53-year-old James Johnson died June 14, 2014, after being hit by an SUV while driving through the intersection of Providence and Wendover Road. Johnson, traveling on Wendover Road, proceeded through a green stop light at which point the driver of the SUV, traveling the opposite direction on Wendover Road, proceeded through a flashing yellow light and hit Johnson. Johnson did not have a pulse at the scene according to persons interviewed by WSOCTV.
The air was heavy at the intersection, and rightfully so. One onlooker who lives close to the intersection stated “by the time I got there – he had no pulse. So, it was a little terrifying, but I tried to help as much as I could.” Adding that she wishes she could give her condolences in person. The driver of the vehicle is praying for Johnson’s family as well.
Unquestionably, the passing away of a loved one is a difficult time; a time that is made even more so difficult by the oncoming pressures of bills, funeral expenses, creditors, and other financial burdens, but don’t lose hope. There are people out there who are educated and experienced in helping people in this kind of situation get through this hard time.
Normally in a lawsuit, the person who is injured must be the person who brings suit against the person who caused the damage. Unfortunately, as is the case here, the person is now deceased. So what does that mean for the survivors of a person involved in an accident like this? The legislature has created an option for those close family members that have survived the passing of a loved one who died due to another’s negligence or wrongful act.
Wrongful death suits are not limited to car accidents like the one discussed above. Unfortunately, loved ones pass away due to many different reasons, such as nursing home neglect, medical malpractice, workplace injuries, truck/car accidents, or even products liability.
But is it worth it? You’ve already lost a loved one and the thought of going to court can be scary. The answer is, it just depends. Those that pursue wrongful death claims with the courts know what damages are available to them because it is detailed in the North Carolina statutes.
Categories of damages such as expenses for care, treatment, hospitalization, pain and suffering, reasonable funeral expenses exist to help those with the upcoming bills to be paid as a result of the tragic loss. In addition, close family members such as a spouse or child may be able to recover the loss of the reasonably expected income, service, care, and assistance of the decedent, or even the society, companionship, comfort, guidance, kindly offices, and advice of the decedent. These damages are normally called “loss of consortium” and are often difficult to put a price on.
There is help out there for those persons who are dealing with the financial and emotional hardships of losing a loved one. It is important to contact an attorney that is sympathetic to your needs, whether you are struggling with certain end of life finances or need that reassurance that someone is actively pursuing a claim on behalf of your loved one. Contact an experienced personal injury lawyer today for a free consultation to help you evaluate your options.