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New Jersey Bus Accident Lawyer

bus accident lawsuitsThe majority of bus accident fatalities are not bus passengers. According to one report from the National Safety Council (NSC), about 69% of bus-related fatalities were occupants of other vehicles and 17% were pedestrians. Inexperience is very often a common factor in severe bus collisions. As outlined in one study from the Journal of Safety Research, “young novice bus drivers increase the risk for higher accident severity.” Victims of bus accidents in New Jersey are protected by a number of laws.

Any person that is injured in a bus accident may be entitled to damages through a personal injury claim. Damages can help cover medical bills, lost wages and the unexpected expenses that come after a serious collision. However, New Jersey has some of the most complex laws with respect to motor vehicle claims in the United States. The New Jersey bus accident attorneys at Gersowitz Libo & Korek, P.C. are here to speak with you if you need help. They have decades of experience helping accident victims and would be honored to assist you. You can contact us anytime for a free and confidential case evaluation.

Common Injuries After A Bus Accident

A fully loaded bus typically weighs around 44,000 lbs. They also have a high ground clearance that can cause pedestrians to be forcibly thrown to the ground. Even a relatively low impact collision can leave victims with serious injuries. The severity of a bus accident will depend on a number of factors including the speed of the collision, the area of impact and whether or not a victim was a bus passenger. Generally speaking, pedestrians tend to suffer the most serious injuries after any bus accident. What follows below are some of the most common injuries associated with bus collisions.

  • Soft Tissue Injuries: A soft tissue injury occurs when there is damage to the body’s connective tissue including muscles, ligaments and tendons. For example, the force of an impact can cause a person to be thrown violently into their seat-belt. Most soft tissue injuries will heal over time with adequate rest and proper rehabilitation.
  • Spinal Cord Injuries: Spinal cord injuries are some of the most serious and traumatic injuries that accident victims can deal with. According to one article by the Mayo Clinic, damage to any part of the spinal cord can cause permanent changes to strength and loss of body function below the injury site.
  • Traumatic Brain Injuries: Those that lack the protection of enclosed vehicles such as pedestrians and cyclists are more likely to suffer traumatic brain injuries (TBI). A serious (TBI) can leave victims with permanent cognitive impairment including excessive agitation, slurred speech and profound confusion. Symptoms of a (TBI) include headaches, fatigue, speech problems and dizziness.
  • Broken Bones: The blunt force trauma from bus collisions often leaves victims with broken or fractured bones. Most broken bones will heal over time with adequate care. What can be very dangerous is when a broken bone punctures a lung or major organ.

Many people who are injured in bus accidents often don’t realize that they are even injured. It’s not uncommon for victims to not recognize the full extent of their injuries for several weeks or months. When a person survives a car accident, their body is filled with adrenaline. This can mask the extent of a victim’s injuries. Moreover, bus accident survivors may suffer from long term psychological injuries such as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). It’s always best to get thoroughly checked out after any bus accident or car accident generally.

Who Could Be Liable For A New Jersey Bus Accident

In general, many motor vehicle claims including bus accident claims can be processed without needing to determine fault. New Jersey requires all drivers to hold “no-fault” insurance policies. In other words, negligence for an accident does not need to be established for a person to receive compensation for their medical bills. However, any person that is seriously or permanently injured in a car accident or bus accident may also be able to file a personal injury claim to recover for pain and suffering and other damages. There are are numerous entities that could bear liability for a bus collision.

  • Bus drivers could be liable for a an accident if they were negligent. One of the most common forms of negligence is dangerous turns in the roadway. Pursuant to New Jersey Vehicle & Traffic Law 39:4-90, “The driver of a vehicle within an intersection intending to turn to the left shall yield to a vehicle approaching from the opposite direction which is within the intersection or so close thereto as to constitute an immediate hazard…”
  • Tour bus companies could be liable for a collision. Generally, corporate entities are liable for the negligent actions of their employees – insofar as those employees were working within the course and scope of their job duties.
  • A state or local municipality could also be liable for a bus accident. Many buses are owned and operated by cities and counties. There are very strict statute of limitations to keep in mind if the at-fault party was a municipal entity.
  • In certain circumstances, a vehicle manufacturer could be liable for a bus accident. Companies have a legal responsibility to produce products that are in a reasonably safe condition. Sadly, this doesn’t always happen. One New Jersey bus crash was blamed in part on faulty brakes.

Evidence is ultimately what will be used to determine liability for any collision. This is why it is so important that evidence is properly preserved. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) requires bus companies that can carry 16 or more passengers to have at least $5,000,000 worth of liability coverage. Bus companies will often fight as hard as they can to deny liability for any collision. A bus accident attorney can take steps to help ensure that evidence is being preserved and that your rights are being protected. In nearly every scenario, it’s in your best interest to have an attorney advocating on your behalf after a collision.

Why You Should Hire A Bus Accident Attorney

Tens of thousands of people are seriously injured every year in different types of bus accidents. Many of those victims don’t end up seeking legal representation or even pursuing any type of claim. In certain situations, an injured party may get pressured to settle their claim quickly for a relatively small amount. More often than not, this is a mistake. There are a number of reasons that it is advisable to hire an attorney if you’ve been injured in a bus accident.

  • No Up-Front Costs: It doesn’t cost anything to hire a New Jersey bus accident attorney. You may sleep easy at night knowing that you’re not the one paying upfront for all of the court costs and fees to pursue a claim.
  • Contingency Fee: Bus accident attorneys only get paid if they successfully resolve your claim. Their pay is a percentage of the total settlement or verdict amount. This creates a strong incentive for the attorney to get you the most compensation they can.
  • Understanding Your Claim: Personal injury attorneys specialize and focus on accident claims. Whether you’re in a bus accident or truck accident, they have the experience to pursue your claim efficiently and judiciously.
  • Medical Care: Recovering from an accident requires getting adequate medical support. A bus accident attorney can help you get the right doctors that you need in order to fully recover.
  • Higher Settlements: A bus accident attorney isn’t going to simply accept the first offer that you are given. They will fight hard to get an outcome that is fair and fully takes into consideration everything you’ve been through.

The vast majority of cases are settled out of court, but another major advantage to hiring an attorney is that they can go to trial for you if that’s needed. It’s not likely that most individuals would do well by themselves against well funded defense teams. Corporations and insurance companies have large teams of defense attorneys that are there to protect their interests. Personal injury attorneys are the necessary counterbalance to the insurance companies and defense lawyers. Their interests are entirely in winning your case for the largest sum possible. Insurance companies, by contrast, have the exact opposite incentive.

Getting Help After A New Jersey Bus Accident

Have you or someone that you care about been injured in a New Jersey bus accident? There are a number of laws designed to protect your rights. For example, you may be entitled to financial compensation for your injuries. The family of any victim that died in a bus accident may also be able to pursue a wrongful death claim. Beneficiaries in a civil claim will typically include the victim’s next of kin such as their spouse, children or parents.

If you have questions after a bus accident, the attorneys at Gersowitz Libo & Korek, P.C. are here to answer them. They’ve devoted their careers to helping accident victims and will fight hard to get you the fair and just outcome that you deserve. The passion that they have for their work shines through in the outstanding results they’ve been able to achieve. This includes recovering nearly $1 billion for their deserving clients. You’re always welcome to call us anytime at 800-529-9997.

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