How do I file a claim after being in an accident? 49 Answers as of July 08, 2013

My husband was a cyclist and was hit by a car. How do I start a claim against the person who hit him?

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Hodges Law Firm, LLC | Warner Russell Hodges
Depends on how much he was injured.
Answer Applies to: Georgia
Replied: 6/20/2013
Tenge Law Firm, LLC
Tenge Law Firm, LLC | J. Todd Tenge
The best way is to hire a qualified personal injury attorney because this is what we do. Injured folks probably wouldn't want me doing their job, nor should they try to do ours. Make sense? Most (if not all) injury attorneys offer a free, initial consultation and will represent you on a contingency fee basis - which means they will be paid a percentage of that they recover for you (or your husband in this case). Thus, if they don't recover, you will not owe any fees.
Answer Applies to: Colorado
Replied: 1/19/2012
Law Office of Jason D. Baltz | Jason Daniel Baltz
First and foremost, I hope that your husband is OK. Even at low speeds, a cyclist who is hit by a car can sustain major, permanent injuries. Without knowing the severity of the injuries, I am assuming that your husband was quite injured in this accident and that the accident was due to the negligence of the car driver. If both of those assumptions are correct, I would highly advise you to seek an attorney because these injuries could have a major impact on your marriage and the quality of your husband's life. I would be happy to review your case for you. To initiate a claim against the driver, you should review the accident report to see who their insurer was at the time of the accident. You would, then, send them a letter notifying them of your claim against their insured. You should keep meticulous records of his medical bills, his medical records, his out-of-pocket expenses, the cycle damage, and his lost wages. Once your husband is done treating or is as good as he is going to get, you can start discussing settlement. If you are unable to reach a settlement, then your husband and you (you have damages, too) should sue the driver and the insurance company.
Answer Applies to: Wisconsin
Replied: 1/19/2012
Broad Law Firm, LLC
Broad Law Firm, LLC | Donald K. Broad
Assuming that this incident occurred within your State's applicable statute of limitations (2 years from the date of the accident in Indiana), then you can begin a claim simply by contacting the driver, his insurance company (which should be listed on the police report if one was prepared), and/or filing a lawsuit. I would suggest that you contact a local personal injury attorney to be certain of your husband's rights.
Answer Applies to: Indiana
Replied: 2/17/2012
Steven Harrell, Attorney at Law | Waymon Steven Harrell
You should get the auto accident report from the police agency that worked the accident. You should then get up any medical records of your husband's, and then contact an attorney that handles personal injury actions. This claim should be filed against the insurance carrier that insured the other driver.
Answer Applies to: Georgia
Replied: 1/19/2012
    The Law Office of Eric R. Chandler, P.C., L.L.O.
    The Law Office of Eric R. Chandler, P.C., L.L.O. | Eric R. Chandler
    First, contact their insurance company. You should also contact your own insurance carrier. If your husband was significantly injured call and injury lawyer in your city.
    Answer Applies to: Nebraska
    Replied: 1/19/2012
    Law Firm of Martin & Wallentine
    Law Firm of Martin & Wallentine | Richard Martin
    You can make a claim upon the auto carrier. However, without the benefit of a personal injury attorney evaluating the worth of your claim you will likely be shortchanged by the insurance company. You should contact an attorney immediately.
    Answer Applies to: Kansas
    Replied: 1/19/2012
    Craig Kelley & Faultless
    Craig Kelley & Faultless | David W. Craig
    If your husband was injured you should contact an injury attorney and schedule a free consultation. The attorney will likely be able to pull up and provide you with copy of the police report. On the police report it should list the person's, who hit your husband, insurance information. A claim can be set up with that company. However it is far better to consult with someone who can help protect you and your husband and make sure that you are treated fairly.
