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Los Angeles Metro Accident Attorney

While public transportation is thought to be one of the safer ways to get around the city, using the Los Angeles Metro system is not without risk. Like any vehicle, a Metro bus or rail car can get into an accident. Metro stops and stations can also be filled with hazards, especially when they are poorly maintained.

Metro accidents can lead to severe injuries or even death. In particular, collisions that involve metro vehicles can be catastrophic, in part due to the size of Metro vehicles and in part because these vehicles lack safety equipment such as seatbelts and airbags. Other types of Metro accidents, such as falls and electrical injuries, can also be extremely traumatic, both physically and emotionally. Metro accidents can lead to broken bones, brain injuries, neck injuries, back injuries, burns, spinal cord injuries, PTSD, and more.

Being injured in a Metro accident can have a devastating impact on a person’s physical, emotional, and financial well-being. After being in a Metro accident, a person can be left dealing with severe pain, emotional trauma, and mounting medical bills. In cases of disabling accidents, a person may also be left wondering how they’ll ever be able to provide for themself and their family.

Metro accident cases can be complex, since they involve a government entity. However, if you’ve been injured in a California Metro accident due to the negligent actions of another party, you may be legally entitled to seek damages for your injuries. Government bodies are not inherently immune from personal injury law. There are restrictions and differing regulations in place for personal injury cases that involve the government. But the government can be held liable for personal injury damages in certain situations. Additionally, it may be possible to hold non-government parties that contributed to a Metro accident accountable for their actions through personal injury law.

If you or a loved one sustained an injury in a Los Angeles Metro accident, contact LA Lawyers Group to speak with one of our expert Metro accident attorneys. A member of our team can provide you with a free case evaluation and help you understand your legal rights. Our Southern California Metro accident lawyers have extensive experience handling claims and lawsuits that involve the government and thus have a full understanding of how to recover and maximize damages in this type of case.

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Timeline for Personal Injury Claims Involving the Government

The typical statute of limitations for a California personal injury claim is two years. However, there is a shorter statute of limitation that applies to claims that involve any type of government agency. The statute of limitations when submitting a claim that involves a government entity is only six months.

The Los Angeles Metro system is operated by the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (LACMTA), which is a government entity. This means that it is crucial for LA Metro accident victims to start the claims process within the six months of the accident that caused their injuries. Even if you think a non-government entity would somehow be at fault for your Metro accident, we suggest pursuing your case as quickly as possible. You may not have a full understanding of an accident’s circumstances and who could be held legally liable for the accident. If a government entity could be legally liable for your losses and you wait too long to file a claim, you may lose the ability to pursue damages.
Special Complications When Suing the Government
A special set of laws applies in California personal injury cases that involve the government. As detailed in the previous section, there’s a shorter statute of limitations for this type of case. Then, there are also some special restrictions and unique procedural rules that come into effect.

There are restrictions in these types of cases because of the California Tort Claims Act (CTCA). The CTCA is a law that was specifically designed to protect the state of California from liability in certain personal injury cases. The law includes language that generally states that a public entity is not liable for an injury caused by it or its employees. However, there are a number of exceptions within this law that allow accident victims to hold the State of California accountable for damages in certain circumstances.
Los Angeles Attorney for Metro Accidents

The government may be held liable for personal injury damages in situations caused by:

  • The negligent acts of government employees
  • The negligent acts of independent contractors working for the government
  • Dangerous conditions on government property
  • A public entity’s failure to carry out a duty imposed by law

In cases of injuries that are caused by government employees or independent contractors, it’s important to note that the employee or contractor must have been actively carrying out government work at the time of the incident. So, for example, it may be possible to hold the government liable for the negligent actions of a city bus driver if their negligence caused an accident while they were driving during their shift. But if the negligence of a Metro bus driver causes an accident while they are not at work, it is not possible to hold the government liable for the accident. 

Per CTCA, there are specific steps an injury victim needs to take when pursuing a government agency such as the LACMTA. These steps include:

  • Filing a written claim to the LACMTA within six months of the incident that caused your injuries 
  • Naming the LACMTA as the party that caused your losses in the written claim 
  • Listing your basic contact information in the claim, such as your name and address 
  • Explaining the date, location, and circumstances of your accident in great detail within your claim 

It’s not uncommon for claims to be flatly rejected by the LACMTA. However, an accident victim can still choose to pursue their case in court if their claim is rejected. Metro accident victims who have a claim rejected should be aware that while the standard statute of limitations for California personal injury lawsuits is two years, the statute of limitations is once again shorter when a government agency is involved. If you want to sue LACMTA, you must do so within a year of receiving a rejected claim. 

