The worst of car accidents can have fatal consequences. If you have lost a loved one due to a fatal accident, Georgia law provides a legal remedy for holding the responsible party accountable. This remedy is known as a wrongful death lawsuit.
Pursuing this legal remedy on your own can be a mistake. While you are not required to work with an attorney, the complexities of this type of litigation can be difficult to navigate alone. This can cause you to miss your opportunity to obtain a measure of justice for your lost loved one. To ensure your rights are protected, contact a Savannah fatal accident lawyer from Bader Scott Injury Lawyers as soon as possible. Call (404) 888-8888 today.
Fatal Car Accident Statistics
Fatal car accidents have long been a serious problem on U.S. roadways. In 2018 alone, there were 33,654 fatal accidents, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). According to the NHTSA, these accidents resulted in a total of 36,560 deaths. While this figure represents an increase in annual deaths since 2009, it is also part of a longer downward trend.
For example, the total number of traffic fatalities in the United States reached 43,000 in 2002. The 2018 numbers also represent a 2.6 percent decrease from the previous year. The statistics provided by the NHTSA reflect other positive trends as well. In 2018, there were 1.13 fatalities for every 100 million miles traveled. This is a steep decline from the rate of 1.73 in 1994.
The NHTSA figures also reflect that 57 percent of all fatal accidents involve only one vehicle. This helps explain why drivers make up four times as many of the fatalities compared to passengers.
Despite an overall decline across the country in recent years, in Georgia, fatal accidents have been on the rise. According to the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety in Georgia, there were 1,504 traffic fatalities in the state in 2018. This represents an increase from 1,292 since 2009.
For a free legal consultation with a fatal accidents lawyer serving Savannah, call (404) 888-8888
How Fatal Crashes Occur
Fatal accidents occur for the same reasons as any other collision. One of the major factors in these collisions is driving while intoxicated. The use of drugs or alcohol can reduce a motorist’s reaction time and hamper their decision making.
Distracted drivers are also a major threat on the roadway. When a driver diverts their attention from the road, even for only a few seconds, the chances of a crash increase significantly. In addition to these causes, other common factors in fatal car accidents include:
- Fatigued driving.
- Aggressive driving.
- Driving in poor weather conditions.
- Not wearing a seatbelt.
- Operating an unsafe vehicle.
A Savannah fatal accident lawyer can investigate the circumstances of a crash and help you identify the at-fault parties. To get started with your claim, call the Bader Scott Injury Lawyers at (404) 888-8888 today.
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Pursuing a Wrongful Death Case
When a person loses their life in a fatal accident, not every friend or family member has the right to pursue legal action. Only certain close family members have the right to file a wrongful death lawsuit on behalf of their deceased family member.
Specifically, the right to file a lawsuit following a fatal accident rests with the decedent’s spouse. If the deceased person and their spouse had underage children at the time of death, the spouse must also represent the children’s interests in the case. If the deceased person lacked a spouse or children, their surviving parents have the right to proceed with the claim. The same is true for a personal representative of the decedent’s estate. If the estate ultimately brings a lawsuit, the proceeds will go to the deceased person’s heirs.
To prevail, a plaintiff must establish that the fatal car accident occurred due to the negligent, reckless, intentional, or criminal acts of another person. In some ways, it is similar to a personal injury claim that the deceased could have pursued had they survived. If successful, these claims can result in significant financial compensation.
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Seeking Compensation After a Fatal Accident
The compensation from a fatal accident lawsuit generally falls into two categories. The first category relates to the value the individual’s life had to their surviving relatives. This could include the wages that a person would have otherwise earned during the rest of their life. In addition to lost wages and benefits, this compensation also represents the loss of companionship and other intangible losses provided to the surviving relatives.
These claims are not limited to the losses experienced by the decedent’s relatives, however. The second type of compensation relates to the deceased person’s damages sustained at the end of their life. This can include medical expenses related to their final injuries. It also covers funeral and burial costs. Finally, this type of compensation could cover the decedent’s pain and suffering before their death.
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You May Qualify for Compensation if a Car Accident Led to Your Loved One’s Death
Losing a loved one in a fatal car accident is one of the most difficult moments most people will ever experience. This loss is made worse when the accident resulted from another person’s negligence.
If your loved one passed away due to the careless or reckless actions of another driver, a Savannah fatal accident lawyer may be able to help. An attorney can help you collect evidence to support your claim, calculate your losses, and present your case to the court. Call the Bader Scott Injury Lawyers immediately to discuss your claim now at (404) 888-8888.
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