Who Do I Sue for Wrongful Death After a Fatal Accident?

It is always difficult to lose a loved one, but your circumstances are extremely tragic when that person was taken from you violently and unexpectedly in an accident. Many survivors go through grief, sadness, and depression, but there will also be consequences for your family and economic interests. Fortunately, you have remedies under Maryland’s wrongful death statute. A surviving spouse, child, or parent has the power to sue the at-fault party to recover damages for their own losses, including loss of love, support, financial contributions, guidance, and education.

However, once you realize you are a party that has standing for a wrongful death case, you might not know what party to pursue. The answer depends upon the type of accident or incident that led to your loved one’s passing, as well as the underlying circumstances. Plus, there may be multiple parties to go after for their role in causing the fatal accident. You can count on a Glen Burnie wrongful death lawyer to handle the details, but some background is informative.

Negligent Motorists

Motor vehicle accidents are one of the leading causes of fatalities in the US, so you will sue the at-fault driver. In practice, you will actually be dealing with an insurance company that covers the responsible motorist. For a wrongful death case, you will need to prove that the policyholder caused the crash by failing to exercise reasonable care while driving.

Employers of Negligent Drivers

In addition to seeking damages from the driver after a crash, you may have grounds to pursue the company that employs him or her. The theory of vicarious liability applies, and it also encompasses the concept of negligence. A company may be liable for the negligent acts of its employees who are working within the scope of employment, such as a delivery driver, truck operator, or messenger.

Property and Business Owners

A fatal accident can also occur because of dangerous conditions on the property, which is why Maryland premises liability laws impose a duty of care. Property and business owners are required to keep their spaces in a reasonably safe state and free from foreseeable hazards. They may breach the duty by:

  • Failing to fix balcony and staircase railings;
  • Not repairing exposed electrical wiring;
  • Neglecting to clean up spills, debris, and obstacles; and,
  • Not taking precautions in light of criminal activity, such as installing cameras, securing entrances, and hiring a security guard.

Health Care Providers

Physicians, nurses, and other medical staff can also be negligent, though the standard is slightly different. When you are pursuing a wrongful death case based on medical malpractice, you need to show how the provider’s actions and decisions deviate from those of another doctor in that same area.

A Baltimore County Wrongful Death Attorney Helps With Legal Remedies For more information on who to sue after different types of accidents in Maryland, please contact Michael A. Freedman. You can set up a no-cost case review by calling 410.363.6848 or visiting our website. We are happy to assess your situation and determine how to proceed.

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