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Fatal Car Accidents Raise Unique Legal Challenges

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Peter J. Gregory
Jan 5, 2021
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According to recent data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), fatal car accident percentages are up in the COVID-19 era despite the smaller amount of vehicles on the roads.  Most cars crashes are the result of driver negligence, including speeding, drunk driving, distracted driving or failing to obey traffic laws.

Car accidents that cause fatalities may result in a wrongful death claim, a special type of personal injury claim that seeks to hold a negligent party responsible for the injuries that he or she has caused. The elements of a claim to recover damages for wrongful death are: (1) death of a human being, (2) a wrongful act, neglect, or default of another person by which deceased’s death was caused, (3) survival of estate beneficiaries or distibutees who suffered financial loss by reason of the death, and (4) appointment of a personal representative of the deceased person.

Typically, the wrongful death claim is brought by the estate of the deceased party, so it is important to retain a personal injury law firm with extensive experience in the area of trusts and estates to handle this portion and assist in appointing a personal representative to bring the claim. Furthermore, the types of available damages in a wrongful death claim are distinct from other personal injury claims. In addition to conscious pain and suffering, generally, the estate may seek the economic value of the deceased to each distributee of the estate at the time the injured person died, including loss of income and financial support, loss of household services, loss of parental guidance, as well as funeral expenses and medical expenses incidental to death.

If you have lost a loved one as a result of a fatal car accident, truck accident or motorcycle accident, protect your rights by retaining an experienced personal injury lawyer at McConville Considine Cooman & Morin, P.C. Our personal injury attorneys have extensive experience in wrongful death claims and are committed to holding negligent drivers accountable for the injuries they have caused. While no amount of financial compensation can ever make up for the loss of a loved one, we can help bring some sense of justice and closure by holding negligence drivers accountable for their actions.

We are available to answer any questions and help you determine your next steps during this difficult time.

Contact Us for a Free Consultation

About the author:  Peter J. Gregory is a partner with the firm.   He is a trial lawyer with extensive experience resolving disputes in state and federal trial courts.  His personal injury practice focusses on advising clients who have been injured or lost loved ones in accidents caused by the carelessness or recklessness of others.  Please feel free to contact him directly at pgregory@mccmlaw.com or (585) 512-3506.

This publication is intended as an information source for clients, prospective clients, and colleagues and constitutes attorney advertising. The content should not be considered legal advice and readers should not act upon information in this publication without individualized professional counsel.


About MCCM

McConville Considine Cooman & Morin, P.C. is a full-service law firm based in Rochester, New York, providing high-quality legal services to businesses and individuals since 1979.  With over a dozen attorneys and a full paralegal support staff, the firm is well-positioned to right-size services tailored to each client. We are large enough to provide expertise in a broad range of practice areas, yet small enough to devote prompt, personal attention to our clients.

We represent a diverse range of clients located throughout New York State and New England.  They include individuals, numerous manufacturing and service industry businesses, local governments, and health care professionals, provider groups, facilities and associations. We also serve as local counsel to out-of-state clients and their attorneys who have litigation pending in Western New York courts.  For more information, please contact us at 585.546.2500.