Losing a loved one in a fatal pedestrian accident is a sudden, devastating blow to family members. During this highly emotional time, families often struggle financially to pay for funeral costs, medical expenses, and the loss of income. A Philadelphia personal injury attorney can help a family file a wrongful death claim for losses sustained from a fatal pedestrian accident.
Can I File a Wrongful Death Claim for an Unintentional Accident?
Yes, you can file a wrongful death claim for both intentional and unintentional accidents. A wrongful death claim can be filed if the accident was purposeful, or if was the unintended consequence to someone’s negligent actions. A purposeful accident may be if an individual intentionally drives a car into a group of protesters standing outside a government building. An example of an unintentional accident may be a teenager who is texting, and accident kills a pedestrian walking in a crosswalk.
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim?
In Pennsylvania, the executor of the person’s estate can file a wrongful death claim for a fatal pedestrian accident. If the executor does not file a claim, persons entitled to recover damages may file the claim. Typically, these beneficiaries may include the children, spouse, or parents or the deceased.
What Damages Can I Seek to Recover in a Wrongful Death Claim?
A wrongful death lawsuit is intended to pay the family of the deceased for losses related to the death. These losses may include:
- Funeral expenses
- Burial expenses
- Hospital or medical expenses prior to death
- Lost income, including reasonable expectations on future earnings
- Expenses from administration of the estate
- Loss of companionship, guidance and support
What Time Period Do I Have to File Wrongful Death Claim?
In New Jersey and Pennsylvania, you generally have two years after death from a fatal pedestrian accident to file a wrongful death claim. However, it’s recommended to seek the guidance of an fatal pedestrian accident lawyer as soon feasible. The fatal pedestrian accident lawyers at the Wieand Law Firm can inform you how the statute of limitations may apply to your situation.
Can I File a Claim if the Pedestrian was Partially Responsible for the Accident?
Sometimes, the pedestrian may have some liability for the accident. For example, the pedestrian might have failed to use a crosswalk or have been distracted due to walking while texting. Pennsylvania uses a comparative fault law, under which it will be determined what percentage your loved one was at fault for the accident. The percentage that the pedestrian is at fault is then deducted from the amount of damages awarded. If your loved one was greater than 50% responsible for the accident, you most likely will not be able to receive compensation through a wrongful death settlement. Contact a fatal pedestrian accident lawyer at our firm to find out more about comparative fault law.
How Much Does a Wrongful Death Lawyer Cost?
Our fatal pedestrian accident lawyers work on a contingency fee basis. We offer a free consultation to review your situation and determine if a claim can be brought. Once we enter into a contingency fee agreement, there are no costs for you unless we win your case. Our fees will be deducted from the wrongful death settlement or judgement if we win you compensation. Therefore, you don’t have to worry about affording an attorney.
Contact a Wrongful Death Lawyer About a Fatal Pedestrian Accident
If you lost a loved one in a fatal pedestrian accident, contact the Wieand Law Firm, LLC to find out if you have the grounds for a wrongful death lawsuit. Call 215-666-7777 or send us a message via the online form to speak directly with a lawyer.