    Answer Applies to: Indiana
    Replied: 1/19/2012
    R. D. Kelly Law Firm, P.L.L.C.
    R. D. Kelly Law Firm, P.L.L.C. | Robert Kelly
    Your chances of getting a favorable result improve if you retain an attorney. You should have gotten the information about the driver's insurance company at the scene. That information will also be in the police report if there is a police report. You, or preferably your attorney, make the claim to the driver's insurance company.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 1/19/2012
    Law Office of Ronald Arthur Lowry
    Law Office of Ronald Arthur Lowry | Ronald Arthur Lowry
    You start by getting expert help from an attorney experienced in such cases. Do not try to do it yourself. The attorney will handle the case on a percentage fee and will charge nothing unless he wins the case or gets a settlement acceptable to you. You didn't try to set the broken bones yourself did you? The same reasoning applies. There is a reason why lawyers exist and why one has to go to school for 7 years to become one. If you try to do it yourself you WILL mess things upthat's a fact. If you have already been talking to the insurer yourself stop doing so immediately. Hopefully you haven't done serious damage to the case already.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 1/19/2012
    The Lucky Law Firm, PLC
    The Lucky Law Firm, PLC | Robert Morrison Lucky
    First thing you need to do is obtain a copy of the police report. Once you have the police report, the other party's insurance information should be listed on the report. You would then call and start a claim with that person's insurance company. Please be advised that cycling cases are some of the hardest cases for individuals to attempt to handle on their own. It is best to contact an attorney who is familiar with the cycling laws and who knows how to appropriately address all aspects of liability. We at The Lucky Law Firm have helped many cyclists with claims where they have been run over and/or hit by vehicles. Please feel free to contact my office as soon as possible to discuss. You don't want your unfamiliarity with the laws and procedures to be detrimental to your husband's case.
    Answer Applies to: Louisiana
    Replied: 1/19/2012
    Paul Whitfield and Associates P.A.
    Paul Whitfield and Associates P.A. | Paul L. Whitfield
    In NC you have to prove negligence of the other party and freedom from negligence of your husband. Any good personal injury lawyer will help you if there is serious injury.
    Answer Applies to: North Carolina
    Replied: 1/19/2012
    DEAN T. JENNINGS, P.C.
    DEAN T. JENNINGS, P.C. | Dean T Jennings
    Hire an personal injury attorney on a contingent fee (he gets a percentage of the recovery, nothing if there isn't a recovery) and have he/she investigate the case and file for you and your husband. The Statute of Limitations in Iowa is 2 years from the of the injury. This really isn't something you can handle on your own.
    Answer Applies to: Iowa
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    David F. Stoddard
    David F. Stoddard | David F. Stoddard
    You need to write a letter to the Claims Department for the driver's insurance company. If the police investigated the accident, they should have given your husband, or someone acting on his behalf, a green piece of paper called an FR-10, which lists the named and addresses of the individuals involved in the accident. The FR-10 also contains insurance information. If there is no FR-10, but you have the driver's address, then you might write the driver a letter requesting his/her insurance info. If you do not know anything about the other driver, such as in the case if a hit and run, then you might consider going ahead an filing suit.
    Answer Applies to: South Carolina
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    Wooten, Kimbrough & Normand, P.A.
    Wooten, Kimbrough & Normand, P.A. | Orman Kimbrough, Esq.
    You or your husband should contact a personal injury attorney in your area as soon as possible. After providing information, the attorney can give you specific advice on how to proceed. I recommend that you do not talk to the representatives of the person who struck your husband until you have spoken to an attorney first.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    Law Offices of Richard Copeland, LLC
    Law Offices of Richard Copeland, LLC | Richard Copeland
    If there was a police report, the name of the insurance company should be listed on it. Report the accident to them immediately. You can settle the claim by yourself, but if the injuries are significant, I would recommend hiring a lawyer to represent you.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    Magnuson Lowell P.S.
