Stonecrest, GA Bus Accident Lawyer

Getting compensation after a bus accident in Stonecrest can be a challenging prospect. The best way to get your damages covered is to contact our lawyers to help you file a lawsuit.

Bus accidents involve several complicated rules that make them more complex than your average accident claim. Many accidents are caused by bus drivers operating public buses, who are protected by the law from being sued for negligence. However, our team can help you pursue damages from the public bus company that owns the bus. Our team can also help if you were a passenger or hit by a private commercial bus. It is also possible that other drivers or rowdy passengers contributed to your accident. We will review the evidence in your case to determine who should be held accountable.

Call Rice, Murtha & Psoras at (470) 287-3070 for a free assessment of your case with our bus accident lawyers.

Who to File Your Bus Accident Lawsuit Against in Stonecrest, GA

Who caused your bus accident is important for recovering compensation and determining whether other parties are at fault. You could have several paths to recovering damages in a lawsuit. Our bus accident attorneys can help you identify those who are liable and get the evidence to prove your claim. We will also determine if certain rules will limit the time you have to file. The following are common defendants we sue in Stonecrest:

Bus Drivers

The bus driver is the first person we will assess for liability in your case. No matter if you were the other driver, a passenger, riding your bike, or crossing the street, it is likely the bus driver played a role in causing your injuries.

If the bus driver did act negligently, the question we will need to answer is who the bus driver works for. Depending on whether the bus is publicly or privately owned, we might be limited to suing only the bus company.

Public Bus Companies

Different rules apply if the bus driver who caused the accident was driving a public bus. Public buses, like the MARTA buses that crisscross Stonecrest, are operated by government agencies. For instance, the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority owns MARTA buses.

However, government employees, like MARTA and county school bus drivers, cannot be held liable for an accident they negligently caused, according to O.C.G.A. § 36-92-3(a). That does not mean you are out of options even though the driver cannot be sued. Instead, we will need to file your claim against the entity for which the driver works.

First, we will need to ensure that the accident happened while the driver was on duty. Under § 36-92-2(c), the public bus company cannot be held liable for its drivers if they were acting outside their job duties. For example, if the driver took the bus for a joyride after going off duty, the government agency could not be sued.

You also have less time to file a lawsuit against a government agency than you do against ordinary citizens. § 36-11-1 only allows one year from the date of the accident to file a claim. If your case is not filed by the one-year deadline, you will be barred from recovering compensation.

Another important issue in public bus cases is the amount of damages you can claim. Bus accidents can result in expensive losses, but damages will be limited to a certain amount, as per § 36-92-2(a)(3). If only one person is claiming damages for injury or death, compensation is limited to $500,000 and $50,000 for property damage. If more than one person is involved in the claim, damages are capped at $700,000. Our attorneys will determine if these rules apply when we review your claim.

Private Bus Companies

Cases involving private bus companies are much more straightforward than those caused by public ones. However, these lawsuits work just like most other vehicle accident claims. The difference is that private bus companies can be held liable for their drivers’ conduct.

A legal principle known as respondeat superior allows us to sue both parties for the driver’s negligence. This is true even if the private bus company did nothing to cause the accident. As long as the driver was on duty and acting in furtherance of those duties, their employer is liable. For example, if the negligent driver worked for Megabus, we would name the company as a defendant.

You will also have more time to file your lawsuit in these cases. Under § 9-3-33, you have two years to sue a private bus company and its driver as opposed to just one. Still, this is not much time, so you should contact our team as soon as you can.

Other Drivers

In many cases, the bus driver is not the person who caused the crash but another driver. It is common for impatient drivers to attempt to get around a bus, sometimes breaking traffic laws to do so. For instance, the bus might have crashed into the side of another car when it cut across the bus to turn from another lane. In other cases, the driver added to the damage in a chain collision.

If you were a passenger, you likely did not get a good look at how the accident occurred. Our team can review the evidence, including surveillance footage from the bus’s cameras, to determine who should be held liable.

Pedestrians and Bicyclists

While rare, it is also possible that someone not even in a car caused an accident. Buses have to share the road with many, including pedestrians and bike riders. For instance, you might be injured from being thrown forward if the bus driver has to come to a sudden stop to avoid hitting a pedestrian who was crossing in the middle of the road.

Bicyclists are required to follow traffic laws like everyone else when using and sharing the road. However, not all riders take their duties seriously. If a bus needs to swerve around a negligent rider, it might sideswipe you or injure you as a passenger.

Proving these cases can be challenging but not impossible. As mentioned above, we can usually use camera footage to determine exactly what happened. We will also interview the bus driver and other witnesses to get their perspectives on the accident.


Other rare cases involve crashes caused by defects in the bus. If the bus or a part was designed wrong or negligently manufactured, it might have contributed to the accident. For instance, it might have crashed because the brakes did not respond. If this is the case, we might sue the designer or manufacturer responsible.

Our Stonecrest, GA Bus Accident Lawyers Can Help Today

For a free case review with our bus accident attorneys, call Rice, Murtha & Psoras at (470) 287-3070.