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Car accidents resulting in death

Car accidents happen frequently on busy UK roads. Injuries ranging from minor to serious can result from a car accident. Death is rarely considered a possible outcome of any car journey that we are involved in, but sadly car-accident death occurs. If you have been involved in a car accident in which a death resulted, you should seek legal advice. There can be serious implications, both legal and financial.

Car accidents resulting in death will be investigated by experienced road traffic police officers and a member of the Accident Investigation Branch. The evidence that is gathered is sent to the Crown Prosecution Service, which decides whether or not to charge the driver responsible for the accident.

There are four offences relating to causing death by driving. These are:

  • Causing death by dangerous driving
  • Causing death by careless driving when under the influence of drink or drugs or having failed to provide a specimen for analysis without reasonable excuse
  • Causing death by careless or inconsiderate driving
  • Causing death by driving while unlicensed, disqualified or uninsured

The latter-two offences were introduced by the Road Safety Act 2006 but are not yet in force. These offences carry serious penalties, including maximum terms of imprisonment of 14 years and minimums of 2 years, and unlimited fines.

Claims for compensation may be brought by the estate of the deceased or his or her dependents. A claim will not always be able to be brought – a claim can only be brought if the deceased would have been able to bring the claim had they not died. The deceased could only have brought a claim if they could have shown that someone else was responsible, either in part or in whole, for their death.

If you would like to obtain legal advice on the criminal and/or compensation aspects of car accidents, then Caven can put you in touch with a local Accident solicitor free of charge. So, if you have any questions or would like our help in finding a local accident solicitor please call us at 0800 1777 167 or complete the web-form above.

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