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Many California residents rely on buses as their primary means of transportation. Professionally trained drivers operate buses; therefore, it is common to consider them safer than other vehicles. Unfortunately, when bus accidents do happen, the damage can be tragic. These accidents often leave their victims with serious injuries, in mountains of medical debt, out of work, and strapped for cash.

Logically, the at-fault party should compensate you for the losses you incur in a bus accident. California laws allow accident victims to seek compensation for their losses. Luckily, having an experienced bus accident lawyer by your side gives you a chance at getting the compensation you deserve. The personal injury lawyers at Kash Legal are here to help.

Liability in California Bus Accident Claims

Because bus drivers are paid to transport people, bus accidents can be complicated in terms of liability. To get compensated, you must file a lawsuit against the liable party. To determine who can be held responsible, you must establish what caused the accident. The following are some common causes of bus accidents and the party liable in each case:

  • Driver negligence: This includes a range of unsafe driving behavior such as overspeeding, driving while intoxicated, distracted driving, and drowsy driving. The bus driver is liable for any property damage or personal injury in these cases.
  • Another driver: Bus accidents can also result from another driver’s negligent actions. For example, a distracted truck driver can cause a fatal accident if they crash into a bus. The at-fault party is, therefore, the truck driver.
  • Bus owner negligence: Bus owners and companies are responsible for maintaining their buses according to industry standards.
  • Dangerous road conditions: Poorly repaired or maintained roads can lead to catastrophic accidents. Local or state agencies responsible for this work can be held liable.
  • Defective parts: If a bus manufacturer knowingly or otherwise produces a defective part, they can be held liable for accidents caused due to this defect.

Under California law, an employer is responsible for damages caused by a negligent employee if they were operating within the scope of their work. This is especially the case if the driver is overworked or does not have proper training. Consult an experienced bus accident lawyer who can help you identify liability quickly. They will also be able to advise you on the compensation you can receive.

Can All Bus Passengers Receive Compensation After an Accident?

You can sue for compensation if you suffer injuries or property damage in a bus accident. Bus accident victims can receive compensation for both economic and non-economic losses as the following:

  • Medical bills incurred
  • Future medical bills for treatments and therapy related to the accident
  • Lost income
  • Loss of future earning capacity
  • Pain and suffering
  • Disfigurement
  • Permanent disability
  • Emotional trauma
  • Property damage
  • Loss of enjoyment of life

The amount of compensation awarded depends on the nature of the passenger’s losses. Two passengers with the same injuries may receive a different amount of compensation depending on the extent to which the injuries affected their lifestyle and emotional distress. A professional sports player and a receptionist who injure their legs will receive unequal compensation because of how the injury affects their lives and ability to work differently.

Do Different Rules Apply to School Buses, Tour Buses, and Chartered Buses?

No. In bus accidents, liability is established the same way. What caused the accident, and who is liable for this cause? Once liability is established, a lawsuit can be filed. If the problem was maintenance-related for school buses, you need to establish who was responsible for maintaining that school bus. In this instance, the school, a contracted company, or the school district may be answerable.

Can I File a Claim if a Bus Hit Me at a Bus Stop?

Yes. It is easy to feel like you have no claim. However, many bust stop accidents are caused by driver negligence. To get the compensation you deserve, you need to show that the driver was negligent and therefore caused your accident. California requires personal injury claims plaintiffs to prove negligence through the following elements:

  • The at-fault party owed you a duty of care. Every road user is responsible for keeping other users safe by obeying traffic rules and regulations.
  • The at-fault party breached their duty of care
  • Causation, which is a direct link between the breach of duty and your injuries

California law allows bus accident victims two years from the accident date to file a claim. If you fail to do so, you risk not getting your case heard at all. Some situations are exempt from this rule.

Contact an Experienced California Bus Accident Lawyer Today

We understand how frustrating this time can be. Fortunately, you do not have to deal with it alone. Hiring an experienced lawyer improves your chances of getting justice and the compensation you deserve. Your lawyer will handle all legal matters and fight for your rights as you focus on healing and supporting your family.

The lawyers at Kash Legal are eager to put their years of experience to work for your case. Contact us at (888) 527-4128 or fill out our contact form for a free consultation.

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