More than 40,000 people lost their lives in car crashes in 2021, which is a 10.5% increase from 2020.
Fatal car accidents are more common than most people think. This is why it is important to know that you are not alone if a loved one dies in a car wreck.
You’re probably feeling overwhelmed with a multitude of emotions, including shock, anger, and grief. Since there are many things that you need to do and decisions you need to make, it’s also normal to feel stressed.
To make things a bit easier for you, we’ve written a guide that breaks down what happens when you lose a loved one in a car accident. Keep reading to find out more.
Speak With a Doctor
You will need to speak with a doctor after your loved one has died in an auto accident. This is a necessary part of the process of determining the cause of death and documenting any medical treatment received.
The doctor will probably want to review the medical records. This includes any reports from emergency medical services. They also might need to conduct a post-mortem examination to understand the cause of death.
When speaking with a doctor, make sure to be clear and honest about the events leading up to the accident and any medical treatment that your loved one received.
You will also need to ask questions and clarify any information that you are unsure about.
Some common mistakes that people make when speaking with doctors after an auto accident include not being patient, and not asking questions to determine the cause of death.
The At-Fault Driver Might Face Charges
In the event of a fatal car accident, the driver determined to be at fault may face criminal charges. The reason for this is that reckless or negligent behavior while operating a vehicle is a crime.
For example, if the driver was eating or using their cell phone, prosecutors might charge them with reckless driving.
And if the driver was speeding or disregarded traffic laws, authorities might charge them with vehicular manslaughter.
But it is not always the case that the at-fault driver will face criminal charges. The decision to press criminal charges depends on several factors, such as the severity of the crime and the evidence that’s available.
Hire a Wrongful Death Attorney
If someone you love has been killed in a fatal car wreck, you should consider hiring a wrongful death attorney.
Keep in mind that these types of cases are often extremely painful. This is why it is a good idea to hire a legal expert who is compassionate and has a deep understanding of how the wrongful death process works.
They will help you to build a solid case, put together important evidence, and undergo negotiations with an insurance company’s lawyers and adjusters.
Your Attorney Will Seek to Recover Damages
Your attorney may seek to recover damages on behalf of family members who have lost a loved one. The purpose of doing this is to compensate the client for the losses they have suffered as a result of the accident.
Damages can help to address financial losses, such as lost income, medical expenses, and funeral costs. They will also address non-economic losses, such as emotional distress, loss of companionship, and pain and suffering.
If the liable party is somebody who has limited assets, the value of the wrongful death claim will also be limited.
On the other hand, if the liable party is a large corporation with significant resources, the value of the claim may be higher.
State laws also play a role in determining the value of a wrongful death claim in a car crash. Some states have caps on the amount of damages that families can recover.
This can limit the value of a claim. An experienced attorney can help to evaluate the specific circumstances of the case and provide guidance on the potential value of the claim.
What to Know About Insurance Companies
Insurance companies may try to short-change the family of your loved one. This is because their primary goal is to minimize their financial liability.
This could mean that they offer a low settlement amount, dispute the validity of the claim, or delay the payment of the settlement.
Insurance companies might also argue that the deceased was partially or fully responsible for the accident, or that the medical expenses or other damages are not covered under the policy.
They may also try to find ways to minimize the value of the claim. They might do this by questioning the extent of the damages or the need for ongoing medical treatment.
It’s important to be aware of these tactics and to have an experienced attorney who can help to ensure that you receive the full compensation that you are entitled to.
An attorney can help to negotiate with the insurance company and present a strong case for damages. They will also fight for the rights of your loved one’s family in court.
If you are not sure how to find the best possible attorney, consider looking at online reviews. It is important to choose an attorney who has plenty of experience.
What to Expect if Your Loved One Dies in a Car Crash
If your loved one dies in a car crash, it is important to know what to expect.
It’s necessary to speak with a doctor and understand that the at-fault driver might face charges. It’s also important to hire an experienced lawyer.
Keep in mind that RHINO Lawyers is here to support you and to help you during this difficult time. Don’t hesitate to contact us to get started today.
CONTACT A TAMPA AUTO ACCIDENT ATTORNEY
In short, after a car accident, you may not know your rights. Above all, don’t struggle through the process alone. Actually, our personal injury team is here to help you with any legal needs you might have regarding your accident.
Lastly, let RHINO Lawyers answer your questions and review the facts of your case with a Free Consultation. So, get started by completing the “Free Instant Case Evaluation” or by calling us any time, day or night, at 844.RHINO.77.