Fatal Accident & Injury Claims Solicitors

It is hard to imagine how claiming can make up for the actual loss where an accident has led to a fatality. Our Personal Injury team are here to help you find justice for those who can no longer do so themselves.

When a person is killed as a result of someone else’s negligence, the dependants of that person may be entitled to compensation. This could include the spouse, children and parents, depending on the circumstances.

Losing someone you love is a traumatic experience, particularly if they died in a sudden and unexpected accident. As well as coping with your grief and supporting your other loved ones, you may be worried about the financial impact on you and your family.

Funeral costs, medical bills, the loss of income and pension benefits – these are all difficulties you may be facing. For example, your late loved one may have been the main earner in your household. Alternatively, perhaps you have had to give up your job to take over their caring responsibilities or to support your family through grief.

If the accident was someone else’s fault, you may be able to claim compensation on your deceased loved one’s behalf and to cover financial losses.

We understand that all the money in the world cannot replace your loss. But it could help make your life easier and help you and your family start moving towards a brighter future.

Get expert help to make a fatal accident claim

WSP Solicitors’ expert Personal Injury Claims team are highly experienced in pursuing fatal accident claims for a wide range of clients. We can help you find out if you may be owed compensation, then take decisive action to get you the money you are owed.

Your claim will be run by one of our qualified personal injury lawyers, Demelza PallantLisa Walton or John Davies. They each have over 10 years’ experience in the industry, so you are guaranteed to get someone working for you who is qualified and able to provide you with the very best legal advice.

We have a strong track record of success, regularly securing substantial fatal accident compensation for our clients. With accreditation from APIL – The Association of Personal Injury Lawyers, you can be assured we have the expertise to handle your claim effectively.

Take advantage of our no win no fee fatal accident claim funding

We offer no win, no fee funding for fatal accident claims, so there is no upfront cost or financial risk to you when pursuing a claim with WSP Solicitors.

Alternative funding options, such as trade union funding and legal expenses insurance may also be available depending on your situation.

Find out more about funding your personal injury claim.

Have a free initial consultation with our fatal accident solicitors

We know that the thought of taking legal action can be intimidating and confusing, especially when dealing with the consequences of an injury. That’s why we offer a free initial consultation with our team, so you can ask any questions you have and find out if you may be able to claim before deciding whether to take action.

Request a free initial consultation with our fatal accident and injury lawyers using our simple enquiry form.

Looking for a quick answer to a fatal accidents and injuries question?

Take a look at our personal injury claims FAQs or feel free to ask us what you want to know and we’ll get back to you promptly.

Confused by any terminology you’ve heard? Check out our guide to personal injury claims jargon for clear explanations of all the key terms.

Types of fatal accidents claims we can assist with

Our expert fatal accident lawyers can advise on all types of fatal accident claims, including:

  • Fatal accidents at work and fatal industrial accidents
  • Fatal car accidents
  • Fatal cycling accidents
  • Fatal motorbike accidents
  • Other fatal road traffic accidents
  • Fatal medical negligence
  • Fatal slips, trips and falls
  • Fatal injuries in a public place
  • Fatal sporting accidents
  • Any other fatal accident or injury

To find out more about our specific expertise in the type of claim you need assistance with, please get in touch.

How fatal accident compensation claims work

Finding out if you are owed fatal accident compensation

The first step is to find out whether you may be able to claim compensation for the death of a loved one after a fatal accident or injury. This is something we can sensitively discuss with you in your free initial consultation with our team.

There are two mains ways you can make a claim:

  • An executor appointed under the deceased person’s Will or an administrator if there is no Will can make a claim on behalf of the deceased person’s estate.
  • A claim can be made by or on behalf of any dependant of the deceased person, such as their husband, wife, civil partner, child or parents.

Often, when someone dies in a sudden or unusual way, it needs to be reported to a coroner who will arrange an inquest. The result of the inquest can potentially be very helpful for your fatal accident claim.

Our fatal injury solicitors can provide clear advice on whether you are likely to qualify for compensation, then take care of gathering the necessary evidence for you.

Gathering evidence to support your fatal injury claim

Once we agree to take on your fatal injury claim, we will start the process of gathering evidence to support your case.

We often work with coroners to review the evidence available. This can help us determine how the accident occurred and where fault arose. Our fatal accident lawyers will ensure all necessary evidence is brought together and presented effectively, with no detail overlooked. You can then be confident your claim will be as strong as possible.

