I was at a four corner stopped at a stop sign looked to my left then right saw the road was clear then proceeded to drive forward at a speed of 5-7 mph I barely got to reach completely across the street when something hit my car from the passenger side and went over my hood. I was not aware of what happened as this happened so fast. Immediately now able to fully cross over driving forward I pulled over got out of my car and saw a person on the ground with a bike. Police were called and a report was made at the moment realizing this person was hurt riding her bike into my car she was asked to go to the ER on an ambulance and refused stating she was fine and that she didn't have medical insurance anyways after she was told my car insurance would pay for her and more she immediately requested to go to the ER on the ambulance.
What can I do to protect myself? What does my case look like?
I have not been retained to represent you in this matter and the answer to your question should not be considered legal advice. There is no reasonable expectation of privacy or confidentiality for the information shared here as this is a public online forum.
Once you report the incident to your insurance carrier, they will complete an independent liability investigation. The outcome on liability will depend on many factors. In many jurisdictions, bicyclists are required to follow the rules of the road the same as a motor vehicle. Therefore, some potential arguments would be whether or not the bicycle rider was riding his/her bike on the right side of the road, if they were riding on the road or on the sidewalk, and whether or not there were any traffic controls the cyclist failed to obey. Some jurisdictions allow bicycle riders to ride on the sidewalk. Therefore, it may be useful to research the local statutes to determine proper use of roads and sidewalks when riding a bike. Your adjuster is going to make a liability decision based on their investigation. However, if you research the information independently, you may be able to share a local statute which may assist your adjuster in their investigation.
This is exactly why you have insurance. Turn the matter over to them and, in the meantime, stop posting admissions on the internet / social media.
answers to questions are for general purposes only and do not establish an attorney-client relationship.
Turn this over to your own insurance company for handling.
Mr. Crosner is licensed to practice law in California and has been practicing law in California since 1978. The response herein is general legal and business analysis.. It is not intended nor construed to be "legal advice" but rather it is analysis, and different lawyers may analyze this matter differently, especially if there are additional facts not reflected in the question. Oftentimes the question does not include significant and important facts and timelines that, if known, could significantly change the reply and make it unsuitable. I am not your attorney until retained by a written retainer agreement signed by both of us. See also avvo.com terms and conditions item 9, incorporated as if it was reprinted here. In seeking an attorney on this site, beware of limiting your search to attorneys with a 10 rating, and carefully read the AVVO disclaimer regarding their rating system. There are certain factors that are given great weight which do not necessarily have any bearing on an attorney's experience, abilities, and results with certain types of cases. Accordingly, the rating numbers can be misleading. Also beware of basing your choice on the fee charged, as a low fee, depending on the skill, experience and determination of the specific attorney handling your case, could actually have an inverse relationship to the amount actually put in your pocket.
How are you deducing that you didn't hit the bicyclist when you say you felt an impact and then saw the bicyclist on the ground?
Regardless, report the accident to your insurance carrier and let them indemnify and defend you for this accident. This is the very reason you are paying auto insurance premiums. Let your insurance carrier earn its keep.
Please do not message me for further advice or contact my former law firm in any way. If you are in need of an attorney to assist you, please search for another attorney in the jurisdiction involved in your case, as I am now retired, and my former law firm is no longer handling these types of cases. I am active on AVVO and answer questions only as a public service at this point.
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