I was hit by a car while biking and was injured. I don’t own a car and don’t have car insurance. What can I do?
Although you may not have your own automobile policy, you can still access no-fault benefits, also known as Statutory Accident Benefits (SABS), because you were injured in a motor vehicle accident.
There are numerous policies which may be responsible for responding to your claim. You may be covered under the policy of someone you live with. If you live alone, you will likely be covered under the policy of the vehicle which struck you. If that vehicle was uninsured, you can apply to the Motor Vehicle Accident Claims Fund for coverage, a type of “last resort” for people to access SABS who have no other coverage.
In addition to no-fault benefits, you likely also have a tort claim, also known as a lawsuit, against the driver who struck you. In cases of pedestrians and bicycles struck by cars, there is a “reverse onus” which applies due to s. 193(1) of the Highway Traffic Act. In other words, the driver of a motor vehicle who strikes a cyclist or pedestrian is automatically at fault, unless they can prove otherwise.
Different types of compensation are available under both systems, and the interaction between them can be complex. Conferring with a lawyer who specializes in motor vehicle accident claims is highly recommended.