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Fatal accident claims

Losing a loved one in an accident is an incredibly traumatic and distressing experience. It can happen in various unexpected or unforeseen circumstances, which can include accidents at work or road traffic accidents. We understand that whatever the circumstances, during any claims involving the death of a loved one it will be an incredibly upsetting time.

At Jordans Solicitors, we have a highly experienced team of fatal accident claims Lawyers. They can support you and your family if you have lost a loved one in an accident and want to make a claim for compensation. We will handle your claim with the highest levels of professionalism, sensitivity and understanding, working towards a settlement that secures the future for you and your family.

What is a fatal accident?

A fatal accident is an accident which causes the death of a person.  Where that accident was caused by the negligence of another  the family of the victim may be able to claim, in their own right and on behalf of the estate of the deceased, for injuries suffered in the accident and also, for dependency and a bereavement award in certain circumstances.

The law in relation to these claims is set out in The Fatal Accident Act 1976 and the Law Reform (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1971. Claims involving fatalities can be caused by:

  • Road traffic accident
  • Machinery malfunction
  • Care home negligence
  • Accidents on public transport accident
  • Exposure to hazardous substances
  • Organised events and trips
  • Other workplace accidents

There are many more examples of types of accident which have caused death which is why it is important to speak to a legal representative who can assess your claim and guide you through the process.

Fatal accident claims guide

We understand no amount of money will ever replace your lost loved one but our aim is to ensure compensation is secure to help improve the quality of life for those left behind. Our service extends, where necessary, to dealing with any inquest that may follow death as a result of an accident.

Evidence will be presented to the Coroner about the circumstances surrounding the death. We will liaise with the Coroner’s office, the investigating police officers and obtain advanced disclosure of documents where possible.

Should attendance at that hearing be necessary, questions will be put to witnesses on your behalf to establish the accident circumstances. Our aim is to work with you through the complex procedure governing this area of law and ensure all aspects of the possible claim are covered.

Who can make a fatal accident claim?

There are various parts to a fatal accident claim.

A bereavement award can be claimed by a spouse or child under the age of 18 at the time of the deceased persons death.  That bereavement award is a set sum which currently stands in English and Welsh law to £12980.00.  It is also possible for those who are dependent upon the deceased to make a claim for that dependency. Those categories of person who may be able to claim dependency include:

  • Spouse
  • Biological child
  • Any other child treated as the deceased’s own
  • Parent or grandparent
  • Sibling (including uncle and aunt)

What can you claim?

A claim on behalf of the estate of the deceased for the pain, suffering and loss of amenity that person suffered from before their death can be claimed by the Executor or Administrator of the estate.

Jordans’ Fatal Accident Claims team have advised and supported claims from parents, grandparents, husbands and wives, co-habitees and children of victims who have tragically lost their lives in accidents that were not their fault, such as:

  • Fatal accidents at work
  • Fatal road traffic accidents
  • Funeral expenses

There are limitations on what can be claimed and who can make a claim. These can be broken down as follows:

Fatal accident claims on behalf of your loved one’s estate

This includes compensation for losses suffered, such as funeral expenses and damage to any property (the car, motorbike, bicycle etc.). It can also include a claim for the pain, suffering and loss of amenity your loved one may have suffered as a result of the accident, before they passed away.

Fatal accident claims by dependants

If you were financially dependent on your loved one, fatal accident compensation claims for lost future income or pension will be made on your behalf. Loss of your loved one’s support following his or her death will include claims for such things as:

  • Contribution to the family earnings
  • DIY
  • Childcare
  • Housework and gardening

This can offer a substantial sum, as it is to reflect the whole of your loved one’s lost potential.

Bereavement compensation

This compensation is a fixed sum set by law. It has been increased but is still considered by many to be very low. The figure applicable to deaths on or after the 1st April 2013 is £12,980 but only the wife or husband of the person who died or parents of a child under 18 or a son or daughter where that person is aged under 18 at the time of the deceased persons death can make this claim.

It is unfortunate and outdated that a common law husband or wife of the deceased still remains unable to claim. We are hopeful, following a recent County Court decision, that the law will be changed to reflect more modern family circumstances. Currently, the law in England and Wales is inconsistent in relation to the availability of a bereavement award for civil partners.  Case law at the Supreme Court ruled that civil partners should be treated in the same way as spouses and should be entitled to claim a bereavement award.  However, the law in England and Wales does not yet reflect this.  Therefore, if you wish to bring a claim as a result of the death of your civil partner then you may be able to include a claim for a bereavement award.  However, the technical stance currently is that the law does not support recovery of this award

Contact Jordans about your fatal accident claim

Our team of specialist fatal accident claims lawyers are committed to excellence and achieving the best possible outcome for you and your family.

To see how Jordans Solicitors can help you if your loved one has suffered a fatal accident, call 0330 300 1103 or request a call back below.


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