New Jersey Bus Accident Lawyers
Public transportation is necessary and convenient for residents and tourists to get around the Garden State. Buses commonly take people from their homes to work, school, the grocery store, or other locations. Bus drivers are responsible for getting people to their destination safely. If they cause an accident and you sustain injuries, you could hold them liable with the help of Brach Eichler Trial Lawyers.
Buses are essential to many peoples’ daily lives. Unfortunately, they can cause severe injuries if there’s an accident. If you collide with a large bus, your small car could end up with devastating damage, leading to even worse injuries for you and the other occupants. At Brach Eichler Trial Lawyers, we know the expenses that could result from a bus crash and are ready to help you fight for the justice you deserve.
Call our New Jersey bus accident lawyers at (973) 364-8300 for a free consultation to find out more about our legal services.
Common Causes of New Jersey Bus Accidents
The reasons for bus accidents are similar to why car crashes happen. When someone is operating a vehicle, they must pay attention to where they’re going, follow all traffic laws, and use proper safety precautions. An error could lead to an accident and injuries to the occupants of the bus and occupants of other vehicles.
The most common causes associated with bus accidents are:
- Driver fatigue
- Failure to obey traffic signs and signals
- Failure to check blind spots
- Distracted driving
- Adverse weather
- Defective bus parts
- Taking turns too fast
- Sudden braking or maneuvering
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Poor road conditions
- Uneven weight distribution on the bus leading to instability
The bus driver or bus company could be at fault for the injuries you suffered. Even though the bus driver was behind the wheel, you might be entitled to compensation from their employer if they hired an inexperienced driver or failed to perform routine maintenance on the bus.
Common Injuries Sustained In Bus Accidents In New Jersey
Bus accidents can cause severe injuries and death to the occupants of other vehicles. This is because of the significant size and weight difference between a bus and a passenger car. Buses can weigh up to 50,000 pounds depending on the type of bus and how many passengers are inside. Its larger size can create greater force during a collision. The driver and passenger in a small car end up suffering injuries that require medical treatment.
Some of the most common injuries from bus-to-car collisions include:
- Spinal cord injuries
- Broken or fractured bones
- Internal damage
- Concussion or traumatic brain injury
- Head and neck injuries
- Crush injuries
- Lacerations and wounds
Even if you sustained a minor injury, you could still be entitled to compensation from the bus driver or another party who caused the accident. It is crucial that you seek legal representation immediately to determine if you deserve a monetary award for the losses you suffered.
If you end up with a permanent injury or disability, you might require ongoing medical care. That costs money, and you shouldn’t be forced to pay for any of those expenses. Brach Eichler Trial Lawyers will help you fight against the negligent driver and hold them accountable.
What Brach Eichler Trial Lawyers Can Do For You After A Bus Accident In New Jersey
While you’re recovering from your injuries, you probably don’t want to deal with the legal ramifications of the bus crash. Our New Jersey bus accident lawyers can handle your case for you so you can focus on what matters the most – healing your injuries and getting your life back on track.
When you hire us, we will advocate for your rights and ensure the insurance company treats you fairly. They are notorious for using certain tactics to deny claims or provide lowball settlement offers. Their goal is to save money. Our goal is to recover the maximum settlement you deserve.
Our first step will be to begin a complete investigation into what happened. We will need to find evidence that proves who was at fault, the injuries you sustained, and the expenses you incurred. Examples include:
- The crash report
- Security video footage
- Eyewitness statements
- Any vehicle repair reports
- The bus driver’s employment and driving history
- Accident scene photos
- Insurance coverage information
- Your medical records and medical bills
Most people are unfamiliar with handling legal cases. Even though it’s possible to handle an insurance claim or lawsuit without a lawyer’s help, we recommend that you don’t go that route. Having an experienced New Jersey bus accident lawyer on your side could improve the chance of receiving more money to cover your past and future losses. We can handle all communications with the opposing party, complete all necessary paperwork, and ensure we comply with any deadlines. You won’t have to lift a finger when you hire Brach Eichler Trial Lawyers to take over your case.
Pursuing Compensation In An Insurance Claim
After a bus accident, there are multiple options for seeking compensation, depending on who was at fault. If the bus driver caused the crash, you could file a claim with their liability insurance company. All owners and operators of motor carriers in New Jersey must purchase liability insurance with minimum coverage limits.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration regulates these limits:
- Vehicle carrying 15 or fewer passengers: $1.5 million
- Vehicle carrying over 15 passengers: $5 million
When you file a liability claim, you could seek compensation for the following losses:
- Medical bills
- Lost wages
- Lost earning capacity
- Emotional distress
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Property damage
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of consortium or companionship
However, state laws require that you follow the no-fault system. That means you must file a claim for compensation with your own auto insurance company before going after the at-fault driver’s insurance coverage. Personal injury protection (PIP) comes with a minimum limit of $15,000. The insurance company should cover your medical treatment, prescription costs, out of pocket expenses, and other costs associated with the accident up to the available coverage. However, they do not cover intangible losses, such as pain and suffering.
Once the $15,000 limit runs out, you could file a lawsuit against the bus driver or their employer. PIP insurance includes two options you must choose when you purchase insurance in the first place. The option you chose then determines your eligibility for compensation from a lawsuit:
Limited Right to Sue – If you chose this option, you could not pursue a lawsuit against the at-fault party unless you suffered one of these injuries:
- Permanent injury
- Loss of a body part
- Displaced fracture
- Loss of a fetus
- Significant scarring or disfigurement
Unlimited Right to Sue – You can sue anyone responsible for your injuries after an accident if you chose this option.
There is a strict deadline you must follow if you want to file a lawsuit. The statute of limitations is two years in New Jersey. That means you have two years from the accident date to file, or you could lose your right to compensation. If you try to file suit after the two-year deadline passes, the judge will most likely dismiss your case and you will lose your right to obtain compensation through the legal system.
You also have the option of filing a claim with the bus driver’s liability insurance company. Their limits are high because buses tend to cause more damage and worse injuries in accidents with a small car than crashes between two small cars. The minimum limits should be adequate to provide the compensation you need to pay for your medical care and other expenses you incurred.
What Should I Do If I Was Riding On the Bus At the Time of the Accident?
Many buses don’t have seatbelts. When you’re not restrained in your seat, you could suffer debilitating injuries from being tossed around like a rag doll if a crash occurs. You could hold the bus driver or bus company financially responsible for your losses with an insurance claim or lawsuit, much like you would do if you were the driver or passenger in another vehicle in the crash.
Call Brach Eichler Trial Lawyers for Experienced and Compassionate Legal Representation
Our New Jersey bus accident lawyers have been recognized by some of the country’s most prestigious legal organizations, such as Super Lawyers, Best Attorneys of America, and The Best Lawyers in America. We take great pride in the services we provide to clients throughout New Jersey. We want to ensure you receive the justice and compensation you rightfully deserve for the suffering you experienced after the bus accident.
We have five office locations so you won’t have to travel far to meet with us. Our legal team is available 24 hours a day 7 days a week. You can reach us when you need us the most. We won’t make you wait days or weeks to receive a callback. We will provide the one-on-one attention you need to get through this difficult time in your life and recover the compensation you need to heal and move forward.
If you were in a bus accident and need help with your case, call Brach Eichler Trial Lawyers at (973) 364-8300 for a free consultation. We work on contingency, so you won’t have to pay upfront fees or costs to receive quality and dependable representation from one of our New Jersey bus accident lawyers.