Someone Dies in a Car Accident

What Happens When Someone Dies in a Car Accident?

If your family member passed away in a car accident, you probably want to hold the at-fault party or parties responsible for the pain they caused you. While they may face criminal charges for the accident, we can also help you pursue a civil claim and recover compensation for your loved one’s pain and suffering as well as your financial damages.
Although nothing can ever make up for your loved one’s loss, the attorneys at Gacovino, Lake & Associates, P.C. want to help you through this difficult time. Call us today at 631-600-0000 for a free consultation.

Criminal Charges Against the At-Fault Driver

Depending on the facts of the case, the at-fault driver may face criminal charges for their role in your family member’s death. This is especially true if they were driving recklessly, were drunk, or otherwise impaired. While a criminal conviction may make you feel somewhat vindicated, it does nothing to pay your accident-related bills. Families often feel worse when a liable driver gets nothing more than a slap on the wrist for causing their loved one’s death.

Civil Claims Against the At-Fault Driver

New York State allows you to take civil action against the person or party who caused your family member’s accident and death. Known as a wrongful death claim, have two parts: a survivorship action and the wrongful death action.
The survivorship action recovers compensation for any conscious pain and suffering your loved one experienced before they passed away. In some cases, when someone dies instantly or when they never recover consciousness, this compensation is not available. If they were conscious and experienced pain and suffering, however, we can help you recover compensation for this noneconomic loss.
Wrongful death actions allow the surviving family members to collect economic damages related to the accident. These damages may include:

  • Funeral and burial expenses
  • Medical care costs
  • Lost wages through the date of death
  • Lost income because of their death
  • Lost inheritance for surviving children
  • The value of support and services they provided
  • The value of parental care and guidance they provided

It is important to note that New York wrongful death laws do not allow you to collect compensation for your noneconomic damages. This includes your pain and suffering, mental anguish, and other emotional losses.

Contact a Wrongful Death Attorney to Learn More

If you believe you have a viable Long Island wrongful death claim, Gacovino, Lake & Associates, P.C. can help. You can reach our office at 631-600-0000. Give us a call as soon as possible, because you only have two years to file this type of action in New York State.