Car Accident Death: What are your Rights After a Car Accident?

Car Accident Death - What are your Rights After a Car Accident

The four basic elements to be proved in all car accidents remain the same, which are:

  • Duty: The person holds a duty of care to another person.
  • Breach: There was a breach of that duty.
  • Cause: There was a cause for breach.
  • Harm: The breach of duty led to harm.

Merely proving that legal duty was breached will not hold the defendant/accused liable. The plaintiff has to prove the causation part followed by the harm. In a fatal car accident, like those involving accidental deaths, the trial can be bit complicated.


The law enumerates various rights that can be helpful in the due course. Make sure you have a basic overview of them. Some of them are:

1Right to compensation for personal injury and property damage

If you suffered injuries in an accident caused by someone else, you have the right to pursue a legal claim against the person or group of people responsible.

2Right to talk to witnesses

You can and should seek out any witnesses to the car accident and obtain their contact information. You should also direct those witnesses to tell their story to the police so that it is included in the official police report.

3Right to contact the police

You are allowed to call the police or other law enforcement personnel in the area to file an official report regarding the accident. A police report is often one of the main pieces of evidence used to support a personal injury claim.

4Right to take photos

Nearly every smart phone has a high-definition camera, so taking pictures of the accident scene, including damage to your vehicle and the other vehicles involved, is easy to do. You should also take photos of any injuries you suffered.

5You have the right to remain silent

Although this is usually a legal right for people arrested for a crime, it applies in the aftermath of a car accident as well. There is no law that compels you to speak to the other party, or the other party’s insurance company or any insurance investigator.

6Right to obtain medical attention

If your injuries require medical attention, you have the right to treatment.

When an accident leads to the death of a person, something called “Wrongful Death Claim” can be filed by the deceased person’s legal representative, which means that the death of a person was caused by the negligence of the other person. In such cases, the plaintiff is entitled to two types of damages, one being pecuniary damages and the other being punitive damages.

Death in a car accident can be a complicated affair thus one is always advised to hire an experienced lawyer in such cases.

Here are some mistakes to avoid in case you are in a fatal car accident.


Remember, that after a car accident there are various mistakes that people make, which can lead them in trouble even after no negligence on their part. Some points to remember are:

  • Driving Off: The most usual amongst them are people driving off after an accident, as the panic takes on their nerve.
  • Remain Silent: Even a mere apology can be used against you. Although hearsay evidence is not usually admissible in court but in certain circumstances they are.
  • Make Notes: If your cellphone has an audio recorder or a video recorder try to record every detail that flows out of the incident and copy down the names of the officers making the report so that it is later available easily.
  • Private settlements: The other party will try to lure into a Private settlement offer which you should avoid.
  • Admit the mistake: Don’t Admit anything or accuse any person of mistake, you may be enticed by the other party to admit something which can later cause you trouble.

Originally posted 2017-11-12 07:48:26.


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