While all car accidents, including car and pedestrian accidents, can be devastating, getting into a bus accident, such as a school bus accident or a collision involving privately owned or city buses, can be especially terrifying for all involved—passengers, pedestrians, or car drivers. This is particularly alarming if a school bus with children on board is involved. If you or a family member has been a bus accident victim or suffered serious injuries in any bus-related incident in Atlanta, it’s crucial to consult with experienced Atlanta bus accident lawyers as soon as possible.
Bus accidents, including those involving charter buses or common carriers, can be subject to different regulations that govern bus transportation systems in Georgia. These regulations are vital to your ability to seek full and fair compensation, including coverage for medical expenses and lost wages. Without the sound legal advice of a personal injury lawyer specializing in bus accidents in Atlanta, navigating the complexities of bus accident claims, insurance company negotiations, and legal challenges can be difficult.
Regardless of the nature and circumstance of your injuries—whether they involve bus passengers, bus operators, or other vehicles— you have the right to fight for compensation. This could be through settlement negotiations or in court, especially in cases of negligent hiring or when a negligent party is involved. A committed injury lawyer from The Weinstein Firm can assist. Call us at 770-HELP-NOW for a risk-free case review from our legal team, offering free consultation and dedicated legal services in Atlanta. We will answer any questions you may have regarding your bus accident case and aggressively pursue maximum financial compensation for your damages.
Ask A Trusted Bus Wreck Lawyer: What Do I Need To Know?
Different kinds of buses, including school buses, public city buses, and privately owned buses, traverse the various interstates and highways of Atlanta, Georgia. These buses serve various purposes: school buses ferry students, while public buses transport passengers to and from bus stops. When an accident occurs, these different bus transport systems are governed by different regulations, affecting the ability of any party, including bus accident victims, to seek accident or wrongful death compensation.
In 2016, there was an alarming rise in school bus accident statistics in Atlanta, with 700 accidents recorded between July and December. Throughout the year, approximately 302 students suffered bus-related injuries. The NHTSA reported an average of 133 people killed in school vehicle accidents annually from 2005 to 2014.
Parents can seek the help of Atlanta bus accident attorneys if their child is involved in a school bus accident. This is also crucial for adults involved in a public bus wreck. Since many public buses are operated by government agencies, pursuing a lawsuit against a government-owned entity presents unique challenges. The guidance of experienced bus accident lawyers in Atlanta becomes essential in such cases.
Although bus accidents, including those involving charter buses or city buses, occur for similar reasons as other vehicle accidents, their immense size and weight can cause more severe damage, impacting surrounding cars, cyclists, and pedestrians. The absence of safety features like airbags and seatbelts in most buses, coupled with their larger size, makes them challenging to operate, especially on interstates or highways.
If you or a family member has been hurt in a bus collision in Atlanta, GA, it’s vital to seek proper compensation from the at-fault party. Hiring a bus accident lawyer with thorough knowledge of Georgia’s laws and regulations, including those related to common carriers and bus companies, is crucial. Skilled Atlanta bus accident attorneys can provide valuable advice, helping you navigate the complex compensation filing process, including dealing with insurance companies and handling bus accident claims.
Types Of Bus Accident Injuries And Responsible Parties
Bus accidents, ranging from school bus accidents to collisions involving city buses and charter buses, can vary widely in nature and involvement. Experienced bus accident lawyers in Atlanta have dealt with a variety of bus collision scenarios, including:
- Bus to bus collisions
- Bus to car crashes, which often involve serious injuries to car drivers and passengers
- Bus to motorcycle collisions, where the size discrepancy can lead to catastrophic accidents
- Bus-pedestrian accidents, which may result in life-threatening injuries to pedestrians
- Bus malfunction accidents, often involving negligence on the part of bus companies or bus operators
- Pedestrian accidents involving buses, where the pedestrian is the bus accident victim
The reasons behind bus accidents are diverse, often mirroring causes common in other vehicle accidents. A proficient Atlanta bus accident lawyer will likely have experience handling cases involving negligent behavior of bus drivers, such as:
- DUI or Driving Under the Influence of drugs or alcohol, a major factor in many bus accidents
- Negligent driving, which can encompass a range of dangerous behaviors
- Speeding, often leading to bus accidents with severe consequences
- Distracted driving, including the use of mobile devices while operating the bus
- Tailgating a motorcycle, which can be particularly dangerous due to the vulnerability of motorcyclists
- Lack of bus maneuvering skills, a common issue in bus accident cases
- Running a stop sign, leading to potential collisions with other vehicles or pedestrians
- Unsafe lane changes, which can cause accidents especially in busy Atlanta traffic
Understanding these various causes and types of bus accidents is crucial for any Atlanta bus accident attorney. Their expertise in dealing with these specific circumstances, including knowledge about bus accident injuries and regulations governing bus transportation, is essential for effectively representing bus accident victims and their families in seeking fair compensation and justice.
Who Is Liable For A Georgia Bus Accident?
If you’ve suffered through injuries as a result of the negligence of a bus driver, you need to contact a bus accident lawyer in Atlanta, Georgia right away. It is important for your legal counsel to review the facts of your case and compile the necessary documents for you to file a claim against the negligent party. However, deciding who should be held liable for the accident can be difficult. Sometimes, multiple parties can be responsible for a single accident.
It is crucial for your bus accident attorney to determine which party can be held liable for your injuries and compensation, which can be any of the following:
The Bus Driver
If sufficient evidence proves the negligence of the driver, s/he will be liable to pay for economic, non-economic, and even punitive damages. A bus accident attorney will quantify the amount entitled to the injured party based on medical receipts, hospital records, police reports, and intangible factors such as pain and suffering.
