After suddenly losing a loved one in a fatal accident, the added stress of making a compensation claim may be something you might want to avoid.
When you’re ready to talk, we’re ready to listen. We can offer you free legal advice and we may be able to deal with the claim on a No Win, No Fee basis - ask us for details.
One of our Personal Injury Solicitors can explain matters to you without using legal jargon and work to make the whole process as straightforward as possible.
We treat every enquiry with empathy and understanding and address our clients’ individual needs.
If you feel you can’t cope after your loss, our compassionate team of Solicitors can help you figure out what to do next.
Were you dependent on the deceased’s income? Are you struggling to carry on after your loss and need some help and legal advice?
More Information on Fatal Accident Claims
If you’re struggling to cope financially after a sudden bereavement, you could make a fatal accident claim on behalf of the deceased’s Estate.
If you weren’t married, in a Civil Partnership, or the child of the deceased, and you’re organising their funeral, then claiming on behalf of their Estate can allow you to recuperate the funeral costs and related expenses.
Those who weren’t dependent on the deceased for support can often be overlooked in the aftermath of their death.
However, claiming compensation on behalf of the deceased's Estate can also help loved ones who aren’t covered by other areas of the law find closure after a fatal accident.
There are steps that can be taken to ensure dependants don’t suffer any additional losses by falling on hard times after having to process their bereavement.
For those that require additional financial support in the aftermath of a fatal accident, a claim could be made under the Fatal Accidents Act 1976.
The Fatal Accidents Act includes Provisions for:
- A Bereavement Award
Bereavement awards allow a flat rate of £12,980 set by statute to be paid to the spouse, civil partner, or parent (if the child was under 18) of the deceased.
While this sum will not compensate for the real-world loss of a loved one, it is - by its nature - designed to consider the emotional trauma following a fatal accident or violent crime.
- Loss of Intangible Benefits
When considering the additional financial pressures placed on surviving family members, certain aspects are difficult to calculate.
This is where a consideration for Intangible Benefits comes in, as spouses and parents can recover some of the impalpable losses that they’ll suffer after losing a husband, wife, or child.
- Dependency for Financial Support
Claims that fall under this category are calculated for those who were financially dependent on the deceased.
A claim can be made for financial dependency by surviving spouses and civil partners, members of a couple who have cohabited for two years, a minor who was dependent on the deceased for day-to-day living expenses, and young adults who were dependent on the deceased's financial support after they left school (for example, a child with university fees).
- Dependency for Services
If you’ve lost a loved one who performed many different tasks on your behalf, then you may feel lost without them. A claim for dependency on services can help ease the day-to-day burdens faced without them and can help you find help for tasks such as shopping, cooking, DIY, cleaning, domestic chores and gardening.
- A free initial consultation and/or home visit: This is an informal chat where you’ll get to know your Solicitor and we can start to discover how the fatal accident occurred.
- Signpost support networks: After our consultation, we’ll help connect you to local agencies that can provide counselling, advice and emotional support.
- Apply for Interim Payments: When the person or party at fault for the accident has accepted liability or partial liability, we can apply for Interim Payments of compensation to help you; before the case is settled.
- Fight your corner: We’ll work to secure your claim and will push for a settlement before a Court hearing, so that your ordeal is over as soon as possible.
- Arrange representation at criminal proceedings or Inquest: Attending an Inquest or criminal proceeding can be unnerving, especially when emotions are running high. We can usually arrange free representation for you at criminal proceedings and Inquests, which we hope will ease the emotional strain of losing a loved one.
- Negotiate a settlement: In most fatal accident cases, a compensation settlement will be offered before the actual Court date. In cases of a settlement offer, we’ll negotiate with the defendant to ensure that you receive a fair amount of damages.
- Taking a claim to Court: If a settlement isn’t offered, we’ll take your civil claim to the Courts and will present your case to a Judge, who will rule on compensation based on the merits of the case.
Frequently asked questions
- What is the claims process?
Calculating how much compensation will be awarded for the future loss of financial and service dependency isn’t a straightforward process.
Salary alone doesn’t dictate the amount of financial loss that can be felt after the sudden loss of a loved one. Interest on earnings and any possible investments, as well as normal life expectancy for the deceased, all have to be considered when calculating how much compensation should be awarded.
Ultimately, every claim is different and the amount that could be awarded for damages will depend on the specifics of the case.
- What funding is available?
Fatal Accident claims can often be funded through a No Win, No Fee agreement - ask us for details.
For free legal advice call our Personal Injury Solicitors
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Simpson Millar is a national law firm with over 500 staff and offices in Bristol, Cardiff, Kingston-upon-Thames, Lancaster, Leeds, Liverpool, London, Manchester, Morecambe and Southport.