Trusted Portland Bus Accident Lawyers Ready To Serve You
Have you or a loved one been injured in a bus-related accident in Oregon? At D’Amore Law Group, we understand that the path to recovery after a bus accident can be long and arduous. Although it might seem simpler to attempt to negotiate with insurance companies on your own, you owe it to yourself to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve. Insurance companies are notorious for paying out the smallest compensation possible – don’t sell yourself short. At D’Amore Law Group, our Portland bus accident lawyer can assist you in crafting a strategic plan of legal action to help you put this traumatic event behind you.
The majority of travelers do not think twice when using a bus to get around. They are an affordable, accessible, and convenient means of transportation. Not surprisingly, an increasing number of Oregon residents are opting for public transportation. In the Portland area alone, nearly 100 million utilize the bus system annually, which constitutes 45% of rush-hour travelers. The increased usage of the bus system, however, has seen a correlated rise in the frequency of bus-related accidents, with Portland’s Tri-County Metropolitan Transportation District (TriMet) reporting over 655 bus collisions over the course of the last year. The Portland bus accident attorneys at D’Amore Law Group have experience in finding solutions to issues associated with insurance, right-of-way statutes, at-fault liability claims, and obtaining fair and equitable compensation for individuals involved in bus accidents.
Bus Accident FAQ’s
Q: What steps should I take after myself or a loved one is injured in a bus-related accident?
A: First and foremost, seek prompt medical attention – you and your loved one’s health and well-being should be your initial priority. After your medical needs have been fully addressed, Oregon law mandates that you submit an Oregon Accident & Insurance Report directly to the state DMV within 72 hours of the accident in question. Next, write down your recollection of the accident, including details of what took place, the names and contact information of the parties involved, the location of the accident, and any comments made by anyone who was involved or witnessed the event. Also, be sure to preserve any records of the accident, including pictures, recordings, exchanged information, and medical bills, etc.
Q: Is there a time limit for me to file a claim after being injured in a bus-related accident?
A: Due to the fact that the majority of public transportation is owned and operated by municipal entities, the limitation period for filing a tort claim notice (a formal notification to the public corporation that you plan on pursuing a compensation claim) is generally 180 days from the date of the accident. If you miss that window, you may forfeit your right to compensation. The experienced bus accident injury attorneys in Portland at D’Amore Law Group can ensure this paperwork is properly and timely completed to safeguard your legal rights moving forward. In addition to this written notice, claimants must also remain compliant with the applicable Oregon statute of limitations for claims against public organizations. This means you may only have two years following the accident to settle your claim or file suit.
Q: Do I really need a lawyer for a bus-related accident claim?
A: Yes. Personal injury claims stemming from bus accidents can quickly become complex and intimidating for all parties involved. There are a multitude of complicating factors to consider, including comparative negligence analysis, liability determinations, and investigative methodology. The reliable and client-focused legal team of D’Amore Law Group can mitigate the stress and hassle associated with these issues and help you obtain a favorable resolution in your case.
School Bus Accidents
Every day during the school year, parents across the country and in the communities in and around Portland entrust school bus drivers and their affiliated bus companies to safely transport their children to and from school. Although this is a relatively safe method of travel, according to the National Highway Safety Administration (NHTSA) data, there were 1,172 fatal school transportation accidents between 2006-2015. There are unique risks associated with school buses. They are large, generally, travel at slower speeds than the surrounding traffic, and conduct frequent stops along their projected routes – all of which contribute to an increased risk for an accident to occur. If your child has suffered a personal injury from a crash involving a school bus, the knowledgeable and responsive legal team at D’Amore Law Group can help your family in obtaining the compensation you are entitled.
In the majority of school bus accident claims, the bus driver is found liable for accidents resulting in personal injury or death. The experienced lawyers at D’Amore Law Group will assist you in conducting a full investigation of the accident to ensure that all responsible parties are held accountable so that you obtain the highest compensation you deserve. Other entities that may be liable include: the bus manufacturer; bus maintenance contractors; driver(s) of another involved vehicle(s); government organizations who designed the roadway; external corporations hired to provide school transportation; and parts makers and private/public school groups.
