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What are your legal options if a loved one dies in a car crash?

Families in Cullman are often living paycheck to paycheck in these tough economic times even if they are hard workers who put forth their full effort every day that they turn up to the job site. So, if the main income-earner in the family passes away unexpectedly due to a car crash, it can leave their survivors in a real financial bind. When this happens, the deceased’s family may want to pursue a wrongful death claim.

What is a wrongful death claim?

In Alabama, wrongful death claims can be pursued by a personal representative of the deceased’s estate on behalf of the deceased’s surviving loved ones. When it comes to motor vehicle accidents, if your loved one died due to another person’s negligence, omission or wrongful act and your loved one, had they survived, would be able to pursue a legal claim against the at-fault party, then a wrongful death claim may be appropriate. Wrongful death claims are civil claims and can be pursued alongside criminal cases involving the same set of acts. Any compensation awarded in a wrongful death claim is paid to the deceased’s heirs as laid out under state laws of distribution and cannot be used to pay the deceased’s debts.

How long does one have to file a wrongful death claim?

If you believe filing a wrongful death claim is right for you, it is important not to wait too long to do so. This is due to the statute of limitations. Simply put, the statute of limitations is the time period in which a person has to file a lawsuit. Once this time period has passed a person can no longer pursue a legal claim even if they would have been able to do so earlier. The statute of limitations for wrongful death claims is two years following your loved one’s death.

Learn more about wrongful death claims

It is important to give careful thought to whether you want to pursue a wrongful death claim based on a car crash. Doing so may seem arduous, but with the right help it can be a way to receive the financial resources you need during a difficult time. This post is for educational purposes only and is not legal advice. Our firm’s webpage on motor vehicle accidents may be of interest to those wishing to learn more about this topic.