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Wayne Personal Injury Law Blog

What types of damages can I seek in a wrongful death claim?

The loss of a loved one is never easy. Sometimes a loved one's death comes after a long illness or simply due to old age. However, sometimes a person's death is caused by the negligence of another, for example, due to an accident caused by a drunk driver. These deaths can be particularly difficult to bear, as they could have been prevented if the person responsible had not acted negligently. In such situations, the victim's loved ones may want to pursue a wrongful death claim through the New Jersey court system.

In general, the damages sought in a wrongful death claim are pecuniary in nature. Pecuniary means financial, and can include medical expenses, funeral costs, the lost prospect of an inheritance, the loss of financial support and the loss of services. The deceased individual's age, health, earning capacity and life expectancy may be considered when calculating pecuniary damages.

We help those injured in commercial vehicle accidents

It is easy to see why a collision in New Jersey involving a large commercial vehicle such as a semi-truck can cause catastrophic damage. After all, these trucks can weigh upwards of 80,000 pounds when fully loaded. Such a massive vehicle has the laws of physics on its side in an accident, and can easily total a standard automobile, injuring or killing those inside.

However, even smaller commercial vehicles such as delivery trucks, utility trucks and messenger service vehicles can cause significant damage when involved in a commercial vehicle accident. Therefore, it is up to drivers of commercial vehicles, large and small, to operate their vehicles in a safe manner. If they don't and cause a crash, those injured in the crash or the victim's survivors if the victim dies may want to pursue a personal injury claim.

Are fatal truck accidents becoming more common?

All motorists in New Jersey must drive with due care, but this is especially true for those driving semi-trucks. This is because, when it comes to truck accidents, a standard 2,000-pound automobile is simply no match for an 80,000-pound fully loaded semi-truck. And, unfortunately, these types of accidents seem to be becoming more common.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration reports that in 2016 there was a 2 percent uptick across the U.S. in fatal motor vehicle accidents involving large trucks and buses compared to 2015. In 2016, 4,440 large trucks and buses were involved in accidents that resulted in death. However, this number is 15 percent lower than it was in 2005, the peak year for deadly large truck and bus collisions, when 5,231 large trucks and buses were involved in deadly accidents.

Common reasons that can cause a motorcycle accident

There is something about riding a motorcycle that draws many people to travel via two wheels instead of four. Whether it be the freedom of not being trapped in a car or just having the wind hitting your face, the popularity of motorcycles continues to grow. Unfortunately, riding a motorcycle does not afford you the same protections a car or truck can provide when it comes to safety. In addition, a motorcycle navigating the roads with other vehicles can often be deadly.

If you are a motorcycle rider, the statistics about motorcycle safety can be grim. Motorcyclists are 27 more times as likely to die in a crash than occupants in a car and 5 times more likely to be injured. These numbers do not mean you should stop riding your motorcycle, but you should at least get a better understanding of what causes the numbers to be so high. By knowing the most common reasons that cause motorcycle accidents, it may allow you to be more attentive and safe while out riding.

Spinal cord injuries can cost millions over one's lifetime

Sometimes it is easy to take our good health for granted. However, accidents happen every day in New Jersey that could lead to serious injuries such as spinal cord injuries. Whether it is sustained in a car crash, falling on a slippery floor or due to a sporting accident, a spinal cord injury can affect a person's health and well-being for the rest of their life. According to data from the National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center, a person with a spinal cord injury can expect to incur a million dollars or more in expenses over the course of their lifetime.

The amount of lifetime expenses incurred depends on the type of spinal cord injury. If a person suffers high tetraplegia at age 25, they can expect to incur around $4.7 million in expenses or almost $2.6 million in expenses at age 50. A person with low tetraplegia at age 25 can expect to incur approximately $3.5 million in expenses or just over $2.1 million in expenses at age 50.

What damages may be sought in a wrongful death suit?

The death of a loved one can be one of the most painful experiences a person in New Jersey can have in their life. However, when a person's life is taken by the negligent or reckless actions of another, their survivors' grief can be especially difficult to cope with, given the fact that it is likely that their loved one's death need never have happened if the responsible party had upheld their duty of care. When this happens, the victim's survivors may wish to pursue compensation for their losses via a wrongful death lawsuit.

The damages sought through a wrongful death claim are generally pecuniary -- or financial -- in nature. This includes not just funeral expenses and medical expenses, but also loss of prospective inheritance, loss of parental guidance and loss of income, to name a few. However, when it comes to determining pecuniary damages, the decedent's age, health and character are factors the court may consider. For example, if the decedent was a working adult supporting several children, the compensation sought will reflect that.

Garden State motorists must practice motorcycle awareness

New Jersey motorists should be aware that motorcycle accidents can occur at any time of the year. Therefore, it is important that motorists understand how to safely share the road with motorcyclists. This is because motorcyclists are particularly vulnerable when they are involved in a crash.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, motorcyclists are 28 times more likely to lose their lives in a collision than those in a standard automobile, and they are five times more likely to suffer non-fatal injuries. From 2011 to 2015, New Jersey saw more than 12,000 accidents involving motorcyclists. In 2015 New Jersey saw 2,3000 accidents involving motorcyclists, 49 of which proved to be fatal.

Two New Jersey women die in dump truck accident

Dump trucks and other commercial vehicles are a common sight on highways. People expect that the operators of commercial trucks will take extra care to drive safely. Unfortunately, this is not always the case and devastating commercial vehicle accidents occur far too often.

For example, two women from New Jersey lost their lives when a dump truck overturned onto their vehicle in a neighboring state. The women, ages 50 and 59, died at the scene of the crash. In addition to these fatalities, two other individuals suffered critical injuries, and one other individual suffered moderate injuries. The operator of the dump truck did not suffer any injuries in the accident. The incident is being investigated by police, who are urging any witnesses to contact investigators.

Are motorcyclists safer with cell phone bans?

Many drivers fail to see motorcyclists on the road, which can leave riders vulnerable to serious injury. The risk becomes even greater if those drivers are using a cell phone behind the wheel.

Several states, including New Jersey, have imposed restrictions on cell phone use, but are those laws making a difference? A recent study shows that, for motorcyclists, the difference is a matter of life or death.

Severe TBIs could cause long-lasting damages

No one in New Jersey expects to be in car accident on any given day. However, motor vehicle accidents caused by negligent drivers happen every day, and can cause a person to suffer serious injuries, such as a traumatic brain injury (TBI).

A TBI takes place when a person experiences a serious hit or jolt to the head. TBIs can cause bruising of the brain, tear brain tissue and cause bleeding of the brain. A person who suffers a serious TBI can experience long-term complications or may even die because of the TBI.

New Jersey Certified Civil Trial Attorney

Why Is This Important? Roughly 3% Of Attorneys Achieve This Status.

A certified civil trial attorney is a designation granted by the New Jersey Supreme Court to attorneys who can demonstrate sufficient levels of experience, education, knowledge, and skill in civil trial practice. The Supreme Court, through its Board on Attorney Certification, designates only those lawyers who apply for certification and who are able to meet the standards set by the Board and approved by the Court.

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Our attorneys will personally meet with you to discuss what we can do to help you fight back against the insurance companies. To schedule your free, no-obligation consultation, please call our office at 973-968-4732 or send us an email. We handle personal injury claims on a contingent fee basis, which means there are no attorney's fees unless we successfully obtain compensation on your behalf.

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