Can I sue for personal injury if I did damage to a vehicle? 21 Answers as of August 31, 2015

I was riding my bike early afternoon in the bike lane next to parked cars when a lady opened her car door and I hit the door and flew over my bike. Neither of us saw the other coming and she wants to sue me because I damaged her car door but I was wondering if I could sue her for personal injury. Can I do this even if I damaged her car?

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JV Law Group, LLP
JV Law Group, LLP | Julie Jung
Based on the facts presented, you should retain a personal injury attorney and file a claim with her insurance company for the injuries you sustained in the accident, including money to repair or replace your bicycle. Since you were riding your bike in a designated bike lane next to the parked cars, she has the duty to be a prudent driver.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 5/18/2015
End, Hierseman & Crain, LLC | J. Michael End
She was probably more at fault than you were, since she opened the door without looking. It would probably be a close case, however, and I don't know if it would be worth your while to do that. The statute of limitations would expire three years from the date of the accident.
Answer Applies to: Wisconsin
Replied: 5/15/2015
Walpole Law | Robert J. Walpole
Yes, you can. Although most states utilize comparative negligence law, meaning you both can be negligent but the one who is more than 50% negligent pays, it appears that this driver wasn't paying attention. She could argue neither were you, but a jury would decide. As a bicyclist myself, I say make a claim if you were hurt and needed medical attention at the time.
Answer Applies to: Oklahoma
Replied: 5/15/2015
Havens & Lichtenberg PLLC
Havens & Lichtenberg PLLC | Michael Lichtenberg
You can sue the woman for personal injury. She might sue you for the damage to the car; and she can do it first or assert it as a counterclaim in response to your law suit. It is not possible to promise that you will win 100%: your attorney will say that you were in the bike lane, and it was her responsibility to loo back and see if it were safe to open the door; her attorney will say that you were riding your bike too close to the parked cars. How will the judge (or the jury) find will depend on many factors - how far from the middle of the bike lane you were riding, how heavy was the adjacent traffic, etc. The court will decide what %% of the fault for this accident is on each party - and assign damages accordingly. There are certain arguments that should shift the fault away from you quite a lot, and, in any case, your damages are likely much larger than the damages sustained by the other side - so you should come up the winner.
Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 5/14/2015
S. Joseph Schramm | Joseph Schramm
You can file suit for whatever damages you sustained, even if she files suit against you for damage to her car. If she files first your response to her complaint would include a counter-claim against her for your damages.
Answer Applies to: Pennsylvania
Replied: 5/14/2015
    Bulman Law Associates PLLC Injury Law Firm
    Bulman Law Associates PLLC Injury Law Firm | Thomas Bulman
    You can certainly argue she should have checked her side view mirror before opening her door. She could have avoided the crash if she had done so. I doubt anyone is going to sue you for the damage to the door. If anyone contacts you, threaten to sue them for her carelessness in flinging her door open.
    Answer Applies to: Montana
    Replied: 5/14/2015
    Law Offices of George H. Shers | George H. Shers
    Sure, why could you not sue, even if you might have some negligence [that only reduces the amount of damages you can collect, not eliminate any damages]. ?You can also sue for the damage to your bicycle. ?She is not allowed to open her car door unless it is safe to do so; if she had looked in her side view mirror and then waited a few seconds the accident presumably would not have occurred.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/14/2015
    James E. Hasser, Jr. P.C.
    James E. Hasser, Jr. P.C. | Jim Hasser
    Yes, you can sue her and if you get sued back or she sues first, turn the claim over to your car insurance company and let them handle it.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 5/14/2015
    Law Ofices of Edwin K. Niles | Edwin K. Niles
    The lady violated section 22517 of the Vehicle Code. She is entirely at fault.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 5/13/2015
    Gates' Law, PLLC | Thomas E. Gates
    If she was parked in the bike lane and you were properly in the lane, you may file a claim against her insurance company. She was negligent in egressing her car.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 5/13/2015
    Richard B. Jacobson & Associates, LLC | Richard B. Jacobson
    Yes. The question will be who committed the greater share of the negligence. Find a good personal injury lawyer. It's almost always worth the investment. Good Luck.
    Answer Applies to: Wisconsin
    Replied: 5/13/2015
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