FATAL CAR ACCIDENT LAWYER CHICAGO
Fatal Car Accident Lawyer Chicago, IL
Non-fatal car accidents are traumatizing enough on their own. Millions suffer from a car accident injury every year, and thousands die unexpectedly. These sudden deaths are crushing for any family or community. Struggling with grief and feelings of intense loss is common for those in the aftermath of a fatal collision. An experienced fatal car accident lawyer Chicago will understand that after this tragic event, you won’t have the mindset or energy to deal with a complicated lawsuit. So, why not let us handle the case while you focus on getting your life back in order?
Chicago car accident lawyers at Curcio Law Offices offer compassionate legal services to those experiencing real tragedy in their lives following a motor vehicle accident. We know that maximum compensation can’t replace the loved one you lost. However, a Chicago car accident lawyer can recover a settlement that provides closure and ensures that your family doesn’t endure financial struggles from medical bills and other crash-related expenses.
With more than 50 years of securing fair compensation for auto accident victims in Chicago, we use our experience to litigate on behalf of your family. If you suffered a tragic loss, please call an experienced car accident attorney for a free consultation at 312-321-1111 today.
Annual Deaths in the U.S. From Car Accidents
A report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) claims that nearly 43,000 Americans died in car accidents in 2021. This is more than a 10% increase in motor vehicle accident deaths compared to 2020. In fact, the NHTSA claims that 2021 had the highest number of crash deaths since 2005.
Common Car Accident Injuries That Can Lead to Death
Some car accident victims die immediately upon impact. Meanwhile, others suffer from the severe injuries listed below which ultimately lead to their death.
- Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
- Spinal cord injuries
- Internal bleeding and internal organ damage
- Broken ribs and intercostal muscle strains
- One or more amputations
- Crush injuries
- Excessive bleeding from external wounds
- Loss of a fetus
If someone you love suffered from the aforementioned fatal injuries, you have grounds to file a car accident lawsuit on their behalf. A Chicago car accident attorney at Curcio Law Offices can walk you through the whole process and obtain fair compensation.
What Happens After a Fatal Car Accident?
Not all accident-related deaths happen at the accident scene. A car accident victim may make it to the hospital for medical treatment and then die from their serious injury. What happens then? Below, our auto accident lawyers outline some of the possibilities for what transpires after a fatal car accident.
Reckless Driving That Led to Fatal Car Crash
If the at fault driver acted in a careless or reckless manner, they may very well face criminal charges, such as vehicular manslaughter. However, district attorneys often decide what to do in these cases. They often consider the following elements:
- If the negligent driver was drunk driving, the DA will usually pursue criminal charges in Chicago, IL.
- When the accident results from reckless or distracted driving, the DA usually brings criminal charges against the negligent driver.
No-Fault Fatal Auto Accidents
Maybe an auto accident occurred due to factors outside of the driver’s control, including:
- Mechanical failures,
- Poor road conditions, or
- Inclement weather conditions.
Motor vehicle accident cases like this usually don’t result in criminal charges.
After a fatal car accident, it is not uncommon for the family of the deceased individual to file a wrongful death lawsuit in Chicago. Every accident has unique circumstances. The family usually works with an experienced car accident lawyer Chicago in order to determine legal liability and conduct a thorough investigation.
What Happens if You Cause a Fatal Car Accident?
The answer to this question depends on many of the factors we listed above. First, you must hire an experienced Chicago car accident attorney to assist with your case. Generally, there are three possibilities in every car accident case where you’re the at-fault driver:
- An arrest on criminal charges. Sometimes, accidents are exactly that: accidents. Other times, however, the negligent or aggressive driving habits of the at-fault driver lead to the death of another person. When this happens, the district attorney will likely decide to press criminal charges.
- A civil wrongful death suit. Even if the DA doesn’t decide to arrest you, you might still face a lawsuit from the family of the deceased person. Typically, they seek compensation from you in the form of your personal assets.
- Higher insurance rates. Many times, the negligent driver’s insurance company raises its rates after a non-fatal accident. After a fatal accident, however, auto insurance gets tricky. Keep in touch with both your insurance company and your attorney to determine how the accident affects your rates.
How Long Does a Fatal Accident Investigation Take?
Most car accident claims involve careful examination and evaluation of the scene. To the best of their ability, the police try to preserve the scene. In fact, they treat it similarly to how they treat a homicide scene. They tape it off, take pictures, and carefully gather the necessary evidence.
