When someone you love dies, the world, as you know it, changes. The feeling of loss never fully goes away, even as the days, weeks and months pass by. Losing a loved one is even more difficult when the death was sudden and was the result of someone else’s negligence, such as a reckless driver. 

Examples of Virginia Wrongful Death Claims Involving Drivers

Wrongful death claims come in many different forms from deaths caused by medical malpractice to motorcycle accident fatalities. Below are some more specific examples of when a wrongful death claim may apply in a motor vehicle accident:


  1. Negligent driver. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the number of car accident fatalities is on the rise (Read our blog post: The Number of Virginia Traffic Deaths Are on the Incline, to learn more). When a driver is distracted, reckless or negligent in some way and causes a fatal car wreck, a wrongful death claim may be pursued. 
  2. Drunk driver. Drunk drivers cause countless deaths each year. Despite the warnings and education regarding impaired driving, people still get behind the wheel drunk. If a drunk driver causes someone else’s death, he or she may be liable for wrongful death damages.
  3. Reckless trucker. When a truck collides into a smaller vehicle, the outcome is often catastrophic. Truckers and trucking companies have regulations to follow, but that doesn’t mean they are playing by the rules. A trucker who decides to push forward and not take rest breaks or carries an excessive load, is acting recklessly. If a fatal crash results, a wrongful death case may come into play.

What You Should Know About Wrongful Death Lawsuits

Virginia law does allow surviving family members to hold the wrongdoer responsible for his or her actions. There are specific damages that may be available, such as medical expenses and funeral costs. In addition, there is compensation for the emotional impact caused by the death, which should be discussed with an experienced lawyer. Punitive damages may apply in some circumstances, as well.

If you feel that you may have a wrongful death claim, the best thing for you to do is to contact a knowledgeable Warrenton wrongful death lawyer at the law firm of Dulaney, Lauer & Thomas. We will review the details of your case and explain your rights. For more information, contact us today at 540-341-0007.

We have offices located throughout the state to best serve you.

Andrew Thomas
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Civil litigation attorney in Virginia and is AV Rated by Martindale-Hubbell.

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