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Seattle Car Accident Wrongful Death FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions, Answered by a Washington Fatal Auto Accident Attorney

Losing a loved one in a car accident is a difficult thing, emotionally, mentally, and financially. What makes such loss even harder is when it could have been prevented. Operating a motor vehicle is a great responsibility with possibly dangerous results if proper care is not taken. Drivers who ignore safe driving habits may end up injuring or possibly killing a fellow driver, pedestrian, or passenger. If you’ve lost a relative, spouse, or partner in an auto accident in Washington, please contact the experienced and compassionate Seattle wrongful death attorneys at Pendergast Law to find out what recourse may be available to you. At such a difficult time in your life, it is vital that you seek competent legal advice. Call (888) 228-3860 for a free, comprehensive consultation.

1. What constitutes wrongful death?

2. Who can file a car accident wrongful death claim in Washington?

3. Who can be sued for a fatal auto accident?

4. What kind of damages may I recover?

5. What is the statute of limitations for filing a wrongful death suit?

6. What is the first step in filing a car accident wrongful death claim?


Q: What constitutes wrongful death?

A: In the State of Washington, "wrongful death" is when "the death of a person is caused by the wrongful act, neglect, or default of another." This doesn’t mean that every accident that occurs can be considered a case of wrongful death. In order to prove such a claim, surviving family members and their legal team would need to prove that the at-fault driver was negligent in their behavior and disregarded basic standards of safety.

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Q: Who can file a car accident wrongful death claim in Washington?

A: In Washington State, anyone of the following individuals may file a wrongful death claim:

  • The spouse or partner of the victim
  • The children and step children of the victim
  • The parents and siblings of the victim
  • A representative of the victim’s estate

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Q: Who can be sued for a fatal auto accident?

A: Whomever the negligent party or parties are that caused or contributed to the fatality can be held accountable.

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Q: What kind of damages may I recover?

A: The damages may include, but are not limited to:

  • All economic damages, such as medical bills and funeral and burial expenses
  • Loss of companionship and care
  • Pain and suffering
  • Lost wages and income of the victim
  • Damages to property
  • For children and step children, loss of instruction and guidance, as well as loss of companionship and pain and suffering

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Q: What is the statute of limitations for filing a wrongful death suit?

A: In the state of Washington, a wrongful death claim must be filed within three years of the date of the death. For this reason, it is important to contact an attorney immediately.

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Q: What is the first step in filing a car accident wrongful death claim?

A: The first step is consulting a competent attorney with expertise in the area of wrongful death law. The Seattle law firm of Pendergast Law has years of experience with Washington wrongful death claims. Our Seattle wrongful death car accident lawyers are compassionate and understanding, and will work diligently for the best outcome possible. For a free consultation, call (888) 228-3860 today.

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