Our attorneys have the requisite insight and legal acumen to handle all aspects of the litigation associated with your claim. If your child has incurred a personal injury in a school-bus related accident due to the negligence of others, you may be entitled to compensation for your child’s medical costs, pain and suffering, emotional distress, and long-term disabilities arising as a consequence of the incident. The following are just a few of the services the D’Amore Law Group can provide you in this trying time so that you can focus on the healing process:
- Compiling documentation to strengthen your legal claim
- Handling communications with insurance companies to obtain the maximum compensation you are entitled
- Negotiating a fair and just settlement agreement with liable parties
- Timely filing a lawsuit in compliance with applicable statutes of limitations, and trying the case if a reasonable settlement cannot be reached
- Conducting a thorough and comprehensive investigation of the accident
Steps to Take after a School Bus Accident
If your child is hurt in a school bus-related accident, the D’Amore Law Group stands ready and willing to provide assistance with all of your subsequent legal needs. We will handle all aspects of your claim so that you can focus on your loved one’s recovery. In order to maximize your chances of obtaining a favorable resolution to your case, it is essential you take the following actions after the event:
- Seek Medical Attention: Your first action should be to seek out medical attention for your child’s injuries. If their injuries do not require immediate medical attention, do not assume that issues will not arise in the future. Take your child to a physician where he/she can receive a comprehensive medical evaluation to ensure your child’s medical expenses are accurately documented. Even if there are no explicit injuries you or your child is aware of, an experienced doctor may discover latent or undiagnosed injuries related to the school bus accident.
- Document the Accident: Retain all information and communication with school districts, involved parties, and government officials. If other children were implicated, speak with their parents as well as any eyewitnesses and keep detailed notes of these conversations. Discussion of the accident should be strictly limited to your child’s physician and your legal counsel – anything you say following the accident can potentially be used against you in court.
- Track Your Child’s Medical Care: The impact of the accident on your child is vital in proving the legitimacy of your legal claim. Document all the ways in which the event has affected your child and/or caused them to experience emotional and mental distress, including signs of physical pain, depression, anxiety, and/or insomnia.
Public Transit and School Bus Accidents – Who Is Liable?
Just as with any other type of vehicle collision, when seeking financial compensation for a public transit or school bus accident, you need to know who was at fault in the crash. While the bus driver may have been to blame, there are various other factors that may have caused or contributed to the collision as well. Depending on the circumstances involved, the parties that may be liable for injuries sustained in a public transit or school bus accident include:
- TriMet – If you were riding on (or hit by) a TriMet bus, then TriMet could be liable for your injuries. As an employer, TriMet is “vicariously liable” for its bus drivers’ negligence, and TriMet could also be directly liable for hiring an inexperienced or unqualified driver.
- School District – If your child was injured in a school bus accident, then the school district may be liable for your child’s injuries and your family’s financial losses. If the bus belonged to a private school, then the private school may be liable.
- Bus or Vehicle Manufacturer – Perhaps driver negligence wasn’t to blame but rather a defective bus (or other vehicle) component. If the accident was the result of a product defect, then the bus or vehicle manufacturer may be liable.
- Maintenance or Repair Shop – Negligent repairs are often to blame for bus accidents as well. If the accident was caused by a faulty brake job or other negligent maintenance work, then the shop that performed the work could be responsible for your losses.
- Road Authority or Private Contractor – If the design or condition of the road caused or contributed to your bus accident, then the road authority or private contractor responsible for the road’s design, construction, or maintenance could be deemed legally at fault.
- Another Driver – Finally, if another driver hit the bus or caused the bus driver to lose control, then that driver (or his or her insurance company) may hold legal responsibility for the collision.
Speak with our Portland Bus Accident Attorney for Free
If you have been injured or a loved one has been killed in a bus accident in Oregon or Washington, please contact us. Our Portland bus accident lawyers will provide you with an honest and straightforward assessment of your legal rights, and we will help you make informed decisions about protecting your claim for maximum reimbursement and compensation. To get started with a free, no-obligation consultation, please call (503) 222-6333 or request an appointment online today.