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How We Handle Your Bus Accident Claim

Coach BusWhether you were injured in a bus accident as a bus passenger or as a motorist in another vehicle, the end result is the same. Perhaps you were forced to miss weeks or even months of work, meaning you aren’t getting a paycheck. However, hospitals and doctors are often less than understanding when it comes to paying for your medical expenses. The result is that you may face growing medical bills with seemingly no way to pay for them. Frustrating doesn’t begin to describe it. 

However, as a bus accident victim you have options. You are not powerless. Through a bus accident lawsuit, you can bring a legal claim against the bus driver or bus company responsible for your injuries. While this may sound like an overwhelming task, with the right bus accident lawyer the process is easily manageable, even with everything else you have going on. 

No Fee PromiseAt Console & Associates, P.C., we represent bus accident victims in personal injury cases, helping them pursue meaningful compensation to aid them in the recovery process. We’re not going to claim that a lawsuit will solve all your problems, but it can help you overcome many of the financial hurdles you face. With more than 25 years of experience handling bus accident claims on behalf of accident victims, we understand what it takes to successfully hold negligent bus drivers and their employers accountable. At Console & Associates, P.C., we like to think that we’re a little different than most personal injury law firms. And our clients agree. We see our role as helping our clients recover holistically, not just financially. On that note, we’re not just personal injury lawyers, we’re advocates who remain by your side throughout the entire process. When you have questions, we’ll answer them. If we don’t know the answer off the top of our head, we will look into it and get right back to you. If you want to learn more about Console & Associates, P.C., or have questions about your case, give us a call to schedule a free consultation. Calling is risk-free because we will never pressure you to bring a case and, if you decide to move forward with a bus accident lawsuit, we won’t bill you unless and until we can recover compensation on your behalf. That’s part of the “No Fee Promise” we make to each one of our clients. 

Anyone with experience driving, either on the highway or the city streets, understands the challenges of sharing the road with buses. Buses are enormous vehicles, reaching lengths of up to 50 feet and weighing as much as 40,000 pounds. They are also high off the ground, have large blind spots, and take a long distance to come to a complete stop.

Call us today at (866) 778-5500!

Bus Accident Lawyers with Experience

At Console & Associates, P.C., we have over 25 years of experience handling bus accident claims on behalf of accident victims. Our compassionate team of personal injury lawyers takes a comprehensive approach to every case we handle, taking as much time as necessary to fully understand the impact that the accident had on your life. From there, we develop a comprehensive recovery strategy to ensure that you are fairly compensated for the injuries you unnecessarily suffered. And because we offer a No Fee Promise, you are never responsible for any legal fees unless we can get you a bus accident settlement or obtain a favorable jury award.

What Constitutes a Bus Accident?

While there are many types of bus accidents, they all share a few things in common. First, motor vehicle collisions involving buses often end in extremely serious injuries. And second, most bus accidents are preventable. It is no surprise that hundreds of people are injured and killed in bus accidents each year. In fact, according to the most recent data from the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration, there are about 74,000 bus accidents each year.

All types of buses are capable of causing serious injury when not operated by a responsible driver. Some of the most common types of bus accidents include:

  • School bus accidents
  • Tour bus accidents
  • City bus accidents

Most bus accidents involve school buses and city buses. In fact, according to the most recent data from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, school bus accidents make up about 40 percent of all bus accidents, and city bus accidents comprise about 30 percent of all bus accidents.

In each of the above examples, different rules apply when bringing a bus accident lawsuit. For example, the laws governing your claim will depend on whether a bus is being operated by a government entity or a private company. At Console & Associates, P.C., we can help you understand the exact nature of your claim and the procedural rules that you must follow to have a court hear your claim.

What Are the Most Common Causes of Bus Accidents?

While negligence is often the underlying cause of a bus accident, there are many ways that a bus driver or bus company can be negligent. Which parties you name in your lawsuit will depend on the type of accident and who was responsible. Below are a few of the leading causes of bus accidents:

  • Equipment problems – Whether a bus’s brakes fail, the steering goes out, or the lights are malfunctioning, an equipment failure can cause the driver of a bus to lose control or prevent other motorists from anticipating the driver’s actions.
  • Drunk driving – While it may seem incomprehensible that a bus driver would drink before getting behind the wheel, these things happen. In fact, there are more than 10,000 alcohol-related traffic deaths each year in the United States.
  • Distracted driving – Bus drivers have a lot they need to pay attention to, and even a split-second distraction can have tragic consequences. Things such as talking on the phone, scrolling social media, or talking with passengers can remove a driver’s attention from the road for just long enough to cause a serious accident.
  • Speeding – According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, speed is the leading cause of fatal bus and truck accidents, contributing to almost seven percent of all fatal accidents. Bus drivers have a legal duty to their passengers and everyone else on the road to obey the speed limit; when they don’t, they can be held financially liable for any resulting injuries.
  • Rollover accidents – buses can be almost 15 feet high and weigh around 40,000 pounds. The result is that these vehicles are incredibly top-heavy. If a bus driver makes a turn too quickly or jerks the wheel to avoid a hazard on the road, the bus can roll. Rollover accidents are not only a hazard to passengers but also to other motorists as a rolled-over bus can block several lanes of traffic.

Who Can Be Held Responsible After a Bus Crash?

In a bus accident case, the most obvious potentially responsible party is the bus driver. Bus drivers owe their passengers and everyone else on the road a legal duty to safely operate the vehicle. When they fail to live up to these expectations and cause an accident, they can be held accountable.

