• Brad Keating

What Happens When Someone Dies in a Car Accident: How to be Prepared

A party at fault that accidentally causes an accident that results in the deaths of a loved one, passengers, other vehicle occupants, or pedestrians may be faced with liability. If a person drives a vehicle and somebody died as a result of the crash, they should seek legal advice as soon as possible from a lawyer or attorney.


Every year, many people die as a result of car accidents across the world. In reality, it is one of the most common causes of unplanned death in the United States.


Despite how popular it is, many people are unaware of what happens when someone dies in a car accident.


This article is going to address how a family should cope with the legal and financial consequences of a fatal car accident that results in the loss of a loved one and the related insurance companies.


Legal Problems One Could be Faced with


Specific parties are entitled to file for wrongful death compensation against the at-fault driver or their property if another person caused the death of a loved one in a car accident. The following parties could be entitled to receive compensation depending on the law:

  • The children and the remaining spouse

  • A child if the spouse did not survive the car accident

  • Parents or family if everyone in the car accident is deceased.

Compensation that people may be able to receive includes funeral and burial costs, medical expenses, emergency transportation, and pain and suffering. If people have inquiries about a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit, they can contact The Keating Firm for a free consultation. The at-fault driver could also incur liability in some cases.


Even if it is the last thing they want to do, a family may find that filing a lawsuit after the time of the accident is worthwhile. This is because the settlement from the case helps them to concentrate on their sorrow and recovery from the loss of a loved one.


There is no one-size-fits-all approach to grieving after a vehicle collision, and discovering the new normal can take time. Sticking to a schedule, taking care of each other, and not being too afraid to seek support, even in the form of a lawyer, when needed helps the family cope.


When someone dies in accident

How Often Do People Die in Car Accidents?


Every year, approximately 1.25 million people are killed in vehicle crashes, with many more dealing with non-life-threatening injuries. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, a car accident happens at least once every 60 seconds. While some of these do not cause a great deal of harm, others have the potential to be fatal accidents.


A sudden death accident occurs when a victim dies at the site of a collision, usually as a result of the impact caused by speeding or forceful trauma.


The survivor survives long enough to enter a hospital during an eventual accident. Their bodies, however, are unable to cope due to substantial physical damage, which means they could die in an ambulance or a medical facility.


These accidents are also considered road fatalities.


The key explanation for the high number of road deaths is that people spend too much time in their vehicles on a daily basis.


It is, for the most part, the most dangerous thing people do on a daily basis.


What Are the Most Common Reasons for Car Accidents?


Many people are curious about how people die in car accidents.


There are several scenarios in which a driver can be involved in a fatal car accident. Occasionally, it's just a slight fender bender, while at other times, their vehicle could be destroyed.


Most drivers, however, would accept that the most dangerous collisions are those that are likely to result in wrongful death. Although most people associate drugs and alcohol with fatal vehicle crashes, driving at high speeds kills more individuals than any other traffic violation.

Another common reason why someone dies in a car accident, particularly in the mobile phone generation, is distracted or reckless driving. Drivers who take their eyes off the road to text or talk on the phone are less aware of their environment and are more likely to collide with something or another driver.


In the United States, tired drivers are also a significant source of concern. Many people are unaware of the risks of driving while tired. Someone who has just completed a tedious workday lacks the mental capacities and response times necessary to drive safely.


In reality, many people believe that drowsy driving is just as risky as driving while intoxicated.

Individuals who do not obey the simple laws of the road cause many fatal accidents. If an individual fails to read the road signs in their immediate vicinity, they can end up crashing into the person who has the right of way.


It is necessary to be mindful of the most likely reasons for fatal injuries to avoid making the same errors. Do bear in mind that what people are doing while driving is potentially risky.

People need to ensure that they are still alert and following the law so they do not face criminal charges.


Does the Driver Responsible for the Fatal Accident go to Prison when Someone Dies in a Car Accident?


Car accidents occur regularly, which can be challenging for grieving families to handle, particularly if they are unfamiliar with what happens when someone dies in a fatal accident.

They also find it challenging to continue with the legal proceedings or a lawsuit that follows a loved one's unintentional death. Many people search for someone to blame following a fatal accident, but not all drivers face criminal charges.


If a fatal accident happens due to reasons outside the driver's control, such as deteriorating road conditions or sudden mechanical failures, drivers seldom face criminal charges. Drivers are therefore not liable for what is regarded as an "Act of God," which involves natural disasters such as hailstones, flooding, tornadoes, and other natural occurrences.


A charge of vehicular manslaughter or a wrongful death claim can be filed if an accident occurs as a result of reckless or careless driving.


Additionally, the district attorney in the area determines if a driver is criminally responsible for a fatal accident. They take into account a number of factors, including the driver's behavior prior to the accident.


In certain states, a driver who was impaired by narcotics, alcohol, or other factors at the time of the crash would be held legally liable for any deaths. If one breaks the law, even sober drivers would be faced with criminal charges.


Driving too fast, failure to comply with road signs, and other infractions may result in a driver being held responsible for a death.


Following an accident, both the authorities and the insurance company conduct a complete investigation. They need to figure out what went wrong and who is to blame. The drivers of both vehicles, and any witnesses who may have observed the collision, are going to be interviewed by the officers.


The police officers also conduct a scene investigation to learn more details about the crash. They examine each vehicle, look for personal injury, skid marks, or other indications of a car accident on the road, and any signs of smaller injuries to the passengers. They can also order blood tests, monitor surveillance footage in the area, and investigate previous driving records.

In fatal car accidents, the incident report is crucial in determining whether a driver is found guilty or not. If a driver is criminally responsible, they can face jail time. The sentence could last anywhere from a few months to several years.


