Many people use buses to get around Atlanta every day, whether through the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA) or a private transportation company. While most drivers operating these “common carriers” can be trusted to perform their jobs responsibly and keep their passengers safe from harm, negligence by bus operators is a sadly common occurrence that can lead to serious harm.
If you suffered severe injuries in a bus crash or other public transportation incident, speak with a dedicated attorney to learn your options for civil recovery. With support from an Atlanta bus accident lawyer, you can better understand the legal process and more effectively pursue the restitution you deserve.
Recoverable Damages in a Bus Wreck Claim
For the most part, personal injury claims based on bus accidents work similarly to those stemming from other types of motor vehicle crashes. This is primarily true in the sense that bus accident cases are generally built on the legal principle of negligence. Specifically, a bus crash victim and their attorney must prove that someone else directly caused their injuries by doing something careless or reckless in breach of a duty of care.
A person or entity found liable for a public transportation accident may be held financially accountable for a plaintiff’s damages, such as:
- All medical and rehabilitative care costs for accident-related injuries
- Lost work income and/or working capacity
- Personal property and/or vehicle damage, if applicable
- Physical pain from injuries
- Emotional/psychological pain and trauma
- Lost enjoyment and overall quality of life
In incidents involving overt fraud, malice, or “willful misconduct” by the defendant(s), a court may also impose punitive damages up to $250,000 against said defendant(s). These damages are subject to additional conditions set out under Official Code of Georgia §51-12-5.1, as a bus crash lawyer at our Atlanta office can further explain.
Private Versus Public Bus Crashes in Atlanta
It is important to note that unique rules may apply to bus accident claims involving negligence by a state or municipality entity. For instance, a government entity may be responsible for operating a bus involved in a wreck or for maintaining transportation infrastructure.
Ante Litem Notice Requirements
Under O.C.G.A. §36-33-5, any bus accident claim filed against the city of Atlanta is subject to a six-month ante litem notice requirement. In other words, this is a deadline by which the plaintiff must formally notify the city council, commission, and/or mayor’s office that they intend to file suit.
Filing Deadlines for MARTA Claims
Additionally, lawsuits against MARTA are generally subject to the same two-year filing deadline set by O.C.G.A. §9-3-33 for most personal injury claims. A knowledgeable local attorney at our firm could clarify what specific deadlines might apply for a specific bus accident case.
Work with a Dedicated Atlanta Bus Accident Attorney
It can be difficult to successfully recover the compensation you need after a bus crash, especially while you focus on healing from serious injuries. However, you do not need to deal with the legal system alone.
At the Gunn Law Group, an Atlanta bus accident lawyer can provide the compassionate guidance and tireless representation you need in your case. Our skilled legal team is here to advise you on pursuing a lawsuit or settlement demand after a crash involving public transportation. Give us a call today to get started on the path to recovery.