What Happens if the At-fault Driver Dies?
Car accident injuries are often serious and there may be cases where the at-fault driver dies in the car crash, or days later from the injuries sustained in the car accident. Filing a claim against a deceased driver can be complicated, however our car accident attorneys are prepared to advise you through the process of recovering compensation from the deceased driver’s insurance or even their estate.
Compensation claims are based on the other driver’s level of negligence that directly resulted in the accident and caused your damages and injuries. This can be established based on the evidence from the scene of the accident, eye -witnesses, and the police report regardless of the status of the other driver. In addition, the claim is being filed against the other driver’s auto insurance often with the at-fault driver remaining uninvolved.
You may be hesitant to file a claim against a deceased at-fault driver out of empathy. However, you still have a right to the compensation you deserve as a victim of a car accident caused by the negligent, now deceased individual. If you fail to seek the proper compensation to cover your mounting medical bills, lost wages and other losses, it could negatively impact your future and result in financial burdens. In addition, you are filing a claim with their auto insurance company, not their family or loved ones.
That said, if the amount of compensation you are seeking is not being met by the insurance company, you may have to file a lawsuit against the deceased driver’s estate to pay out the difference. Our car accident attorneys will help you determine if this is a solid course of action and explain the process.
In the event there is not enough compensation in the estate of the deceased, you may also seek compensation by filing a claim through your own uninsured or underinsured motorist policy, if you carry one in your personal auto insurance plan.
If you or a loved one has been involved in an accident where the at-fault driver died, you should hire an experienced personal injury attorney. At Joshi & Patel we offer a free case evaluation, no obligation consultation. Once it has been determined that you have a case, we will work for you on a contingent fee basis. In other words, you do not pay your personal injury attorney fees up-front. Instead, you sign an agreement to pay us a percentage of your settlement amount. You pay us absolutely nothing unless you recover.
**Many of our blog articles discuss the law. All information provided about the law is very general in nature and should not be relied upon as legal advice. Every situation is different, and should be analyzed by a lawyer who can provide individualized advice based on the facts involved in your unique situation, and a consideration of all of the nuances of the statutes and case law that apply at the time.