When a victim dies in a car accident that resulted from the careless actions of another driver, the victim’s family members may be able to bring a wrongful death lawsuit. Even though no amount of money can fully compensate for the loss of a loved one, seeking damages in a wrongful death claim can begin to address the immediate economic issues that arise following a loved one’s death.
Too often, car accidents can prove to be fatal events. As a recent news article reported, a vehicle collision in Waterboro, Maine left two people dead and two others injured. According to local police, the accident occurred when a van traveling south collided with another vehicle driving north. Both drivers were pronounced dead at the scene. The van’s two passengers were transported to the hospital to treat their injuries.
What Damages are Available After a Fatal Car Accident in Maine?
While no amount of money can fully compensate for the loss of a loved one, a plaintiff in Maine can pursue a wrongful death lawsuit after a victim dies in a car accident. Maine primarily allows the deceased victim’s estate or the victim’s family to file a wrongful death lawsuit if the family members were the victim’s dependents. A wrongful death lawsuit can seek economic damages, such as medical and funeral expenses, along with the deceased victim’s lost wages. Additionally, the victim’s loved ones can sue for damages that are more difficult to quantify. These include the loss of the deceased victim’s companionship and comfort, along with emotional distress damages arising from the accident that led to the victim’s death.
For a deceased victim’s family to recover damages in a wrongful death lawsuit in Maine, the victim cannot be equally at fault or more at fault than the defendant for the accident that led to his or her death. This means that an injured victim’s family can receive a damages award if the victim was 49% at fault for the accident or less. Under Maine’s comparative negligence laws, the defendant has the burden of demonstrating that the plaintiff’s fault was a contributing factor in the accident. In essence, the same comparative fault rules that apply if a victim had survived the accident apply to a lawsuit brought by a deceased victim’s family. An experienced personal injury attorney can help you understand these complex laws and navigate the process to bring a successful wrongful death claim.
Have You Lost a Loved One in a Maine Car Accident?
If you have recently lost a loved one in a Maine car accident, you may be overwhelmed and unsure about your next steps. The dedicated and compassionate attorneys at Peter Thompson & Associates can help guide you through your options. The attorneys at our personal injury firm have the skills and experience to help you navigate every stage of a wrongful death lawsuit. Through our zealous representation, we will work tirelessly to pursue the compensation you deserve. To schedule a free initial consultation with an attorney on our team, contact our office at 1-800-804-2004.