East Meadow Bus Accident Attorney
Like car accidents, bus accidents can cause severe injuries. If you suffer injuries in an accident with a NICE bus or other city vehicle as a pedestrian or a driver in another car, you may suffer more severe injuries than you would have in an accident with a passenger vehicle. Most bus drivers take care to reduce the risk of accidents and keep their passengers and others who share the road with them as safe as possible. Unfortunately, the large size of a bus means longer turning and maneuvering times and slower stopping times.
Did you suffer injuries in a bus accident? If you need to file an East Meadow bus accident claim or want to learn more about your legal right to compensation, contact the East Meadow bus accident lawyers at Jacoby & Meyers, LLP today at (877) 565-2993.
Life After East Meadow Bus Accident Injuries: What to Expect
Bus accidents often involve extreme trauma. The large size of the bus exerts a great deal of force on victims outside the bus, while victims inside the bus might lack seatbelts or other safety measures that can help prevent them from suffering severe injuries. Below our East Meadows personal injury lawyers discuss some of the more common injuries they see from clients that have been in a bus accident.
Neck and Back Injuries
Neck and back injuries occur commonly in bus accidents. During a bus accident, both passengers inside the bus and passengers outside the bus may experience a great deal of physical force. The spinal cord and the muscles that surround it often cannot easily take that kind of force.
Some neck and back injuries leave the victims suffering from ongoing pain. Neck and back injuries, especially those not treated with appropriate physical therapy, can prevent the victim from engaging in many of the activities they usually enjoy, from going for long walks with friends to engaging in sports and other recreational activities. Neck and back pain can also interfere with normal work tasks, making it difficult for the victim to sit or stand for a long time.
In severe cases, especially when the victim suffers extreme force during the accident, victims may suffer spinal cord damage. Injury to the spinal cord typically results in decreased mobility and function below the site of the injury. In the case of severe spinal cord injury, in which the spinal cord severs completely in the accident, the victim may end up completely paralyzed below the site of the injury. Spinal cord injury can also lead to decreased feeling below the site of the injury.
Traumatic Brain Injury
When bus accident victims strike their heads against something, they can suffer from traumatic brain injury. Sometimes, traumatic brain injury occurs due to extreme force to the head inside the bus: the bus comes to an abrupt stop due to a collision and victims slam into the seats or poles around them. Other times, victims outside the bus may suffer extreme force as a result of a bus collision.
Traumatic brain injury causes a wide range of symptoms that can complicate many areas of the victim’s life. Many victims with traumatic brain injury, for example, struggle with memory problems: they may have trouble bringing long-term memories to the forefront or keeping up with short-term memories.
Victims with traumatic brain injury frequently have trouble with emotional control and regulation. They may have unexpected or extreme emotional reactions due to a lack of impulse control. They may also experience mood swings, personality changes, or trouble dealing with people. Victims with traumatic brain injury may have trouble returning to work or engaging in their usual interactions with people following their injuries.
Bus accidents can quickly cause severely broken bones. In some cases, bus passengers may stand up, making it more likely that they will tumble to the ground in an accident. If the bus strikes another vehicle or pedestrian, it can cause even more serious broken bones. Victims who try to break their fall may land on their hands or arms, leading to broken wrists, arms, and bones in the hand. On the other hand, victims that do not break their fall may end up with broken legs, ribs, or hips, depending on where they land and their overall health.
While broken bones often heal completely given time, the recovery can take a great deal of time and energy. In the meantime, victims may need help with common activities, including self-care tasks. Many victims cannot return to work immediately following their injuries, since they may need time to recover before they can complete their usual work duties.
When a bus strikes a pedestrian, especially if, in a worst-case scenario, a school bus strikes a child, it can cause severe internal damage. Internal damage can include kidney trauma, liver damage, or internal bleeding. Internal injuries require prompt, immediate treatment to prevent the victim from bleeding out.
Filing a Claim for East Meadow Bus Accident Injuries
You suffered a bus accident in East Meadow, and you need to file a claim to help you seek compensation for those injuries. What comes next? How should you handle your East Meadow bus accident claim?
Start by contacting an experienced bus accident attorney in East Meadow. An attorney can go over the situation that led to your injuries, help give you a better idea of the compensation you deserve, and guide you through each step of the process. An experienced attorney can also help collect evidence related to your accident. That evidence can help prove what caused or contributed to the accident and provide the evidence you need to advance your claim.
