Fatal Accident Claims
If a family member has suffered a fatal accident, we can help you claim the compensation they deserve, under the Fatal Accidents Act 1976.
What are Fatal Accident Claims?
Losing a loved one at any time is traumatic, and when someone you love dies in a fatal accident that wasn’t their fault, it’s no different. Not only does suddenly losing a loved one cause emotional distress, but an unexpected death can also leave partners and dependents in financial turmoil. With our help, however, you can focus on dealing with your bereavement, safe in the knowledge that an experienced fatal accidents lawyer is managing your loved one’s estate.
We work with skilled fatal injury lawyers who understand that your future is in their hands. We will do everything in our power to get you the fatal accident compensation you are entitled to.
Types of Fatal Injury Claims
Claims for fatal accidents can be made if the victim was not responsible for the incident, or they are only partially to blame. Examples include:
- Sporting accidents and horse riding accidents
- Motor vehicle accidents, including being a passenger or a pedestrian
- Fatal work accidents
- Medical accidents, including for elective surgery
In order to claim for a fatal accident, you need to be a dependent of the deceased, or acting on behalf of their estate. For example, a spouse or partner can make a fatal injury claim, as can an executor of the victim’s estate on behalf of the beneficiaries.
Fatal accident compensation case study
The husband of a woman who suffered severe depression made a fatal injury claim; his wife was hospitalised during one such episode and, despite being a known risk to herself, was insufficiently monitored and given permission to leave the facility.
This then gave her the opportunity to take her life by jumping in front of a train. Her husband’s fatal accidents lawyers successfully argued that, if she had had adequate medical care, her death would not have happened.
Who can Make Fatal Accident Claims?
Following a fatal injury, dependents of the deceased can make a fatal accident compensation claim. Dependents are:
- Partners (must have cohabited for at least 2 years before the accident)
- Civil Partners
- Parents (including step-parents and adoptive parents)
- Children (including step-children)
Those who represent the deceased’s estate can also make fatal accident claims.
What is the Time Limit to Claim Fatal Accident Compensation?
All fatal injury claims must be made within 3 years of the date of death. This is known as statutory limitation. Not only must you initiate the claim within 3 years, but legal proceedings must have also begun, otherwise you will not be able to proceed with your claim.
You are unable to make fatal accident claims after this 3-year deadline, unless exceptional circumstances apply.
Examples of why the time limit to claim fatal accident compensation may differ include:
- For medical negligence – the 3-year fatal accident claims time limit applies only from the date of knowledge of reason for the death. This is because doctors do not always know what the cause of death was immediately.
- For Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority claims (CICA) – you must make these claims as soon as possible. The time limit on these types of fatal accident claims is usually 2 years.
- If the accident occurred abroad – time limits to claim will vary from country to country, so it is important to check and make fatal accident claims as soon as possible.
- If mental capacity is lacking – there is no time limit, if a person cannot make a fatal accident compensation claim due to a lack of mental capacity. An expert will need to confirm this.
What can be Included in a Fatal Accident Claim?
After the sudden and unexpected death of a loved one, not only will you be dealing with significant emotional distress but, you may also worry about practical factors such as funeral expenses, finances, and more. Our experienced solicitors will help you decipher the law surrounding fatal accident claims, and understand what you can and cannot claim compensation for.
The amount of fatal accident compensation you can claim for depends on a number of factors. These include the level of financial dependency that the deceased had, the age of the deceased, life circumstances and more.
Possible inclusions in fatal accident claims include:
- Funeral expenses
- Loss of earnings, cost of care and other reasonable expenses for the deceased, where death is not instant
- Bereavement Award (this can be claimed by the parent or spouse of the deceased under the Fatal Accidents Act 1976)
- Compensation for pain and suffering
- Dependency – this will take into account the loss of income from the deceased, employment benefits such as healthcare, and loss of lifestyle contributions e.g. property maintenance, DIY, etc
How to Make a Fatal Injury Claim
We appreciate that seeking legal advice after the death of a loved one may be the last thing you feel like doing however, but the earlier you speak to The Compensation Experts, the sooner we can help you obtain the fatal accident compensation the deceased deserves.
Firstly, our knowledgeable fatal injury advisors will find out about the circumstances of the accident. This is so they can determine whether your fatal accident compensation claim has a strong chance of being successful.
We work with a select group of experienced personal injury lawyers, and will refer you to the one who we feel will be best suited to your requirements. Making a fatal injury claim can take six months or longer, so we want to ensure you are comfortable with your choice of lawyer.
We offer a No Win No Fee* approach to making claims for fatal accidents (*Conditions may apply. Please see details at the bottom of the page). Not only does this remove the necessity for you to stretch yourself financially to pay legal fees upfront, but it also removes the risk associated with having to pay legal fees should your claim not be successful.
The Compensation Experts has a team of agents who are happy to provide you with a free, no-obligation conversation at a time that suits you. Contact us today.
Am I eligible?
If a loved one has suffered a fatal accident in the last 3 years, due to someone else’s negligence, you should be able to make a strong claim for fatal accident compensation.
Exceptions to this are, for instance, industrial disease or if you were a child at the time of a loved one’s fatal accident. In this case, you may have a longer period to claim.
How much could I claim?
Not every accident is the same, so the amount of compensation paid out can differ between each fatal accident inquiry. For instance, fatal work accidents differ to medical negligence. Factors that contribute to the final figure include the extent of suffering, loss of earnings, and potential impact on the surviving relative.
Our dedicated team of fatal accidents experts will give you an indication of how much you could potentially claim for.
How does the process work?
When opening a fatal accident inquiry, it’s important to know what to expect and when to expect it from the process. That’s why we make claiming for fatal injuries as transparent & clear as possible.
Your solicitor will gather all the evidence and notify the negligent party that you wish to begin claim proceedings. With your fatal accidents solicitor negotiating on your behalf, you will be kept up to date every step of the way.