Recently, a Chicago woman was pulling in to a parking spot on the street when a CTA bus attempted to pull around the parking car. The driver claims that at that point the bus hit the front end of the car. The bus driver was cited by police for overtaking a vehicle on the right Sometimes a victim of a car accident can pursue a legal recovery in the court system, but can face difficulty recovering from the plaintiff.
The driver filed a claim with her insurance company and the company covered part of the claim. The insurance company then sought to recover money from the CTA. The CTA informed the insurance company that they would not be paying the claim. The CTA contended that the bus driver was not at fault for the accident. The CTA claims that the video evidence recorded by the bus shows that while the car was being parked, it swerved in front of the bus and that was the cause of the accident.
When a victim of car accident is considering its' legal options, it is important to remember that a criminal conviction or traffic citation is not always evidence of civil liability. Criminal convictions are not always proof that the driver can be held civilly liable.
In a criminal case, the officer does not always consider the extent to which the victim might be liable for the accident. In a civil lawsuit a person's monetary reward can be reduced if their own negligence also contributed to the accident.
However, anyone who is injured as a result of another person's negligence may be able to recover compensation for their injuries including reimbursement of medical expenses, lost wages, and damages for pain and suffering.
A civil lawsuit for a car accident can be very complicated. Victims can turn to an experienced attorney to help guide them through the process.
Source: Chicago Tribune, "Problem Solver: Bus driver ticketed in accident, but CTA denies fault", Jon Yates, Feb. 21, 2013