Fatal Car Accidents
Thousands of car accidents happen each day in Georgia, and many of the drivers and passengers involved in them are fortunate enough to be able to walk away unscathed. Tragically, though, some people in car crashes suffer insurmountable harm and ultimately succumb to their injuries. Losing a loved one can cause significant emotional trauma and economic losses, and people whose family members were killed in collisions should seek legal counsel regarding their rights. The dedicated Roswell car accident lawyers at Don Turner Legal Team are mindful of the wide-ranging losses that fatal car accidents cause. If you lost a loved one in a collision, we will advocate assertively on your behalf to help you pursue the best legal outcome possible in your case.Georgia’s Wrongful Death Laws
In Georgia, people who carelessly cause the death of another person may be deemed liable for damages under the wrongful death law. The law specifically provides that a death of an individual due to a crime, defective product, or negligence is a wrongful death. Most wrongful death lawsuits arising out of fatal car accidents will assert negligence claims against a driver involved in the collision, which requires proof that the defendant owed the plaintiff a duty and breached the duty owed. The duty is usually the obligation to act reasonably under the circumstances, but it may also be a duty imposed by law. The plaintiff must then prove that the defendant’s acts directly caused the fatal accident. In some instances, the plaintiff may also assert that defects in a vehicle brought about the accident. Establishing liability for a defective product generally requires a plaintiff to prove that the vehicle suffered from a defect that rendered it unreasonably dangerous and that the harm suffered was caused by the defect.Seeking Damages in a Wrongful Death Claim
Georgia’s wrongful death law limits who can recover damages via a civil lawsuit. It states that the spouse of a deceased person or, if the deceased person was not married, surviving adult or minor children may be awarded compensation in a wrongful death lawsuit. Parents also have the right to seek damages for the loss of their minor children. If no individual falls within the categories listed under the law, the administrator or executor of the deceased person’s estate can pursue wrongful death claims, and any damages awarded will be disbursed to the next of kin.
A plaintiff who establishes a defendant’s liability in a wrongful death case will be awarded compensation for the full value of the deceased person’s life. The value is usually calculated by considering economic factors, like the deceased person’s wages and benefits, and intangible elements, like the care, companionship, and nurturing that the deceased person provided to family members. The anticipated expenses that the deceased person would have incurred throughout his or her life are not subtracted from the damages awarded. The personal representative of the deceased person’s estate may also be awarded the cost of any medical treatment rendered prior to the deceased person’s death and any funeral expenses incurred by the estate.
The law provides that the compensation awarded for the value of a deceased person’s life should be split between a surviving spouse and children, but the spouse is entitled to at least one-third of the damages awarded, regardless of how many children the deceased person had.Meet With a Skillful Roswell Attorney
Losing a loved one in a fatal car accident often causes substantial economic harm in addition to shock, frustration, and emotional trauma. If you lost a loved one in a collision, it is advisable to meet with a lawyer about your options. At Don Turner Legal Team, our skillful car accident lawyers can craft persuasive arguments in your favor to help you seek justice for your losses. We regularly represent people in lawsuits asserting wrongful death claims in Roswell, Atlanta, McDonough, and elsewhere in Georgia, including in Fulton, DeKalb, Cobb, Gwinnett, Clarke, Cherokee, Douglas, Forsyth, Greene, Hall, Henry, Richmond, and Rockdale Counties. You can contact us through our online form or at (770) 594-1777 to schedule a meeting.