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Dealing with the death of a loved one or relative is extremely difficult. If your loved one was killed in an accident that wasn’t their fault, the emotional hardship can be heightened and the notion of making a claim may seem overwhelming. 

The death of a loved one can often leave financial doubt and worry within a family, which causes further distress for everyone involved. Pursuing a compensation claim for a fatal accident that was caused by a third party can help to alleviate some of that financial uncertainty. 

How Compensation is Calculated

Each fatal accident claim is different and individual in nature and the compensation that is recovered will, therefore, depend upon these individual circumstances. However, when valuing a claim for compensation that are certain factors that are used to assess the amount that is owed: 

  • The level of pain and suffering that has taken place between the injury initially occurring and the eventual death. 
  • Financial losses that have been incurred during this period. These losses may include medical or treatment expenses, care costs, prescription charges or travel expenses. Funeral expenses are usually also included in this part of the claim. 
  • A loss of earnings
  • Loss of services and losses for dependency (as part of a dependency claim) 

Dependency Claims

If the deceased had any dependents such as a spouse or children, a dependency claim can be filed for those who have been affected financially by the loss of a loved one. This is usually the largest part of a fatal accident claim and it helps to ensure that dependents are not any worse off after the death of their loved one. 

Usually, the deceased’s income and pension (including any future promotions) are included in a dependency claim. It can also cover any losses relating to childcare or household duties which may, therefore, need to be paid for in the future.

Bereavement Claims

The Fatal Accidents Act 1976 allows spouses or parents to access a Statutory sum for Bereavement damages. This is a set sum of £12,980 for a spouse, civil partner, or mother of a child under the age of 18. Separate claims can be made if you have suffered psychological damage due to witnessing the accident which killed your loved one.

Inquest

On occasion, the accident which resulted in the death of your relative or loved one may require an inquest to establish their cause of death. This sort of inquest does not attempt to appropriate blame, it is solely focused upon understanding the medical reason for what caused the person to die. Therefore, an inquest is often useful for detectives and criminal law solicitors but inquests will not be used to prescribe blame in a personal injury case.

Therefore, a fatal accident claim will not attempt to criminally punish the blameworthy party. Instead, compensation will just be paid by this party’s insurance company and any criminal conviction is undertaken separately under criminal law. 

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Making a Claim

There is usually a three-year time limit beginning upon the date that your loved one died, to make a fatal accident claim. Therefore, it is always the best policy to contact a personal injury solicitor as soon as you feel able to ensure that your case can be processed.

Making Personal Injury Claims

If you have developed an illness due to someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation. First Personal Injury solicitors are available to assist you and ensure that you get the compensation you deserve. 

First Personal Injury works with both families and individuals across England and Wales, leading them on their legal journey and helping them claim compensation after an accident or injury.

To learn more or to start your claim, get in touch with our expert team on 0800 808 9740 or contact us online. 

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