Types of evidence we will typically rely on include:

  • The outcome of any coroners’ inquest
  • Testimony from eyewitnesses (such as bystanders or co-workers)
  • Any photographic evidence, such as photos of the environment in which the accident occurred
  • CCTV footage, dash cam footage or other video evidence
  • Medical records

Working out how much fatal accident compensation you can claim

The type of compensation you can claim depends on the type of legal claim you have. If you are a dependant of the deceased, you can claim compensation under the Fatal Accidents Act 1976, including:

  • Statutory Bereavement Award – set at £12,980. This is available for:
    • The wife, husband or civil partner of the deceased
    • If the deceased was unmarried and under 18 years old, their parents or mother
  • Loss of a special person compensation (also known as Loss of Consortium)
  • Loss of Past and Future Financial Dependency – such as the deceased’s salary, pension, and state benefits
  • Loss of Past and Future Services Dependency – such as the deceased’s care of the children
  • Funeral expenses

If you are an executor or administrator, you can claim under the Law Reform (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1976 on behalf of the deceased person for things like:

  • General damages – For non-financial losses, such as pain and suffering.
  • Special damages – for financial losses, such as loss of earnings (until death), clothing and possessions, care, travel and medical expenses prior to death.
  • Funeral expenses
  • Probate fees

A living claimant whose life expectancy has been reduced (for example, because of an asbestos related illness) may also be able to make ‘lost years’ claim for the years they would have earned a salary, pensions or otherwise had their financial expectations met.

We can provide clear advice about the kind of compensation you may be entitled to.

Seeking an out-of-court settlement for your fatal accident claim

We are able to help the overwhelming majority of our clients settle their fatal accident compensation claim out of court. This means our clients get their compensation faster and with lower legal costs, while still ensuring we get the maximum available compensation to meet our clients’ needs.

When you are also grieving, the idea of going through the claims process can be extremely stressful. By helping our clients settle out of court, we remove a lot of the potential stress and worry as well as the need to attend an intimidating formal hearing.

Taking a fatal accident claim to court

It is rare, but sometimes it is not possible to settle a fatal accident claim out of court. In this event, we are experienced at helping clients take their claims to court to get fair compensation.

If this happens, we will work closely with you to build a strong case. We will also provide a supportive shoulder to lean on and a listening ear throughout the process as we know going to court can be stressful. With us on your side, you have the best possible chance of achieving a positive outcome.

Common questions about fatal accident claims

Is there a time limit for fatal accident claims?

Yes. Typically, you will have three years from the date of death to start your claim. It is important to note this time limit does not start from the date of the accident itself.

So, for example, if your loved one was in hospital for a while after the accident before passing away, the clock will start ticking from the date of death.

How long does a fatal accident claim take?

This will depend on the individual circumstances of your case. Fatal accident claims can be complicated. It is necessary to undertake a rigorous investigation to gather all possible evidence and there is often coroner involvement. We work as swiftly as possible to get you the maximum amount of compensation possible, but to do so means taking great care over the investigation.

Does the coroner need to get involved in my claim?

It is likely the coroner will need to get involved. This can be intimidating but it is actually very common – in 2019, 40% of all registered deaths were reported to the coroner.

The coroner’s role is to establish the facts, such as who died, how they died and where they died. The coroner will likely hold an inquest into the death. The result of the investigation and inquest is not to assign blame for the death, however, the process and outcome can usually be of great help in a fatal accident compensation claim.

Can you take over someone’s personal injury claim if they die?

Yes, in most cases, the executor or the administrator of the deceased person’s estate can continue the claim on behalf of the estate.

Who benefits from fatal accident claims on behalf of the deceased person’s estate?

Any compensation won as part of a claim on behalf of the deceased person goes back into the estate. This means that the money will be paid out as inheritance to the deceased person’s heirs in line with their Will or the Rules of Intestacy (if there is no Will).

Can you claim as a dependent AND on behalf of the estate?

Yes, you may be able to make an additional claim as a dependent as well as claiming under the estate. We can provide further advice about the benefits and drawbacks of each type of claims so that you can make an informed decision about how to move forward.

If you are a dependant but not the executor or administrator, it is usually the executor or administrator who will make the claim for you. The exception is if they do not begin a claim within six months of the deceased’s death – in this case, the dependant can make their own claim.

Who is classed as a ‘dependant’?

Under the Fatal Accidents Act 1976, a dependant can be:

  • The husband, wife or civil partner of the deceased.
  • Anyone living with the deceased immediately prior to their death.
  • Anyone living with the deceased for two years before death.
  • The deceased’s children, including biological children or anyone treated by the deceased as their child.
  • The deceased’s parents or grandparents
  • The deceased’s siblings

Didn’t find the answer you were looking for?

Take a look at our personal injury claims FAQs or feel free to ask us what you want to know and we’ll get back to you promptly.

Book your free consultation with our expert fatal accident and injury solicitors

To book your free initial consultation with our fatal accident claims team, please contact your local WSP Solicitors office in Gloucester, Stroud or Dursley, or use our simple enquiry form and we’ll get back to you promptly.

 


    Close

    Get in touch

    Please fill in the form and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can





    We can help with...