The recent fiery crash on Interstate 95 that left 2 people dead has certainly put the community on edge. Car accidents that end in explosions are supposed to be the stuff of Hollywood movies, not everyday life. Unfortunately, Florida sees a good number of traffic fatalities on our roads each year. According to state statistics, 3,150 people died in 2018 from car accidents.
What happens if you lose a loved one in a car wreck? At Dolan Dobrinsky Rosenblum Bluestein, our Miami wrongful death attorneys meet with clients who have lost a child, spouse, or parent in a devastating car accident. Let us explain how we can help.
Wrongful Death Lawsuit
When someone is injured by a negligent driver, they can often bring a lawsuit for compensation. Now, you might think that a victim’s right to sue dies along with them, but that’s not the case.
In Florida, certain survivors can bring what is called a wrongful death claim. The personal representative for the deceased person’s estate actually prosecutes the lawsuit in court and essentially “steps into the shoes” of the deceased. The estate must prove that the defendant negligently or wrongfully injured the deceased by using witnesses and other evidence.
Wrongful death cases are not criminal trials. Instead, they are civil cases that are brought in civil court. The prosecutor will not bring the case for a family, who instead should meet with an attorney. Our lawyers can file appropriate paperwork in court to start these cases.
Compensation in a Wrongful Death Case
The purpose of a wrongful death lawsuit is to compensate family members for the loss of a loved one. Family members can qualify for a range of damages, for such things as lost wages, lost services, loss of companionship and care, and sometimes pain and suffering.
The amounts our clients receive depend on the circumstances. If the deceased was well-educated and had a high income, then family members will probably receive more in lost wages. If a deceased was old and retired, less compensation is usually available. However, every case is different.
Building a Case
Wrongful death lawsuits are not easy to bring. The state does not collect evidence for you; instead, you should hire an attorney who can tackle the case for you. To prevail, you need to show that the defendant’s conduct was wrongful in some way and that this wrongful conduct led to your loved one’s death. Our lawyers have experience interviewing witnesses, analyzing crash reports, and working with experts to reconstruct accidents.
How Common are Fatal Accidents?
According to the Department of Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FHSMV), there were 341,399 car accidents in the state in 2020 alone. Tragically, 3,098 of these collisions proved to be fatal, resulting in the deaths of 3,332 people, a number that represented a nearly 5 percent increase since 2019. An estimated 328 of those deaths were the result of drunk driving or driving while under the influence of drugs. Around 552 of the victims were motorcyclists, while 715 were pedestrians, and another 169 were bicyclists. Having a thorough understanding of these numbers can help accident victims determine the cause of most Florida crashes and their prevalence, as well as what steps they can take to prevent them.
Types of Fatal Car Accidents
While rear-end collisions are one of the most common types of car accident in Florida, they are not always the most dangerous. The most dangerous types of car accidents in which a Florida motorist can be involved are:
- T-bone collisions, which often occur at intersections and involve one driver striking the side of an oncoming vehicle;
- Head-on collisions, which are notorious for being deadly, as these crashes often occur at high speeds and can result in engine fires;
- Single-vehicle crashes, which occur when a person strikes not another vehicle, but another object, like a light pole, or tree, often in an attempt to swerve out of the way of a negligent driver or because of a vehicle defect; and
- Multi-vehicle collisions, which are among the most dangerous types of crashes, as they involve multiple impacts from varying directions.
Although these kinds of accidents are some of the most common causes of fatal car accidents in Florida, they are by no means the only situations in which a tragic accident-related fatality can occur. For help determining the cause of your own loved one’s serious accident, don’t hesitate to reach out to our legal team today.
Available 24 Hours a Day
If your loved one was involved in a fatal car accident in Florida, you should have a plan in place for what to do next. At Dolan Dobrinsky Rosenblum Bluestein, our dedicated legal team and support staff can help you file an accident report, gather evidence, speak with witnesses, and negotiate with your insurer, all while you focus on yourself and your family. We answer calls and messages 24 hours a day, so don’t hesitate to reach out to our dedicated Miami wrongful death lawyers to learn more about how we can help. Call us at 305-371-2692 or contact us online today.