Determining Liability for an East Meadow Bus Accident
Bus accidents involve a little more complexity than a standard auto accident. Passengers on the bus did not contribute to the bus accident, nor can they bear liability for the accident itself. As such, your attorney will start by determining who caused your bus accident.
When another driver caused the accident. If another driver caused your bus accident, you may need to apply for compensation through that driver’s insurance company. Sometimes, this can lead to a complicated claim scenario, since many drivers do not carry adequate insurance to cover serious injuries in multiple parties in an accident. Contact an experienced East Meadow bus accident attorney as soon after your accident as possible to get a better idea of how you can go about seeking compensation for injuries associated with a bus accident.
When the bus driver caused the accident. Sometimes, the bus driver may cause the accident. If you suffered serious injuries, you may receive greater compensation by filing a claim against the bus driver or the bus company than if another entity caused the accident.
Unfortunately, in many cases, buses belong to government entities. School buses, for example, often belong to the school district. It can prove much more complex to file a claim against a school district than to file a claim against a private entity. On the other hand, sometimes, school districts contract bus services to another organization, usually a bus company, within the district. If the bus driver works for a private organization, rather than working for the government directly, you may have grounds to file a claim against that specific entity.
Consult an experienced East Meadow bus accident attorney soon after your accident to get a better idea of your right to compensation, including how to go about filing a claim against a government entity.
Sometimes, you may have grounds to seek compensation against the bus driver directly: if the bus driver’s negligence directly caused the accident, for example. In other cases, you may have grounds to file a claim against the bus company: if, for example, the bus company failed to keep the bus in good repair, leading to an accident due to mechanical failure.
Determining Likely Compensation After an East Meadow Bus Accident
You suffered serious injuries in an East Meadow bus accident. Just how much compensation should you expect? You may have substantial medical bills to deal with. Worse, if you cannot work due to your injuries, you may have reduced income coming in, which can make it more difficult for you to pay the rest of your bills.
How much compensation should you expect?
Depending on who caused your accident, you can claim compensation for the financial losses you faced due to your injuries. An attorney cannot guarantee the funds you will ultimately receive in compensation for your injuries, especially if you must deal with a government entity to seek compensation. Most personal injury claims, including bus accident claims, however, include the same basic elements.
Compensation for your medical bills. The entity that caused your bus accident does not have to pay your medical bills directly. However, you may file for the compensation that will help you cover your medical costs. Make sure that you calculate all medical bills associated with your accident, including everything from emergency care immediately after your bus accident to a stay in a long-term care facility or ongoing therapy for the injuries you suffered.
You can also include the cost of occupational therapy, psychological therapy, durable medical equipment, and modifications that you must make to your home to make it possible for you to continue to live independently after your injuries.
Compensation for lost income. Often, bus accident injuries can leave you unable to work for a considerable time. Those lost wages can cause financial hardship at an already difficult period in your life. Without your income, you may have trouble paying your usual bills: your mortgage or rent, your grocery bills, and your utilities, for example. Lost wages can cause even more hardship in a bus accident victim’s life than your medical expenses, especially if you can work with your doctor to come to a payment agreement concerning your wages.
In addition to lost income immediately after your accident, you should also work with your lawyer to calculate other wages lost due to your accident. For example, some accident victims may need to miss work regularly following their accident to attend therapy sessions or keep up with follow-up appointments. Other victims cannot return to work on a full-time basis immediately: they may go back part-time but not have the ability to manage a full day at work while dealing with the pain and limitations from their injuries.
Coverage for pain and suffering. In addition to the tangible financial losses you may suffer as a result of your bus accident injuries, you may have the right to file a claim that includes your pain and suffering due to your bus accident injuries. Some victims, for example, may suffer substantial physical pain related to the injuries. Others may suffer social losses or find themselves facing significant limitations on their leisure activities. Talk to your attorney about these limitations, how they affected your life, and how to include them as part of your East Meadow bus accident claim.
Filing a Wrongful Death Claim After an East Meadow Bus Accident
Sometimes, bus accidents can lead to death, especially if a bus strikes a pedestrian or bike rider. In that case, the surviving family of the victim may have the right to file a wrongful death claim for compensation for their loss. A wrongful death claim can help cover final expenses and provide some compensation for the loss of a loved one. Consult an attorney to learn more about your right to compensation following the loss of a loved one in an East Meadow bus accident.