    Magnuson Lowell P.S. | Richard S. Lowell
    As a cyclist - your husband is normally entitled to have his reasonable and necessary medical bills paid by the car's insurance company under the car's PIP coverage (assuming they had PIP coverage). He can then, also, make a claim against the car's insurance company. Normally, it makes sense to have a qualified personal injury attorney handle these matters. A personal injury attorney has the experience in dealing with these insurance companies and can make sure that you are not being taken advantage of. Additionally, most personal injury attorneys work on a contingence fee basis - meaning that there is no attorney fee charged unless and until a recovery is made. And then, the attorney is paid merely a % of that recovery. If your husband suffered an injury, you should contact a personal injury attorney. Most if not all personal injury attorneys will be happy to speak with you free of charge.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    Ford, Howard & Cornett, P.C. | Bradley Cornett
    If you have the information, contact the driver's insurance carrier. If you do not have the insurance information, you and your husband may need to speak with an attorney for assistance. Most law firms, including this one, are happy to provide a free consultation.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    Bernard Huff, Attorney/Mediator
    Bernard Huff, Attorney/Mediator | Bernard Huff
    Your husband, the injured party, and you should first consult with a plaintiff's personal injury or accident lawyer for specific legal advice and direction. That lawyer should advice you on how to contact and initially proceed with a claim with the automobile driver's insurance company for relief and later file a lawsuit if you are not satisfied.
    Answer Applies to: Indiana
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    Mishkind Law Firm, Co., L.P.A.
    Mishkind Law Firm, Co., L.P.A. | Howard Mishkind
    If your husband was injured due to the incident, it is important that he talk to an attorney to understand the process of filing a claim. It is usually advisable that you talk to an attorney knowledgeable in the area so that you know your rights before you discuss the case with the insurance company. If you talk to a reputable attorney that handles personal injury cases he or she will advise you as to the steps that should be taken and the steps that should not be taken so as to protect your interest. The process in terms of trying to deal with the responsible party and his or her insurance company can be intimidating and is frequently best handled by an attorney. The first step that would be taken by your attorney is to send a notification to the party responsible to determine if he had insurance and to notify his or her insurance company. Again, you can usually get some initial advise from an attorney in this area over the phone so that you take the necessary steps and know what to anticipate.
    Answer Applies to: Ohio
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    The Olawale Law Firm | Emmanuel Olawale
    You need call the other driver's insurance company to set up a claim. Also, call your husband's insurance company to notify them. In the event the other party does not carry insurance or does not have enough coverage to cover your husband's injuries and damages. Your husband's insurance company would step in if the vehicle your husband was riding has uninsured/underinsured motorists coverage.
    Answer Applies to: Ohio
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    Goodman & Goodman PA | Bruce Elliott Goodman
    It is not clear if by cyclist you mean that your husband was on a motorcycle or a bicycle at the time of the accident. Under Maryland law a bicyclist is considered a pedestrian and the claim would be that of a pedestrian. A motorcycle claim is identical to a claim involving an automobile. An attorney can be very helpful in either situation. You and your husband should contact an attorney immediately.
    Answer Applies to: Maryland
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    The Torkzadeh Law Firm
    The Torkzadeh Law Firm | Reza Torkzadeh
    I suggest that prior to making a claim for your husband, that you speak with an attorney who can spend time describing the pitfalls and advantages of having legal representation. Having handled many bicycle accident cases, there are many nuances that you must watch out for when dealing with the insurance company. Remember, their job is to settle the case as quickly as possible for as little as possible.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 9/5/2012
    Law Office of Sam Levine, LLC
    Law Office of Sam Levine, LLC | Sam L. Levine
    First, I hope that your husband is ok & not seriously hurt. You need to contact the other person's insurance company (of the person that hit you) & request that they open up a claim. Once you do that, things should move progressively until settlement.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    Ewusiak & Roberts, P.A.
