Flagstaff Bus Accident Lawyer
Bus accidents can cause catastrophic injuries for those inside the bus and those in vehicles that collide with the bus. Since these crashes are often a result of negligence, victims should meet with an experienced lawyer to discuss whether they may be eligible to pursue compensation.
Phillips Law Group’s experienced attorneys have recovered hundreds of millions of dollars in compensation for Arizona personal injury victims over more than 27 years. Founding partner Jeffrey Phillips is a Top 25 member of the Motor Vehicle Trial Lawyers Association and a Top 10 member of the Trucking Trial Lawyers Association.
Our firm offers bus accident victims a free, no-obligation legal consultation to discuss their claim. We can determine if you may be able to pursue a case and what it may be worth. If you decide to move forward, there will be no upfront fees for having us represent you.
Our firm can be reached any time, day or night over the phone, by completing a free online form or by live chat.
How Do I Know if I Have a Case?
In a free consultation with our licensed Flagstaff bus accident lawyers, you can find out if you may have a valid case against the driver or another party whose negligence may have resulted in the accident and your injuries.
If you were injured in a bus accident involving any of the following kinds of buses, negligence may have been involved, so we recommend contacting us to discuss it:
- City buses
- 15-passenger vans
- School buses
- Charter buses
- Tour buses
The size difference between these vehicles and other passenger vehicles on the road means crashes can cause significant damage, no matter how fast the bus was traveling. Passengers in these vehicles generally are not wearing seat belts, as these vehicles often are not equipped with seat belts. This puts them at risk for severe injuries.
Forms of Financial Compensation for Bus Crash Victims
Depending on the severity of your injuries and how long they may last, you could be eligible for many different forms of compensation to cover physical, financial and emotional damages. Compensation is generally divided into two categories:
The financial costs of a bus accident injury can be quite significant, particularly when victims need medical treatment over a long period of time.
Some common examples of economic compensation that may be available include:
- Current expenses for your treatment
- Future medical costs (physical therapy, rehabilitation, prescription medication for pain)
- Ambulance transportation
- Stay in the hospital
- Medical equipment (wheelchair, crutches, cane, etc.)
- Medical imaging
- Surgical procedures
- Lost wages for missed hours of work
- Lost earning capacity
- Damage to your vehicle or other personal property
This type of compensation covers the physical and emotional effects of your injuries. Common examples of non-economic compensation can include:
- Pain you experience
- Emotional suffering
- Being permanently disabled
- Permanent disfigurement
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of enjoyment of life
Under state law, there is no cap on compensation for a personal injury accident. This means your attorney can pursue full compensation for your damages, if you have a case.
If you have questions about compensation or other aspects of the legal process, our Flagstaff bus accident lawyers have answers.
You can call us toll-free at 1-800-706-3000
How Long Do I Have to File a Case?
There is limited time to take legal action after a bus accident because of the statute of limitations. Generally, the statute of limitations is two years from the date of the accident. If cases are not filed by then, they may be dismissed, and victims may lose the right to pursue compensation in court.
The deadline for your case may be different though, depending on the specifics of your case. Minors have a different statute of limitations, and so do those who have been declared mentally incompetent (Arizona Revised Statutes 12-502). Other cases are governed by the discovery rule, which says the two-year clock does not start until the victim discovers the injury.
Since this issue can be complicated, you should consider meeting with one of our Flagstaff bus accident lawyers as soon as possible. We can determine how much time is left to file a claim. The sooner you contact us, the sooner we can start investigating, if you have a case. It takes time to build a strong case so it is best not to wait to determine if you may have a case.
You can contact us today by completing a free online form or doing a live chat.
Liable Parties in a Bus Crash
The bus driver could be the one at fault for the crash if he or she was negligent behind the wheel.
Negligence refers to a failure to uphold a duty of care to prevent harm to others. This failure must be linked to the victim’s injury and the injury must have caused damages.
Examples of negligence could include speeding, disobeying road signs, driving while under the influence of alcohol, tailgating other vehicles or driving while drowsy.
While drivers are often the ones responsible for a bus crash, there could be other parties that have financial responsibility for the damages suffered by victims.
Owner of the Bus/Vehicle
The bus company must make sure drivers are properly qualified and trained on safely operating the vehicle. Bus companies must also make sure they, along with their drivers, do not violate state or federal trucking regulations. For example, bus drivers cannot operate the vehicle more than 10 hours after eight straight hours off duty.
When the bus driver is an employee of the school district, the district could hold liability for the accident. A common example of a situation where a school district could be held liable is if the driver was not properly trained or qualified.
If the accident resulted from a mechanical issue with one of the components on the bus, the maintenance company could be held liable for not repairing the issue.
It is possible the mechanical issue was there because parts were defective, not because the maintenance company failed to repair it.
The bus driver may have acted responsibly, sometimes it is another driver who was negligent, and this resulted in an accident. Maybe the other driver violated the right of way or missed a stop sign or was driving while distracted.
Determining who is at fault for a bus crash can be very complicated, so you should discuss the issue with an experienced Flagstaff bus accident attorney. The consultation is free of charge.
The call is toll free and you can reach us anytime. 1-800-706-3000.
Steps to Take After a Bus Crash
There are several steps bus accident victims can take after an accident to help them begin building a case:
This way emergency vehicles will be dispatched and injured people can receive medical treatment. The police will also be sent to investigate and file a report, which will be a useful piece of evidence in an injury claim.
Get Medical Attention
It is best to be examined by a medical professional, even if you do not feel much pain or have an injury that is visibly serious. Sometimes serious injuries take a few hours or days to cause severe pain. If you wait, things could progress and become much worse than if you had received treatment right away. Receiving treatment right away also helps link your injuries to the accident because the injuries will be documented in your medical records.
Collect Evidence at the Scene
It is a good idea to write down what you remember about the accident soon after it happens. If you wait, you may forget details that could become very important later. You can also help your case by keeping a daily journal in which you discuss your daily pain and other symptoms from your injuries, along with how treatment is progressing.
While at the scene, try to get the name of the bus driver and his insurer. You should also obtain contact information from others involved in the accident, particularly witnesses. If you have a smartphone, you can take pictures at the scene. Be sure to capture damage to all the vehicles involved, damage to the road, debris, your visible injuries, and anything else that may be helpful.
Avoid Saying Too Much to Insurance Adjusters
You will likely be contacted by insurance companies after an accident. If you are, you need to be careful with what you say, because saying the wrong things or revealing too much information could seriously hurt your injury claim. You can decline to comment until talking to your attorney about the accident, or simply provide the basic details about the crash and avoid specifics about your injury and how severe it is.
Our Flagstaff Bus Accident Lawyers Are Here to Help
The legal process is complicated, particularly for injury victims who do not have experience with it. That is why hiring an attorney can be an advantage as you attempt to recover from bus accident injuries.
The attorneys at Phillips Law Group operate on a contingency fee basis. That means there is no upfront fee. The initial consultation is entirely free, and our lawyers do not get paid unless their clients receive compensation.
For more than 27 years, our firm has been obtaining fair compensation for injury victims. We know how important compensation is to injury victims who are looking to heal and attempt to get their lives back on track.