In big cities such as Los Angeles, San Francisco, and San Diego, taxis are the most popular mode of transportation for families, students, and workers. However, this vehicle has been involved in numerous traffic accidents in California and the United States. As of 2017, the California Highway Patrol recorded that in every three minutes, there is a car accident, which resulted in nearly 200,000 injuries and fatal accidents during that year.
Everyone wants to be safe when driving a car or riding a cab. When a taxi strikes one’s vehicle, an injured individual has a lawful right to claim compensation and damages. However, the victim must prove liability to avail such compensation. According to Chris and Frank Attorneys, here’s what you need to know if you are involved in a taxi accident:
Amounts that you can claim
There is no fixed amount when claiming damages and compensation in any vehicular accident. However, it is essential first to prove liability to be entitled to such claims.
In any justice system, it follows that when someone is held criminally liable, they must also be civilly liable. Although one can be acquitted in the criminal aspect, one can still prove civil liability.
In any case, the average claims for minor injuries can range from $5,000 to $15,000. Individuals claiming personal injury claims can even reach $500,000 in claims, so long as the strength of their liability claim is clear and convincing. On the other hand, in serious car accidents, where injuries are severe, or there are multiple persons involved, one can claim even up to $1 million for pain and suffering damages.
Studies have shown that with the frequency and intensity of taxicab accidents, various cities and states require taxi cab drivers to allocate $250,000 to $500,000 accident coverage as a safety measure.
When a taxi hits your vehicle
A taxicab hitting the car you drive, or ride shows a standard two-car accident case. To successfully claim compensation, it is essential to identify who was at fault and the extent of the claimant’s injury. Substantially proving that the taxicab driver was either careless, unfit, or negligent to drive will give you a high chance of winning the case.
When you’re injured as a passenger
If you are a passenger involved in a taxi accident, you can also file a personal injury lawsuit. In this case, the passenger is in an easier situation than the driver because there is no need to prove which drivers are liable. The passenger can opt to file a third-party car insurance claim from the driver at fault or go for a personal injury lawsuit against one or both drivers. This case extends not only to taxi drivers who own the cab personally but also to ride-sharing applications such as Uber and Lyft.
Steps to take after the accident
After the accident, make sure that you are still of sound mind and body to assess the situation. Take a few minutes to rest and check what happened, not to be overwhelmed by the incident.
Then, gather the names and contact information of all the people involved in the accident. Make a list of witnesses who can provide ample and straightforward accounts of what happened before, during, and after the accident. Then, take documentary evidence such as pictures, videos, and voice recordings of what happened in the scene. These may include photos of the accident scene, the vehicles involved, the affected persons, the debris from the accident, and anything relevant.
It is also essential to call the police to dispatch their personnel to the accident scene immediately. One should also contact medical personnel so anyone injured would be given immediate medical attention.
After a time of rest and recovery, one should also record expenses related to the accident. Whether these are immediate short-term expenses like medicine and hospital treatments or long-term payments such as vehicle repairs and replacement, every receipt, and proof of payment must be recorded.
Lastly, one should ask for advice from legal counsel to know the possible outcomes of the legal case related to the accident. After getting guidance from the lawyers, one should decide and take steps to file a claim with the courts.
Compensations under your taxi crash case
Aside from an individual’s injuries, one can still have additional losses. It is essential to document all losses and exhaust all means possible to prove the extent of what one suffered.
- Travel expenses – Incurred when attending your physician or hospital
- Medical fees and treatment costs – This includes prescription medicine, painkillers, physical therapy sessions, and surgery.
- Loss of earnings – Lost salaries, wages, commissions, and other benefits because of being absent from work due to recovery
- Vehicle repairs – Includes costs for repair, as well as towing and rental expense
- Pain and suffering – Includes the physical and emotional trauma endured during the accident and in the recovery period
- Punitive damages – For instances where the taxi driver was irresponsible, like driving drunk or under the influence of drugs
- Loss of consortium – This can only be claimed by the spouse or other family member when the victim died during the accident.
In any taxi-related accident, always seek legal help
In any car crash, injuries are almost always present. Lacerations, broken bones, paralysis, or even death are endured by victims of taxi accidents, along with medical bills, property damages, and other things. Often, these victims are confused about who should be held accountable and responsible for such an unfortunate event.
In any case, it is crucial to look for experienced, concerned, and dedicated lawyers who can help in claiming monetary compensation, including medical costs, lost wages during the injury or recovery period, and even emotional and sentimental damages.
Yes, you may be paying for the services of these legal experts. However, when your life, liberty, or property is at stake, it’s better to leave the case to those who are more knowledgeable. All you have to do is relax and wait for the adjudication of the case. You save yourself the hassle. Plus, you also significantly improve your chances of winning the case.