You realize how dangerous and powerful vehicles could be when you think about car accidents. In some very unfortunate instances, car accidents could result in the death of a loved one.
Usually, the last thing on any person’s mind when faced with a car accident is the law. However, it’s vital to know that if the fatal accident was due to someone else’s reckless actions, you could file a wrongful death claim and recover damages. It’s best to consult a lawyer if you are involved in a serious car accident. Many lawyers in Los Angeles and other cities specialize in wrongful death claims.
Wrongful Death in Car Accidents
If an individual was killed in an auto accident, his or her family members could file a wrongful death claim or lawsuit. This claim is similar to a personal injury lawsuit and involves the claim that an individual’s death was due to another person’s intentional, reckless, or negligent actions that led to the auto accident.
According to an experienced car accident lawyer in Los Angeles, you are entitled to two types of damages, punitive damages and pecuniary damages. Punitive damages are for instituting punishment for the ruinous behavior of the liable party, while pecuniary damages are meant to recover expenses such as health care bills, lost wages, and funeral costs.
However, some states forbid punitive damages, while some enable plaintiffs to recover damages for suffering and pain. Some states place limits on how much damages plaintiffs could recover. Additionally, each state imposes time limitations for filing wrongful death cases.
Plaintiffs could also file a claim against other liable parties such as car manufacturers and related entities. While each auto accident is different, they would involve proving that the death of the person wasn’t his or her fault. As the plaintiff, you would have to collect crucial information you could use to prove your claim. These include photos of the accident scene, police reports, and statements from witnesses.
The Main Takeaway
Auto accident cases, particularly those that involve claims of wrongful death, could be very complex, not only legally, but emotionally as well. If someone you love passed away because of a car accident, consult a lawyer experienced in car accident cases to discuss your options. Remember that while you can’t bring back your deceased loved one, you could help make certain the responsible party would be put to justice.