    Ewusiak & Roberts, P.A. | Christopher J. Roberts
    As a lawyer, my first recommendation is to speak to a lawyer in your area who handles personal injury cases. A lawyer can guide you the process and help make sure that your rights and interests are protected. If you do not wish to use a lawyer, you should be able to obtain the insurance information for the driver from the police report of the accident, assuming one was generated. You can the contact the insurance company and reference the accident date and the police report, and they should set up a claim for you. They will tell you what they need from you to process the claim. If the other driver did not have insurance or you cannot locate his insurance information, you should talk to your own auto insurance company if you have one. Depending on your type of insurance coverage, your husband may be covered for this accident under your own policy even though he was not driving. If neither of you had insurance that covered this loss, you will presumably need to use the court system to pursue a claim against the other driver.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 2/17/2012
    Holzer Edwards
    Holzer Edwards | Kurt Holzer
    The police report or exchange of information will have the insurance carrier for the driver noted on it.
    Answer Applies to: Idaho
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    Kelly A. Broadbent, Esq.
    Kelly A. Broadbent, Esq. | Kelly Broadbent
    I would strongly advise that you speak with a personal injury attorney so that you properly fill out all the forms for the insurance company and so that you can maximize a potential settlement for pain and suffering. At this time, you should report the accident to your husband's insurance company. Make sure you file an accident report with the rmv, the town, and the division of insurance.
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    Lacy Fields, Attorney at Law, LLC
    Lacy Fields, Attorney at Law, LLC | Lacy Fields
    If you are seeking to file a personal injury claim, you will need to file a Petition, have the defendant served, notice up depositions, serve the defendant with Interrogatories and other requests, endorse experts, etc. As you see, these are complicated cases -nothing like small claims court-and you will need the help of an attorney unless you have some extensive legal training. The attorneys are paid out of the proceeds of the lawsuit. You can call any personal injury attorney and most should provide you with a free consultation.
    Answer Applies to: Missouri
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    The Law Offices of Paul A. Samakow, P.C.
    The Law Offices of Paul A. Samakow, P.C. | Paul A. Samakow
    You contact the motorist's insurance company. Having now answered you, I would advise that you hire an attorney. I 100% guarantee your husband will benefit financially, more, even after the attorney's fee is taken out, using an attorney, than he can possibly get himself. The reason is that an attorney can threaten a lawsuit and actually go to court to press the insurer; your husband cannot, and therefore they have no incentive to deal fairly with him.
    Answer Applies to: Virginia
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    Richard E. Lewis, P.S.
    Richard E. Lewis, P.S. | Richard Eugene Lewis
    If your husband was injured you should retain a competent personal injury attorney who can advise you on how to proceed. To try to handle this yourself is not wise, unless it is under 5000 in damages in which case you can use small claims court.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    Ryan L. Hilts, Attorney at Law
    Ryan L. Hilts, Attorney at Law | Ryan L. Hilts
    Call the other driver's insurance company. You are not required to give a recorded statement or sign a medical authorization from that company.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    Andrew T. Velonis, P.C.
    Andrew T. Velonis, P.C. | Andrew Velonis
    The question is unclear. If your husband is so badly incapacitated that he cannot fill out a no-fault benefits application, you can do it for him. If he had already executed a power of attorney for you, then it is no problem. If he had not, then you should explain that to the claims representative and see if they will accept your signature. Otherwise, you will have to get a court order appointing you as Guardian ad Litem, or if his incapacity is permanent you may have to be appointed as his permanent Guardian. If you are referring to making a liability claim, a spouse is entitled to a "derrivative cause of action" that is, the extent to which your husband's injuries have affected your life e.g., loss of society and companionship, loss of economic value of household services, and loss of consortium. Of course, that all assumes that the accident was the car driver's fault, and that your husband sustained a "serious injury" as that term is defined by law.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    McKell Christiansen
    McKell Christiansen | Michael McKell
    You simply need to contact the other persons insurance company and start a claim. It is very easy and often the insurance company will contact you.
    Answer Applies to: Utah
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    Paris Blank LLP
    Paris Blank LLP | Irving M Blank
    He has to file the claim.