Then, the waiting begins. Investigators piece together the evidence they gathered and assign blame to one or more drivers involved in the crash. It is not uncommon for even a non-fatal crash to take up to two months for an investigation. For simple and obvious car accident injury cases, this time may be shorter. For complicated cases, it could take much, much longer. This all depends on the facts of the case, as well as the level of cooperation from all parties involved.
What is the Statute of Limitations to File a Wrongful Death Suit in Chicago?
A statute of limitations is the time period in which you have to file a lawsuit. For Chicago car accidents that result in death, the statute of limitations is two years. In other words, you have two years from the date of your loved one’s death to file a lawsuit and secure a car accident settlement. However, exceptions exist to this rule, which we list below:
- If you file a wrongful death suit on behalf of a minor victim, you have two years past the date that they reach maturity. To put it simply, you have two years from the date that they would have become a legal adult.
- In medical malpractice cases, survivors must file their claim within two years after they knew or should have known of the injury. However, claims must still be filed no later than 4 years after the medical act occurred.
- If you are suing a Chicago government agency for wrongful death, you only have one year to file a claim.
Is the Family Entitled to Compensation After a Fatal Car Accident in Chicago?
In Illinois, a personal representative of the deceased must file a fatal car accident claim. However, the beneficiaries of the estate of the deceased usually receive compensation from successful lawsuits. The court determines the identity of these individuals based on the will of the deceased person. If no will exists, individuals may petition a probate court to achieve the status of the deceased’s personal representative. Survivors might receive both economic and non-economic damages in their fatal motor vehicle accident case.
Economic damages are the losses in a serious car accident that have a set monetary value. Examples include:
- Medical expenses for the car accident victim before they died
- Loss of future inheritance
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Loss of benefits through the deceased’s employment
- Loss of future income from the deceased
Meanwhile, non-economic damages are the losses in fatal car accident cases that don’t have a set monetary value. Examples include:
- Loss of spousal companionship
- Loss of parental guidance for children
- Pain and suffering of the deceased and the survivors
- Emotional distress of the survivors
- Punitive damages
How Can a Fatal Car Accident Lawyer Chicago Help Me?
In almost every personal injury claim, hiring a lawyer is extremely beneficial. Chicago auto accident lawyers serve as legal guides and advocates for your right to just compensation. After the death of a loved one, you shouldn’t have to do mental gymnastics to determine what your case is worth. An attorney will do that for you. Below, we list the factors we take into consideration while valuing cases.
- Medical bills, including surgeries, hospitalization, and medications
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Loss of financial resources, such as wages, insurance, or other financial benefits
- Loss of companionship
- Pain and suffering of both you and the deceased
Not only does our law firm help clients seek appropriate compensation in their personal injury cases, but we also help our clients communicate with insurance companies. Dealing with your insurance company and the other driver’s insurance company after a fatal car crash is extremely stressful, especially after losing a loved one.
Each Chicago car accident lawyer at Curcio Law is fully equipped to handle the complexities of auto insurance coverage after a fatal wreck. We fully understand that the last thing you want to do after losing your loved one in a crash is deal with a pesky auto insurance company. Allow us to handle all the stressors that come with a fatal auto accident claim so you can heal from your loss.
Types of Fatal Motor Vehicle Accidents That We Handle
Every single fatal car crash attorney at Curcio Law Offices has extensive experience in handling the following cases:
- Motor Vehicle Accidents
- Bus Accidents
- I-94 Accidents
- Airbag Injuries
- Brake Checking Car Accidents
- Whiplash Claims
- Commercial Vehicle Accidents
- Amazon Truck Accidents
- Garbage Truck Accidents
- Post Office Vehicle Accidents
- Ridesharing Accidents
- Hit and Run Accidents
- Motorcycle Accidents
- Train Accidents
- Truck Accidents
- Tractor Trailer Accidents
- Drunk Driving Accidents
- Texting and Driving Accident
Call a Fatal Car Accident Lawyer Chicago Today
We are Chicago’s top wrongful death and personal injury law firm. If you or someone you know suffered injuries or death from a crash, you need fatal car accident lawyers from Curcio Law Offices on your side. We have won more than $67 million in combined settlements for motor vehicle accidents. A personal injury attorney at Curcio Law can help you recover a fair settlement too.
To schedule your free consultation with Chicago car accident attorneys, please call Curcio Law Offices at 312-321-1111 today. Find out what sets us apart, and achieve the compensation you deserve.