Fatal Car Accidents in Murphy
Suddenly losing a loved one in a vehicle collision is devastating, especially if someone else is responsible. As you take this time to grieve, you should also consider your legal options regarding fatal car accidents in Murphy. Such auto accidents are often grounds for wrongful death claims that allow surviving family members to recover a variety of damages. With the guidance of a compassionate injury attorney in the area, you and your family could seek financial restitution from the party responsible for the deadly collision.
What are the Most Common Causes of Fatal Auto Crashes?
While any vehicle wreck has the risk of being deadly, there are some circumstances that can increase this risk. Fatal car crashes in the area often involve:
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Distracted driving
- Drowsy driving
- Reckless or careless driving
- Violating traffic laws or signs
Poor weather can also contribute to deadly auto crashes, but are rarely the sole cause. For example, if a person is speeding during a heavy rainstorm, if their vehicle begins to hydroplane, they would still be at fault for skidding and crashing into other vehicles.
Recoverable Damages After a Deadly Car Collision
As per Texas Statutes section 71.001, only certain family members can file wrongful death claims. They include surviving spouses, parents, and children, including legally adopted children. Biological and adopted siblings are exempt from making such claims. Suits require filing by appropriate family members within three months of the loved one’s passing. If the claim is filed past the three-month mark, the estate’s personal representative must file. All cases require filing within two years of the person’s death.
Surviving family members can claim a number of damages in fatal vehicle accident cases, including those concerning emergency medical care costs, funeral and burial expenses, and lost earning capacity if the deceased person was the main source of income. Known as economic damages, they compensate family members in light of financial hardships related to the untimely passing.
Non-economic damages, or those that are not related to accident costs and lost income, include pain and suffering, loss of companionship, emotional and mental anguish, lost advice and support, and lost care. Notably, there are no caps on fatal vehicle crash damages in Texas.
What if the Deadly Accident Was Due to a Government-Owned Vehicle?
In some cases, a fatal auto crash requires making a claim against the Murphy government, such as a deadly collision involving a public bus. Under these circumstances, surviving family members have six months to give notice to the entity according to Tex. Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code section 101.101. For the claim to have merit, the claim must include a description of the accident, including when and where it happened, and what transpired as a result. If the claim is against a city, the city charter can shorten the required notice even more. If the injured person fails to give timely and proper notice and the city does not have actual notice of the claim within the required time period, then the claim will not prevail. It is critical that if the deadly accident was due to a governmental-owned vehicle, that the claimant make a timely and proper claim.
Call a Murphy Attorney After a Fatal Car Accident
Fatal car accidents in Murphy require professional legal assistance to preserve the claim and to increase the chances of receiving maximum damages. By taking prompt action, you could help yourself and the rest of your family maintain financial stability during this difficult time. Depending on the type of crash, you could be entitled to the full range of damages, and while money cannot make up for your loss, they provide the financial assistance necessary to moving forward with your life. Contact our law firm today to get started.