Bicyclists Hit by Uninsured Drivers & Hit and Run Drivers
You can protect yourself in case you are struck by a hit and run driver,
or by a driver who has no auto insurance, or not enough auto insurance.
Your protection is carrying
uninsured motorist coverage on your car. Especially if you or your children are avid bicycle riders,
it is critical that you carry this coverage, and enough of it, because
there are so many uninsured, and underinsured, drivers on the road. We
recommend that you carry uninsured motorist coverage with a policy limit
of at least $100,000 per person; better still: $250,000 per person.
Bicycle Accident involving an Uninsured Driver
If while riding your bike, you are struck by a driver who is uninsured,
you can still receive compensation for your injuries if you own a car
and carry uninsured motorist coverage. Uninsured motorist coverage is
an optional coverage which you may have purchased. To find out if you
have it, check your policy, ask your agent, or our attorneys can find
out for you. If you have uninsured motorist coverage, your insurance will
act as if they are insuring the driver who hit you. With this coverage,
you can collect the same compensation from your own insurance company
that you could have from the driver if he/she had been insured. Your insurance
company must pay you for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and
Bicycle Accident involving a Driver with not Enough Insurance
If while riding your bike, you are struck by a driver who has insurance,
but the driver's policy limit is not enough to cover the value of
your injury claim, you can make an underinsured motorist claim under your
auto insurance policy if you carry uninsured motorist coverage. Uninsured
motorist coverage is the same as underinsured motorist coverage, so if
you have one, you have the other.
Your underinsured motorist coverage will only apply to your bicycle accident
if your policy limit is greater than the driver's policy limit. If
it is, then your underinsured motorist coverage will kick in once you
"exhaust" the driver's insurance policy, i.e., after you
collect the driver's policy limit.
Bicycle Accident involving a Hit and Run Driver
If while riding a bike, you are struck by a
hit and run driver, you can receive compensation for your injuries if you own a car that
has uninsured motorist coverage. As long as there was physical contact
between the hit and run driver and your body or your bike, your uninsured
motorist coverage will apply. It will not apply if you fell while trying
to avoid the vehicle, and never made contact with the vehicle.
If your Bike-Riding Child is Hit by an Uninsured Driver or Hit and Run Driver
If your child, while bicycling, is hit by an uninsured driver or a hit
and run driver, your child can make an uninsured motorist claim under
your auto insurance policy. Similarly, if your child is struck by a driver
who doesn't have enough insurance, your child can make an underinsured
motorist claim under your auto insurance policy.
Making a Claim under your Policy will not Increase your Premiums
You need not worry that making an uninsured or underinsured motorist claim
will affect your insurance premiums. Your premiums will not increase if
you were not at fault for the accident.
Contact a Long Beach bicycle accident attorney at McGee, Lerer & Associates for a free consultation if you were hit
by an uninsured driver, an underinsured driver, or a hit and run driver.