Benefits available to Fatal Accident Victim’s Families

Statistics revealed by the 2015 Transport Canada’s National Collision database show that 945 people were killed in traffic accidents while a total of 54,430 were injured across the country.  At the time those statistics were published, the estimated total cost of these accidents was approximately $11 billion.  Whether it involves a defective product, motor vehicle, or a slip and fall accident, losing a loved one can devastate a family emotionally and financially.

According to Ontario’s Family Law Act, Section 61(2), family members may be entitled to compensation when a loved one has been killed or seriously injured in an accident and can sue for damages.  The law applies to residents of Barrie, Orillia, Stouffville, and any other city in Ontario Province.  There are two avenues for filing a claim for benefits when a loved one is killed in an accident.  You can either file with your own insurance company or the insurer of the responsible party.

Unfortunately, most insurance companies are looking out for their own interests and not yours.  They will typically low-ball a settlement offer in order to keep expenses to a minimum.  On the other hand, a personal injury lawyer will have the experience and expertise to deal with the insurance companies in order to protect an injury victim’s family’s best interests.  They know how to litigate or negotiate for the best settlement possible in these situations.

Additionally, the right personal injury lawyer will serve as a buffer for the victim’s families during this difficult, emotional time.  When family members sue for damages under Ontario’s Family Law Act, they could recover:

·         Actual benefits expenses incurred for the deceased or injured individual

·         Actual reasonably incurred funeral expenses (deceased individual)

·         Compensation the individual may have been entitled to for their injuries had they survived (e.g. loss of care, companionship, and consortium)

·         Housekeeping, nursing, and other related services that the claimant incurred for the injured individual

·         Travel expense allowances that were incurred when visiting the injured person while they were undergoing medical care and recovery in a Barrie, Orillia, or Stouffville clinic or hospital

Keep in mind that death benefits were intended to help family members recover funeral expenses and loss of income as well.  Furthermore, family members could recover other expenses such as home maintenance and lawn care.  Basically, these benefits are meant to provide financial stability to the victim’s family members.

It goes without saying that this is one of the more complex areas of family law.  The process of filing for death benefits or personal injury claim can be confusing and difficult to understand.  If you have recently lost a loved one in an accident or they have been permanently disabled by their injuries, you should consult with a personal injury lawyer in Ontario, immediately to ensure your rights are protected under the Family Law Act. they will be able to handle your case to the best of their abilities.