As seasoned criminal defense lawyers in Minnesota, we know that losing a family member is one of life’s most tragic events, especially if it happened due to another person’s negligence. The anger and emotional trauma can weigh heavily, impairing your ability to make sound decisions regarding the next steps. In this trying time, the prudent counsel of a knowledgeable criminal defense lawyer in Minnesota can be extremely helpful.
While filing a legal lawsuit can seem like a daunting task when dealing with emotional distress, doing so is important. You may be eligible to receive monetary compensation from the responsible party.
We do realize that no amount of money can replace your loved one, but the compensation can allow you to focus on healing from the grief rather than worry about paying hefty hospital bills. In some cases, the compensation received can also help you pay off your criminal defense lawyer cost.
This post presents a few helpful tips on what you should do if you lose your loved one in a car accident.
Let’s start by first understanding the common causes of fatal car accidents.
Common Reasons behind Fatal Car Accidents
Car accidents typically occur when the driver was driving the vehicle in a reckless or unsafe manner. Unfortunately, sometimes these accidents lead to another person’s death.
Broadly speaking, the most common causes of fatal auto accidents are:
Negligence: When the driver does not operate their car in a responsible manner, it can lead to a serious auto accident that may be fatal to individuals. Examples of negligence include driving at a high speed or not flashing the indicator light while making a turn.
Driving while intoxicated (DWI): When a driver operates their vehicle while under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol, they endanger the lives of all other drivers, passengers, and pedestrians present on the road at that time. These substances can impair the driver’s motor skills, focus, and reaction time, and can ultimately lead to a fatal collision.
Distracted driving: When the driver takes their eyes off the road, even for a split second, they can miss the traffic lights or the double yellow lines on the street, and collide with another motor vehicle or an individual.
1. Contact a Competent Criminal Defense Lawyer in Minnesota Immediately
It is crucial that you hire an experienced criminal defense lawyer immediately after the death of your beloved family member. Only a well-practiced criminal defense lawyer in Minnesota will know how to deal with your case in the most appropriate manner.
They will be able to guide you on collecting evidence, consult relevant experts, reconstruct the crash at the accident site, communicate with the responsible party’s insurance company, and prepare your case for trial.
Your lawyer will also be well aware of how the local court system works as well as the statute of limitations and applicable exceptions. Accordingly, they will help you file your claim in a timely manner.
2. Gather Evidence
It is crucial that you collect as much evidence of the accident as possible. You may want to preserve photographs of the ruins at the accident site, any video footage, statements from eyewitnesses as well as their contact details, medical reports, and so on. Supporting your claim with this evidence can strengthen it.
You may have visited the accident site even before you hired an attorney. So, be mindful of everything you observe and keep all the evidence safe so you can present it to your Minnesota criminal defense attorney. Retain everything you gather as you never know what may prove to be useful.
3. Record Your Expenses
One of the main objectives of filing a lawsuit against the at-fault party is to cover expenses related to medical bills, lost wages, funeral expenses, loss of companionship, and others. More often than not, insurance companies try to dodge a trial by offering the deceased’s family an amount to settle the case.
Before accepting their offer, however, you need to ensure that the amount being offered is commensurate with your financial losses and emotional suffering. In other words, the amount offered should be fair and cover all your financial obligations. The only way to ensure this is by recording your expenses from the very beginning. If the amount offered matches your calculations, you can be sure you’re not being cheated.
4. Do Not Discuss the Details with Anyone
Most seasoned criminal defense lawyers in Minnesota know that insurance companies are reluctant to part with their money. They will present their own body of evidence to prove that they are not liable to pay you any compensation. This is why you should never discuss your case with anyone other than your lawyer. You should also refrain from mentioning anything about it on social media as anything you disclose can backfire.
Avoid communicating with insurance companies without first consulting your criminal defense lawyer in Minnesota. These companies work with professional negotiators who know how to use your own words against you and impose an inadequate settlement amount on you. Hence, it is always better to speak with your lawyer first and work out all options for receiving fair compensation.
Dealing with the death of a loved one is never easy. Death caused in a car accident due to another person’s negligence is even more emotionally distressing. If you’re in a similar situation, you may want to consider bringing in a legal claim with the help of a skilled criminal defense lawyer in Minnesota. Although compensation can never fill the void, it can bring you some financial relief at the time of paying the bills. You can also work with your lawyer to fight in court and bring the at-fault party to book.
Speak with a Knowledgeable Criminal Defense Lawyer in Minnesota
The team of criminal defense lawyers at Carlson & Jones, P.A. works tirelessly to help grieving family members file their legal claims and provide sound consultation in their time of need. We will fight tooth and nail to make the responsible party liable for their negligent actions, so you can focus on healing from your loss. For a free consultation, call us at (855) 976-2444 or reach us via our website. Convenient payment plans are available.