How To Do Justice If You Lost A Loved One In A Car Crash: South Florida Caribbean News
Suddenly losing someone you love in a car accident is as horrible as life can get. Yet this is the reality of a good number of families across the United States.
Statistics from the Federal Highway Administration show that there were approximately 33,000 fatal traffic accidents in 2019 alone. These accidents killed more than 36,000. A significant portion of them have been labeled as wrongful deaths. For example, in the same year, the NHTSA reported that 10,142 traffic fatalities were due to impaired driving. That’s almost a third of all fatal traffic accidents!
Therefore, even though losing a loved one is a horrific experience, it is essential that the family left behind stand up for the rights of the deceased. This is not only good for you as a family, but for the millions of people who have also lost loved ones due to preventable traffic accidents. Because every time someone is convicted of wrongful death, it is a less reckless person on our roads. It gives you the justice you deserve while protecting the community as a whole.
Having said that, the process of seeking justice can be very overwhelming. It doesn’t help matters that you are also trying to heal the emotional hurt caused by your loved one’s disappearance.
With this guide, we hope to make the process a little less stressful for you. We’ll give you clear direction on what to expect as you seek justice during this difficult time.
Understand the cause of the accident
The first step in building your wrongful death trial is to investigate the accident. You need to find the root cause of the crash and collect all the necessary evidence. It should help you build a strong case that will get you the justice you deserve.
The police are usually the first investigators on the scene. The law requires that they document the key details of the accident on what is called the CR-3 form. This form will contain a lot of information that should be part of your proof.
Some of the data that will be captured on this document are:
- The date and place of the accident
- Identification of details of the people and vehicles involved in the accident, for example, the license plate of the car and the names of drivers, passengers, pedestrians and anyone else involved in the accident.
- Medical services are provided to those involved in the accident. It also records whether the victim died at the scene.
- Driver drug test results
- Damage around places observed by the law enforcement officer
In some cases, the Department of Transportation may also send investigators to the scene. This usually happens if the accident requires detailed information forensic investigations. Specialists can also help reconstruct the accident.
Don’t worry if the ministry doesn’t do any reconstruction. Families of wrongful death victims are allowed to hire an accident reconstructor to recreate the scene. This is a great option when the cause of the accident is unclear. This will help you get the forensic evidence you need to make your case.
In general, a wrongful death accident can be due to:
- Distracted driving
- Drunk Driving
- Aggressive driving
- Driving without a valid driver’s license
- Road constructions
Hiring legal aid
As you can imagine, facing a wrongful death trial takes a lot of commitment and effort. Even the gathering of evidence can be very overwhelming for an already grieving family. This is why you must bring a wrongful death lawyer on board. And not just any lawyer, but a qualified and experienced lawyer. The lawyer will help you in many ways. First of all, they will collect all the evidence you need for your case. These professionals deal with similar cases on a daily basis. They know what evidence to look for and how to get it.
Lawyers specializing in wrongful death also have the connections to provide you with the specialists you need for your case. For example, they can find the right accident reconstructor who can recreate the scene in court.
Third, lawyers understand the legal process. They know what to drop off and when to drop it off. They include all the deadlines affecting your file. With this knowledge, rest assured that they will make the whole process easier for you. Most importantly, they will use their expertise to increase your chances of winning the deal.
Finally, the lawyer will reduce your workload and save you a lot of time. After you lose a loved one in an accident, the last thing you want is to go over the details of the accident over and over again. These details can have a profound effect on your mental and emotional well-being. What you need and deserve is for the matter to be resolved ASAP and for you to focus on getting your family back together.
A lawyer will help you in dealing with the details of the case.
So when should you hire a lawyer? The simple answer is immediately. A lawyer can do more for you if they get involved in the process as early as possible. Bring them while the evidence is still fresh. Believe me; you don’t want your lawyer catching up with the opposing lawyer. It hurts your chances more than you might think.
How to hire the right lawyer? Here are four simple considerations to help you find the right lawyer for your case:
Experience is crucial in wrongful death cases. Remember, this is a very delicate trial, so you don’t want to leave your case in the hands of an inexperienced man. It is also important to refine the experience. Don’t just go looking for a lawyer with 10 years of practice experience. Choose one who has 10 years of experience in wrongful death cases. Better yet, try to find one with experience in wrongful death lawsuits in car accidents. Ideally, you want to hire a lawyer who can help you settle the case as quickly as possible. However, they should also be able to be tried if necessary.
Lots of details need to be shared back and forth throughout this matter. For this to happen properly, both parties need to have excellent communication skills. Therefore, make sure the lawyer you hire is easy to contact and communicates well. They should be able to give you updates as they go. They should also address any concerns you may have about regulations and other matters.
Law is a busy profession. In fact, you’ll find that almost every lawyer you contact has similar cases going on. Knowing that other victims trust them can be a good sign. However, the lawyer should also be available for your case. Hire a lawyer who has time for you. The one you can get when needed. They don’t have to be on the phone 24/7, but they should definitely be able to create time for you.
What do other lawyers have to say about your lawyer? And what are the ratings of their previous clients? Be sure to check out reviews and testimonials from a lawyer before using their services.
It is important to know what you will face if your case goes to trial. Let me start by pointing out that it won’t be the most enjoyable experience of your life.
To begin with, various painful details will be discussed regarding the accident itself. Your lawyer can even show CCTV footage showing the last moments in your loved one’s life. It will be a difficult time for you, but it is a necessary part of the process. You should also be prepared for the counter arguments that the opposing lawyer will present. Some of their arguments will strike you as ridiculous and ignorant, but you may need to consider all of them.
Perhaps the most painful part will be seeing the person who killed your loved one. Prepare for the waves of emotions you will go through during this time. Your lawyer and family should help you through this process. At the end of the affair, several things can happen. The driver at fault could be found guilty and sentenced to jail if the local district attorney pushed criminal charges.
In terms of offsets, you will look at the following options:
- Medical fees: Sometimes an accident can leave your loved one in the hospital for days or even weeks before they die. This leaves your family with high medical bills. The claim for wrongful death must include medical expenses incurred while the deceased was in hospital.
- Burial and funeral costs: The claim will also cover the funeral and burial costs.
- Pain and suffering: If the deceased was hospitalized for some time before dying, your family may seek compensation for pain and suffering.
- Loss of income: Your lawyer will speak with experts and calculate the salary lost by your loved one due to the wrongful death. These salaries will be included in the claim.
- Loss of service: You can also file a loss of service complaint if the deceased played a vital role in the family. For example, if they were responsible for raising children or looking after an older family member, the lost services will have to be compensated in the claim.
The process of seeking justice for a loved one lost in a car accident is painful. It can also take a long time. However, with the right experts by your side, this process should be less stressful and overwhelming.