Fatal Car Accidents
Losing a loved one is always devastating, but it may be even more painful when the death is untimely and unexpected. If your loved one was killed in a car accident that was someone else’s fault, you need a skilled Wheaton and Schaumburg fatal car accident attorney on your side. At Therman Law Offices, we can guide you through the complex process of seeking damages from an at-fault party who caused or contributed to your loved one’s death. Our car accident lawyers understand that this an emotionally difficult time for your family, and we can offer compassionate representation at every step of the way.Bringing a Claim Based on a Fatal Car Accident
Using data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Fatal Accident Reporting System, the Auto Insurance Center compiled data on every fatal car accident between the years of 2009 and 2013. The data revealed that some of the most common causes of fatal crashes include failing to keep in the proper lane, failing to yield the right of way, reckless or careless driving, overcorrecting, not adjusting to the road surface, and driving on the wrong side of the road. In Illinois, the most common cause of deadly car crashes was the failure of drivers to keep in their proper lane. The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) reported that there were 914 fatal crashes in Illinois in 2015, for example. IDOT also reveals that there have been 328 fatal crashes in Illinois between January and the third week of May 2017.
In Illinois, a wrongful death occurs when a person dies due to the wrongful act or neglect of another person or entity. The Illinois Wrongful Death Act affords family members of these victims the right to seek financial compensation through a civil lawsuit. The idea behind these claims is that the deceased person would have been able to file the claim on their own behalf had the death not occurred.
In order to win on a wrongful death claim in Illinois, a fatal car accident lawyer in Schaumburg or Wheaton must try to establish that your loved one’s death was a direct and proximate result of the other driver’s negligence. Negligence is defined as a failure to exercise ordinary care to protect the safety of others. Ordinary care is defined as how a reasonably prudent person would act under the same or similar circumstances. For example, if your loved one was killed in a fatal car crash due to someone driving drunk, you would likely be entitled to wrongful death damages because a reasonably prudent person would not get behind the wheel while they were inebriated, understanding the risks associated with such behavior.
If negligence is established, you may be able to recover a variety of damages, including medical expenses prior to the decedent’s death, funeral and burial costs, loss of consortium, loss of companionship, loss of income, and pain and suffering preceding the decedent’s death. In rare cases, you may also be entitled to punitive damages. The purpose of punitive damages is to punish the party responsible for your loved one’s death and deter others from engaging in similar conduct.
It is important to note that wrongful death claims must be filed within a specific time frame, known as the statute of limitations. Typically, this type of lawsuit must be commenced within two years from the death of the victim. Failing to file within this time may mean being barred from pursuing any legal action against the at-fault party.Contact a Fatal Car Accident Attorney in Schaumburg or Wheaton
If you have lost someone close to you in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence, our experienced wrongful death attorneys can help. At Therman Law Offices, we know that filing a lawsuit is not the first thing that you want to consider after the unexpected loss of a loved one, but recovering compensation may help deal with the financial burden that often arises after such an event. Our Wheaton and Schaumburg fatal car accident lawyers also represent people in communities such as Arlington Heights, Hoffman Estates, Streamwood, Elgin, Bartlett, Hanover Park, Bensenville, Wood Dale, Bloomingdale, and Roselle. Call us at 312-588-1900 or contact us online for a free appointment.