Losing a loved one is devastating. What happens when someone dies in a car accident? When their death was caused in a motor vehicle accident by someone else's fault and negligence. If you are a close family member of the deceased, you may sue the at-fault driver for financial compensation for your loss, as well as for a variety of damages. At Glenn Law, you will find a compassionate and experienced wrongful death lawyer who will fight on your behalf..
We cannot truly compensate you for the immense loss, but we will make sure that the party with liability for the crash will pay a death claim settlement that allows you to cover for the funeral, medical expenses before death (if applicable) and other economic and non-economic damages.
Can You File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in Parallel with a Criminal Trial?
Many relatives of road fatality victims are not sure whether the criminal trial filed by the state against the at-fault driver gives them the right to take a wrongful death action in a civil court. These are two separate cases. Criminal cases determine if fatal accidents were the result of a crime, for instance, a drunk driver. In a wrongful death claim, the surviving relatives are suing for financial compensation.
While the defendant may be found not guilty under Texas Penal Code, or they may receive a suspended sentence (not serve prison time), they may be found liable for an accidental road death in the civil case. What wrongful death attorneys need to prove is that:
- The reckless driver acted with negligence or in a deliberate manner in the death car accident
- that the surviving relative who is suing has suffered financially as a result of their loved one's death
- that a person was appointed as representative or executor to the deceased's estate.
What Happens When Someone Dies in a Car Accident? Who Can File a Claim for Death Compensations?
The state of Texas has strict stipulations concerning the relatives who may file a wrongful death lawsuit against the person at fault. The Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code Title 4 Sec. 71.002 indicates that the eligible relatives are:
- parents - especially if the deceased person is a minor.
Siblings are entitled to file a lawsuit only if they are also the executors of their relative's estate.
The Driver May Not Be the Only At-Fault Party
When it comes to the question: "Whom should you sue?" the answer appears simple: the other driver. This is true if the cause of the accident was:
- reckless driving
- driving under influence
- unsafe driving
In reality, the statistics published by Texas Department of Transportation indicate that some of the contributing causes to motor vehicles were:
- defective steering mechanism
- defective or no vehicle brakes
- pedestrian failed to give right of way to vehicle
- defective or slick tires.
In such circumstances, additional damages can be sought from other parties responsible for your loved one's untimely death, such as the manufacturer of the tires equipped on the wheels of the vehicle, the car manufacturer, or the company that performed the mandatory annual vehicle safety inspection.
Reasons to Hire a Wrongful Death Lawyer
Fighting powerful insurance companies is a dirty job, not fit for a grieving spouse, child or parent. Sudden motor-vehicle accident related deaths are treated without any compassion by insurance adjuster. For them, it is only a matter of getting you to sign a quick settlement and paying the smallest personal injury damages they can get away with.
A seasoned wrongful death attorney will start working on your case from the very beginning: the actual crash that caused the road death.. From the reports prepared by police officers at the scene of the crime to witness statements and surveillance camera footage, the attorney will identify the at-fault drivers and the degree of responsibility for the accident.
While drowsy drivers and impaired drivers may be liable for negligence, an intoxicated driver is liable for gross negligence. This means that the final death benefit awarded to you may also include punitive damages.
What Types of Damages Can You Win in a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in Texas?
No amount of money can truly compensate your loved one's tragic death, but you will be left with huge expenses, loss of income and emotional trauma requiring grief counseling. A wrongful death attorney will seek to obtain compensation on your behalf for:
Financial or monetary losses cover:
- medical and funeral expenses
- lost wages
- lost services performed
- other financial hardships.
Expenses for Psychological Counseling and Treatment
All sudden deaths of a loved one cause a trauma to the relatives, and some may need professional help to overcome the moment. The trauma may be even deeper if you were the driver or passenger in the car and witnessed the vehicle crash. You deserve to recover the cost for psychological treatment, and our legal team will ensure you receive this compensation.
Loss of Advice and Counsel
If you deceased loved one was also your professional advisor, your lawyer may calculate the monetary loss of their guidance as part of the wrongful death claim.
Glenn Law Firm - the Force of Justice by Your Side!
Dealing with the aftermath of a loved one's death is a painful and confusing time. You should not be alone in fighting automobile insurance agencies and getting the settlement you are entitled. You need a strong and knowledgeable lawyer who knows how to negotiate an insurance claim settlement or prepare your case for trial.
With over 38 years of experience as a personal injury attorney, David Glenn knows how to devise an aggressive strategy that brings results. He will not back down when insurance adjusters refuse to accept the fair compensation you deserve, but take the insurance company to court. During the trial, you will receive all the necessary information and be shielded as far as possible from its unpleasant aspects.
You need closure for the loss you suffered and the assurance that you are not left destitute. Contact Glenn Law Firm for a free case review. We are available 24/7, so call us: 817-424-5999!