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Seattle Fatal Car Accident Attorney

Seattle fatal car accident attorney

A catastrophic car accident is terrifying and traumatic. When an accident involves one or more fatalities, the trauma extends to close family members of the deceased victims who suffer the grief and anguish of the sudden loss. When the fatal accident occurred because of the careless or reckless actions of another driver or due to a negligent road maintenance agency, road-planning entity, or the maker of a defective car part, it’s even more traumatic knowing the death was preventable if only someone else had taken reasonable care.

When a family member suffers a preventable car accident death in Seattle, surviving family members deserve skilled representation from a Seattle fatal car accident lawyer so they can achieve a sense of justice and accountability.

Was Your Loved One’s Car Accident Fatality a Wrongful Death?

When a motorist dies in a devastating car accident, and the accident was caused by another driver’s actions, close family members may be eligible for compensation through a wrongful death claim. If the circumstances of the accident were such that the loved one could have filed a personal injury lawsuit had they survived the injury, then a Seattle car accident lawyer could recover compensation for grieving family members. Proving liability in a wrongful death claim requires a thorough investigation and careful documentation of evidence showing the following:

  • The at-fault driver or other party owed a duty of care to motorists to take all reasonable actions to avoid causing an accident, injuries, and fatalities
  • They breached this duty through negligence, recklessness, or intentional wrongdoing (like drunk driving)
  • This breach of duty directly caused the accident and fatality
  • The close family members of the decedent suffered economic and non-economic damages from the death of their loved one

If the evidence meets this burden of proof, a wrongful death claim after a fatal car accident can move forward with negotiations for a settlement.

Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim In Washington After a Fatal Car Accident?

According to Washington RCW 4.20.010:

“When the death of a person is caused by the wrongful act, neglect, or default of another person, his or her personal representative may maintain an action against the person causing the death for the economic and noneconomic damages sustained by the beneficiaries…”

Some states allow a spouse, adult child, or parent to file a wrongful death claim directly, but Washington requires the claim to come through the representative or executor named in the decedent’s will or estate plan. If an individual dies without a will, the court appoints a representative for the claim who then distributes the compensation to the family members who suffer financial impacts from the death—typically the spouse, child, or parent of the decedent.

What Types of Car Accidents Are Often Fatal?

Any accident has the potential to result in fatal injuries, even those with relatively mild property damage to a vehicle. However, some types of accidents have fatal consequences more often than others. Data reveals the most common car accidents resulting in fatalities, including the following:

  • Head-on Collisions, which caused about 5,800 deaths in 2022
  • Side-angle collisions (T-bone accidents) caused 8,800 deaths in 2022
  • Rear-end collisions caused 3,400 fatalities in 2022
  • Side swipes caused 1,600 deaths in 2022

When any of the above accidents occur at high speeds, the risk of a fatality substantially increases.

Vehicle rollovers are less common than the above accident types but often result in catastrophic injuries and fatalities.

What Causes Fatal Car Accidents in Seattle?

Seatbelts and airbags save lives but cannot prevent all crash-related injuries or deaths. Common causes of fatal car accidents in Seattle include:

  • Distracted driving
  • Speeding
  • Tailgating
  • Failing to yield the right of way
  • Unsafe lane changes
  • Improper merging
  • Aggressive driving
  • Intoxicated driving

When another driver causes any of the above accidents and the result is a fatality, the driver is responsible for providing compensation for grieving family members through their insurance policy.

What Compensation Is Available in a Car Accident Wrongful Death Claim in Washington?

An untimely death sometimes leaves family members facing financial hardship at the same time they are saying goodbye to a loved one. A successful wrongful death claim alleviates the financial consequences of the death so the family members can focus on the more important aspects of the death and care for their grieving loved ones. A successful fatal car accident claim results in compensation for the following:

  • Medical expenses from any emergency treatment before the death
  • Funeral and burial costs
  • Lost income for the number of working years the victim would have had left to them
  • Loss of benefits such as health insurance coverage and retirement contributions
  • Loss of household services
  • Emotional grief and anguish

Call The Seattle Fatal Car Accident Attorney From the Fang Law Firm Today

No grieving family member should have to deal with insurance companies after suffering a loss. Insurers often protect their profits at the expense of victims and their families. Contact the compassionate Seattle fatal car accident attorneys at the Fang Law Firm for help navigating this sensitive and all-important accident claim.

Fang Law Firm offers 100% remote and contactless meetings & representation.