A fatal car accident can forever alter the lives of those who are left behind to mourn the loss of loved ones. Not only must they learn how to live without a beloved relative who has unexpectedly died in a car accident, but they are often also left struggling to pay any of the final expenses that may be associated with that loss. This is one reason why some surviving relatives choose to file a wrongful death lawsuit after a fatal California car crash.
One California family lost both their 22-year-old daughter and their 6-year-old grandson in a car accident that occurred in 2012. Their daughter had just obtained her degree in social welfare a mere week before the fatal collision. She died instantly in the car wreck, but her 6-year-old son survived for a week before tragically succumbing to his wounds.
The crash happened while the two were traveling with the woman's 25-year-old boyfriend. What makes this crash seem particularly senseless is the fact that he was driving drunk at the time. California police officials tested his blood-alcohol content at twice the legal limit over two hours after the actual crash. This means that his alcohol level was likely even higher when the collision occurred.
This may be one of the reasons that the man recently pleaded no contest in the criminal case related to this fatal car accident. He had been charged with committing two counts of gross vehicular manslaughter while under the influence of alcohol and faces as much as 12 years in a California prison. A guilty or no contest plea does not preclude the family from pursuing a separate civil lawsuit. Sometimes, surviving relatives choose to bring a wrongful death action in order to gain further justice for a loved one who had been killed in a drunk driving crash.
Source: ktvu.com, "Berkeley man pleads no contest to crash that killed two," May 15, 2013