Motor vehicle collisions involving commercial trucks and personal vehicles can end in tragedy. These much bigger and heavier semitrucks may cause the total destruction of the smaller vehicle and fatal injuries to the driver and any passengers.
Surviving family members in Alabama may have a hard time adjusting to life after a sudden motor vehicle collision. They may have major financial losses because of the crash. They may also feel victimized, especially if the party responsible for the collision has not faced any criminal consequences.
Is it possible to bring a wrongful death claim after a commercial vehicle causes a crash with a smaller passenger vehicle?
Alabama does allow for wrongful death lawsuits
State statutes include provisions for wrongful death claims. Typically, there needs to have been omissions, meaning actions someone failed to take, negligence or wrongful acts leading up to the fatality for there to be grounds for a wrongful death claim. Wrongful death claims after trucking crashes could target the person driving or the company that hired them and maintained their vehicle.
A truck driver eating at the wheel might be negligent, while a commercial driver texting at the wheel is a violation of federal statutes that may constitute a wrongful act. Companies failing to maintain the brakes in a vehicle might constitute negligence, while demanding that drivers stay at the wheel when they have been on the road for too long could be wrongful conduct.
If the evidence from the crash and the police report support your claims that there was wrongful conduct or negligence involved, then it may be possible for your family to seek financial justice.
Who can file the lawsuit?
In Alabama, surviving family members won’t bring a wrongful death claim. Instead, the personal representative of the estate of the deceased will pursue compensation in civil court and then distribute what they receive among the family members in accordance with state law.
Although commercial vehicles often have more insurance than passenger vehicles, there still may not be enough coverage for a lifetime of lost wages and other expenses. Knowing your rights after a commercial vehicle crash can help your family seek justice in the Alabama civil courts.