If you or a person close to you is involved in a serious accident, such as a Road Traffic Accident or Accident at Work , injuries can range from slight, moderate or severe. But in the most extreme and unfortunate cases, some of these accidents can tragically result in death, either immediately or some time after the incident due to complications with the injury – this is known as a fatal injury.
The death of a loved one is among the most emotionally painful things that a person can experience. Alongside this feeling of loss you might feel anger, particularly if the fatal accident happened due to someone else’s negligence. If someone close to you has passed away following a fatal accident, then the chances are that, in the first wave of shock and grief, the last thing you’ll be thinking of is claiming compensation.
Not only is the death of a loved one emotionally traumatic, but it can also have an effect on your life in ways that you might not think of at the time; for example, if the person was the sole breadwinner of your household. Claiming compensation for a fatal accident can:
If your loved one has died as a result of the negligence of a third party, then you might be able to claim compensation to protect you and your family from any additional trauma relating to your loved one’s death. In this case, this may mean being compensated for the lost earnings of the main wage-earner of a family, something which will have financial ramifications going forward many years.
You can get in touch with a trained advisor for free on 0800 234 6438. Or, if you’d prefer, you can fill in one of the contact forms on this page to arrange a call back.
Fatal accidents can happen anywhere, to anyone. In some cases, the accident may cause instant death, and in other cases the severity of the accident might only become clear over time, and death might come as a result of those injuries. For example, a fatal accident could happen in:
Among the most common places for a fatal accident to occur is the workplace. Many of us, regardless of occupation, spend a lot of our lives at work, and some careers are naturally more hazardous than others; for example, if you work on a construction site. No matter where your loved one’s fatal accident took place, you may be able to claim compensation for their death if someone else was responsible.
Whenever we go to work, we have a right to feel safe; and it’s our employers’ job to make sure that this is the case. Sadly, accidents do happen as a result of employer negligence, and if they’re found to have breached their legal duties under the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974, and/or other legislation such as the Management of Health and Safety at work Regulations 1999, then they’re potentially liable for any injury – especially if that accident was fatal.
These types of legislation require employers to carry out a risk assessment and implement the health and safety measures identified as being required by this assessment. If the employer fails to do so, then they may have to pay a fair amount of compensation to a person’s family if they have died as a result of their negligence.
A fatal injury isn’t necessarily one where an accident is immediately fatal, such as falling from height and a crush injury . In some circumstances people may die many years after leaving their job, due to a disease or illness which they contracted because of their working conditions.
In fact, deaths from asbestosis (a lung disease caused by breathing in excess asbestos dust) are still on the rise in the UK many years after the use of the substance was made illegal due to it’s links to Mesothelioma. Occupations known to have exposed workers to the risk of exposure to asbestos include:
Alongside asbestosis, these types of workers could be exposed to any number of workplace hazards or industrial illnesses that may only develop later in life and prove themselves to be fatal.
A fatal accident is typically followed by formal investigations into the death, to find out more about how the accident happened. Common investigatory authorities are the police, the Health and Safety Executive, the coroners’ courts and inquests.
In a fatal accident injury claim, the findings of any such investigation will be vital evidence in support of your claim so it’s important to keep a record of police incident numbers, criminal convictions, and contact details of those carrying out the investigations.
The amount of compensation you may be awarded following the death of a loved one will be calculated based on a few different factors:
Any injury claim, including fatal accident claims, can be made on a no win no fee basis. This means if you don’t win, you don’t have to pay out any money. This takes a huge amount of stress off you when you’re already dealing with grief and the devastating effects of losing a loved one.
Anyone who is a close family member of the deceased can launch a compensation claim. Under the Fatal Accidents Act 1976, the qualifying parties include:
To find out whether you could make a fatal accident claim, speak to a trained advisor on 0800 234 6438, or submit your details using the claim form on this page.
Nicola is a dual qualified journalist and non-practising solicitor. She is a legal journalist, editor and author with more than 20 years' experience writing about the law.
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