Dealing with Injuries or Death of Vehicle Passengers
Many vehicle accident cases are focused on the negligent acts of drivers of other vehicles. However, it is very possible that an accident can be caused by the driver of the vehicle in which you are a passenger. When you are riding as a passenger, you put your safety in the hands of the person operating that car or truck, and if that person is negligent or reckless, you could be severely injured.
A recent crash in San Antonio illustrates how a reckless driver can cause injury and death for passengers. The crash happened near the University of Texas-San Antonio after 2:00 in the morning and involved one car that had four people inside. Reports indicate that the driver plowed through a construction zone and crashed into a concrete barrier. The two backseat passengers were thrown forward, hitting the front seat passenger. One of the backseat passengers was taken to the hospital with injuries while the front seat passenger was killed.
Police reportedly detained the driver for suspected driving while intoxicated. Updates indicated that the driver now faces charges for both intoxicated assault and intoxicated manslaughter. While criminal charges seek to punish a driver for unlawful acts, these cases often do little to help injured victims or families who have suffered tragic losses.
Taking Legal Action
Texas law allows injured car accident victims to seek compensation from any negligent parties, which includes the driver of the vehicle you were in. In the above case, the backseat passenger may be able to file an insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit against the intoxicated driver.
Deceased individuals cannot file lawsuits, however. Instead, certain surviving family members are allowed to file a claim for wrongful death against any negligent or wrongful parties. This means that the family of the front seat passenger who did not survive can exercise these rights and seek compensation from the driver.
A criminal conviction can be used as evidence in a civil case to prove that a driver acted wrongfully and should be held liable. This is not the end of a case, however, as victims must still prove the extent of losses they incurred as a result of the personal injury or wrongful death. Losses can vary significantly from case to case and can be substantial, especially in cases involving disabling injuries or wrongful death. Therefore, you should always have an experienced attorney handling your case, even if the liable party was criminally convicted.
Contact a San Antonio Wrongful Death Attorney to Discuss a Possible Case
At the Law Offices of George Salinas, we have seen the tragic aftermath of vehicle accidents many times. We are committed to helping injured accident victims and families that have suffered a wrongful death. These cases can be stressful, so we handle every aspect of the legal process to allow you to focus on your mental and emotional recovery. If you would like to discuss your situation for free, please call 210-225-0909 or contact us online for help as soon as possible.