Just like passengers in other vehicles, taxi cab passengers may suffer severe injuries in a motor vehicle crash. In some accident scenarios, the taxi cab driver behaves negligently under the circumstances and causes the accident. At other times, however, a third-party driver negligently causes the accident.
If you recently suffered injuries in a taxi cab accident, complete your medical treatment regimen and consult experienced legal counsel as quickly as possible.
Your San Jose personal injury attorney can investigate your accident, identify potentially responsible parties, and file a claim with the appropriate insurance company. Your attorney can then negotiate the fair settlement compensation you deserve for your injuries or file a lawsuit in the court system on your behalf.
Your attorney will be your advocate every step of the way and can answer all your legal questions during every stage of the proceedings. Your lawyer can also represent you at all legal proceedings and work to secure the highest possible monetary award on your behalf.
How do Taxi Cab Accidents Usually Happen?
Taxi-cab accidents frequently happen in much the same way as any other motor vehicle collision. In most situations, these accidents happen because the taxi cab driver – or a third-party driver – is negligent in some way.
Drivers are negligent when they deviate from the reasonableness standard of care and behave unreasonably under the circumstances. Usually, this means that the driver violated one or more traffic laws while operating their vehicle.
Some taxi cab accidents happen when drivers fail to yield the right-of-way, speed excessively, tailgate other vehicles, or use their turn signals appropriately. In different situations, taxi cab accidents result from distracted driving.
Cab drivers may become distracted when they use cell phones, pay attention to GPS directions, or engage with passengers. Third-party drivers might also be texting or otherwise distracted and crash into a cab. Even a momentary distraction can cause long-term injuries and disruptions in your life following a crash.
Finally, some taxi cab accidents happen when cab drivers, or third-party drivers, drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol. These substances can affect a driver's mindset, limiting their concentration abilities and reflexes. As a result, an intoxicated driver may lose control of their vehicle. Alternatively, the driver cannot stop their car in time to avoid a crash due to impaired reflexes.
Alcohol and other drugs may also affect a driver's vision, causing it to become blurry and preventing the driver from seeing other vehicles nearby.
If you or someone you care about suffered injuries in a recent taxi cab accident that resulted from driver negligence, you are not alone. A skilled personal injury attorney in your area can review your accident circumstances, speak with eyewitnesses to the occurrence, and review police reports.
Your lawyer can then determine your eligibility for filing a claim or lawsuit seeking monetary recovery for your injuries. If you can move forward with a case, your attorney can assist you with every step in the process, including submitting a claim to the insurance company or litigating your case through the court system.
Potential Injuries in a Taxi Cab Accident
Passengers who are involved in a taxi cab accident may sustain severe injuries. The injuries that an accident victim suffers will depend mainly upon the specific accident circumstances, including the force of the collision, the number of crashes that occur, where they are sitting in the vehicle, and how their body moves at the time of the crash.
For example, the force of some taxi cab accidents is so strong that it causes a passenger's body to move forward and backward very abruptly. As a result, the driver might hit their head on the seatback in front of them or on the window, suffering a concussion or other traumatic head injury.
Other potential injuries that taxi cab victims may suffer in a crash include:
- Soft tissue whiplash contusions
- Bone fractures
- Internal organ injuries
- Internal bleeding
- Open lacerations
- Spinal cord damage
- Paralysis injuries
- Shoulder injuries
If you suffered one of these injuries in your taxi cab accident, you should consult with experienced legal counsel right away. Your attorney can help you decide on the best course of action for your case and begin pursuing the monetary compensation you need to recover for your accident-related injuries.
Essential Steps to Take After a Taxi Cab Accident
Following a taxi cab accident, there are specific steps that you should take as quickly as possible.
First, follow through with your medical treatment regimen.
When an accident victim goes to a hospital emergency room or urgent care facility after their accident, the medical provider on duty usually prescribes a medical treatment plan for the accident victim. As part of this plan, the accident victim might need to consult another medical provider if their injuries or symptoms worsen.
Additionally, they may need to call their primary care physician (PCP), attend physical therapy sessions, or undergo a medical procedure, such as surgery, for their car accident injuries.
Car crash victims must follow this protocol, undergo all recommended medical treatment, and continue treatment until a medical provider formally discharges them from care. Otherwise, the insurance company handling the claim might believe that the accident victim's injuries are not all that serious or that the accident victim is lying about their condition.
As a result, the insurance company may refuse to offer the accident victim the fair monetary damages they deserve for their accident-related losses.
By treating continuously for your injuries after a taxi cab accident, you show the insurance company that your injuries are severe and that you deserve to recover appropriate monetary compensation. You also increase your chances of making a full recovery from all of your accident-related injuries.
In addition to completing your medical treatment regimen, you should gather all pertinent documents in your case – and that you keep track of those documents. Essential documents in a taxi cab accident case may include witness statements, camera footage, police reports, medical records, medical bills, and lost income documentation.