The Bus Driver’s Employer
This will depend largely on whether the employer of the bus driver is a government agency or a private company. A government agency may not be liable for any accident-related compensation through their immunity privileges.
However, it is possible to hold a private employer legally responsible if and when the negligent driver is their employee and if the driver’s actions are well within the range of his work duties. Given these potential complexities, it is important for anyone involved in a bus-related accident to consult with bus accident lawyers right away.
Another Vehicle Driver
It is also possible for another driver to be the one responsible for a bus accident. In these cases, the employer of the other driver and their insurance carrier may be liable for paying any compensation to the injured parties.
The Bus Or Bus Parts Manufacturer
The liability would rest on the bus production company or bus parts manufacturer if defective parts contributed to the accident. The bus accident lawyer of the injured party will have to work on obtaining evidence necessary to establish the negligence of the manufacturing company.
What Type Of Compensation Is Available To Bus Accident Victims In Georgia?
Your bus accident lawyer will help to determine which types of compensation may be available to you. The factors that determine the compensation you are qualified to claim typically include the severity of your injuries and losses, the degree of the at-fault driver’s negligence, and the ability of your bus accident attorney to obtain relevant evidence. With that said, you may be able to collect compensation for any of the following:
Loss Of Wages
If you are unable to work and earn money due to your accident injuries, your compensation claim could include the loss of your present and future wages.
If your vehicle or any other property has been damaged, these damages may be quantified and factored into a compensation claim. If a lawsuit must be filed, your bus accident lawyer should do the filing within four years from the date of the accident.
Your compensation claim may also include all your medical expenses, which will have to be supported by your medical records and other pertinent documents.
Not all accident-related losses can be quantifiable. Non-economic losses may include pain and suffering, loss of the company of a loved one, or the loss of enjoyment of life. With the help of a bus accident lawyer, these intangible losses may be estimated and covered in a compensation request.
Ask A Bus Accident Lawyer: Settlements Vs. Lawsuits, Which Is Best For Me?
When it comes to filing a compensation claim, there are two possible directions that your legal counsel may take—a settlement or a lawsuit. The right bus wreck lawyer should explain to you which direction is best given your unique circumstances.
If you prefer to avoid a lengthy court trial, you and your Atlanta, Georgia bus accident attorney may instead negotiate a settlement. With a settlement, the attorney of the injured party and the at-fault party will negotiate on a compensation amount based on the circumstances of the bus accident and the injured party’s medical expenses.
Not only does this eliminate the hassle of courtroom proceedings, but it can also result in an immediate release of compensation. If you prefer to go for a settlement in Atlanta, GA, make sure that you discuss the matter with your bus accident lawyer first.
Nonetheless, there are cases that necessitate litigation, over and beyond simple settlement discussions. If you are seeking punitive damages, your bus accident attorney in Atlanta, GA may bring the case to court. This is usually the case for accidents that occur due to extreme negligence or malicious intent. If the negligence of another has resulted in your prolonged disability or any losses graver than physical injuries, you and your bus wreck lawyer may file a lawsuit against the negligent defendant.
Another reason for filing a lawsuit is if the at-fault party and his or her respective bus accident lawyer refuse to offer you full and fair compensation for your injuries. Unfortunately, not all settlement discussions conclude favorably. If you and your bus accident attorney believe that a lawsuit, and not a settlement, is going to grant you the right compensation, then proceeding to the state court is a wiser course of action.
Whether you choose an amicable settlement or a feisty courtroom battle, what is more, important is that you understand the advantages and demerits of either a settlement or a lawsuit. For this, you need a bus wreck lawyer to provide you with sound advice and legal help.
Why Is The Legal Help Of An Atlanta Bus Accident Lawyer Crucial?
More than helping you dissect the pros and cons of a settlement and litigation, a bus accident lawyer is also going to help you in many other ways.
One of the crucial factors in filing a compensation claim in the state of Georgia is the deadline. In this state, you are given only two years to file a bus accident compensation claim. For property damage, your bus wreck lawyer should inform you that the deadline is at only four years. Any type of compensation claim filed beyond the stipulated period for lawsuits faces higher chances of rejection.
In addition to the deadline, your bus accident lawyer should inform you of the comparative negligence rule in Georgia. This rule applies to the determination of a compensation claim amount in the case of multiple negligent parties. Due to the comparative negligence clause, your liability in an accident may significantly affect your ability to receive full compensation. You can recover damages only if your liability does not reach 50%. Otherwise, you won’t be entitled to any compensation.
Your bus accident lawyer at The Weinstein Firm can still work in proving the other party had a higher percentage of negligence, however. This is why it is crucial for your lawyer to gather evidence such as eyewitness accounts and police reports to bolster your claims. This is just another reason why you need a bus accident lawyer who will work on your case from start to finish.
Hire A Trusted Bus Accident Lawyer Today
Bus accidents can be one of the most catastrophic accidents on public roads and highways. Regardless of the nature of the bus collision, if someone’s negligence has resulted in your accident-related injuries, you have the right to full compensation. Our automobile accident lawyers at The Weinstein Firm are ready to help you with your bus accident compensation claim in Atlanta, Georgia
With the help of a bus wreck lawyer, you can take appropriate action against an irresponsible entity—whether it’s the bus driver, the driver’s operator or employer, or a faulty parts manufacturer. There is no reason why you should not fight for your right to be compensated in Atlanta, GA. Talk to one of our bus accident lawyers today for a free consultation.