INJURY LAW BLOG

Relevant & Important Information About Personal Injury Law So You Can Be In The Know

Seeking Damages From an MTA Bus Accident?

Accidents on an MTS Bus

MTA Bus NYC

Non-collision bus customer accidents, which did not involve a collision, increased 11% from August 2018 according to the MTA and reported in the New York Post. Of the 494 accidents reported, 207 of them were the result of what was described as "throwing movements." 207 may not seem like a lot, but to the injured passenger, or their family if the passenger dies as a result of the accident, it is one too many. If it happens to you, you may be due compensation for your injuries, pain and suffering, medical expenses, and lost income. To collect damages you must follow MTA rules and guidelines.

Is the MTA Liable?

This is the question MTA attorneys will ask. Even if the answer is "yes," their goal will be to minimize any compensation. Basically, for the MTA to be held liable, two critical elements must be satisfied:

  1. A Notice of Claim must be received within 90 days of the incident.
  2. The notice must show that either the MTA was negligent or the driver was negligent by not following MTA policy.

After receiving the Notice, the MTA has 30 days to respond. There will be a hearing. If the matter goes to court, the injured party has one year and 90 days to file a lawsuit. If the passenger died as a result of the injuries, the family has two years to file suit.

The Notice of Claim

It is always a good thing to remain at the scene of the accident and to ask for witnesses to support your claim. It may be difficult to prove a particular driver on a particular bus caused the injury, if you get off and walk away. Take detailed notes describing the facts of the matter, including the driver's id. The notice must include the following:

  • 1. Your full name and contact details.
  • 2. The deceased victim's details, if appropriate, and your relationship to the victim.
  • 3. Your attorney's contact details if you appropriate.
  • 4. Date, time, and location of the accident.
  • 5. Injuries and damages you suffered as a direct result of the accident.
  • 6. Other relevant circumstances surrounding the incident.
  •  

Proving Your Claim

Nothing is simple or straightforward when it comes to matters of law. The MTA's attorney will be looking for missing information or anything unclear that can be used to your disadvantage. You must show that:

  • - The MTA had a duty to protect you as a passenger. (E.g. if the driver was off-duty, then he or she was not in the employ of the MTA at the time.)
  • - The MTA breached its duty in some way. (E.g. the driver had not completed their training, so should not have been driving.)
  • - Your injury was a direct result of the breach of duty, or
  • - Your injury was a direct result of the driver's negligent actions.
  • - Your injury resulted in your suffering damages (medical expenses, lost income, etc.) so you are entitled to compensation.
  •  

Summary Comment

In a nutshell, you are entitled to damages if you suffer injury because either the MTA or a driver is at fault. To receive the damages you must meet MTA Notice of Claim standards, and you must have enough supporting evidence to prove your claim is fair. The MTA will be represented by an experienced attorney, so it makes sense that you are.

If you have suffered injury while getting on, traveling on, or getting off an MTA bus, and would like to seek legal advice, then please just click here to contact us.

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Hurt in Police Custody: Do You Have a Case & What Should You Do?

police custody

Overview

It is uncommon, but people can be hurt in police custody. People can suffer injuries:

  • On the street after being taken into custody.
  • In a police vehicle.
  • On police premises.

Those injuries may be sustained because of:

  • A simple accident - whether avoidable or not.
  • Your own actions - whether accidental or not.
  • Unlawful police action.

No matter how someone is injured, it is essential to know the law to decide if you have a case and, if so, what you should do. In this article we will focus on unlawful police action. Unlawful action resulting in injury violates a person's Constitutional rights.

The United States Department of Justice says: The Department "vigorously investigates and, where the evidence permits, prosecutes allegations of Constitutional violations by law enforcement officers. The Department's investigations most often involve alleged uses of excessive force."

 

Your Status at the Time of the Injury

 

Your status is critical. If you are under arrest or have been detained by an officer, or if you are in jail but not convicted of a crime, then it must be shown that the officer used excessive force. "Excessive force" means the officer used more force than was reasonably necessary either to protect that officer or others, or to restrain the injured party. It is an objective standard, not something that relies on an officer's personal opinion. Reasonableness is what a judge decides how a reasonable officer at the time would act. It may be assumed that a "reasonable officer" would follow police procedures and adhere to police standards. A reasonable officer would:

  • Know the standards.
  • Have been trained to work to those standards.
  • Know how to apply them in any given situation.

It is not for nothing that NYC police vehicles have on their doors, "Courtesy Professionalism Respect."

 

What You Should Do

 

Both the officer and the Department may be liable in a civil or criminal case. A civil case can result in financial compensation and restitution for constitutional rights being violated, physical injury, psychological trauma, loss of income, and other direct results of the injuries. Payment depends on the specific circumstances of the case as a whole. If the officer is convicted of using excessive force, then punitive damages may be awarded.

Winning any case, and especially a case against a police officer, takes expert knowledge of both the law and the best way to pursue the case in a court action. If you have been hurt and want advice on what to do and how to proceed, please click this link to contact us for a free initial consultation.

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