If you must claim loss of earning capacity, you might also need to submit copies of prior years' tax returns. Once you gather these documents, give them to your attorney. If your injuries are too severe to create a file of important documents, a car accident lawyer in San Jose can help with this.
Finally, you should consult with experienced legal counsel as quickly as possible after your taxi cab accident. Your lawyer can investigate your accident circumstances, identify potentially responsible parties, and assemble all necessary documents into a settlement demand package.
Once the demand package is complete, your lawyer can forward it to the insurance company handling your claim and begin negotiating with insurance company representatives on your behalf.
Throughout the process, your lawyer can help you decide whether to accept a pending settlement offer from the insurance company or reject an offer and litigate your case in the court system.
Finally, if you decide to litigate your case, your lawyer can file a lawsuit on your behalf, assist you throughout the litigation process, and represent you at all legal proceedings in your case, such as civil jury trials, mediation sessions, and binding arbitration hearings.
By aggressively advocating on your behalf throughout the settlement and litigation processes, your lawyer will pursue the highest amount of monetary recovery available to you in your case.
Potentially Responsible Parties in a Taxi Cab Accident Case
Several individuals or entities may be responsible for your taxi cab accident. First and foremost, the driver of your taxi cab may be responsible if they violated their legal duty of care or otherwise drove negligently under the circumstances.
Moreover, if a third-party driver caused or contributed to the accident, they may also be fully or partially responsible for both the accident and your subsequent injuries and medical treatment.
Taxi cab companies may be partially responsible for your accident if they negligently hired or retained a cab driver with a known record of moving violations or traffic infractions.
A taxi cab company may also be negligent if they failed to supervise the driver who caused your accident or negligently entrusted one of their cabs to a problem driver.
Further, a cab company might share liability without being negligent at all. The law holds employers vicariously liable for the negligence of employees, and this includes employee-drivers.
Some companies claim all taxi drivers are independent contractors to try to avoid liability, but this is not always a successful argument. Your car accident lawyer can challenge any efforts by cab companies to wrongfully avoid liability for the harmful conduct of their drivers.
Your attorney can help you identify all potentially liable parties in your case and file the necessary claim or lawsuit to recover the monetary damages you deserve.
Pursuing Favorable Monetary Recovery in a Taxi Cab Accident Case
If you sustained physical injuries in a recent taxi cab accident, and you can satisfy your legal burden of proof, you may be eligible to recover various types of monetary damages via settlement or litigation.
The economic damages an accident victim recovers will depend upon multiple factors, including the nature and extent of their physical (and mental) injuries, the specific accident circumstances, and the cost of their medical treatment.
Generally, the more serious an accident victim's injuries and limitations, the higher the monetary compensation they may recover in the personal injury case.
First, accident victims can recover monetary damages for their related medical expenses, including the cost of doctor visits, physical therapy appointments, and medical procedures (such as surgery or other operations).
In addition, if they had to miss time from work after their accident to recover from their injuries – or attend medical appointments – they can bring a successful claim for lost income. Similarly, if their accident-related injuries prevented them from performing their former work duties, and they had to switch jobs and take a pay cut, they may recover loss-of-earning-capacity damages.
In addition to these economic damages, taxi cab accident victims may pursue monetary recovery for their intangible losses from the accident.
Those damages may compensate the accident victim for their:
- Lost quality of life
- Loss of the ability to use a specific body part
- Mental anguish and emotional distress
- Past and anticipated pain and suffering
- Loss of spousal companionship and consortium
- Permanent disability or disfigurement
Your attorney can help you develop realistic expectations for your case so that you know the likely types and amounts of monetary compensation you can recover.
Your attorney can also assist you throughout the negotiation and litigation stages of your case, increasing your chances of recovering a favorable monetary award that genuinely compensates you for your injuries.
Contact an Experienced Taxi Cab Accident Lawyer in Your Area Right Away
Victims of taxi cab accidents have a short time to take legal action in their cases. Specifically, car crash victims only have two years from their accident to file a personal injury lawsuit for monetary damages.
If the accident victim files their lawsuit even one day after the statute of limitations deadline expires, they will no longer be eligible to bring a claim for monetary compensation and damages. Therefore, it is in your best interests to act quickly when securing legal representation for your case.
Your attorney can promptly investigate the circumstances leading up to your taxi cab accident, help you file your claim, and aggressively negotiate with insurance company adjusters on your behalf.
If you must take your case to a formal litigation proceeding in the court system, such as a civil jury trial, your lawyer will aggressively represent you, introduce favorable evidence on your behalf, and pursue the best possible result. Most importantly, your lawyer can do all this for you while you focus entirely on recovering from your injuries.
Never wait to seek legal help and learn about your rights and options following a taxi cab accident.