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When you ride on a school bus or any other type of public transportation, you assume some risks. After all, these vehicles have to drive on the road, which means there is some risk of accident and injury. When a bus accident happens and someone is injured, it can be hard to know where to begin with filing a claim for damages. 

Fortunately, most states have laws in place that protect passengers in the event that negligence leads to an accident. In California, this process begins by understanding what kind of liability you have been exposed to as a result of the accident. Understanding these components of liability in a bus accident will help guide your next steps moving forward after an accident:

Who Can Be Held Liable for a Bus Accident in California?

There are many different types of bus accidents, and as such, there can be many different liable parties. While drivers are who we typically assign blame in an accident, there are a number of other parties that are potentially liable. Liable parties may include:

  • The bus driver
  • A driver of another car
  • A mechanic who worked on the bus
  • A part manufacturer of the bus
  • The owner of the bus company
  • A pedestrian or cyclist
  • The government, in a case of poor road care
  • A passenger of the bus distracting the driver

If you are involved in a bus accident, it is important to speak with a personal injury attorney to determine who may be held liable in your specific case. Bus accidents can be complex, and an experienced attorney will be familiar with how liability is assigned even in such complex cases.

Filing a Claim and Proving Liability After a California Bus Accident

After a bus accident, you will likely be able to file a personal injury claim. Rarely are passengers at fault for a bus accident, and while you should be able to receive compensation after your accident, your case depends on the liable party being determined. Proving liability falls on your shoulders as the plaintiff, so you and your lawyer will have to prove the four elements of negligence: 

  • The defendant owed you a duty of care
  • They breached that duty of care by failing to perform what was expected of them
  • Your injuries resulted directly from their breach of duty
  • The accident caused you losses, such as costs relating to injuries

While this may seem straightforward, a lawyer will iron out every detail so that your claim is nearly inarguable, helping ensure you receive the compensation you deserve.

Compensation in a California Bus Accident Lawsuit

There are a few different types of compensation available in a bus accident lawsuit. Typical compensation is divided into economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages may include:

  • Current medical bills
  • Predicted future medical costs
  • Lost wages
  • Lost earning capacity
  • Property damage

Non-economic damages are more difficult to calculate. They may include:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional distress
  • Change in lifestyle
  • Loss of consortium

Rarely, a judge can award punitive damages, which are designed to punish the person or company responsible for the accident. These are only available whenever the case proceeds to court, and they are only offered in cases of gross negligence by the liable party.

Contact a California Bus Accident Lawyer Today

Determining liability in a bus accident is very difficult when you don’t have adequate training, resources, or support. You won’t need to deal with liability issues and other legal matters if you hire a legal team with the resources and expertise in the field. Protect yourself from after-accident expenses with help from Kash Legal.

Bus accidents can be especially tricky when it comes to liability due to the sheer number of parties involved. Your legal help can sort through the evidence and recommend the best course of action for you. Fill out our contact form or call us at (888) 527-4128 to discuss your options with our team. We look forward to hearing from you soon.

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