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Can I Still File a Claim if the At-Fault Driver Dies?

Posted on behalf of Anderson Cummings on Jun 25, 2021 in Auto Accidents

flowers at roadsideIf the driver who caused your accident dies in the wreck, you may be wondering how to go about filing a claim to recover compensation for your injuries.

Our Fort Worth car accident lawyers may be able to help you file a third-party claim to help you pursue the compensation you need for your medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages.

Below, we discuss the process of filing a claim and how you may be able to recover compensation by filing a lawsuit against the deceased driver’s estate.  

Filing a Third-Party Insurance Claim

Texas is an at-fault state, which means accident victims need to file a claim against the at-fault driver’s liability insurance to pursue compensation for damages. This is true even if the driver responsible for the accident died in the crash.

While you may have concerns about the deceased driver’s family and how difficult the situation may be after losing a loved one, it is important to understand that a claim has no economic effect on the at-fault driver’s family. This is because the insurance company is the one responsible for paying out your claim.

Third-party insurance claims for accidents in which the at-fault driver is deceased work the same as if the driver had survived the crash.

However, when the insurance company denies liability for the accident, you may have to file a lawsuit against the deceased person’s estate.

Filing a Lawsuit Against the Deceased Driver’s Estate

Unfortunately, there may also be cases in which the at-fault driver does not have enough insurance to cover the full value of your damages or has no insurance at all.

When this happens, your case may become more complicated. You should strongly consider speaking to one of our licensed attorneys who may be able to help you file a lawsuit against the deceased at-fault driver’s estate to recover the compensation you need.

Compensation Through Probate Court

When filing a lawsuit against an at-fault driver’s estate, unlike a third-party insurance claim, your compensation would not come from an insurance company. Instead, your damages would be paid for from the deceased’s estate through a process called probate.

Probate is a process whereby a court legally recognizes a person’s death and ensures payments of a deceased person’s debts and distribution of that person’s assets.

The statute of limitations for filing a claim for damages through probate may differ from that of a regular injury claim in Texas, so it is very important to have someone on your side who knows the law. 

Are There Additional Liable Parties?

Another option for recovering compensation for an accident caused by a driver who died is to file claims against other liable parties. This may be your last option if there is no insurance and no assets left over after distribution through probate.

You may need help conducting a proper investigation into your case, which could be difficult if you were seriously hurt in the crash. Our attorneys may be able to help you thoroughly review all the facts of your case to determine what all your legal options may be.

Get Help from an Experienced Attorney. Call Us Today

Remember, if you were injured in an accident that was caused by someone else’s negligence, you have the legal right to pursue compensation for your damages from all liable parties. This includes any at-fault parties who died in the accident.

Whether you are filing a third-party insurance claim or a lawsuit against the deceased driver’s estate, it is important to have a licensed attorney who can review the facts of your case to help you recover the compensation you need for medical bills, lost wages and other damages.

We offer a free consultation and charge you nothing while we work on your case, so there is no risk to you.

Call us today at (877) 920-9009