Boston MBTA Accident and Injury Lawyers
Transportation via roads, highways, and trains is such a prevalent part of our lives today, and accidents are bound to happen. If you are lucky, your accident will be relatively minor and your recovery speedy. Unfortunately, not everyone is so fortunate. When we ride public transportation, we rely on drivers and conductors to be as safe as possible to avoid crashes or collisions. In the event of an accident on public transportation, you could sue the governing municipality.
After an accident involving the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA), you could be entitled to sue the public transportation company in a lawsuit. However, because the state runs the MBTA, some different rules may apply and there may be different hurdles to jump before you can sue. There are also limitations on damages because a public entity is involved.
Our Boston MBTA accident lawyers have experience handling lawsuits for crashes and collisions, both private and public. Speak to our team at the Law Office of John J. Sheehan about your case to determine if you have a valid claim against the MBTA. Call our offices at (617) 925-6407 to set up a free legal consultation.
How Do I Sue the MBTA in Boston for an Accident?
According to the Mass. Gen. Laws Ch. 258, § 2, public employers may be held liable for the negligent actions of their employees. However, the employee’s actions must be within the scope of their employment. This rule is very similar to employer-employee liability regarding private parties rather than public ones. Our Boston MBTA accident lawyers can provide guidance on getting compensation for your injuries.
This rule is important for people who have been injured in a public transportation accident involving the MBTA. The rule allows you to sue the MBTA for your injuries, not just the employee who might be unable to pay for your damages. However, there are a few additional hoops to jump through if you want to file a lawsuit against the MBTA.
The MBTA is a public entity owned and operated by the state. To file a lawsuit against the MBTA, you must file a letter of presentment within 2 years of the accident and your injuries per Mass. Gen. Laws Ch. 258, § 4. Before you can sue, your letter of presentment must be finally denied by the relevant executive officer, meaning the MBTA denies your claims and refuses to compensate you. Only then can you file a lawsuit. This is important to remember as this time limit is shorter than the standard 3-year statute of limitation imposed on private personal injury lawsuits.
Injuries from MBTA Accidents or Incidents in Boston
The nature and extent of your injuries depend on how your accident happened. The MBTA encompasses far more than the Boston subway system. The MBTA runs various bus lines, trains, and other forms of public transportation. Additionally, your accident might not happen on an MBTA vehicle but rather in a facility like a train station.
Your injuries could be the results of a crash or collision. Public vehicles like busses and trains are extremely large and heavy vehicles. Collisions can be very severe for all parties involved. Passengers on MBTA vehicles could be thrown about the vehicle. Other drivers or pedestrians stuck by MBTA vehicles could suffer catastrophic injuries like brain damage or spinal cord injuries. In many crashes, injuries like broken bones, lacerations, and concussions are common.
You could also be injured in an MBTA facility like a bus or train station. The MBTA is responsible for maintaining these premises and keeping them safe for patrons. If you suffered an injury because the premises were unsafe, you might have a case against the MBTA.
Your damages could include both economic and non-economic injuries. Economic injures are those that come with an explicit price tag. Medical bills, the cost of property damage, and lost wages from missing work are all economic damages. Non-economic damages are things that cannot necessarily be seen but are still experienced by the plaintiff. This normally includes physical and mental pain and suffering. Our Boston MBTA accident attorneys can assess your injuries to determine the extent and value of your damages.
When suing the MBTA, your damages may be a bit limited. Damages against public entities are capped at $100,00 under Mass. Gen. Laws Ch. 258, § 2. However, under the same law, damages may exceed 100k if injuries are serious.
What Is the Next Step After an Accident on MBTA Premises in Boston?
The very next step after an MBTA accident in Boston is to get help as quickly as possible. Accidents involving public transportation can be severe, and you might be seriously injured. If you can, you should call for the police and an ambulance right away. Our Boston MBTA accident lawyers can help you review any evidence collected.
Once emergency services have been dispatched to your accident scene, you can begin to think about collecting evidence. You do not need to launch a full investigation immediately following an accident. However, snapping pictures and recording videos of the scene with your phone may prove useful later on. You should also take note of the people around you as they may be potential witnesses in your case.
MBTA vehicles and facilities commonly have surveillance equipment recording at all times. MBTA cameras on a vehicle or in a station likely recorded your accident. We can obtain this evidence from MBTA authorities when we begin your case.
Accidents involving public transportation frequently involve numerous injured individuals. There could be other passengers or drivers who were hurt in the same accident as you. This is important to understand as your case could merge with or be affected by rulings in other cases.
Call Our Boston MBTA Accident Lawyers
If you were injured by MBTA public transportation or in an MBTA facility, talk to our team about filing a lawsuit. Our Boston MBTA accident attorneys can give you advice on how to proceed with a lawsuit. Call the Law Office of John J. Sheehan at (617) 925-6407 for a free legal consultation.