If this is the first time that you’ve been injured in a Colorado bicycling accident or if you haven’t and just want to know how to protect your rights in case you are – read on. You are entering a playing field that is not even. You may already had several calls from the insurance company representatives or even a visit where they just want to “get a little information”. The insurance company’s investigators or adjusters are nagging you to sign their forms so they can “get your records and take care of things for you”. They might have said you need to give them everything they ask for and sign all of their forms so that they can repair or replace your bike. Worse yet, perhaps a day or two after your accident they are pressuring you to settle your case by offering you a minimal amount for your pain and suffering (the extent of which at this point you couldn’t possibly know) and promise to pay your medical bills if you sign a release. The insurance companies motives are clear. They want to settle your claim quickly – before you know the nature and extent of your injuries, before you’ve finished treatment, before you can begin to understand what your full damages might be, before you can get a fair settlement, and before you have spoken with an attorney, and before know your rights.
I am sick of insurance companies claiming that you are in good hands, that they are like a good neighbor all the while doing everything they can to make sure that you aren’t fairly compensated. I am sick of seeing the insurers offer only a fraction of what it will take to replace a demolished bike.
I am dismayed by the useless, meaningless, and sometimes downright slippery lawyer advertising. You need to know how to week through the meaningless ads to find the attorney who is best qualified to represent you. If you have begun your search on the internet you already know that most lawyer websites they are little more than electronic business cards. Yellow page ads are even more useless as nearly all offer a “free consultation” and mention “no recovery, no fee”.
With my books and the articles on my website, you are now in possession good information that every cyclist should be aware of and can reference in the privacy and quiet of home BEFORE talking to an insurance adjuster, hiring a lawyer, or signing any forms. Understand your rights before talking to a lawyer or the insurance company.