causes wrongful death

Accidents that result in fatal outcomes can be devastating for those who survive the deceased person. Not only do they have to go through the emotional trauma of losing a loved one, but they also have to deal with immense financial difficulties. Unfortunately, there are numerous occasions when a fatal accident is caused due to the negligent actions of someone other than the deceased.

Wrongful death claim is the term used to describe a New York personal injury claim filed in such incidents where the victim has died. These claims can help to compensate the surviving relatives for the medical and funeral expenses they have had to bear, and also for the loss of companionship, love, and support that they have suffered due to losing their loved one.

What are the Common Causes of Wrongful Death Accidents in NYC?

Data over the years has shown that the most common causes for wrongful death accidents in New York City include the following:

  • Car accidents
  • Truck accidents
  • Motorcycle accidents
  • Bicycle accidents
  • Pedestrian accidents
  • Defective product accidents
  • Slip and fall accidents
  • Medical malpractice cases
  • Construction site accidents

Car Accidents are a Leading Cause of Wrongful Death Cases in New York

Most car accidents that have fatal results occur due to entirely avoidable human error. Driving in a reckless manner or under the influence of alcohol or other drugs is one of the most common causes of fatal car accidents. In recent times, there has also been an increase in the number of persons killed due to speeding and distracted driving.

In exceptional instances, wrongful death cases may also be the result of defective roads or construction and repair activity on the roads without adequate systems to warn motorists. With the help of a resourceful NYC lawyer, it is possible to prove the liability of even government agencies that were responsible for the upkeep of the faulty roads and to recover damages through a wrongful death claim.

Truck Accidents: An Increasing Factor in Wrongful Deaths in NYC

With an increasing number of businesses operating their delivery trucks within the city, there has been a steep rise in the number of truck accidents in NYC. Compared to accidents that involve smaller passenger vehicles, truck accidents are more likely to result in fatalities.

Trucks are huge vehicles that weigh at least 20 times more than the average car and are quite difficult to maneuver in congested streets. Trucks also require more time to come to a complete stop after the brakes have been applied, and have huge blind spots. Due to their sheer size, weight, and inability to come to an instantaneous stop, trucks can easily crush smaller cars even if the collision occurs at a relatively lower speed. All these factors increase the probability of wrongful death in truck accidents in New York.

Huge Risk of Wrongful Death in Pedestrian, Bicycle and Motorcycle Accidents in New York

While any accident that involves impact between vehicles can cause serious injuries, the risk of fatality is higher for pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorcyclists. Persons who travel in a car or a truck or a bus are protected to a large extent by the structure of their vehicle. They also have other safety features to reduce the damage caused by high-speed impact.

Unfortunately, pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorcyclists have no such protection and because they are directly exposed to the collision, they are at a greater risk of death in a serious road accident in New York. If you have lost a loved one in a pedestrian accident or a bicycle or motorcycle accident, you may be able to claim wrongful death damages if it can be proved that the other party’s negligence was responsible for the fatality.

Role of Defective Products in NY Wrongful Death Accidents

Any company that manufactures and sells its products is legally bound to ensure that its products are safe for use. While most products meet this requirement, there are certain cases when defective products find their way to a consumer and result in wrongful death. Some of the common types of defective products that may cause fatal accidents to include:

  • Dangerous drugs and pharmaceutical products
  • Defective car seats
  • Toxic food products
  • Malfunctioning household appliances or tools
  • Dangerous toys and childcare products
  • Malfunctioning seatbelts and airbags in cars
  • Faulty construction equipment

Whether the fatality was a result of a design defect or manufacturing defect or a failure to warn regarding the appropriate way to use the product, it is possible to recover damages through a wrongful death claim. Having an accomplished product liability lawyer can make it easier for you to claim the compensation you deserve especially in cases that involve large companies or corporations.

Wrongful Deaths in Slip and Fall Accidents

If you have lost a loved one in a slip and fall accident that occurred due to the negligence of the property owner, you can claim damages for wrongful death. Accidents can happen at different places – on construction sites, in parking structures, in-office or apartment or school buildings, and in shopping malls.

If someone meets a fatal accident on any premises due to lack of sufficient safety measures or due to insufficient maintenance by the responsible individual or agency, it is possible to sue them through a wrongful death lawsuit in New York City.

Medical Malpractice as a Cause of Wrongful Death

While most doctors and other healthcare professionals deliver the necessary level of care, there are quite a few instances where they may fail to follow the right procedures and these mistakes can cost a patient’s life. If you have lost a loved one due to any of the following reasons, you can file a wrongful death claim on grounds of medical malpractice:

  • Errors in diagnosing a medical condition
  • Delay in treating a medical condition
  • Errors in providing the right medication
  • Surgical errors
  • Anesthesia malpractice
  • Hospital negligence
  • Birthing process injuries
  • Use of defective medical devices

Construction Accidents and Wrongful Death Claims in NYC

Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics show that fatalities in the construction industry are responsible for 1,000 worker deaths every year in the US. Persons working on construction sites may die in a slip and fall incident, or due to accidents that occur due to the use of ladders, scaffolding, machinery, or power tools.

Forklift and crane accidents, electrocution, and being struck by objects are also causes of death on construction sites. In case of such accidents, it is possible to claim compensation from the concerned company as well as other parties that may be liable for the accident.

How is Fault Established in a Wrongful Death Claim in New York?

In order to win compensation in a wrongful death claim, it is vital to be able to prove that the deceased person was owed a legal duty of care by the defendant and that they breached that obligation. In order to determine breach of the duty of care, the actions or behavior of the defendant will be compared with that which is expected of a reasonable person in a similar situation.

Furthermore, it is equally important to show that the death of the victim took place directly due to the negligence of the defendant. If all these factors can be proved, it is possible to win compensation for the economic and non-economic damages suffered through a wrongful death claim.

Establishing fault in such cases is not an easy task and this makes it imperative to have a legal expert on your side. A committed New York City wrongful death attorney can help you gather all the data and evidence and build a strong case to win the maximum compensation to which you are entitled under the law.

What Damages Can Be Claimed in a Wrongful Death Case?

Under New York law, it is possible to claim compensation for the following losses in wrongful death cases:

  • Medical expenses for treatment and care provided before the death of the accident victim
  • Funeral costs
  • Cremation or burial expenditure
  • Loss of wages
  • Loss of consortium
  • Inheritance loss
  • Punitive damages

Get in Touch with a Resourceful NYC Wrongful Death Attorney

Losing a loved one is a traumatic experience and we understand that after such accidents, it can be tough to think of anything beyond your loss. However, it is important to realize that the party at fault for the accident that caused your loss must be made to pay for their negligence. Receiving monetary compensation definitely cannot fill the void left in your emotions but it can help provide the financial support that is so necessary to get on with life in the altered circumstances.

At Rosenberg, Minc, Falkoff & Wolff, LLP, our New York wrongful death attorneys have several years of experience in winning compensation for clients who file wrongful death claims. With us on your side, you need not worry about the complex paperwork and other aspects of the legal machinery that is essential to receive the damages you rightfully deserve.

To learn more about how we can help you recover maximum compensation for your loss, call Rosenberg, Minc, Falkoff & Wolff, LLP today at 212-344-1000 or contact us online for a free and confidential consultation.


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