Colorado Laws Affecting Bicycle Riders
In the state of Colorado, certain laws have been put in place to ensure the safety of bicycle riders. According to Colorado Revised Statute section 42-4-1412:
- A person riding a bicycle or electrical assisted bicycle has all of the rights and duties applicable to other motorists.
- No bicycle or electrical assisted bicycle shall be used to carry more persons at one time than the number for which it is designed or equipped.
- No person riding upon any bicycle or electrical assisted bicycle shall attach the same or himself or herself to any motor vehicle upon a roadway.
- Any person operating a bicycle or an electrical assisted bicycle upon a roadway at less than the normal speed of traffic shall ride in the right-hand lane.
- Every person riding a bicycle or electrical assisted bicycle shall signal the intention to turn or stop.
- A person riding a bicycle or electrical assisted bicycle upon and along a sidewalk, crosswalk, pathway, or across a roadway shall yield the right-of-way to any pedestrian.
- A person riding a bicycle or electrical assisted bicycle shall give an audible signal before overtaking and passing a pedestrian.
- A person shall not ride a bicycle or electrical assisted bicycle upon and along a sidewalk or pathway where it is prohibited by official traffic control devices.
How to File an Injury Claim in Colorado
Colorado is considered an "at-fault" state. That means that the at-fault party (the person who caused the accident) will use their insurance to cover any injuries or damages suffered by the victim from the collision. The injured victim can recover damages by:
- Filing a claim with their own insurance company.
- Filing a third-party claim against the insurance provider of the at-fault party.
- Filing a personal injury lawsuit in civil court against the negligent party.
Statute of Limitations
Colorado's traffic accident statute of limitations states that an injury claim resulting from any form of negligent accident, whether by the bicyclist, driver, passenger, pedestrian, or motorcyclist, must be filed within two (2) years from the date that the accident occurred (Colorado Revised Statutes section 13-80-102(1)(a)). However, it is extended to three years under section 13-80-101 if it involves a motor vehicle.
Modified Comparative Fault in Colorado
Furthermore, Colorado uses the "modified comparative fault" rule, with a 50% bar. This means that under this system, an injured victim will only be allowed to receive compensation if it has been determined that the other party was found to be 50 percent or more responsible for the accident. However, the amount you're able to recover will be reduced by your fault percentage (Colorado Revised Statutes section 13-21-111).
For example, if the jury awarded $100,000 for your injuries and damages, but decided that you were 10% responsible for the accident, your damages will be reduced by 10% ($10,000). In the end, you will only be able to recover $90,000. However, you will forfeit your right to recover any compensation for your injuries if you are found to be 50 percent or more at-fault for the accident.
How a Personal Injury Attorney Can Help
Getting injured in a bicycle accident can bring about devastating, long-term consequences to your physical, financial, and emotional health. Luckily, you don't have to face these challenges on your own. If you have been hurt in a bicycle accident, it is important that you speak with an experienced Colorado personal injury attorney who can protect your rights and help you pursue fair financial compensation.
At Downs, McDonough, Cowan & Foley, our attorneys have devoted their careers to protecting the rights of bicycle accident victims and their families. As your legal counsel, we will:
- Fight compassionately to protect your rights and represent your best interests
- Review the details of your case and conduct a comprehensive investigation
- Gather all necessary information, evidence, and required documentation
- Seek to establish fault and liability
- Determine the full impact of your injuries and estimate case-value
- Handle all communication and negotiations with the insurance provider
- Help negotiate a fair settlement with the insurance company
- File a personal injury claim, if necessary
Our attorneys will fight vigorously to ensure the right people are held accountable. With our team of experienced attorneys on your side, you can rest easy knowing your case is in good hands. Our firm will do all that we can to help you pursue a successful outcome in your personal injury lawsuit.