Fatal Motorcycle Accidents
Motorcycle accidents are often fatal. There is very little protection for a motorcyclist who gets into a crash, even when they are wearing gear and a helmet. In a collision with a larger vehicle, even a crash that occurs at low speeds, the motorcyclist's body absorbs the force, and the resulting injuries are likely to be catastrophic and may result in immediate death at the scene or death at the hospital later. If your loved one died in a motorcycle crash in Tennessee or a nearby state, you may be eligible to bring a wrongful death lawsuit with the assistance of our Memphis fatal motorcycle accident lawyers. Each state has its own rules related to wrongful death lawsuits, including who may bring the lawsuit and which damages may be recovered.Pursuing Compensation for a Fatal Motorcycle Accident
Generally, a wrongful death lawsuit may be brought when a loved one dies in a fatal motorcycle accident that is a result of another person's fault. In Tennessee, a wrongful death is defined as a death that is caused by injuries received from someone else or by someone else's omission, wrongful act, or killing.
Many states treat wrongful death lawsuits as personal injury cases in which an accident victim may not bring their own claim. Specific family members are permitted to bring the civil lawsuit in place of the victim, as is the personal representative of the victim’s estate. You may bring a wrongful death lawsuit to pursue damages in civil court even if a defendant has been acquitted in criminal court of any associated criminal charges, such as manslaughter. The burden of proof is much higher in criminal court than it is for personal injury cases. Our fatal motorcycle accident attorneys can help Memphis residents determine whether they may have a claim.
In each state, different family members have priority to file a wrongful death lawsuit. The first family member with the right to file in Tennessee, for example, is the surviving spouse of the decedent. When there is no surviving spouse, the surviving children or next of kin are entitled to file. When none of these is living, the personal representative of the decedent's estate may file. However, if the decedent is a minor or dependent on their parents at the time of death, a surviving parent may file.
To establish liability in a fatal motorcycle accident lawsuit, you will most likely need to show another driver's negligence. This means that you will need to prove that another driver owed the motorcyclist a duty to drive safely but failed to do so, thereby fatally injuring or killing the motorcyclist.
Generally, surviving family members who bring a wrongful death lawsuit may recover a wide range of damages, including funeral and burial expenses, medical bills, lost earning capacity and lost enjoyment of life between the time of the accident and the death, mental anguish, physical and mental suffering of family members due to the wrongful death, current and future lost wages and benefits, and loss of love and companionship. In some cases, a motorcyclist's child is the next of kin, and the damages recovered will need to be put in a trust for their benefit.
The statute of limitations to bring a wrongful death case varies from state to state, but typically the window is quite short. For example, in Tennessee, you only have one year from the date of the accident to bring suit against a negligent driver. Even if you are grief-stricken, it is important to act quickly to retain an attorney.Consult a Fatal Motorcycle Accident Lawyer in Memphis or Surrounding Areas
After a fatal motorcycle accident involving a loved one, you may need to recover damages for funeral expenses, medical bills, and household services. Our Memphis fatal motorcycle accident attorneys may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit on your behalf. Our firm employs over 30 attorneys and 100 staff members, serving clients throughout Tennessee, Kentucky, Missouri, Arkansas, and Mississippi, including in Memphis, Chattanooga, Knoxville, Nashville, Caruthersville, Hayti, Oxford, Starkville, Grenada, Columbus, Tupelo, Meridian, Jackson, Little Rock, and Jonesboro. Call Nahon, Saharovich & Trotz at 800-529-4004 or complete our online form to set up a free appointment with a wrongful death lawyer. NST is the way to go.