Whether your injury case can be handled through a claim or must be taken to court, we recommend seeking legal counsel. It’s best to seek legal representation before you attempt to file a claim with the LACMTA on your own. This type of claim must include a detailed account of the commuter vehicle accident that caused your injury. The information included within this written statement is important for your claim and may also prove very important if you end up filing a lawsuit. A personal injury attorney can help you prepare your written statement and ensure that it is accurate and complete so that you do not accidentally hurt your case now or in the event of a future lawsuit.

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Common Causes of Los Angeles Metro Accidents
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Metro accidents can be caused by a wide variety of issues, including:

  • Bad Road Conditions: Bad road conditions, such as potholes or missing signage, can cause a Metro bus to veer off course and get into an accident.  
  • Driver Error: Accidents can easily occur if a Metro bus driver or train operator fails to adhere to the strict guidelines they must follow in order to safely operate their vehicle. 
  • Faulty Brakes: If a Metro vehicle’s brakes malfunction, this can cause serious damage to passengers, passersby, and Metro employees. 
  • Faulty Tracks: When Metro rail line tracks are not properly cleaned and maintained, these tracks may become extremely hazardous. 
  • Lack of Operator Training: Metro drivers and operators must be properly trained in order to ensure the safety of the public, as an untrained or undertrained Metro driver or operator is extremely dangerous. 
  • Other Drivers: Metro busses or above ground rail lines can get into car accidents that are caused by motor vehicle drivers who are driving recklessly. 
  • Poor Maintenance: Poor maintenance can lead to the use of a dangerous vehicle, which may lead to disaster in the event of a malfunction. 

Poor Weather Conditions: Certain weather conditions can impede a driver’s ability to see the road or control their vehicle, impairing their ability to drive safely.

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Common Public Transportation Accident Injuries

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Some examples of public transportation accident injuries include: 

  • Amputation
  • Brain Injuries
  • Broken Bones
  • Burns
  • Dental Injuries
  • Electrocution 
  • Head Injuries
  • Internal Injuries
  • Lacerations
  • Ligament Injuries
  • Muscle Injuries
  • Slipped Discs and Other Back Injuries
  • Spinal Cord Injuries
  • Tendon Injuries
  • Whiplash
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Determining Liability in a Los Angeles Metro Accident

In California, more than one party can be found liable for the damages caused by an accident. If more than one party is found to be legally responsible for an accident, fault will be assigned in percentages. In this case, each party would be responsible for their proportionate percentage of the losses caused by the accident. 

Determining who is liable in a Los Angeles Metro accident can be a complex process. Generally, liability in a California accident case is determined based on negligence. So, typically, you must examine how much each party involved in an accident may have been and how much that negligence factored into the incident and, ultimately, the victim’s injuries. 

It’s common for more than one party to be at fault in a Metro accident case. A wide variety of people and entities could contribute to a Metro accident, including: 

  • A Bus Manufacturer
  • A Government Body
  • A Parts Manufacturer 
  • A Private Property Owner
  • A Rail Line Car Manufacturer
  • Metro Crew Members
  • Metro Drivers or Operators
  • Metro Passengers
  • Other Drivers 

Accurately determining liability in a Metro accident case takes investigation and an expert understanding of California personal injury law. An experienced Metro rail line and bus accident attorney can help you uncover whose negligence led to your injuries, determine which parties can be held legally liable for your injuries, and furnish the critical evidence you need in order to build a strong case. 

Damages Available in a Los Angeles Metro Accident

Compensation in a Los Angeles Metro accident is based on each individual’s losses. Victims in a Metro accident case may be entitled to recover compensation for a variety of losses caused by their injury, including: 

  • Medical Expenses, Including Expenses Related To:
    • Emergency Transportation
    • Surgery
    • Hospital Visits
    • Doctor’s Office Visits
    • Lab Tests and Imaging
    • Prescriptions
    • Physical Therapy
  • Lost Wages
  • Emotional Distress
  • Pain and Suffering
  • Scarring and Disfigurement
  • Loss of Enjoyment of Life
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Get Help From an Expert Los Angeles Metro Accident Lawyer

If you or a loved one has been harmed in a Los Angeles Metro bus, Metro Busway, Metrolink, or Metro Rail accident, contact LA Lawyers Group today to receive a free consultation. Our skilled Los Angeles Metro accident attorneys are here to fight for your right to recover the damages you’re legally entitled to. The personal injury lawyers at our Los Angeles office serve accident victims from across Southern California, including those from Glendale, Burbank, Hollywood, Beverly Hills, Downtown LA, Riverside, Pasadena, Ontario, and many other parts of the Golden State.

Call our law firm today at (213)LAWYERS (529-9377) to receive your free, confidential consultation with one of our Los Angeles Metro accident lawyers.

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Sherman Oaks, CA 91403
Phone: (213) LAWYERS

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