Pittsburgh Fatal Car Accident Lawyers
Our personal injury attorneys help you get justice for your loved one
There is no experience more tragic than losing a loved one. When your loved one was lost in a car accident that was somebody else’s fault, you want to hold the negligent party accountable. In order to get answers and justice, it’s important to choose the right car accident lawyer to represent you.
At Romanow Law Group our compassionate car accident attorneys understand that holding responsible parties accountable for the harm they caused plays a major role in both helping the family begin to heal and preventing another avoidable death. If you have lost a loved one due to the wrongful act or negligence of another, please call us today.
Is a fatal car accident a criminal or civil matter?
The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania may bring criminal charges (such as vehicular manslaughter) in connection with a death in a car accident, but the victim’s family can also bring a civil wrongful death claim in connection with the same death, whether or not the driver is charged with a crime. Because the standard of proof is lower in civil court, it’s possible to win a wrongful death lawsuit even if the responsible driver is acquitted in criminal court.
Who can file a lawsuit after someone dies in a car accident?
Pennsylvania law gives the personal representative of the deceased person’s estate the first opportunity to file a wrongful death lawsuit. After six months, if the personal representative has not done so, any beneficiary of the estate may file a claim on behalf of all beneficiaries. The statute of limitations (deadline to file) is usually two years from the date of the death.
What can be recovered in a fatal car accident lawsuit?
Under Pennsylvania’s Wrongful Death Act and Survivor Act, relatives can recover damages after the loss of a loved one due to negligence.
- Survival Statute
This allows the estate of a victim to recover loss of future earnings. Loss of earnings is measured by what your loved one would have earned by intellectual or bodily labor in his or her business or profession during the remainder of his or her lifetime. In a survival action, the plaintiff-estate stands in the shoes of the victim, which means that the estate can recover for the pain and suffering that the person experienced before his or her death.
- Wrongful Death Statute
The damages that are recoverable in a wrongful death action include “reasonable hospital, nursing, medical, funeral expenses and expenses of administration necessitated by reason of injuries causing death.” A surviving spouse may recover for loss of financial support, services, comfort, society and affection. Surviving children may bring a claim for loss of a parent’s guidance, tutelage and moral upbringing.
How much is a wrongful death lawsuit worth?
The short answer is “it depends.” The value of a wrongful death claim is affected by the amount of time the deceased person would have been expected to live, the amount they would have earned based on their career path, any medical expenses and other costs associated with their final injury or illness, and numerous other factors. The only way to assess the value of your claim is to discuss it with an experienced attorney.
Proving fault in fatal accidents
The laws involved in wrongful death actions and survivor actions are complicated. Defendants in these cases often begin planning their defense on the day of the accident when the victims have just begun the grieving process. They consult with lawyers in an effort to minimize or eliminate liability.
At Romanow Law Group, we value our clients like family and don’t want to see their rights jeopardized. Our attorneys will begin preserving evidence, taking witness statements and investigating your claim the moment you retain our services. We have recovered millions of dollars in damages for injured accident victims and the families of fatal accidents in Pennsylvania. Let our experienced lawyers guide you through the process and help you receive the monetary damages you and your family are entitled to.
The experienced Pittsburgh wrongful death lawyers at our firm will comprehensively evaluate your wrongful death case. It costs you nothing. If we decide to take your case, we will never ask for any money up front and will only collect a fee in the event of a successful monetary recovery at the conclusion of your case.
If you want to get justice for the loss of a loved one, our firm is ready to help you get through this difficult time. To learn more about how we can help, schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced car accident lawyers. You can reach us at 1-844-GET-MORE or by contacting us online.