Fatal Motorcycle Accidents
There are few barriers to protect a motorcyclist from serious injuries should the motorcycle capsize or collide with a car, truck, or other object. While a helmet can help in some cases, a motorcyclist driving at high speeds on the highway may not be helped by a helmet, a leather jacket, or any other gear. In the worst-case scenario, a motorcyclist may pass away due to his or her injuries. As the family member of someone who has died in a crash caused by another driver’s negligence, you should consult the Detroit, Traverse City, and Grand Rapids fatal motorcycle accident attorneys at Neumann Law Group about your ability to recover compensation. Our principal, Kelly Neumann, is an experienced trial lawyer with a strong reputation who has regularly secured more than $3 million in personal injury cases each year for the last several years.Pursuing Damages after a Fatal Motorcycle Accident
To recover compensation after the death of a loved one caused by a wrongful act or negligence, you will need to bring a wrongful death lawsuit. Under the Michigan Wrongful Death Act, an estate will need to be opened. The personal representative of the estate, often a family member, is entitled to file a wrongful death lawsuit. However, the beneficiaries of that lawsuit are surviving dependents and others close to the victim.
In order to recover damages, the estate will have to prove that the motorcycle accident was caused more than 50% by the defendant, the defendant acted negligently (below the appropriate standard of care), there are surviving family members who are eligible to receive compensation, and actual damages were incurred due to the wrongful death.
Under 700.3924 of the Estates and Protected Individuals Code, any wrongful death proceeds must be distributed in a particular way. The personal representative initiates the process by filing a petition for the authority to distribute the proceeds. A notice of hearing is given to everyone entitled to damages. The notice will include the name and address of the personal representative and his or her attorney, as well as a statement about how the person being notified must present a damages claim to the personal representative on or before a particular date and that he or she will be barred from making a claim on the proceeds if no claim for damages is presented in the time frame described in the letter.
What if the motorcyclist leaves behind only a minor child or an incapacitated individual as a survivor? Generally, the court must first appoint a guardian ad litem or fiduciary, and notice needs to be given to that person.
The court will hold a hearing on the petition and order payment to be made of necessities such as medical, funeral, and burial expenses. Only after that will the court order a distribution to any of the people who suffered damages, including damages for the victim’s conscious pain and suffering.Retain a Fatal Motorcycle Accident Attorney in Traverse City, Grand Rapids, or Detroit
Motorcycle accidents can result in catastrophic injuries and sometimes death. After the death of a loved one, your last concern may be compensation, since no amount of money can make up for the loss. However, for many survivors, the death of a family member can cause serious financial trouble, such as difficulty paying bills or a mortgage, and the loss of an income to support a family. The Detroit, Grand Rapids, and Traverse City fatal motorcycle accident lawyers at Neumann Law Group may be able to help you recover the compensation you need. Our firm represents people in Petoskey, Warren, Holland, Midland, Muskegon, Saginaw, Wyoming, Kalamazoo, Lansing, Flint, and Ann Arbor, as well as communities throughout the Upper Peninsula. Contact us at 800-525-NEUMANN or via our online form to set up a free consultation with a wrongful death attorney. We also represent families in Massachusetts and California.