Car accidents happen when they are least expected. While some car crash victims are usually lucky to walk away with nothing but minor bruises, others sustain life-altering injuries.
If a loved one succumbs to injuries that are attributable to a car crash, you can be devastated. Fortunately, the law allows you to pursue the liable party for damages through a wrongful death lawsuit.
When, exactly, can you sue for wrongful death following a fatal car crash
Legally speaking, death is deemed wrongful when it is attributable to another person or entity’s unlawful actions. In the context of a car crash, this may refer to the defendant’s driver behaviors that led to the fatal accident that resulted in your loved one’s fatal injuries.
Here are some common negligent driver actions that can justify a wrongful death lawsuit:
- If the defendant was driving under the influence of alcohol or other inebriating drugs
- If the defendant was speeding beyond the designated speed limit in a school, commercial or residential zone
- If the defendant’s illegal turn caused the accident
- If the defendant knowingly drove a faulty vehicle
- If the defendant violated basic traffic rules like giving way at the crosswalk
- If the defendant changed lanes without notifying other motorists leading to a crash
Most of these actions can also lead to criminal charges. Thus, a wrongful death lawsuit can run concurrently with a criminal charge, but the criminal charges are pursued by the state while the wrongful death claim is pursued in civil court.
A fatal accident that is caused by another person or entity’s negligent actions may qualify for a wrongful death lawsuit. Learning more about Arizona’s laws can help you protect your rights and interests while filing a wrongful death lawsuit.