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Family of Child Injured Trying to Catch School Bus Receives $36 Million

A California family was recently awarded more than $36 million in a personal injury lawsuit.

In October 2012, a then six-year-old girl was struck by a car in the middle of the street while she was attempting to catch the school bus. She was in the care of an adult neighbor at the time. The child flew 70 feet into the air, before landing on the pavement. As a result of the accident, the little girl suffered serious injuries including fractures to her neck, pelvis, arm, and leg. She went into cardiac arrest several times and was in a coma for three months. Due to a permanent traumatic brain injury, the child requires around-the-clock care by a licensed vocational nurse (LVN), for the rest of her life. The settlement will go into a trust for her medical care.

The lawsuit alleged that the company providing transportation services failed to report and prevent mid-street crossings, which is a violation of their own policies and procedures. Under the system, students who violate the rules get a verbal warning and then a written warning. Discipline can eventually include losing school bus privileges.

During the five-week trial, the family’s attorney was able to show that it was common practice for parents and students to cross the street mid-block directly in front of the bus driver. Parents of other children at the same bus stop testified that they never used the controlled intersection and always crossed in the middle of the block in plain view of the bus driver who never took steps to prevent such behavior. At trial, it was also disclosed that bus drivers are required to report dangerous conditions at bus stops including unsafe mid-block crossings, yet the district had never been notified about the problem.

The jury deliberated for two days before assessing the bus company 50 percent responsibility and the bus driver 30 percent accountable. The jury said the child’s mother was 20% responsible for her daughter’s harm because she endorsed the dangerous route to school. The driver of the vehicle that hit the child was not held at fault.

When a driver hits a pedestrian, often the biggest question is: Whose fault was the accident? Determining fault can sometimes be a complicated process. Some states follow what is called a “pure contributory negligence” rule. This means that if the pedestrian contributed in the slightest bit to the accident, then he/she and his/her auto insurance company cannot recover damages. Other states follow a “comparative fault” rule. This means that a pedestrian can recover some damages even if he was partly at fault.

It is important to always consult with an attorney. Once you file a lawsuit, how will you pay your bills while you wait for your settlement, especially when the case takes years to settle? It’s easy, with litigation funding.

Litigation funding is an excellent way to pay medical expenses, regular monthly bills, and other necessary expenses. It also helps to prevent damage to a plaintiff’s credit score. When applying for a lawsuit cash advance, an applicant only needs to provide case details to the funding company. There are no credit checks; credit history does not matter and there is no need to prove employment. Once approved, funding can be available within 24-48 hours. There are no monthly payments to make and the money can be used at the plaintiff’s discretion. Best of all, litigation funding is repaid only upon a successful settlement. If the plaintiff does not receive a favorable cash settlement, he/she is under no obligation to pay back the cash advanced.

Lawsuit Financial is a direct lender for pre-settlement litigation funding. If you have been seriously injured due to the negligence of someone else, are seeking restitution, and need financial assistance, call our office or complete our free, online funding application. We may be able to help you financially while your lawsuit works its way through the legal system.