What Should You Do if Your Loved One Was Involved in a Fatal Accident on I-95 Today in Maine?
The loss of a loved one is never an easy thing to deal with. Unfortunately, fatal car accidents take the lives of more than 700 people in Maine every year. Given the fact that Interstate 95 is one of the deadliest roadways in the United States and here in Maine specifically, it is no surprise that these accidents do take place on this busy roadway.
After losing a loved one due to a fatal accident on I-95 today in Maine, it is crucial that families understand the options that they have moving forward. One of the most common steps that families take after fatal accidents is the filing of a wrongful death claim. It is important to understand what this process involves and how it can help your family throughout the grieving process and beyond.
Proving Negligence after a Fatal Crash on I-95
In the aftermath of the fatal accident on Interstate 95 today in Maine, families are able to take legal action so long as they are able to prove that the negligence of another party was the cause of the fatal accident that claimed the life of their loved one. This can be a difficult task as it often involves an in-depth investigation into the accident to uncover critical details surrounding what occurred.
There are several negligent actions that continue to impact families across our state. Some of the leading factors in fatal I-95 accidents include:
- Distracted driving
- Aggressive driving
- Weather conditions
- Impaired driving
- Reckless driving
- Running red lights or stop signs
- Poor road conditions
- Mechanical failures
It is important to have a thorough investigation performed to determine what factors contributed to the accident taking place and who is responsible.
The Investigation Process
After a fatal accident is reported, an investigation is performed to uncover various details pertaining to what took place. The investigation process will review evidence and information surrounding all aspects of the crash in order to recreate exactly what occurred. Some of the information and evidence that is reviewed during the investigation includes:
- Vehicle damage
- Surveillance camera footage
- Weather conditions
- Eyewitness accounts
- Vehicle positions and trajectories
- Skid marks and tire tracks
- Roadway conditions
- Vehicle data recorders
- Toxicology reports
All of these factors will be thoroughly scrutinized as the investigators try to re-create the accident to show how each one of them contributed. In some cases, authorities will also review cell phone records and vehicle maintenance records to determine if cell phone use or a mechanical failure led to the accident. Given the fact that one or more factors can contribute to an accident taking place, the investigation is not typically rushed. This process can take several weeks to months after an accident to come to any conclusion.
Although you have no legal requirement to do so, it is in your best interest for your family to seek help from a wrongful death lawyer who will be able to conduct an independent investigation into the accident and work with experts who can re-create the crash to uncover details in support of a claim for wrongful death against the responsible party.
Negligence Laws in Maine
After a fatal accident on Interstate 95 in Maine, bereaved families have the ability to file wrongful death claims against those who are responsible. These claims can help families recover compensation for various damages that they face. This can include:
- Medical expenses
- Funeral and burial costs
- Property damage
- Loss of future earnings
- Loss of services
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of companionship
To recover compensation for the losses and damages that you face, you must be able to prove that the defendant was responsible for the crash. Awards of compensation for lawsuits filed in Maine follow the laws of comparative negligence.
These laws state that a person can recover compensation for the damages and losses that they face so long as the deceased victim is not more than 51 percent responsible for the accident occurring. If the deceased victim contributed to the accident taking place in any way, the amount of money that a family is able to recover for their wrongful death claim will be reduced to reflect the amount of fault that was shared.
This makes it important for you to seek guidance from a wrongful death lawyer as soon as possible. A lawyer will be able to prove your case against the defendant so that your family can maximize your recovery.
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Case in Maine?
In the state of Maine, the authority to initiate a wrongful death lawsuit in the name of the deceased’s surviving family members lies with the personal representative of the decedent’s estate.
Typically, this personal representative is designated by the estate in the will. In cases where there is no will, the court will appoint a personal representative to act on behalf of the deceased’s estate.
Even though the representative files and pursues the wrongful death lawsuit, it is important to note that their actions ultimately benefit the heirs of the deceased. This means that any compensation obtained by the personal representative, after covering legal fees and funeral expenses, will ultimately be distributed to the remaining family members and other lawful heirs of the deceased individual.
Statute of Limitations
After a fatal car accident on Interstate 95 in Maine, entitled parties have a period of up to two years from the date of the death to file a wrongful death action. Waiting too long to file a claim can prevent you from making any type of financial recovery. For this reason, it is important to act quickly to file a claim as waiting can result in the loss of evidence and various other factors that can negatively affect your case.
Reaching Out to an Attorney
After the loss of a loved one due to a fatal crash on Interstate 95, you should reach out for legal representation as soon as possible. A seasoned legal team will be able to help you with the crash investigation, gathering evidence, and building a claim against the responsible party. They will also be able to communicate with the insurance company on your behalf so that your family is able to get justice.
It is crucial that you take the necessary steps to preserve as much evidence as possible. You will want to take pictures of the scene of the crash, collect any available web cam footage, and take statements from anyone who witnessed the crash. All of these pieces of evidence can help to build your case against the defendant by providing invaluable insight as to what took place.
You can hire an attorney to help you with the gathering of evidence so that you can be sure to have all of the documents and information needed to prove your case.
After the loss of a loved one due to a fatal New Hampshire Interstate 95 accident, your family will want to take legal action against the responsible party. In order to recover compensation for the economic damages that you face as a result of the accident, you will need to have evidence in support of your claim. For this reason, you will want to start gathering evidence as soon as possible that demonstrates the extent of damages that have been forced upon your family.
You will want to hold onto any medical expenses, funeral arrangement bills, records of lost earnings, and records of property damage. You will also want to gather evidence and information that demonstrates the loss of services and companionship that the fatal accident has caused. This type of information can help prove your losses, so that you can maximize your recovery.
Do Not Talk About the Accident
Insurance companies will do everything in their power to avoid paying money to those who rightfully deserve it. As a result, they will take any statement that is provided about an accident and try to twist it and use it as evidence against you. This makes it imperative that you refrain from making any statements about the accident, whether oral or written. Not speaking to anyone about the accident or posting anything online will help to ensure that statements you make are not taken out of context and used in court to fight your claim.
Seek Legal Guidance Today
Filing a wrongful death claim is an important way for families to seek justice after losing their loved one due to a fatal car accident. At i95accidentalerts.com, we understand the emotional burden that this process can be and want to help make it as easy as possible by connecting you with experienced attorneys who are knowledgeable about Maine’s wrongful death laws.
We are here to take some of the weight off your shoulders so that you can focus on healing during this difficult time. Do not hesitate to reach out to our team today for resources and guidance if someone close to you has lost their life due to an Interstate 95 car accident in Maine.