Can You Sue For Wrongful Death after a Motorcycle Collision?
The number of people relying on motorcycles for their everyday commutation is increasing every year and so is the number of motorcycle accident fatalities. Since two-wheelers lack an enclosed structure and many other safety features that are installed in passenger cars and other vehicles, the victims are likely to suffer from catastrophic injuries.
In fact, a study reports that motorcycle riders are 30 times more susceptible than passenger car drivers and occupants to die in a collision. In case you lost any of your family members in such an accident, it is likely to break you down both financially and emotionally. However, you will be able to sue the person liable for your irreparable loss by filing a wrongful death lawsuit against him/her.
Unfortunately, not every motorcycle accident can make a wrongful death claim. So, it is recommended to consult a credible motorcycle accident attorney and discuss the possibilities of your case. Some of the major points your motorcycle lawyer may consider to determine whether or not you can file a wrongful death lawsuit are given below.
Your Relationship With The Motorcycle Accident Victim
In California, the spouse, surviving children or the present domestic partner of the victim is eligible to file a wrongful death claim in case of motorcycle accidents. Similarly,if the parents or stepchildren of the victim were financially dependent on him/her, they can also file a claim. In case victim does not have any of the above-mentioned relatives, any person who is in the line to acquire the assets of the deceased can file a wrongful death claim against the liable person. On the other hand, if you are just a friend or neighbor of the victim or someone who does not belong to any of the above-mentioned categories, you will not be able to move on with the wrongful death claim.
The Cause Of The Accident
Unless you have someone other than the victim to blame for the accident, you cannot file a wrongful death lawsuit. In most cases, motorcycle accidents are caused by the negligence of another vehicle driver. In such cases, you can sue the liable motorist. Otherwise, you can file a claim blaming the bad condition of the road, traffic signals, manufacturing defects of motorcycle, etc., that contributed to the fatal accident, which resulted in the death of the victim.
It is not that easy to prove liability in case of wrongful death cases. Here, you will have to present as many evidence as you can in court to obtain maximum compensation from the defendant. Some of the potential pieces of evidence include witness testimony, surveillance footage, police report, etc. Note that proving liability in court will be relatively challenging in case a crack on the road, a faulty light signal, etc., caused the accident.