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Legal Steps to Take if Your Child Is Injured in a School Bus Accident

If your child was injured in a school bus accident, your first priority is their care and recovery. That makes one of the first legal steps to take if your child is injured in a school bus accident reaching out to a lawyer in your area. While you take care of your child, a bus accident lawyer will identify the at-fault party or parties, prove the cause of the accident, and file your lawsuit. 

Additional steps your lawyer will take include conducting discovery sessions and depositions. They will also assess your financial recovery and interpret the statute of limitations according to your child’s age. These legal steps can help you recover fair and appropriate financial compensation. 

Reach Out to a Lawyer to Learn About the School Bus Accident Legal Process

The process of recovering damages after a negligence-based bus accident is complex and can be stressful and demanding without legal guidance. It typically involves:

  • Investigation
  • Damage assessment
  • Settlement demand
  • Filing of lawsuit
  • Depositions
  • Exchange of discovery
  • Settlement negotiation

Your attorney will negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf. If a settlement agreement cannot be reached, your lawyer will take your case to court for final resolution. Most cases are resolved out of court, so you may not even see the courtroom.

A Personal Injury Lawyer Can Define Financial Liability for School Bus Accidents

To sue for compensation after a bus accident, its cause must be the negligence of another person or entity. Your legal team will prove the at-fault party’s negligence by documenting its legal elements, including:

  • Duty of care: The responsibility to safeguard the bus occupants and others on the road
  • Breach of duty: Any action that deviates from the legal duty of care
  • Causation: The accident would not have occurred without the at-fault party’s actions 
  • Damages: The financial expenses and losses created by the accident and injuries

The investigation will uncover evidence to prove negligence, and it includes interior video (if the bus was so equipped), witness statements, and the official accident report. Your case file can also include accident reconstruction reports and your child’s medical records and bills. 

Track the Financial Expenses and Losses Caused by the Accident

After a school bus accident, compensation for your child’s injuries includes all accident-related medical care—hospital stays, assistive devices, and prescribed medications. Your lawyer will assess the value of your claim based on these additional recoverable damages:

  • Economic damages, including parental lost wages, loss of your child’s earning potential, treatment-related travel expenses, personal property damage or loss.
  • Non-economic damages, including impairment, disfigurement, physical pain and suffering, mental anguish, and emotional trauma.

If a school bus accident led to a fatality, your lawyer will seek wrongful death damages for your family. While nothing can atone for your loss, you can recover appropriate damages for the at-fault party’s negligence. 

Child Injury Claims Change the Personal Injury Statute of Limitations 

Your legal rights after a school bus crash include filing a lawsuit against the at-fault party. According to CCP § 335.1, you generally have two years to file your personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit. 

When a minor is injured in a negligence-based accident, the filing deadline tolls, or pauses, in their favor. This typically means the statutory clock starts ticking on their eighteenth birthday. If their lawsuit is not filed within the allotted time, they could lose the legal right to file it at all. 

A personal injury lawyer can help you understand the statute of limitations, interpret the correct filing deadline, and avoid the costly consequences of filing your lawsuit too late. 

A Personal Injury Attorney for Children Could Pursue Multiple At-Fault Parties 

Figuring out who is liable after a school bus accident can be complicated on your own. When a lawyer represents you, they will investigate the circumstances and causes of your accident to identify the appropriate at-fault party or parties.

The bus company could be liable for compensating you. but additional liable parties include:

  • The government responsible for road maintenance
  • The manufacturer of the bus or its components
  • The company responsible for bus repair and maintenance

Negligent vehicle drivers and cyclists could also bear liability for bus accidents. Your lawyer will pursue damages from all liable parties and their insurance providers.  

Call for a Free Review of Your School Bus Accident Case

The first legal step to take if your child was injured in a school bus accident is to contact our law firm. One of our team members will review your case at no cost or obligation and clarify the steps we will take to recover damages for your family. 

Learn more about your financial recovery options by contacting our team at KJT Law Group today at (818) 507-8525.

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