    Answer Applies to: Virginia
    Replied: 7/2/2013
    Bulman Law Associates PLLC Injury Law Firm
    Bulman Law Associates PLLC Injury Law Firm | Thomas Bulman
    Get a copy of the police report. The driver's insurance company is usually listed. Call them and ask for a claim number. If they refuse to help you, you may need an attorney. If your husband's injuries are minor, you can probably handle the claim yourselves.
    Answer Applies to: Montana
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    Joel H. Schwartz, P.C.
    Joel H. Schwartz, P.C. | Steven A. Schwartz
    There are certain requirements needed for your husband to be able to make a claim. You can't just "start a claim." There are fault issues that must be dealt with as well as a medical threshold requirement. My best suggestion is to contact an experienced personal injury attorney in your area as soon as possible for a free consultation.
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    Dunnings Law Firm
    Dunnings Law Firm | Steven Dunnings
    What type of claim are you talking about? If you mean a claim for medical bills, loss wages and replacement services, you file that with your automobile insurance, it's called Personal Protection Benefits. If you are talking about suing the driver for pain and suffering, you really need to confer with an attorney. That issue is more complicated.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    Lombardi Law Firm
    Lombardi Law Firm | Steve Lombardi
    You contact the owner of the car and ask for his auto insurance contact information. Then you contact the adjuster. If they don't respond then you hire a lawyer and he/she gets their attention.
    Answer Applies to: Iowa
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    Kelaher Law Offices, P.A.
    Kelaher Law Offices, P.A. | James P Kelaher
    Send a letter to the man at the address on the accident report, and request that he have his insurance company contact you. If his insurance company is listed on the accident report, send them a letter as well, informing them that you intend to bring a claim against their insured. If you, your husband or a resident relative of your household owns a car, then you need to inform the insurance company for that vehicle right away, as your husband's medical bills should be covered under the PIP insurance on that vehicle.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    Moody Jones Ingino & Morehead | Charles A. Morehead III
    You get the other driver's insurance information and call them and make a claim. The data are irrefutable that people who have a lawyer settle their cases for far more money, on average, than those without.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    Gilbert & Bourke, LLP | Brian J. Bourke
    If you were given the name of the other party and his insurance company you can contact them. However, you may need to wait for the police report to obtain that information. You would be better served to contact an attorney in your area to discuss the claim and to represent your husband. The other driver's insurance company does not have your best interest at heart. You are always better off having an attorney present the claim and obtain a fair settlement.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    Downriver Injury and Auto Law | Michael Heilmann
    First you need to file a PIP application with your own insurance company. MI is a no-fault state and you get medical benefits from your own insurance company, even if it was the other driver's fault. Then write a letter to defendant driver (address on police report) and advise their insurance company to contact you. Finally contact a lawyer who has extensive experience in this field.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    The S.E. Farris Law Firm
    The S.E. Farris Law Firm | Spencer E. Farris
    This is not ground for the timid! If you call the insurance company for the driver, they will immediately ask you for signed authorizations to get your husband's medical records since time began. They will demand a statement. After about 6 months or so, they will make a low ball offer and tell you that is all you will ever get. All the while, the statute of limitations is ticking away and if it runs out without a lawsuit being filed, the claim dies. If this is a serious injury case, you need to call an attorney who handles injury cases. Not all lawyers can handle injury cases, which should tell you that most lay people are not prepared to take on a professional insurance adjuster. Studies show that injury victims with attorneys get 4-5 times more money than those without.
    Answer Applies to: Missouri
    Replied: 1/18/2012
    Rothstein Law PLLC
    Rothstein Law PLLC | Eric Rothstein
    Retain a personal injury lawyer asap as there are short filing deadlines to meet for no-fault benefits.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 7/8/2013
    EJ Leizerman & Associates | Michael Leizerman
    You should contact your insurance company and report it. If you choose not to hire a lawyer, you should also contact the car's insurance company to establish a claim. This should be listed on the Ohio crash report. I hope that your husband was not too badly hurt.
    Answer Applies to: Ohio
    Replied: 1/18/2012
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