Veteran New York Lawyers for Victims of Transportation Crashes
New Yorkers are fortunate to have a variety of public transportation methods available to them. Buses, for example, can be a convenient way to travel around the state. Many buses do not provide passengers with seat belts or mandate their use, however, so an accident can result in severe injury or death. The number of passengers who may be carried while seated or standing inside a crowded vehicle can pose additional hazards. The Law Office of Michael H. Joseph, PLLC has assisted transportation crash victims and their families in New York for more than a decade. Our knowledgeable attorneys are dedicated to serving clients in Manhattan, the Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens, Westchester, Rockland, Long Island, upstate, or Staten Island, as well as the surrounding areas.
Holding Negligent Bus Drivers Liable In general, buses operating in New York are considered common carriers, so they are subject to the safety provisions included in the New York Transportation Law. This means that a bus company that wishes to conduct business in this state must first obtain permission from the Department of Transportation to carry passengers in exchange for money. Common carriers are also held to a higher standard of care than other motor vehicle operators. Under Section 140 of the Transportation Law, they are required to provide all passengers with “safe and adequate” facilities. Anyone running a bus service in New York must immediately report all collisions and other accidents that occur during the course of operations to the Department of Transportation. Additionally, vehicles and related facilities must be made available for Department inspection.
All bus drivers owe a duty of care to passengers, other motorists, and pedestrians. When someone violates that duty, an avoidable injury often results. A serious bus accident may be caused by a number of factors, including driver negligence, inadequate equipment maintenance, or a lack of training. A crash may result in contusions, broken bones, serious head injuries, spinal cord harm, and even tragic death. A bus operator also may be held responsible for a preventable slip-and-fall or other injury that an individual sustains while boarding or on board the vehicle.
Seeking Compensation After an Accident
Taking legal action after a crash involving public transportation can be challenging. Many buses traveling on the streets of New York are owned by a government agency, such as the New York City Transit Authority. If a passenger is hurt while traveling on a vehicle that is operated by the Transit Authority, he or she may be entitled to file a no-fault claim against the entity for up to $50,000 worth of medical expenses and lost wages, subject to certain limitations. Additionally, a statutory death benefit of $2,000 is also available to people who lost a loved one in a bus accident. A no-fault claim does not require an injured person to offer proof of negligence to recover damages. Still, a victim must file this type of claim within 90 days of a crash. It is important to note that no-fault insurance coverage does not account for damages related to pain and suffering, emotional trauma, and wrongful death.
Passengers who suffer a serious injury may also be eligible to pursue a negligence claim against a bus company or government entity. In general, a person who seeks to prove negligence must show that he or she was owed a legal duty, that the defendant violated this duty, that the victim’s injury directly resulted from that violation, and that he or she incurred damages. To illustrate, all motorists are required to adhere to state and local traffic laws. If a passenger was hurt in a collision that was caused by a speeding driver, the passenger may be entitled to recover for any harm that he or she sustained as a result of the driver’s negligent act. Similarly, if a person dies in a crash that was caused by a bus operator’s careless behavior, the company that hired the operator may be held responsible for the person’s death under the rule of vicarious liability. This can make an employer liable for any damages that resulted from the negligent actions of an employee if he or she was within the scope and course of the employment relationship at the time. Our bus accident attorneys have won numerous victories against the MTA and the New York City Transit Authority, as well as private bus carriers.
Consult a Skilled Bus Collision Attorney in White Plains
An unforeseen injury can be hard on your family and you. If you were injured or lost a loved one in an accident, you should have a hardworking bus collision lawyer on your side. The Law Office of Michael H. Joseph, PLLC provides quality representation to injured individuals in White Plains, Westchester County, and throughout the five boroughs of New York City. Our attorneys have handled a number of cases against the County of Westchester and Liberty Lines. If you were hurt as the result of someone else’s carelessness, do not hesitate to call us toll-free at (877) 580-6636 or contact us through our website today.