Buses are usually regarded as a safer mode of transportation. Unfortunately, even these vehicles are not immune to accidents. Furthermore, studies claim that the chances for a person to get involved in an accident while traveling in a private bus are likely to be more when compared to a public bus. Anyhow, when you get involved in an accident, the next steps that you may think about will be to consult a credible bus accident attorney and file a lawsuit against the bus company. Do you know that there are many differences while dealing with an accident claim involving a private and a public bus company? Without any doubts, suing a public bus company will not be that easy as suing a private bus company.
Note that unlike private entities, government bodies like municipalities, towns, etc., enjoy some special considerations or immunities because of their public status. For instance, government bodies cannot be held liable for failing to install traffic light signals anywhere in the city or for failure to adopt a law. However, none of such immunities can be applied in case of bus accidents and government entities as well will be sued for negligence just like other private bus companies.
Note that it will be challenging to win such a claim and obtain fair bus accident settlement. Hence, always rely on the services of a well-versed bus accident attorney. Below are some of the common differences that you may find while dealing with a private bus and public bus accident claim.
Statute of Limitations
The major consideration or immunity that government entities tend to use in case of bus accident cases is the statute of limitations. Note that the maximum time limit within which you can file a claim against a public entity for personal injury cases and wrongful death claims are 1 year and 2 years respectively from the date of the accident. This is just half the time that you get to file a case against a private defendant. So, you will have to act fast in this case.
Notice of Claim
You will have to first document notice of claim and file it with the government entity that you intend to sue. This notice claim has to be filed before you start with other legal proceedings and the time limit to file a notice of claim is just 6 months from the date of the accident. In case the government rejected your claim, you will be permanently barred from bringing a suit. However, you can appeal to court again before the expiration of the time window. When it comes to suing a private body, you will have to give the ‘service’ of complaint to the defendant when it is filed in court. However, this is not as complicated as the notice of claim.