DC Car Accident Wrongful Death Cases 

A car accident case in DC can become a wrongful death case if someone dies. As long as the injuries caused by the accident lead to a death, then a person can claim wrongful death. The further attenuated the death is from the accident, the harder it is to prove. For instance, if someone got into a car accident and broke their leg and then the leg develops gangrene and the gangrene ultimately caused their death six months later, then there is still a wrongful death claim there, as well as survival actions. It is imperative that a person contacts a qualified DC wrongful death attorney immediately to see what compensation they are entitled to.

Fatal Car Accidents in DC

Fatal car accidents in DC occur on the highways. There are more high-speed collisions on highways than on thoroughfares, but pedestrian accidents can happen on the roadway as well.

Patterns Surrounding Fatal Car Accidents

Typically, what will happen is there will be a car accident where someone dies. Somebody ignores a traffic control device and causes a high-speed collision or tractor trailers do not make safe lane changes and cause catastrophic accidents. Drivers will lose control of their vehicle and cause high-speed collisions. The more high impact the collision, the more likely it is to result in catastrophic injury. The fact patterns are that either someone is drunk behind the wheel, they lose control of their vehicle, someone is inexperienced on the roadway and driving too fast, or a tractor-trailer makes an unsafe lane change and causes someone’s wrongful death or triggers a survival action. These are common in DC car accident wrongful death cases.

At-Fault Driver Driving Illegally

If the at-fault driver is driving illegally, the case might be a criminal case. Even if there is a criminal case pending, a person can still file a wrongful death action, but there is civil law and there is criminal law. They are separate from each other, and it determines why that person is acting illegally and whether that illegality led to someone’s death. If that is the case, then it would be a homicide case in addition to being a negligence case.

Seeking Damages

If someone is doing something egregious, a person can recover punitive damages. They are rarely available because there needs to be some sort of egregious conduct that triggers a claim for punitive damages. If someone is drunk, for instance, that may or may not be enough depending on the underlying circumstances for a person to recover punitive damages. But if somebody does something that is illegal, then it creates a foundation for somebody to recover in addition to compensatory damages and punitive damages in DC car accident wrongful death cases.

Talking to a DC Wrongful Death Lawyer

A person will want to talk to a DC wrongful death lawyer as soon as possible if they are facing a fatal car accident. It is important to remember the cause of actions happens quickly. Two years is a lot of time to do a proper investigation. If a person is a personal representative of someone’s estate and that person thinks they might have a claim for wrongful death or survival or arising out of the death, a person should talk to an attorney as soon as they can.