Biking is a popular method of commuting in Metro Vancouver, especially in the summer. But with the increased use of this mode of transportation, there is an increased risk of cyclist accidents. The Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC) reported that during the summer months, on average, 670 cyclists are injured on the province’s roads each year with an average of six or seven fatalities. The main cause of car accidents involving cyclists is negligence or distracted driving.
What happens if you find yourself in an accident while cycling? Are there any benefits that you can claim?
Once a cyclist is involved in an accident with a motorist insured in BC, then some benefits would be extended to the cyclist through an ICBC no-fault claim. The cyclist may also be entitled to make a tort claim for additional compensation through the motorist’s third-party liability coverage if the driver was at fault. No-fault benefits cover medical costs, homemaker expenses and rehabilitative care. Under the no-fault clause, there are also benefits to be had in the event that you are disabled and unable to return to work. Tort claims cover medical expenses, lost wages due to injury, cost to repair or replace your bicycle as well as damages for pain and suffering.
Many cyclists are unaware of the steps involved in filing an ICBC claim. Some are even unaware that they may be entitled to benefits. If you’re a cyclist and you have been involved in a car accident, here’s what you should do:
Report the accident
The first step to take after an accident is to call the police and inform them of the incident. Ensure when making your report that you stick to the facts. Also, ensure that you receive a copy of the report as you will need this later.
Collect relevant contact details
In order to make your claim, you will need the contact information for the driver involved in the accident. It’s also a good idea to get the contact information for any witnesses. Witness testimony will prove helpful when you file your claim.
Document your injuries
After your accident, you should seek medical attention and keep a thorough record of any injuries you have sustained as well as the course of treatment. This step is even more important if the injuries sustained may require long-term treatment or result in lost wages as a result of being unable to work.
File your claim
The next step in the process is to file your claim. To qualify for no-fault benefits, you must notify ICBC of an accident within 48 hours, give a statement describing the collision within 30 days, and submit a claim form to ICBC within 90 days of the accident. You have two years in which to file a tort claim.
Contact a personal injury lawyer
Filing an accident claim can be quite an arduous task, and ICBC aims to pay as little as possible. As a result, it is recommended that you consult an ICBC claims lawyer who can guide you through the process.
Finding a Surrey ICBC claims lawyer
At Law Boutique, we will handle every aspect of your claim, including negotiating with ICBC, referring you to appropriate specialists to prove your claim and, when necessary, litigating on your behalf to get you the money you deserve. We give personal attention, fight to protect your rights and charge nothing unless we win.