Lithonia, GA asked in Car Accidents and Personal Injury for Georgia

Q: I have a friend who is a school bus driver. She drives special needs kids. She had an accident in her bus.

We're in the state of Georgia. She hit a very low pole that you could not see over the hood of her bus. I believe there might have been minor injuries but no child was kept in the hospital overnight. I'm not sure if any children were even taken to the hospital at all since it was more of a fender bender. The police did not charge her nor write her a ticket. A parent whose daughter was on the bus and who herself was on the bus (she was a chaparon) is now sueing the county because she says her daughter is now afraid to ride the bus. My friend the bus driver is worried if she can be held legally responsible. Any information you can give would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.

2 Lawyer Answers
Mr. Garrett S. Handy
Mr. Garrett S. Handy
  • Personal Injury Lawyer
  • Salt Lake City, UT

A: This is a good question that involves a situation where someone was on the job when involved (and at fault) for an accident. In cases like this the employer is going to generally be responsible for the employee's negligent conduct. This is the legal principle of respondeat superior. Presumably your friend was acting within the course and scope of her employment with the school/county when the accident happened. As such, the employer is going to be on the hook for your friend's allegedly negligent acts. You friend will likely be involved in any litigation against her employer. Specifically, she may have to provide deposition testimony. However, more likely than not, the county will provide her with legal counsel and the county (and their insurance company) would pay any potential settlement/judgment that may come as a result of the litigation.

Tim Akpinar agrees with this answer

Priscilla T. Upshaw
Priscilla T. Upshaw
  • Powder Springs, GA
  • Licensed in Georgia

A: I agree with my colleague, and I wish you and your friend well.

-The Upshaw Law Firm, (770) 240-0922.

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