Trucking accidents, because of the weight and size of the truck in comparison to other vehicles on the road, can be very serious and many result in fatalities. If your loved one has been killed in a fatal truck accident, you may be able to file a wrongful death suit to help you offset expenses and loss of income.
Because each state has governing laws for wrongful death suits, it is important to understand what New Jersey’s regulations permit and/or require for such cases. You will need to consult a qualified attorney who is familiar with filing wrongful death suits to review your case and evaluate what documentation and evidence you need to present and what your next steps should be.
Liability for Fatal Truck Accident
Your attorney will help you understand who might be liable for the fatal truck accident when you are preparing your case. In trucking accidents, there are multiple entities that could be involved. Consider the following possibilities.
If the accident occurred because of the failure of some critical part of the truck (such as worn brakes), a mechanical failure may be to blame. In this case, the following entities could be responsible for your wrongful death claim.
- truck manufacturer.
- parts manufacturer.
- the trucking company.
- or the maintenance company.
There are multiple ways that the driver can be liable for the accident. Did he or she act negligently or ignore federal regulations for service hours or cargo securement? Did these violations cause or contribute to the accident? It is important to review all possibilities because it is not always obvious what circumstances led to the crash.
The following are essential in investigating a deathly truck accident.
- checking driver work logs.
- investigating truck weight or cargo containment.
- and, inspecting tie-downs.
The driver and trucking company can be responsible in many cases. Many other parties may be liable for damages in the fatal truck accident as well depending on the circumstances of the accident. Talk to an attorney about the circumstances of your accident to figure out which party or parties are liable.
New Jersey Wrongful Death Laws & Fatal Truck Accidents
New Jersey defines wrongful death as a fatal injury caused by another party’s negligence or wrongdoing. In wrongful death cases, the plaintiff must be able to prove that the defendant caused the death because of negligent or reckless behavior. These cases are heard in the state’s civil courts and are limited to financial liability outcomes.
In these cases, a personal representative of the deceased must represent the interests of the beneficiaries.
- and/or, parents.
The claim may recover compensation for this list of things.
- medical bills from the accident prior to death.
- lost wages from the deceased.
- and, noneconomic damages that beneficiaries experience like loss of companionship or parental guidance.
The statute of limitations for a wrongful death claim in New Jersey is two years. After two years from the date of the fatality, you may not pursue a wrongful death case. So get started soon after the fatal truck accident to avoid the statute of limitations expiring.
Get Help Filing Your Fatal Truck Accident Claim
Fatal truck accidents are complicated and there are often multiple parties involved. It is imperative that you are able to identify who is liable for your wrongful death claim; an attorney can help you make this determination and send a spoliation letter to the trucking company to prevent destruction of evidence.
If you need help filing a wrongful death claim after a truck accident, Cordisco & Saile can help. We handle truck accident and wrongful death cases and will help you pursue the compensation to which you and other family members are entitled. Call us today at 215-642-2335 to set up a free consultation to discuss your case with an attorney.