Los Angeles School Bus Accident Lawyer

Los Angeles School Bus Accident Lawyer

A school bus accident in Los Angeles can drastically change your life, leaving you with serious injuries, trauma, and financial burdens. A school bus accident lawyer can guide victims like you through the legal process of obtaining compensation and justice. Below, Law Offices of Samer Habbas & Associates, PC will explain useful information about school bus accidents: their types and causes, your legal options, the potential compensation you can receive, and how our school bus accident lawyers can assist.

Types of School Bus Accidents

School Bus AccidentOne common type of school bus accident involves collisions with other vehicles. This occurs when a school bus and another vehicle crash into each other. Another type is single-vehicle accidents, where the bus itself might hit an object or run off the road without involving another vehicle. Sometimes, accidents happen during the loading or unloading of children. This could involve kids getting hurt while getting on or off the bus, often due to moving traffic or other hazards. Lastly, there are pedestrian accidents, where someone walking, perhaps a child, is hit by a school bus.

Causes of School Bus Accidents

The reasons behind school bus accidents vary. Driver error is a major cause. This includes things like speeding, not paying attention, or not following traffic rules. Poor bus maintenance can also lead to accidents, especially if important parts like brakes or tires fail. Busses without lap/shoulder belts also increase the risk of occupant ejections and other injuries. Weather plays a role too; slippery roads from rain or foggy conditions can make driving a school bus more challenging. Also, other drivers on the road can cause accidents involving school buses, especially if they’re not careful around these large vehicles.

Common Locations for School Bus Accidents in Los Angeles

Busy intersections are a common accident spot. With lots of cars, buses, and pedestrians, these areas can be risky, especially during rush hours. Residential neighborhoods are another location. These areas have many school buses in the mornings and afternoons, and sometimes drivers or pedestrians are not as cautious as they should be. Highways around Los Angeles also see school bus accidents. High speeds and heavy traffic can make highways dangerous for large vehicles like school buses. Remember, being aware of these common places can help you be more cautious when you’re near school buses in Los Angeles.

Potential Liable Parties

If you’re involved in a school bus accident in Los Angeles, several parties might be responsible. The bus driver could be liable, especially if they weren’t driving safely or were breaking traffic laws. Sometimes, the school district or the bus company that owns the bus might be at fault. This could be the case if they didn’t keep the bus in good shape or didn’t hire qualified drivers. Other drivers can also be responsible if their actions caused the accident. For example, if a car runs a red light and hits a school bus, the car’s driver could be liable.

Legal Options for Victims

After a school bus accident, you have legal options. First, you can file an insurance claim. This means asking the insurance company of the responsible party to pay for your losses. It’s a way to get financial help without going to court. However, sometimes insurance claims don’t work out. Maybe the offer is too low, or they deny your claim. In that case, you can file a lawsuit. This is taking the matter to court to get a judge or jury to decide. When you file a lawsuit, you need to show how the accident happened and who was at fault. You also need to show your losses, like medical bills or lost wages. Remember, there are time limits for filing a lawsuit, known as statutes of limitations. In California, you generally have two years from the date of the accident to file a personal injury lawsuit. However, if the bus is owned by a public entity like a school district, you may have to file a claim with the entity first, and you usually have less time to do this.

Potential Damages in School Bus Accident Cases

If you’re injured in a school bus accident, it can really change your life. Physically, you might deal with pain and injuries that need a lot of time to heal. Some injuries, like broken bones or head injuries, can be quite serious. Emotionally, the impact is also big. It’s common to be depressed or traumatized. This can affect your daily life, making it hard to do things you used to enjoy. Financially, the costs can add up. This includes medical bills and maybe even losing money if you can’t work while you’re recovering. All these changes can be overwhelming and difficult to handle.

Fortunately, in a school bus accident case, you can recover different types of damages. Medical expenses are common. This includes costs for things like doctor visits, hospital stays, and any treatments you need because of the accident. Lost wages are another type. If you can’t work while recovering, you can ask for the money you would have earned. Pain and suffering are also a key part. This is for the physical and emotional stress caused by the accident.

In cases of wrongful death, where someone dies in an accident, their family can seek damages for things like funeral costs and loss of companionship.

It’s important to keep in mind that in California if you’re partly at fault for the accident, you can still get damages, but they might be reduced. This is under California’s comparative fault law. If you’re 30% at fault, for instance, you can get 70% of the total damages.

After the Accident

If you’re involved in a school bus accident, your first step is to ensure everyone’s safety. Check yourself and others for injuries. Call 911 immediately, especially if there are injuries or significant damage. Next, if it’s safe, take photos of the accident scene, including the bus, other vehicles, and any relevant road signs or signals. Exchange contact and insurance information with the bus driver and any other drivers involved. It’s also important to get contact information from witnesses. Avoid discussing fault at the scene. Report the accident to your insurance company as soon as possible.

Lastly, consider consulting a lawyer to understand your rights and options, especially if you or your child is injured. They can guide you through the process of claiming compensation for any injuries or losses. Your lawyer will look into the accident, gathering evidence like bus maintenance records and driver history. They can talk to witnesses and work with accident reconstruction experts if needed. Your lawyer will handle all communications with insurance companies and others involved in the accident. This means they will talk on your behalf and aim to get a fair settlement for you. If necessary, they can also represent you in court. They’ll work to make sure your rights are protected throughout the whole process.

Los Angeles School Bus Accident Attorney

If you or your child has been involved in a school bus accident in Los Angeles, you have legal rights that are worth protecting. At Law Offices of Samer Habbas & Associates, PC, our experienced bus accident attorneys understand the challenges you’re facing. We are here to help guide you through the legal process, aiming to secure maximum compensation and justice for your situation. Don’t hesitate to reach out for support and guidance. Contact Law Offices of Samer Habbas & Associates, PC by calling (888) 848-5084 or contacting us online for a consultation.

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    Frequently Asked Questions

    Can I sue for a school bus accident? +
    Who can be held responsible for a school bus accident? +
    How long do I have to file a claim?+
    What kind of compensation can I get?+
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    How do insurance claims work in these accidents? +
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