Proving a Wrongful Death Claim

Amtrak resumed passenger train service between Philadelphia and New York City just a week following the deadly derailment at Frankford Junction. Reports revealed that Train 188 was traveling at 106 m.p.h. when it derailed. As a result, eight people were killed and over 200 others injured. Without admitting culpability, an Amtrak spokesman announced that the railroad installed an automatic train-control system on the tracks to limit speed approaching the curve to 45 m.p.h.

Several lawsuits against Amtrak were filed. Litigation experts predict that the claims against Amtrak will likely exceed the $200 million cap that was imposed in 1997 to help Amtrak regain financial stability. Thanks to a bill introduced by Florida Senator Bill Nelson, the ranking Democrat on the Transportation Committee, families of the accident victims may be eligible for higher payments. “We can’t allow anyone to suffer additionally due to an outdated cap based on mid-1990 dollars,” Senator Nelson said.

How to win a wrongful death lawsuit?

There are two main points that a catastrophic attorney needs to prove to win wrongful death claim:

  1. The death was caused by negligence or harmful intent on the part of another

Like the Amtrak derailment, negligence is often part of the cause for many accidental deaths. In general, negligence is a person’s failure to use the degree of reasonable care expected to minimize the risk of harm to another. You can file a wrongful death lawsuit in various situations, including:

  • Train, auto, boating, or airplane accidents
  • Exposure to hazardous substances on the job
  • Fatal injuries during sports and other supervised events
  1. The surviving immediate family suffered a financial loss

You may suffer financial loss due to the wrongful death of a family member, including:

  • Loss of income
  • Incurred medical expenses
  • Cost of burial
  • Loss of companionship
  • Loss of paternal guidance
  • Mental anguish

If a member of your family was killed as a result of another person’s negligence or recklessness, you may file a wrongful death lawsuit. At Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath, we have 24 years of experience helping families navigate the complicated world of wrongful death lawsuits. If you have any questions on this blog or need information on other personal injury queries, please call the Law offices of Lytal, Reiter, Smith, Ivey & Fronrath located in West Palm Beach at 1-800 4-RIGHTS (1-800- 474-4487) We welcome your call and look forward to helping you.