Bus crashes can produce devastating injuries. Whether you were hurt while a passenger on a Phenix City Express Bus or your vehicle was hit by a local school bus, you could be facing daunting medical bills and extended time off work.
Bus companies and other negligent parties are responsible for paying the losses of those harmed by their negligence. If you were not at-fault for your injuries, a Phenix City bus accident lawyer could discuss the legal options available to you during an initial consultation. A dedicated personal injury attorney at Bence Law Firm, LLC is prepared to help you pursue the responsible parties for damages.
Bus Collisions Can Cause Significant Injury
An altercation with a bus is rarely a fair fight. Buses are much larger than most other vehicles on the road, and they can do tremendous damage. People who are injured in bus wrecks often experience severe physical injuries, such as:
- Sprained and strained joints are common
- Neck hyperextensions, also called whiplash
- Internal organ damage
- Disfiguring facial injuries
- Skull fractures and traumatic brain injury
- Spinal cord damage
Whenever an injury sustained in a bus crash requires medical treatment or keeps a person away from work for more than a few days, the injured person could have grounds to seek legal action against the bus driver, company, and any other potentially responsible parties. A Phenix City bus wreck attorney could review the details of a specific case to determine whether a claim for recovery is warranted.
Establishing Negligence in a Bus Crash Claim
Negligence is a failure to act with a reasonable degree of caution to prevent harm to another person. In any personal injury claim, the injured person—the plaintiff or claimant—must prove that someone else—the defendant—was negligent. Negligence triggers a defendant’s obligation to pay damages to the claimant.
In most motor vehicle accident cases, the negligence standard is whether a driver used the same degree of care a reasonably cautious person would have used in similar circumstances. However, buses are common carriers under federal law, and they are held to a higher standard. A bus company is negligent if it or its driver does not use the utmost caution and diligence to keep its passengers and other road users safe at all times.
If the bus company or the driver deviated in any way from best safety practices, the company could be liable to pay damages to anyone who suffered losses due to its negligence. A seasoned bus accident lawyer in Phenix City could investigate the accident to identify acts and/or omissions that might lead to liability.
Recoverable Damages in Bus Accident Cases
The money a negligent party pays to an injured person is called their damages. In a personal injury claim, reimbursement includes all the victim’s economic damages, such as:
- Injury-related medical expenses
- Incidental expenditures made necessary because of the injury
- Lost wages
- Value of any employment benefits used during their recovery, such as paid time off
- Future injury-related medical care
- Reduced earning opportunities, if the victim cannot resume their previous employment
A comprehensive claim may also include payment for non-economic damages, like:
- Lost ability to enjoy activities and hobbies
- Mental trauma
A Phenix City bus crash lawyer could assess the impact the injury had on an individual’s lifestyle and wellbeing, and demand damages that provide adequate compensation.
If a plaintiff proves a defendant acted with reckless disregard for others’ safety or intention or malice, Alabama Statutes §6-11-20 allows them to seek punitive damages. Most personal injury cases do not meet this high standard, and an award of punitive damages in a personal injury action is rare. However, if clear evidence shows a party behaved egregiously and caused significant harm to someone else through their actions, a court might award punitive damages.
Rely on a Phenix City Bus Accident Attorney to Pursue Your Claim
Healing from the severe physical and mental trauma of a bus wreck could take significant time. You might not have the energy to pursue a claim for damages on your own.
Fortunately, a Phenix City bus accident lawyer could handle all tasks associated with your case and ensure that you receive a settlement or damages that provides reasonable compensation for your losses. Call today to schedule a consultation with Bence Law Firm, LLC.