Our lawyers can help you file a lawsuit in Minnesota against a hit-and-run driver who hit and injured you when you were riding a bicycle. Our bicycle accident lawyers have helped people seek money settlements in cases like this. In one of our cases, a semitrailer truck driver failed to stop. We helped our client, who had lost a leg, sue the truck driver and trucking company, and we obtained a settlement over $5 million. You can contact our law firm about a bicycle accident lawsuit using the form below.
Minnesota Hit-and-Run Law
The Minnesota hit-and-run law was enacted to prevent people from leaving the scene of an accident after hitting a person (bicyclist or person walking) or another vehicle. The driver of any motor vehicle (car, semi-trailer truck, van, motorcycle) must immediately stop if the driver is involved in an accident with a bicycle resulting in immediately demonstrable bodily injury to or death of the bicyclist (Minnesota Stat. 169.09, Subd. 1).
Under Minnesota hit-and-run law, the driver must:
“Stop at the scene of the accident, or as close to the scene as possible but shall then return to and in every event shall remain at the scene of the accident, until the driver has fulfilled the requirements of this section as to the giving of information. The stop must be made without unnecessarily obstructing traffic. The driver shall render reasonable assistance to any individual injured in the accident.”Minnesota Stat. 169.09, Subd. 1
Violations of traffic laws are criminal offenses and can lead to a finding of negligence or gross negligence in a civil action (a lawsuit seeking compensation for the victim and his or her family). In the case of a hit and run accident, this would mean that there may be grounds for punitive damages, which can be significant and are meant to punish very bad behavior.
Liability if Driver is Not the Owner of the Vehicle That Hit the Bicyclist
If the driver of a vehicle that injured or killed someone riding a bicycle does not own the vehicle, the driver is generally deemed the agent of the owner (Minn. Stat. 169.09, Subd. 5a). This means that the owner’s insurance company will be responsible for paying bicycle accident personal injury compensation to the victim. The facts of the case need to be reviewed and evidence needs to be gathered as to consent.
Here are a couple of examples:
- A semitrailer truck driver hits and kills a bicyclist and then flees. The driver is not an employee of the owner of the truck. The owner of the truck may still be held liable (be legally responsible to pay medical expenses, pain and suffering, etc.) because, under the law, the driver is the agent of the owner.
- Bob’s best friend loans him a car. Bob hits the top of the back wheel of a bicycle, throwing the bicyclist to the ground. The insurance company for the owner of the car may have to pay medical expenses and pain and suffering compensation to the bicyclist.
- The driver of a bus hits someone riding a bike. The injured person may have the right to sue the bus company and get a money settlement from the company’s insurance policy. This would also be the case if the at-fault driver was driving any commercial vehicle, including cases where someone riding a bike was killed by a garbage truck.
If it is a fatal crash, the family may have a bicycle accident wrongful death claim against the driver and owner of the hit-and-run vehicle. Our lawyers have won millions in wrongful death cases for grieving families. For our clients, these cases help them get some justice.