Fatal Car, Truck, and Motorcycle Accidents in Sacramento
Your loved one was taken from you in a fatal auto accident. You know that another person is responsible for the crash, but you need to prove his or her fault in order to hold the reckless individual accountable. Fortunately, you do not have to take on this fight alone. With our wrongful death lawyers at your side, you and your family can focus on the grieving process while we go to work building a strong case on your behalf.
To learn more about your legal rights and options after a wrongful death car accident in Sacramento, please call our toll-free number (916) 444-0100. We can help you find the answers you need and the money you deserve at no cost to you.
The Common Causes of Fatal Truck Accidents in California
Fatal truck crashes can happen in any number of ways. In many cases, fault can be attributed to the truck driver and/or the trucking company.
Some of the most common contributing factors behind fatal truck accidents include:
- Fatigued driving: Although truck drivers are required to get a certain amount of rest in a set period under federal law, some bend the rules to make faster delivery times. This may lead to more profits, but it also contributes towards a higher crash risk. Fatigue can induce slower response time, lack of focus, and even unconsciousness. Other people shouldn’t be put in harm’s way just so greedy trucking companies can stuff a little more money in their pockets.
- Bad driving behavior: This includes speeding, tailgating, abrupt braking, distracted driving, inebriated driving, and other behaviors which put people on the road at risk of harm.
- Poor maintenance and improper loading: When it comes to operations, trucking companies are expected to uphold certain safety standards enforced by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) among other regulatory agencies. Failure to comply with these standards may result in a fatal collision, in which case, the trucking company could be held liable.
My Relative Was Killed in a Motorcycle Wreck. What Are My Rights?
If you have lost a loved one in a motorcycle accident, you are probably experiencing pain, grief and a variety of emotional responses. You may be very confused as to what is going to happen in the future, as well. Will the police charge the person who caused the fatal accident? If the person is arrested, will the family receive any money to pay for funeral expenses or other costs related to the accident? What are the rights of a family member when someone is killed in a motorcycle accident?
The Family Connection
A person who causes a fatal accident may face two types of legal action. The first is criminal charges for any actions he or she may have taken that broke the law, such as drinking and driving or speeding. The other type is a civil action brought by survivors of the victim and is known as a wrongful death lawsuit.
In order to file a wrongful death lawsuit, the person who is filing must have a legally-recognized family relationship to the victim. The state of California outlines by statute who is entitled to file a wrongful death lawsuit and recover damages from the person responsible for a fatal accident. These people include spouses, parents, grandparents, children and even step-children in some cases.
What Types of Damages Are Available to Family Members of Wrongful Death Victims in Sacramento?
Family members who have lost loved ones in a motorcycle crash may be entitled to payment of several types of damages, including:
- Payment of medical and funeral expenses. Victims of fatal accidents may still incur medical costs, especially if an ambulance and emergency room team is involved in the care of the patient after an accident. In some cases, victims who ultimately die from their injuries spend some time in the hospital before passing away, often while incurring massive expenses each day. The final hospital bill may be in the tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars for intensive care prior to death. Families also have funeral expenses from any services, cremation or burial of the loved one, and these expenses may also amount to thousands of dollars.
- Payment of loss of income and support. If the deceased person was a breadwinner, the family may be entitled to compensation to replace lost future income. The family may also collect damages for the loss of emotional support of the victim, especially if the deceased person was a parent helping to raise children or a caregiver for an incapacitated adult.
- Payment of pain, suffering and loss of love and affection. There is also a price to be paid for the loss of the loved one’s company, affection and love. These figures are what are called non-economic damages and are the hardest to calculate and negotiate.
A Sacramento motorcycle attorney often represents family members who have lost a loved one to a collision to help the victim’s family collect damages and protect their rights.
Am I Eligible to File a Wrongful Death Claim in Sacramento?
In the state of California, the surviving spouse, domestic partner or children of the deceased have first priority when it comes to pursuing a wrongful death claim. In the event that there is no surviving spouse, partner or children, other dependent family members, such as the parents of the deceased, or step-children may file a claim. (Code Civ. Proc. § 377.60)
Contact an experienced wrongful death lawyer to determine whether you are eligible to file a wrongful death claim.
Time is of the Essence in a Sacramento Fatal Car Accident
In order to prove fault after a fatal car accident, it is crucial that you seek legal guidance as soon as possible. The success of your wrongful death claim will depend heavily on the evidence of the other party’s fault, as well as the legal time limit in which you file.
First, common types of evidence, such as cell phone records, eyewitness testimony, police reports, medical records and video surveillance footage may not be readily available to support your claim if you wait too long.
Second, the statute of limitations, meaning the time period in which you can legally make a claim, begins the date of the fatal accident and may end within two years. Therefore, it is important that you enforce your legal right to compensation as soon as possible.
Proving Your Loved One’s Sacramento Fatal Car Crash Claim
Going up against the insurance company alone is not recommended. They have the resources to employ a crack squad of professionals who specialize in claims reductions and denials. In order to have a fighting chance at a successful claim, you must seek legal counsel from a reliable attorney who has direct experience in personal injury law.
If you decide to hire an attorney with Demas Law Group, P.C., s/he will do everything possible to strengthen your claim, including the following:
- Conduct a thorough investigation of the crash site.
- Document vehicle damages and injuries.
- Review the police report and medical records.
- Analyze the driver’s log, vehicle maintenance records, and cell phone records.
- Consult with accident reconstruction specialists and other experts in relevant fields.
Our Wrongful Death Law Firm Can Help You Cope with Your Loss
While taking legal action may seem like an inconvenience or hassle through it, you can obtain the support you need to face the unexpected loss of a loved one. The Demas Law Group, P.C., has extensive experience helping grieving families obtain the justice and closure they seek. We provide the kind of compassionate guidance and strong legal representation you deserve during this difficult time.
Call us for a free consultation. We are proud to offer our clients a no fee guarantee – we do not accept payment for our services unless we win your case.
This literature may be considered attorney advertising or an offer of professional services, according to rule 1-400 Rules of Professional Conduct by the State Bar of California. The information does not constitute a guarantee, warranty or prediction regarding the outcome of your potential legal matter.