Do Insurance Companies Compensate for Wrongful Death in Car Accidents?


Dealing with insurance companies regarding wrongful death or the loss of a loved one during an accident can sometimes be a challenging task. It is often easier to let an attorney or legal company deal with the insurance company. Many family members struggle to pay medical bills, fees, maintenance costs, investigative fees, funeral and burial costs, and other expenses after losing a loved one due to a car accident. This is especially true if the deceased or the lost victim was the source of income in the household. It can be even more confusing what happens to your bills in a multiple car pile-up or what happens if someone else is driving your car and gets in a car accident.


They may seek financial assistance by being able to file a wrongful death claim with an insurance company against the responsible party in some circumstances. A personal representative of the deceased person, such as children, a spouse, parents, blood relatives, or other family members, must file for insurance claims on behalf of the deceased.

In the final settlement of a wrongful death claim or the liability, both financial and injury damages can be recognized.


The responsible party would almost always be obligated to pay at least a portion of the financial losses, such as medical bills, funeral expenses, and lost income.


Non-economic damages, such as emotional anguish and a lower quality of life, are often taken into account. Compensation could be awarded if the driver was acting recklessly.

The victim's family member could be entitled to demand monetary compensation even though no one is arrested.


However, whether they have a wrongful death lawsuit or not depends on the liable party. If the deceased's relatives, spouse, or children wish to see some outcome, they need to know who to file the wrongful death lawsuit against.


Although police reports may assist in determining guilt, other facts can also be used in court. Families should retain the services of a wrongful death attorney to go over all of the facts required to create a strong case. A competent prosecutor would be able to find those responsible for deaths, accidents, and other losses.


The driver of a vehicle involved in a car accident may or may not be held liable. If the driver does not own the vehicle, the actual owner shares some of the blame or liability.


The local authority may be held responsible if a poorly maintained road causes an accident. Companies that dispatch drivers on company time may be held liable in the event that an employee or company vehicle is involved in an accident.


Victims of traffic accidents could be able to file an insurance claim for death resulting from the crash. It is essential to keep in mind, though, that not all insurance policies are created equal. While some people might pay the full amount of the damages, others may only pay a small portion.


In certain cases, families are entitled to qualify for a death payout as long as the deceased is listed on the insurance policy.


People are also entitled to seek compensation from the liable party's insurance. Their insurance can cover up to a specific amount if the vehicle is damaged or a passenger is injured.


Although insurance is needed, it is essential not to rely on anyone else's coverage to cover expenses after a car accident. One can check to see if their insurance policy has a compensation policy in the instance of a car accident.


How can you avoid a fatal accident?

How Do People Avoid a Fatal Car Accident?


One does not have to be concerned with what occurs when someone is killed in a car crash all of the time. Although people have no influence over what other drivers do on the lane, they may take steps to reduce their risk of being involved in a car accident.


One of the safest ways to prevent a collision with a drunk driver is to drive defensively. When driving, people should always be concentrated, alert, and conscious of their environment.

Every few years, it is an excellent idea to brush up on the state's road rules to get a refresher course on safe driving.


If people are ever in a car accident, there are precautions they must take to protect those in the vehicle from severe injury. Seat belts should be worn by the driver, passenger, and everyone else riding in the car for the duration of the journey. For their own protection, children under the age of 13 should travel in the appropriate car seat.


People can also sit straight, with their legs down and their arms inside the car.


Maintain a healthy distance between the vehicle and the car in front when driving. Keep a three-second travel time behind other drivers as a general principle. You do not have to worry about running into the other driver's bumper when coming to a sudden stop. People reduce the chance of the driver behind them colliding with the car by allowing themselves a reasonable stopping distance.


Even if people drive carefully and follow the law, a mechanical failure in the vehicle may result in a fatal car accident. One must get their car serviced regularly to prevent this. Oil should be changed every 3,000 to 5,000 miles, and the vehicle should be inspected by a specialist once a year.


Choose a Personal Representative or Attorney from The Keating Firm


Working with a reputable legal firm or lawyer to obtain justice and restitution is crucial. The Keating Firm LTD helps parties if they need a personal injury lawyer or a criminal defense lawyer. Clients want to work with us because of the following reasons:

  • The law firm works with each person individually and invests in the results of their case.

  • The attorney systematically examines all aspects of legal circumstances.

  • Each lawyer has decades of collective experience.

Contact a lawyer or attorney from The Keating Firm for a free consultation or free case review. We provide individuals with the legal assistance they need. To meet with an attorney or lawyer, call one of The Keating Firm LTD offices and set up a free consultation to discuss the wrongful death accident, liability, injuries, the insurance company, and the at-fault party.


Contact The Keating Firm Today for Assistance with a Lawsuit!


A car accident, unfortunately, is not a rare cause of death. It can be challenging to cope with the consequences of the death of a loved one in a car accident.


Knowing what happens if someone dies in a car accident, on the other hand, helps people prepare for the future. People should not be caught off guard by any of the legal or financial challenges that could arise.


Victims of a fatal accident may have to deal with criminal charges, and those who were related to the victim may be entitled to financial compensation.


Additionally, people must note that being proactive is the best way to cope with road injuries and an accident. People can reduce the number of road deaths or injuries per annum by obeying the law regarding driving and taking action to keep all parties in the vehicle safe.


Contact The Keating Firm to get a personal representative attorney when dealing with a wrongful death case, lawsuit, or compensation for medical expenses and injury. The last thing that any family wants to do when grieving the loss of a loved one is deal with insurance companies determining who was at fault at the scene of the accident, injuries, and liability claims. Let an attorney from our company deal with the matter so that the deceased or lost victim can get a proper and respectful burial and funeral.