Pearland Train Accident Lawyer
While trains are statistically speaking much less prone to accidents than cars or other passenger vehicles, when a train accident does occur, the consequences are often devastating for the victims. We have all seen reports of train derailments or collisions at railroad crossings that have produced substantial casualties and property damage. What you may not realize is the legal complexity that follows when it comes to sorting out liability for such accidents.
Train accidents are not like other types of personal injury claims. They typically involve much more detailed investigations into the circumstances surrounding the accident as well as a host of federal and state regulations. So if you are one of the injured victims, it is in your best interest to work with a qualified Pearland train accident lawyer. Attorney Keith B. French is an experienced Texas civil litigator who has assisted many accident victims in obtaining compensation for their injuries.
How Federal Law Affects Railroad Accident Settlements
Personal injury claims arising from train accidents are often settled out of court. The reason for this is fairly simple to understand: Private train companies and public transportation authorities rarely want to risk the potential exposure and negative publicity of a contested lawsuit.
But that does not mean that accident victims should accept any settlement that is proposed. In many cases a settlement offer is far below the victim’s full measure of economic losses and other damages. And there are situations where litigation–and in particular, pre-trial discovery–may help to uncover all of the factors that led to a preventable train accident.
That said, it is important to understand that federal law caps the total amount of liability for railroads involved in passenger rail accidents. This cap applies not just to national railroads like Amtrak but also commuter and light rail systems that operate throughout Texas. In a catastrophic accident with dozens or hundreds of victims, this cap may ultimately limit how much each individual victim can recover.
There are also separate laws governing injuries sustained by railroad workers in accidents. The Federal Employers Liability Act typically covers such situations. The FELA actually allows injured railroad workers to file a lawsuit in federal court under a reduced burden of proof. FELA claims are also not subject to the passenger railroad liability cap mentioned above.
Contact Keith B. French Law Today
Railroad accidents can occur for many reasons, including track-related problems, conductor error, improper loading of cargo, excess weight, and mechanical failures caused by improper maintenance procedures. Determining who exactly was at-fault often takes several months of investigation, followed by an extended period of settlement negotiations and potential lawsuits.
If you or someone that you loved has been injured or killed in a railroad accident, you need representation from someone who can help you sort all of these complicated factual and legal issues. So if you need to speak with a Pearland railroad accident lawyer as soon as possible, contact Keith B. French Law, PLLC, today to schedule a free initial consultation.