East Meadow Bus Accident FAQs
Many people have substantial legal questions following a bus accident, whether you suffered serious injuries or lost a loved one in a bus accident. If you have questions specific to your claim, you should consult our East Meadow bus accident attorneys. Below, we offer some answers to the most commonly-asked questions victims have following a bus accident.
My child died in an East Meadow school bus accident. Do I have the right to compensation?
School buses provide vital transportation to and from school for thousands of children each day. Unfortunately, that also means a great deal of injury risk. If your child dies in a school bus accident in East Meadow, you may have the right to compensation for the loss of your child.
The school district may own the bus and hire the drivers or contract out those services. Either way, these claims require the services of a law firm like Jacoby & Meyers, LLP, which has the resources and experience to take on the complex liability issues involving school bus accidents.
What should I do if my child suffers injuries in an East Meadow bus accident?
Seeing your child injured can cause a great deal of trauma for any parent. Unfortunately, children have many opportunities to suffer injuries in a school bus accident.
If your child suffers injuries in a bus accident, the steps you take immediately after that accident can help protect your child physically and you financially.
To keep everyone safe, make sure that you:
- Take your child to the emergency room or an urgent care center immediately after the accident. Make sure that your child receives a full evaluation that will document and diagnose any injuries suffered in the accident and can receive much-needed treatment.
- Document everything. Take photos of your child’s injuries. Keep track of all of your child’s medical records. Take photos of the injury as it heals. The more documentation you provide, the easier it is to prove how your child’s injuries occurred.
- Contact the school district. Find out who takes care of busing children. You may also want to ask the school district about who drove the bus that caused your child’s accident.
- Get in touch with an attorney. After a bus accident, you should get in touch with an attorney as soon as possible to learn more about your right to compensation and to help you file an East Meadow bus accident injury claim.
How long do I have to file an East Meadow bus accident claim?
In most East Meadow bus accident claims, you have until the statute of limitations runs out to file a claim. In a bus accident claim against a government entity, including one against a school district or one against public transportation providers, you may have a more limited timeline when it comes to filing your claim. In some cases, you may have just 90 days to submit a notice of your injuries and file an East Meadow bus accident claim.
To make your claim goes as smoothly as possible, get in touch with an experienced East Meadow bus accident attorney as soon after your accident as possible. If you do not know who caused your bus accident, or if you do not know whether the bus belongs to a government entity, you may want to start working with a lawyer as early as possible.
Do I really have to have an attorney to file an East Meadow bus accident injury claim?
If you suffer injuries in a bus accident, you should get in touch with an attorney as soon as possible. In a bus accident claim, you may have unique considerations to manage as you file your claim. Not only do you have a shorter statute of limitations to deal with, a government entity may, in some cases, provide less compensation for the injuries sustained in the accident than another entity.
Having an attorney on your side can make it easier for you to navigate that claim, increasing the odds that you will receive the compensation you really deserve for your injuries.
If a government entity does not bear liability for your accident, you should still have an attorney on your side. Many accident victims each year find that having an experienced East Meadow bus accident attorney on their side increases the compensation they can ultimately receive for their injuries, even when they consider their legal fees.
An attorney can:
- Collect evidence regarding your bus accident. How did your bus accident occur? What factors may have contributed to it? On your own, you may have a hard time collecting all the evidence related to your accident, especially if you need to deal with physical limitations through that investigation period. An attorney can help interview witnesses, check camera evidence, and even piece together what led to your accident. Thanks to the attorney’s efforts, you can get a much better idea of all factors that may have contributed to the accident.
- Negotiate on your behalf. Dealing with an insurance company or handling negotiations with the party that caused your accident can cause an extreme amount of stress, especially if you feel shorted or as though the insurance company does not consider your needs. An attorney can take care of those negotiations on your behalf, freeing you up to focus on your recovery and reducing your overall stress levels so that you do not have to experience the negative effects of those negotiations.
- Help you understand your rights and your options. Following a bus accident, you need a strong understanding of your rights, including your right to compensation. You may need to work closely with an attorney to fully understand your rights, from how much compensation you really deserve to how submitting a bus accident claim against a government entity can affect your claim.
How long will it take to receive compensation for an East Meadow bus accident claim?
