Most car accidents don’t result in serious injuries. There are fender benders all the time. Someone could rear-end you while you’re stopped at a red light. Or someone hits your car while it’s parked in the lot of the grocery store. Sadly, some accidents aren’t so minor. Some accidents are so bad that one of the drivers passes away. They just can’t survive their injuries and end up dead. As devastating as this is, it doesn’t absolve that person from liability.
If someone causes an accident and dies from his injuries, his estate may still be liable for the accident. Under the eyes of the law, death doesn’t always relieve you of liability. The other drivers can still file a claim against his insurance. And, if the insurance doesn’t cover all the damages, they can file a lawsuit against the driver’s personal estate.
If you get hurt in an accident where the other driver dies, you will want to call a car accident lawyer. These cases get very complicated. It’s not something you’ll want to handle by yourself.
Your Georgia Car Accident Lawyer Can Still File an Insurance Claim
Even if the other driver dies, his insurance may still cover your injuries. You will still file a claim against their insurance policy even though they die. The policy was presumably valid at the time of the accident. Therefore, you’re still entitled to coverage.
The insurance company can still deny your claim for other reasons. Some of these reasons include:
- The policy wasn’t valid
- The policy had lapsed for non-payment
- The other driver wasn’t listed on the policy
- They believe you caused the accident
- They don’t think your injuries were that bad
For most of these reasons, your accident attorney can file an appeal. Although there is nothing he can if the policy wasn’t valid at the time of the accident. There’s no way an insurance company will pay out a claim on an invalid policy.
Will Your Georgia Car Accident Lawyer Have to File a Lawsuit?
Ideally, the insurance company will pay your claim. However, they may not. If they had to pay out a large settlement for the insured driver who passed away, they may be reluctant to pay your claim.
If this happens, you’ll need to file a lawsuit against the other driver. Since he has passed, you’ll actually be filing a lawsuit against his estate. This means that you are using his family for the damages he caused.
When a person passes away, their family opens up something called an estate. This is basically a court case that helps divide up the person’s assets when he dies. You will be considered a potential creditor of that estate. So your suit will actually be filed against his assets, not him personally.
Filing suit against an estate is very difficult. The deceased driver isn’t around to tell his part of the story. And, if your case goes to trial, juries are very sympathetic to people who pass away. They may feel bad making his wife and kids suffer now that he’s dead. They’re certainly not going to want to force the family to see their home in order to pay your lawsuit.
You Should Contact a Georgia Car Accident Lawyer
If you’ve been involved in a car accident, you should call a Georgia car accident lawyer. This is even more true of someone died in the accident. Regardless of how serious your injuries, you have probably suffered damages.
Some of the damages your lawyer will demand are:
- Medical bills – You are entitled to recover all current and future medical bills
- Lost wages – if you missed time from work, you should be reimbursed for this time.
- Pain and suffering – If you suffered physical pain or mental and emotional anguish, you are entitled to compensation.
- Property Damage – Any repairs or replacement costs for your vehicle will also be included in your claim.
You may feel terrible filing a claim against someone who has died. And that is normal. However, just keep in mind that you’re actually pursuing his insurance company. If the insurance company covers your claim, the family won’t be impacted at all.
Call and schedule your free initial consultation with your local Georgia car accident lawyer. You can sit down with an accredited personal injury law firm and discuss your case. Ask any questions you may have so that you can be prepared for your legal journey. The consultation is free and you pay nothing until you win your case.