Oklahoma City Wrongful Death Lawyers Fight for the Families of Fatal Accident Victims
Caring counsel for spouses, children, and families when a car, truck, or motorcycle accident takes a life
More than 37,000 people died in car accidents in 2016, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. In 2016, there were 624 fatal crashes in Oklahoma in which 683 people died. Over 2/3 of those who died in Oklahoma car crashes rode in cars, SUVs, or pickup trucks. Nearly one in six fatalities were caused by motorcycle crashes. There’s simply no excuse for these accidents. Drivers who fail to obey traffic laws and businesses that fail to put safety first should be held accountable for these tragic wrongs.
At Cunningham & Mears we understand how devastating it is to lose a loved one. One day a relative is providing for his/her family, attending school, enjoying kids and grandchildren – and the next moment they’re gone – forever. Our Oklahoma City lawyers appreciate your pain. We answer your questions. We know the suffering and hardships the loss of a loved one brings. That is why we work aggressively to hold wrongdoers accountable for your loss.
Why fatal auto accidents happen
Almost everyone gets into a fender-bender at some point. But think about that expression: “fender bender.” Even the most minor accidents, it seems, are enough to bend metal. So it is no wonder that more serious accidents often lead to more serious injuries. In the most tragic of circumstances, those collisions can lead to the death of a loved one.
Fatal crashes are often the result of:
- Driver intoxication. The numbers don’t lie. According to the IIHS, over half of the deaths in Oklahoma fatal auto accidents were due to driver intoxication. Drunk drivers are a double danger. Not only can’t they control their vehicles, other drivers can’t drive defensively because they have no clue what the intoxicated driver will do.
- Distracted driving. We hold drivers accountable if they were texting while driving, talking on a cell phone, adjusting the radio, eating, or doing anything that took their hands off the steering while and their eyes off the road.
- Failing to obey the traffic laws. Speeding is a leading cause of traffic accidents. Other traffic violations that can kill include improper passing, going through red lights and traffic lights, not merging properly, and driving too fast for conditions
- Driving fatigue. When trucking companies push their drivers to place sleep and rest after profit, death can occur. Car drivers who think coffee is a substitute for sleep are putting other drivers in danger. There are federal rules that regulate how much sleep truck drivers need. There are common-sense rules that determine when all drivers should get off the road.
- Faulty auto parts. Defective steering mechanisms, fuel lines, and brakes put every life in danger. Cars with improper treads and windshield wipers that are inoperable should never be on the road. Motorcycles with gears that don’t shift properly can kill drivers and passengers in an instant.
Motorcycle riders and pedestrians are at a greater risk of dying in a crash
Motorcycle crashes are especially deadly because the riders have no real protection. Large trucks kill because they are so much bigger and heavier than the cars, SUVs, and bikes they run into. A pedestrian who is struck by any vehicle runs a high risk of dying for the very same reasons.
Your rights when a loved one dies in an auto crash
We work with financial professionals, psychologists, and other experts to fully evaluate your wrongful death claim. Our Oklahoma City lawyers understand that no financial sum can ever compensate you for your loss. Our goal is to make sure that, once liability is established, that you get all the financial compensation Oklahoma law allows.
Wrongful does not mean criminal. If the defendant was negligent or failed to perform a duty owed to the decedent, that is the enough to bring a claim. Wrongful death lawsuits are civil lawsuits.
In fatal auto crashes, once fault or responsibility is proven:
- Spouses, children, and the parents of minors are entitled to wrongful death benefits
- Damages can be assessed. The damage award should include:
- The decedent’s medical bills
- The decedent’s funeral and burial costs
- Any pain and suffering endured by the decedent before he/she died
- The loss of income the decedent would have reasonably earned if the death had not occurred
- The loss of companionship, support, and guidance the decedent would have given to the relatives
- The emotional pain and suffering of the relative at the loss of the a loved one
- Punitive damages can be awarded if the wrongdoer acted recklessly or with wanton disregard for the safety of others
Our caring Oklahoma City vehicle accident lawyers are ready to guide you through this extremely difficult time
At Cunningham & Mears, we understand how upsetting it is to speak to lawyers when all you want to do is mourn the loss of your loved one. We guide you through each phase of the litigation process while balancing your need to mourn your loved and to respect his/her wishes for spouses, children, and parents. Our lawyers help families move forward while honoring the past. In many wrongful death cases, we can negotiate strong settlements. If your case must go to trial, our advocates help you get the full compensation you deserve.