It can take quite some time to receive the compensation you deserve for a bus accident, whether you suffer injuries yourself or lose a loved one due to the negligence of a bus driver. Consider these elements of your claim and how they may impact the process.
The investigation/ To accurately assess all parties that caused or contributed to a bus accident, both sides must investigate the accident. That investigation may include several important facets. Internally, the bus company may want to investigate the driver. Does the driver have a habit of behaving negligently behind the wheel? Does he drink while driving? Did he do something foolish that could have contributed to the accident?
Your attorney will also want to know if the bus company bears direct liability for the accident in any way. For example, if the bus company failed to properly maintain the bus, or if the bus company allowed a driver to continue driving after a serious history of accidents, the company may bear direct liability for the accident.
Your recovery. If you suffer severe injuries in a bus accident, it can take a long time for you to make a full recovery. You do not have to make a full recovery before you file a bus accident claim. However, depending on who caused your accident and how long you have to file a claim before the statute of limitations can interfere with your ability to seek compensation, you may need to progress through your recovery before you file your East Meadow bus accident claim.
In the case of spinal cord injuries, especially incomplete spinal cord injuries, for example, you may not know what your eventual recovery will look like until you have had time to start to heal. Even your doctors might not have the ability to fully predict what your recovery will look like in the early days after your accident.
At that time, you may not know what your medical bills will look like since your medical bills may grow higher based on the full extent of your injuries and any complications that you face along the road to recovery. You may also not know how those injuries will impact your everyday life until you have a chance to progress down the road to recovery.
Sometimes, your attorney will recommend waiting until you reach a certain point in your recovery before you file a bus accident claim. Other times, you may need to move forward quickly with your claim to prevent the statute of limitations from running out. Talk to your attorney about the best time to file your East Meadow bus accident claim.
The negotiation process. The negotiation process takes up a large percentage of the time involved in settling an East Meadow bus accident claim. Depending on who caused your bus accident injuries and how much compensation you need to claim, you may go through several rounds of negotiation before you reach an agreement that reflects both your needs and the restrictions offered by the insurance company or liable entity.
The more rounds of negotiation you need to go through, the more it will extend the time needed to receive compensation for your injuries.
That does not necessarily mean, however, that you should stop negotiating or settle for less than you deserve. Discuss your needs with your attorney to get a better idea of how long you should negotiate and when you should accept a settlement offer.
Taking your claim to court. If you need to take your bus accident claim to court, it can further extend the time needed for you to receive compensation for your injuries. You will need to wait for a court date, then appear in court, present your evidence, and wait for the court to reach a resolution.
How likely is it that my East Meadow bus accident claim will have to go to court?
Most of the time, bus accident claims settle out of court. Insurance companies, including those that cover bus companies, understand that going to court can significantly increase legal costs on both sides. As a result, most of them will try to reach an agreement out of court, if at all possible. Sometimes, however, you may not reach an agreement with the party liable for your bus accident through negotiation.
If you cannot reach an agreement, you may need to go to court to settle your claim. If you do need to go to court, having an attorney on your side can make it easier for you to present your evidence, argue your claim, and, ultimately, pursue the compensation you deserve.
What should I do if I receive a settlement offer after an East Meadow bus accident?
Whether you lost a loved one in a bus accident or you suffered severe injuries due to negligence from a bus driver, you should consult an experienced East Meadow bus accident attorney before accepting any settlement offer. Sometimes, especially when dealing with a government entity, your attorney may advise accepting an offer. In many cases, however, a settlement offer will not reflect the full compensation you deserve for the financial losses you suffered in your accident.
An attorney can give you a better idea of how much compensation you really deserve, when to continue negotiations, and when you should accept a settlement offer. Keep in mind that if you accept a settlement offer at any time, it eliminates the liable party’s future financial liability for your injuries or financial losses, so you should make sure that a settlement offer reflects your financial needs before accepting.
Do You Need a Bus Accident Attorney in East Meadow? Jacoby & Meyers, LLP Is Ready to Help You
If you suffered injuries in a bus accident in East Meadow, an experienced attorney can offer support as you file your claim, help you collect evidence, and give you a better idea of the compensation you deserve for your injuries. For your free case evaluation, contact Jacoby & Meyers, LLP today at (877) 565-2993 or start a confidential webchat with one of our representatives.
East Meadow Office
90 Merrick Avenue, Suite 601
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