Case Study: Broken Wrist After Car Collided With Cyclist

Ms V, Compensation: £11,814.84 

JMW's specialist cycling team, Twisted Spokes have secured £11,814.84 compensation for a cyclist who suffered a broken wrist after a collision with a driver.

The case

Ms V was in the cycle lane and was stationary at traffic lights, when a car approached from behind and pulled in to her right.  As the traffic lights turned green, Ms V began to cycle ahead.  However, the vehicle proceeded to turn left, without having previously indicated, colliding with Ms V and knocking her off her bike.  Ms V decided to make a claim and was put in touch with JMW Solicitors. 

Starting the claim

We wrote a letter to the driver of the car, the defendant, outlining Ms V’s intent to claim.  The driver passed the letter to his insurance company.  The defendant’s insurance company replied to us, denying responsibility for the accident and requesting a statement, diagram of the accident area and independent witness statements. 

As the defendant had committed a criminal offence, he underwent police prosecution.  We obtained a police report on the incident, which included witness evidence demonstrating that the driver of the car was at fault. 

Progressing the claim

The defendant’s insurance company chose to pass the matter over to a solicitor, whom we wrote to, suggesting that they should now take responsibility for the accident.  They responded by saying that they thought Ms V was clearly proceeding to turn right, and had failed to take into account the driver’s route.  They suggested that Ms V was 50% responsible for the accident, and should therefore receive a 50% deduction of any agreed compensation amount. 

We engaged in a lengthy discussion with the defendant's solicitor; they still believed Ms V should bear some responsibility for the accident, despite the driver’s witness statement highlighting that he had seen Ms V in the cycle lane, but still chose to turn left without indicating, and didn’t wait for her to pass his nearside.  They also failed to note that Ms V was actually proceeding straight on, and not turning left.  Eventually, after much discussion, we encouraged them to accept full responsibility for Ms V’s accident on their client’s behalf. 

Medical evidence and offers

We had Ms V examined by an independent orthopaedic surgeon, to prepare an independent report to support her claim.  The report highlighted that she had suffered a right scaphoid fracture.  We then disclosed the report to the defendant’s solicitor.  They responded by making an offer to settle Ms V’s general damages – the element of the claim that covers an individual’s pain, suffering and loss of amenity.  We felt the offer to be on the low side and, with Ms V’s consent, negotiated a higher settlement. 

We then needed to negotiate an appropriate settlement for Ms V’s special damages – the element of the claim covering an individual’s financial losses.  As Ms V was a freelance graphic designer, this was not straightforward.  She had been contracted to a large, profitable client at the time of the accident, and lost out on thousands of pounds during the time she had been unable to work. 

Ms V also spent six weeks in a plaster cast, then a further a further 6-8 weeks recovering, during which time she underwent physiotherapy.  We therefore looked to make sure that an amount to cover Ms V’s care needs during her accident, was included in the claim. 

Final settlement

After detailed consideration of how much Ms V had lost in earnings during this time, we started negotiating with the solicitor.  They offered Ms V a figure for her loss of earnings, based on our estimate.  Ms V was happy with this figure and agreed to accept it in settlement of her case.  

Have you also suffered an accident involving a car while cycling?

If so, speak to our expert solicitors today to make a claim for compensation. Call 0808 168 7228 or fill in our contact form.

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