Tag Archives: bicycle accidents

San Jose car accident lawyerWhile cars and bicycles are supposed to share the road, every year thousands of bicyclists are injured by drivers who fail to follow all the safety rules. If you have been injured in a bicycle accident you need to understand what your rights are.

Who Is at Fault?

California law gives you the right to recover damages when you are injured because of someone else’s negligence. Deciding who is at fault for an accident, unfortunately, is not always straightforward.

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San Jose car accident lawyerCycling in the city can be dangerous, and bicycle accidents are common. California has traffic laws to protect city cyclists, but they still have to deal with a heavy flow of traffic and pedestrians. Many cities have bike lanes, but they are not always respected by vehicles or pedestrians. Cities pose special dangers to cyclists, but there are safety measures that cyclists can take to protect themselves.

Car Doors

Possibly the biggest difference between cities and suburban or rural areas for cyclists is the sheer quantity of vehicles on the streets. Car doors are among the most common hazards in city cycling. Drivers and passengers open car doors unexpectedly without checking for bicycles, and collisions are often the result.

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comparative negligence in California, San Jose injury lawyerDetermining liability in some personal injury cases is fairly straightforward. For example, you are sitting at a red light and your car is rear-ended by a driver who was under the influence of alcohol and speeding. That driver is likely to be held fully liable for any injuries you may have sustained. What if, however, your own actions played a role in causing your injuries? For example, you are driving along a city street, over the posted the speed limit while texting on your cell phone. Another driver blatantly runs a red light and crashes into your car. Could you still collect compensation for your injuries?

All or Nothing

Prior to 1975, the answer to that question would have been a flat no. Under the law in place at the time, if your own actions or negligence were found in any way to have contributed to your injuries, recovery would be completely barred. In 1975, the California Supreme Court’s ruling on Li v. Yellow Cab, set a new standard for the state, one that was determined to be more equitable albeit more complex. In its the ruling, the state’s High Court recognized that an “all-or-nothing” approach to recovery was outdated and that each contributor to an injury case should be held justly liable.

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Janoff Law,
A Professional Corporation
1570 The Alameda, Suite 221, San Jose, CA 95126 408-286-2300
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