Fatal Car Accidents
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
There are approximately 200 car accident deaths per year in Houston.
And there are roughly 3500 car accident deaths per year in Texas.
As of 2021, Texas has gone 20 years without a death-free day on its roadways.
If you lost a loved one in a car accident, you may be able to bring a wrongful death claim in Texas.
Texas law allows a spouse, child, or parent to bring a wrongful death claim to obtain compensation for the loss of their loved one.
To establish liability, the claimant must show their loved one died as a result of the “wrongful act, neglect, carelessness, unskillfulness, or default” of the defendant.
The following monetary damages may be available in a Texas wrongful death case.
DAMAGES IN A WRONGFUL DEATH CASE:
Exemplary (Punitive) Damages
ACTUAL DAMAGES IN A WRONGFUL DEATH CASE:
Actual damages include:
Loss of society & companionship
Loss of inheritance
What is included in the definition of pecuniary losses?
Loss of decedent’s earning capacity
Pecuniary losses include:
Loss of advice, counsel, services, care, maintenance & support
Expenses for family members' psychological treatment
What is included in the definition of punitive damages?
In Texas, the awarding of punitive damages is rare.
Unlike actual damages, punitive damages are not designed to compensate the plaintiff for their injuries.
Punitive damages focus on punishing the defendant for serious, egregious behavior.
The plaintiff must prove that the death was caused by the wrongdoer’s willful act or omission or gross negligence.
After a fatal accident, the victim’s estate can recover damages that the deceased victim suffered.
ON BEHALF OF THE DECEASED
The “survival” action is brought on behalf of the deceased for the deceased’s damages caused by the negligent driver.
DAMAGES IN A SURVIVAL ACTION:
Physical pain that preceded the death
Mental anguish that preceded the death
At The de la Garza Law Group, we know that no two cases are the same. Every client is special. Every case is personal.