligence rule, you can recover compensation from the driver even if you are 99% to blame for your bicycle accident.
Suppose you failed to yield when you were supposed to, and the motor vehicle driver was speeding. In such a case, you might be assigned 30% of the blame and the driver 70%. If your total damages are $100,000, it would mean that you can only recover 70% of $100,000, which is $70,000.
Is Not Wearing a Helmet Considered Negligence?
If you were not wearing your helmet when your bicycle accident happened, you might be wondering if your failure to wear a helmet will be considered negligence. In Florida, the failure to wear a helmet when riding a bicycle is usually not considered negligence. Florida law states that the failure of a bicyclist to wear a helmet may not be regarded as evidence of negligence or contributory negligence.
Contact a Coral Springs Bicycle Accident Lawyer
At Lyons & Snyder, our Coral Springs bicycle accident lawyers have the experience you need if you were injured in a Florida bicycle accident. We can help you recover compensation from a negligent party even if you are partially to blame for your bicycle accident. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.