How many car accidents are there in the US and how many people are killed or seriously injured as a result of these?
On average, there are more than 6 million car accidents on the roads of the US, annually. More than 3 million people are injured in car accidents, with more than 2 million of these injuries being permanent.
What are some of the reasons for car accidents and fatalities?
In more than half of all car accident fatalities, the deceased were found not to be wearing their seat belts at the time of the crash. Even with seat belts being mandatory, a vast majority of people choose to disregard this safety precaution and end up losing their lives because of it. Many car accidents are caused by people talking to other passengers while driving, and others due to drivers playing with the radio while driving. A large percentage is because of eating or drinking while driving, and 25% of car accidents are caused due to talking on cell phones while at the wheel of the car. These car accident statistics are sad enough on their own, the saddest part being that they could have easily been avoided had drivers been paying more attention to driving and less to other activities.
What are the legal aspects regarding compensation for car accident injuries/fatalities?
If you have been injured in a car accident, or have lost someone because of a car accident, you can file a case of personal injury or a wrongful death claim, as the case may be.
Those who are involved in car accidents, usually suffer serious injuries or death. Various types of car accident injuries include brain injury, injury to the spine, neck injuries, fractures and broken bones, head injuries, etc.
Such serious injuries can often leave the victims in severe pain and discomfort, not to mention making them disabled for life. Car accident injuries can also result in the loss of eyesight or hearing. Even if your car accident injuries are treated properly, you may still end up with some permanent disability or disfigurement.
What criteria must one meet to be eligible to make a claim for injuries, and what is compensation paid out for?
The law entitles victims of car accidents to recover damages and compensation for their injuries sustained in the accident. If you can fulfill the following conditions, you have a valid personal injury claim.
For a valid personal injury claim, proving negligence is the first step. The law does not allow you to be compensated for your own fault, thus, you need to prove that the accident was someone else’s fault and due to their negligence.
If fault can be established, you can recover compensation and damages for the following:
What about wrongful death eligibility and compensation breakdowns?
If you have lost a parent, spouse, or child to a car accident, you can file a wrongful death claim against the negligent parties. Most states limit the people who can bring a claim of wrongful death to those mentioned previously. In addition to the above, if you were financially dependant on someone, you can bring a claim of wrongful death if that person was killed in a car accident, even if you are not actually related to the deceased.
Here too, you need to establish that the death was caused due to the negligent actions of the defendant and happened because of the car accident. In a wrongful death claim, you are entitled to receive damages for the following:
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