Buses are a great option when it comes to getting around Long Beach. Unfortunately, bus accidents in Long Beach happen, and they tend to be all too dangerous. The fact that buses are immense vehicles that carry large numbers of passengers tends to make bus accidents that much more serious.
If someone else’s negligence leaves you injured in a bus accident, do not wait to consult with an experienced Long Beach bus accident lawyer.
Bus Accident Claims in Long Beach
Many Californians commute to work, and many of them travel by bus. If you commute by bus, you travel on a city bus, which means a government entity runs it. The same is true of the buses your children take if they travel on a school bus to a public school.
Bus accident claims involving buses run by government entities have tighter time constraints and more restrictive legalities overall, making seeking professional legal guidance as soon after the bus accident paramount.
Elements of Your Bus Accident Claim
In order to bring a bus accident claim – just like any other kind of personal injury claim – several basic elements must be met.
Duty of care
The at-fault party must have owed you a duty of care, and this is true whether you were a passenger of the negligent bus driver or were injured as an occupant of another vehicle involved in the bus accident, which was caused by the bus driver’s negligence.
The fact is that every motorist owes everyone else on the road a considerable duty of care, and professional drivers, like bus drivers, shoulder even more responsibility.
The at-fault party breached the duty of care that was owed to you. This can involve the bus driver engaging in any of the following forms of negligence:
- Failure to follow the rules of the road
- Excess speed
When a bus driver fails to employ the safety standards necessary to keep their passengers – and everyone else on the road – safe, it sets the stage for life-threatening accidents.
The bus driver’s negligence must have been the direct cause of the accident that left you injured. In California, even if you share fault as another driver in the accident, you can seek the percentage of compensation that the negligent bus driver is responsible for.
Finally, you must have suffered losses that are recognized by the law, which can include all the following:
- Property damage to your car and its contents
- Your medical expenses
- Your lost wages
- Your physical and emotional pain and suffering
One of the most important factors in your recovery is obtaining the compensation that fairly addresses your physical, financial, and emotional losses in their entirety. This makes working closely with a dedicated bus accident lawyer in your best interest.
Responsibility for a Bus Accident
While bus driver negligence is often at the heart of bus accident claims, this is not always the case. The bus company, which may be a government entity, is responsible for covering claims that spring from employees engaged in the scope of their work, including bus drivers who are riding their routes.
Other possible sources of negligence include:
- A poorly maintained bus
- A bus that is defective by design or as a result of manufacture
- A bus part that is defective by design or as a result of manufacture
- A bus company that overworks its drivers (such as with overly ambitious routes or long hours), leaving them vulnerable to exhaustion behind the wheel
Sometimes, more than one party is responsible for a bus accident.
Compensation From a Bus Company’s Insurance Company
It is not unusual to feel completely alone and vulnerable after being injured by someone else’s negligence in a bus accident, and you may have no idea where to turn for the help you need. While the bus company’s insurance provider handling your claim is likely to reach out, it is important to recognize that the company is in the business of making money, and it is willing to invest its immense resources in its ongoing efforts to keep settlements as low as possible.
As such, you should be on the lookout for any of the following preemptive strikes on the part of the insurance company:
- An early settlement offer that is almost assuredly far too low
- An early denial that is meant to intimidate you into dropping your claim entirely
- An attempt to shift blame away from the bus company
- An attempt to artificially prolong and complicate the already lengthy and complicated claims process
Having a seasoned bus accident lawyer on your side helps to ensure that you are well prepared to take on the insurance company.
How Our Bus Accident Lawyers in Long Beach Can Help
Your bus accident lawyer will ably take on all of the following essential tasks in pursuit of your claim’s best possible resolution:
- Communicating with the claim’s representative on your behalf to minimize the company’s ability to trip you up
- Gathering the robust evidence necessary to prove fault on the part of the bus company and to highlight your attendant losses in their entirety
- Skillfully negotiating for a just settlement with the insurance company
- Carefully preparing for trial in the event the insurance company refuses to offer a fair settlement
Consult with an Experienced Long Beach Bus Accident Attorney Today
The trusted Long Beach bus accident lawyers at One Law Group take great pride in their impressive reputation for skillfully guiding challenging claims toward favorable outcomes, including engaging in litigation whenever necessary. Your claim is important, so please do not delay contacting or calling us at 310-923-9420 for more information today.