Receiving Compensation for Your E-Bike Accident: How to Maximize the Value of Your Claim

Electric bikes and scooters are becoming popular modes of transportation and not just for teens and college students. 

Professionals are also ditching their vehicles in favor of alternative modes of transportation. E-bikes are rarely stuck in traffic jams, don’t require stops at fuel stations, and are eco-friendly, to name a few reasons for their growing popularity. 

With that being said, riders still need to be aware of the legalities of e-bikes and e-scooters. Not only can it help you avoid getting a traffic ticket, but it can also help protect the value of a personal injury claim if you’re involved in an accident.

What the Law Says About E-Bikes and E-Scooters

Hopefully, you’re already familiar with bicycle laws. You know things like don’t bike in a lane dedicated for automobile use and try to stay off of sidewalks. 

Other laws include riding in a bike lane when one is available and following all basic traffic laws. For example, stopping at red lights, using crosswalks in intersections, and yielding the right of way when it’s not your turn to go.

Along with these standard road rules, e-bike riders have a few more to pay attention to, including:

  • All electric bikes must have fully functioning navigational handlebars. This means you can’t depend on your legs and body position to control the bike or scooter’s movements. The handlebars must be capable of steering the bike.
  • The pedals must be in good working condition. Yes, the bike is powered by an electrical charge, but the pedals serve as a backup. You must be able to pedal the e-bike if it runs out of juice.
  • The size of the electric motor is capped at 500 watts. Don’t worry, this is more than enough power to get you to your destination at a relatively quick speed.
  • The e-bike or e-scooter can’t have a maximum speed exceeding 32 km/h. Yes, you can go faster downhill. This rule only applies to the speed the motor is capable of producing.

Your e-bike must also display a manufacturer’s label in both English and French. However, you may be able to get away with only having one or the other, depending on the province. If French is the primary language, you may be able to get by without having an English sticker. 

The opposite can apply if English is primarily spoken. The purpose of requiring a manufacturer’s sticker comes down to safety. Not everyone is capable of building an electric bike, so the authorities prefer to leave this up to the experts. A manufacturer’s sticker simply lets everyone know you’re not riding around on a homemade contraption.

You should also know that it’s illegal to modify an e-bike or electric scooter with the intent of increasing its speed or power.

What to Do After an E-Bike Accident

Unfortunately, e-bike accidents are increasing in frequency, and, yes, this is largely due to the increasing number of e-bikes on the roads. However, this doesn’t lessen the potential severity of an accident. In fact, injuries sustained in e-bike and e-scooter accidents are typically more severe compared to a vehicle crash.

While seeking compensation for your damages may not be your first thought after an accident, it’s something to consider once you get your bearings. Even if you’re not responsible for the accident, you still want to protect the value of your potential personal injury claim. 

To help get the compensation you deserve, some of the following tips may even help maximize your claim’s value.

Seek Immediate Medical Attention

You may not need a ride in an ambulance to a hospital, but this doesn’t mean you should simply walk off your injuries. Even though you’re hopefully wearing a helmet, you can still suffer internal injuries. These injuries can take a while to start showing signs and symptoms.

Seeking medical attention not only helps ensure your injuries are properly diagnosed, but it also helps protect your personal injury claim. You’re going to need medical documentation to support your claim, which means visiting a physician.

Document Your Pain and Suffering

Pain and suffering are considered non-economic damages and can be harder to prove. Not to mention, trying to come up with a price for your mental anguish is tricky at best. 

You can make the process a little easier and help ensure you receive full compensation by documenting every aspect of your injuries. This means going a little further than simply relying on your medical paperwork.

If possible, take pictures of your injuries throughout the healing process. If you’re not already keeping a journal, now’s the time to start. Write down how your injuries are affecting your life. You also want to keep a record of your pain and suffering. 

Don’t forget to include information about your medication and any side effects. The more details you include, the easier it is to prove your claim.

Don’t Throw Anything Away

Okay, saving everything is taking it a bit too far, but be careful what you toss in the trash. Obviously, you want to keep everything related to your treatment, including prescriptions and any payments you may have already made. 

If your personal injury claim includes property damage, keep all repair or replacement estimates. Go ahead and get more than one estimate, as this can make negotiations with the insurance company go a little more smoothly. Sometimes, all it takes to successfully settle an injury claim is to give the insurance adjuster a couple of options.

You also want to save any information about witnesses to the accident. Your attorney will want to interview the witness. Your accident report will probably contain the same information, but it’s always best to have it just in case. Don’t forget to pick up a copy of your accident report since this document proves the accident occurred. 

Most insurance companies aren’t going to start processing an accident claim until they receive the report first.

Contact an Experienced Accident Attorney

Even when you have all of your paperwork, it’s still not a good idea to try and settle a personal injury claim without legal representation.

Your attorney is familiar with all legal aspects of your case and can work to help ensure you receive full compensation for your e-bike accident. Their expertise can help you navigate the complexities of the legal system and negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf.