There are a few steps to follow to file a claim after a bus accident in New York.
According to New York’s Department of Financial Services, New York has a No-Fault insurance law requiring all drivers to carry Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage. After a car accident with a bus, your first insurance claim may go through your own PIP coverage, regardless of who was at-fault for the accident.
If you suffered serious injuries or if your damages exceed the limits of your PIP coverage, you may also be able to file a fault-based insurance claim with the responsible party in your case. This may be the bus company or another liable party.
Filing either type of claim may require submitting evidence of the accident and of your damages to the appropriate insurance company. A personal injury lawyer may be able to help you file your claims or follow up with a lawsuit if an insurance company does not offer to compensate you fairly.
Finding the Liable Party
Depending on the details of the accident, multiple parties could be liable for a bus accident. These may include:
- The bus driver: if they violated traffic laws or caused the accident through a negligent act such as texting and driving. In some cases, due to the principle of vicarious liability, a bus driver’s employer may be liable for their employee’s on-the-job negligence.
- The bus company: if they pushed the bus driver to make unsafe decisions or failed to maintain the bus properly.
- A manufacturing company: if one of the accident vehicles had a defective part that malfunctioned and contributed to the crash,
- A maintenance company: if the accident was caused by their failure to properly service a vehicle,
There may be multiple parties that share liability for a bus accident. A lawyer may be able to help you identify all of the liable parties in your case.
Recoverable Damages in a Bus Accident Case
Depending on the details of your accident, the severity of your injuries, and other factors, you may be able to recover both economic and non-economic damages in a bus accident case.
Examples of Economic Damages
Economic damages are recompense for a victim’s financial losses and may include:
- Medical expenses: if you had a hospital stay, received medical tests, got a prescription, went to physical therapy, etc.
- Property damage: to replace or repair damaged property, such as your vehicle.
- Loss of wages: if your injuries kept you home from work, depriving you of income.
Examples of Non-Economic Damages
Non-economic damages are recompense for a victim’s physical injuries or emotional trauma. These may include:
- Pain and suffering: if you experienced physical or emotional pain because of your accident injuries.
- Reduced quality of life: if activities you used to take for granted—from a favorite sport to household chores—are now very difficult, if not outright impossible.
- Disfigurement: if you have painful or noticeable scars.
An attorney may be able to help you identify your potentially recoverable damages and estimate their value when they represent you.
Working with a Lawyer on Your Case
You do not need to file an insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit on your own. A lawyer may be able to manage all aspects of your case when they represent you.
In general, a lawyer may be able to provide you with the following services during representation:
- Demystifying the legal process, so you have someone to turn to for answers to legal questions and support with your concerns
- Managing all communications, deadlines, and paperwork on your behalf
- Filing your insurance claim and/or lawsuit
- Collecting evidence of the responsible party’s liability and of your damages
- Negotiating for a settlement offer
- Representing you at trial if the insurance company refuses to offer a fair settlement
Call Morelli Law Firm Today
If you were injured in a bus accident in New York, Morelli Law Firm may be able to take care of the legal work in your case while you focus on recovering from your injuries. We represent acceding victims in New York City, on Long Island, and in New York State up to Albany.
For a free consultation on your case with a member of our team, call Morelli Law Firm today at (212) 751-9800. We can discuss your case, our services, and how we may be able to help you file a claim after a bus accident.
Morelli Law Firm offers representation on a contingency-fee-basis, meaning our clients do not owe us attorney fees unless and until they recover compensation via a settlement offer or court award.
We encourage all prospective clients to contact as soon as possible, as New York Civil Practice Law & Rules (CVP) §214 sets a general three-year statute of limitations on personal injury lawsuits in New York. For lawsuits against a government agency, the deadline to act may be as short as 90 days.