However, there may be other responsible parties as well. For example, under the doctrine of vicarious liability, employers are generally liable for the negligent acts of their employees. Thus, if a bus driver caused an accident, you may also have a claim against their employer. That said, complications can arise if the bus is operated by a city, state, or local government. In these cases, you may need to follow additional procedural rules to ensure your claim complies with the legal requirements.

While a bus driver and their employer may be the negligent parties, that does not mean that they will be the ones defending the case. In the vast majority of bus accident lawsuits, the bus driver’s insurance company intervenes on behalf of the driver. The involvement of an insurance company is both a good and bad thing for accident victims.

On one hand, an insurance company undoubtedly has the assets needed to fairly compensate you after an accident. However, on the other hand, insurance companies are notoriously difficult to work with. For example, an insurance company may question the seriousness of an accident victim’s injuries or even claim that they were partially responsible for the accident. This often results in an inadequate bus accident settlement offer.

At Console & Associates, P.C., we have decades of experience negotiating with some of the largest insurance companies in the country. We’ve enjoyed a successful track record when it comes to bus accident settlements and look forward to helping you pursue the compensation you need to continue on the road to recovery.

Proving Liability in a Bus Accident Case

To successfully bring a claim against a bus driver, you must prove they were legally liable for your injuries by showing that they were negligent. In this context, “negligence” is a legal term that encompasses the following four elements:

  • Duty – Bus drivers must operate a vehicle in a reasonably safe manner. This includes following all traffic laws and posted traffic signs.
  • Breach – The breach element refers to the bus driver’s actions that violate the duty of care owed to the accident victim. For example, distracted driving, speeding, and failure to conduct a pre-trip safety inspection can all be considered a breach of the duty a bus driver owes to others.
  • Causation – Before you can recover money damages for your injuries, you must prove that the bus driver’s negligence was the cause of your injuries. This often comes up when there are multiple other vehicles involved in a bus accident, as the drivers of these vehicles may have contributed to your injuries.
  • Damages – To successfully pursue bus accident compensation, you must prove that you suffered damages as a result of the accident. Damages include both the economic and non-economic losses you suffered as a result of the accident.

The knowledgeable bus accident lawyers at Console & Associates, P.C. have developed an effective strategy for pursuing maximum compensation on behalf of accident victims. We can help you by assessing the strength of your claim and developing a comprehensive recovery strategy.

When Should You Hire a Bus Accident Attorney?

There is no benefit to waiting to contact an attorney about your bus accident claim. On the other hand, waiting too long can make the financial recovery process more difficult than it needs to be. As time passes, important physical evidence may have been lost or destroyed. Additionally, witnesses can be harder to track down and may not remember crucial details about the accident.

The sooner you bring a lawyer onto your case, the more quickly they can begin working towards a bus accident settlement that will fairly compensate you for what you’ve been through.

Why Choose Console & Associates, P.C. to Represent You in Your Bus Accident Lawsuit?

Having an attorney represent your interests in a bus accident claim is imperative to obtaining the compensation you need and deserve. In fact, a 2014 study from the Insurance Resource Council found that those accident victims who work with an experienced personal injury attorney recover 3.5 times more in money damages than those who pursue the claim on their own.

To be sure, there are many bus accident attorneys who are happy to take your case. And most of them can competently handle your claim from beginning to end. However, when you are seeking bus accident compensation, you deserve more than mere competence. At Console & Associates, P.C., we offer all accident victims comprehensive representation from the moment you bring us onto your team. We will immediately begin investigating the accident, locating evidence and witnesses, preparing your claim, and negotiating with the insurance company. And if the insurance company isn’t willing to offer a fair bus accident settlement offer, our experienced litigators will not hesitate to take your case to trial.

Schedule a Free Consultation with a Bus Accident Lawyer Today

The choice of which bus accident lawyer to trust with your claim is a major decision, one that could have a significant impact on the outcome of your claim. When you choose Console & Associates, P.C., we will do everything we can to make the process as easy on you as possible. We offer all clients a No Fee Promise, which means that you will not pay us anything unless we can successfully resolve your case, either through a bus accident settlement or a favorable jury award. At every stage of the process, we are there for you, advocating on your behalf in pursuit of fair compensation for your injuries.

To schedule your free consultation, just call (866) 778-5500 today or fill out our secure contact form.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Much Time Do I Have to File a Bus Accident Claim?

Typically, you have two years from the date of the accident to bring a claim. If you wait too long, the court will almost certainly dismiss your case. This will leave you with no way to recover compensation for your injuries. While bringing a lawsuit in the immediate aftermath of a serious bus accident may not be at the front of your mind, there is no reason to wait any longer than necessary to get the process started.

How Much Does a Bus Accident Lawyer Near Me Cost?

The best bus accident lawyers take cases on a contingency basis. This means that they will take your case for no money upfront and only charge you a fee for their legal representation if they can recover damages on your behalf. This not only makes bringing a case easier but also aligns your interests with those of your attorney.

How Much Should I Expect from a Bus Accident Settlement?

Settlements are common in bus accident cases. However, it is difficult to provide an accurate settlement figure unless you first sit down with an experienced bus accident lawyer. The factors your attorney will consider when assessing your case include the nature and extent of your damages and the available evidence of the bus driver’s negligence. While it is true that most bus accident cases are settled before reaching trial, that is not always the case. If an insurance company offers to settle your case for less than you think you deserve, you do not have to accept their offer and can take the case to trial instead.