Losing a loved one is a traumatic time for a family. When this is the result of an accident that was not their fault, the devastation can not only be emotional, but can also lead to a vulnerable financial position.
Types of Fatal Injury Claims
A variety of accidents can give rise to a fatal injury claim including:
- Road Traffic accidents
- Workplace accidents
- Clinical negligence
Who Can Claim?
If you were a “dependent” of the deceased, you may be able to claim. This includes but is not limited to:
- the wife or husband or former spouse
- a civil partner or former civil partner
- a cohabitee of over two years
- any parent of the deceased or treated as such by the deceased
- any children of the deceased or treated as such by the deceased
- any person who is the brother, sister, uncle, aunt, niece or nephew of the deceased
The personal representatives of the deceased may also claim damages for any claim that the deceased would have had in his or her own right, for example for loss of a car, clothes, pain and suffering, and loss of earnings. To do this, a grant of probate is required. Our probate team will be able to assist with any issues you have with the administration of the deceased’s estate.
What Can Be Claimed?
As a dependent you may be able to claim:
- Loss of financial support
- Loss of other support including childcare and household duties
- Loss of pension benefits.
In addition, or if you cannot show dependency, you may be able to claim:
- Reasonable funeral expenses.
- A fixed bereavement award if you are the spouse of the deceased or the parent of a child under 18 years (this is currently fixed at £15,210 for accidents after 1 May 2020).
The personal representatives of the deceased may be able to claim:
- Loss of items including a car or clothing damaged during the accident.
- Pain and suffering suffered by the deceased prior to their death.
- Loss of earnings during any period the deceased was alive after the accident.
These damages will be distributed under the will of the deceased. If you have any queries regarding probate and estate administration, please contact our probate team.
A basic 3 year time limit applies on bringing these claims, from the date of death. This may not be conclusive depending on circumstances, so please still contact us for advice if you believe that you may have a claim.
Funding Your Claim
Funding may be available from a variety of sources including trade union membership, motor insurance policies, and legal expenses insurance policies. However, our solicitors often act for clients in these types of claims on a no win, no fee basis.
Nobody wants to have to claim compensation. The need to do so arises from difficult circumstances. You want to know where you stand.