Losing a loved one in a motor vehicle accident can be devastating to a family. In addition to the emotional toll an event like this can take, financial issues can add further strain during this difficult time.
There are legal avenues the family can explore to seek justice and compensation for their loss.
Wrongful death claim
In Pennsylvania, the family of a deceased person may file a wrongful death claim. This claim seeks compensation for the damages resulting from the death, including funeral and medical expenses, lost wages and the emotional suffering of the surviving family members. While this cannot bring back the lost loved one, it can provide financial support during this time.
Survival action lawsuit
Apart from the wrongful death claim, the family may also file a survival action lawsuit. This lawsuit allows the deceased person’s estate to seek compensation for the pain and suffering the deceased endured before passing away. It covers damages that the deceased person could have received had they survived the accident.
It is important to be aware of the time limitations for filing these claims in Pennsylvania. The statute of limitations for wrongful death and survival action claims is generally two years from the date of the person’s death. Promptly initiating the legal process is key to protecting the family’s rights and avoiding potential legal complications.
Liability and compensation
To pursue these legal options successfully, it is important to establish the liability of the party responsible for the accident. Gathering evidence, such as accident reports, medical records and eyewitness testimonies, helps to build a strong case.
There were 1,179 reported motor vehicle crash fatalities in Pennslyvania in 2022. While no amount of compensation can make up for the loss of a loved one, there are legal options to provide these families with the financial resources needed to help them cope with the aftermath.