A Basic Guide to Bus Accident Lawsuits
When it comes to bus-related accidents, most tend to happen due to driver error or mechanical failure. Whatever the cause, the size of these vehicles is what makes this type of accident more dangerous than those caused by other types of vehicles. Also, there is likely to be more people involved if there are passengers aboard.
Oftentimes, people involved in any kind of vehicle accident aren’t sure what steps to take after the incident… or, whether or not they have a case to file a lawsuit. If you find yourself in this position and not sure if you have a case or not, don’t stress. Our team has put together an overview of what a bus accident lawsuit entails to give you an idea of what options you may have, or what steps to take following it.
Bus Accident Traumas
Injuries sustained by bus accidents vary greatly. On the less serious end, they may include:
Much more serious are hard injuries, such as:
- Spinal breaks
- Permanent scars
- Brain injuries
The amount of money you may be able to recover is highly dependent upon the level of harm you endure. If you were partially at fault, you may not be able to recover because in North Carolina if the injured person is at fault they cannot recover. This is called contributory negligence. A competent personal injury attorney in Durham is capable of determining whether you have a case.
Bus Accident Injury Claims
Vehicle ownership is an important determination. If the bus involved is owned by a governmental entity the case may be barred by governmental immunity or may have to be filed as a State Tort Claim in the industrial commission.
When someone is injured by a commercially-owned bus, the suit may be filed against the operating company in a civil court in North Carolina. If the owner is a corporation from another state it may have to be litigated in Federal Court.
Bus Accident Claim Statutes of Limitations
Any bus accident victim has a limited period of time for filing suit. For buses in the private sector, the length of time you have to file is typically three years in North Carolina. The exact amount of time is determined by the state where the accident occurred. The window for suing the government may be shorter.
Bus Accident Common Carrier Laws
For safety, states have laws regarding how bus drivers must perform. These requirements may include:
- Using qualified and licensed drivers
- Proper vehicle maintenance
- Driving according to the rules of the road
If you can prove that a driver or bus company has violated any of these laws, your odds of winning increase dramatically.
The suffering that comes from being hit by a bus is immense and those who are stricken deserve adequate compensation. Sometimes, lawsuits are necessary to obtain the compensation you deserve.
Don’t Take Chances, Hire an Attorney
If you have been involved in a bus-related accident, don’t leave a potential case to chance. Contact Glenn, Mills, Fisher & Mahoney to see if you have a claim or require legal assistance. We will assess the facts and circumstances of your situation. You can also Fill out our online Case Evaluation Form, or call our team directly at (919) 683-2135 today.