Car insurance is required by law to protect against damage and injuries done to other people, even if that person isn’t driving a car. That means that if someone in a car hits you while you’re on foot or riding a bicycle (or anything else that isn’t considered a motor vehicle, from rollerblades to skateboards), you may be able to make a claim against the driver’s insurance.

However, the insurance claim process is different in this type of accident compared to accidents involving two vehicles. Read on for simplified details – but we suggest talking to a lawyer, because every situation is different. You can contact us for a free consultation and we’ll help answer your questions.

See a doctor

If you need emergency care, go the hospital.  If not, it’s best to go to your family doctor.  Explain all of your injuries. If your doctor places you off work or prescribes treatments or medication, it’s for your own health, so be sure to follow the advice they give you.

Keep your medical receipts! Each insurer works differently so you may have to pay upfront for treatments and send in receipts for reimbursement.  In addition, any expenses you incur as a result of your injuries, like snow removal or housekeeping services, can be claimed against the other driver when the time comes.  This type of claim can take a while, so be sure to keep all of your receipts to track what you have paid for out of pocket.

Tell your employer

If you have been placed off work or given restrictions by your doctor, make sure to let your employer know. Provide doctors’ notes and explain the situation. If your job is physically demanding, it's OK to ask for lighter work or help from coworkers.

Open an EI claim

Employment insurance sick benefits are available for 15 weeks following an accident that prevents you from working for longer than 2 weeks.  You can visit the EI sick benefits webpage for more information or call Service Canada at 1-800-206-7218.

Open a claim with your insurance company

Insurance claims involving a pedestrian or cyclist are very different than accidents involving multiple vehicles. Unlike a car accident, you usually start by making a claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance rather than your own car insurance. Because of this, we suggest contacting a lawyer when beginning the insurance claim process.

If the insurance company contacts you, ask them if they work with “Section A” or “Section B”. It’s OK to talk to Section B, but we suggest speaking to a lawyer before talking to Section A – they are working to represent the driver, not you.

Get the driver’s insurance information! It can be hard to remember this in the heat of the moment, but it’s very helpful to get the driver’s insurance information right away, the same way you would after a car accident.

Hit-and-run: In cases where the driver leaves the scene of the accident, you may still have insurance coverage under your own car insurance. This depends on your particular situation – a lawyer can help determine whether you will be able to make a claim.

Contact a lawyer

The internet is great for little bits of information, but only a lawyer can give advice about your particular situation, especially for a more complex insurance claim like this. Lawyers know your rights and obligations following an accident, as well as things you may never think to look for on Google. Hiring a lawyer to help will save you time and stress. We offer free consultations and can help you get the best outcome for your case.

Open claims with other insurers

If you have short-term disability or private health insurance (often through your employer), you should open claims with them as well. In the case of health insurance, you are required to use it before your car insurance will kick in for treatments and medications.

An important note about deadlines

There are several deadlines that affect motor vehicle insurance claims (and that also apply to pedestrian and cyclist claims). For example, you have two years after the date of the accident to file a lawsuit against the other person. When it comes to no-fault loss of income benefits you have to miss at least 7 work days out of the 30 days following the accident, or be on reduced duty, to potentially qualify.

Do I really need a lawyer?

Hiring a lawyer to represent you is completely optional. You can choose to handle your insurance claim alone if you want to.

Some people choose to do it themselves to save on legal fees, but we believe that in those cases the outcome will be worse than if they had hired a lawyer to represent them.

The insurance company has a whole team of adjusters and lawyers on their side with years of experience in making sure insurance payouts - including yours - are as small as possible. A lawyer with experience in insurance claims, on the other hand, will fight for you to make sure you get the full compensation you deserve.

What our clients say

It was faster than expected. Mathieu was available through the process. The service was excellent.

LC