What happens when an accident causes fatal injuries in Iowa?

Iowa City, IA – Certain serious accidents result in fatalities to one or more of the people involved. From a legal standpoint, this creates a special situation covered by the state’s wrongful death law. Injury lawsuits are usually brought by the person who was the victim in the accident with the assistance of their lawyer to receive compensation to cover their costs. However, if the victim has died in the accident, this is not possible. All states have laws that account for this possibility by allowing others to stand in the victim’s place and take legal action. 

Who can bring a wrongful death case?

A lawsuit that is brought on behalf of a deceased person is brought by the administrator of the person’s estate or certain family members. The compensation will go to the person’s spouse, children, or other extended biological relatives such as parents of siblings if the person was not married or did not have children. Immediate family members receive priority under these laws. 

Statute of limitations

All wrongful death cases in Iowa have a time limit to take formal legal action. This is called a statute of limitations. Once the time limit has passed, any lawsuits filed related to the fatal accident will be dismissed and the victim cannot receive any compensation. In the state of Iowa, the time limit to bring a wrongful death case is two years from the time that the victim died. This means it is important for the family to try to get legal help and bring the case as soon as realistically possible.  

Damages in a lawsuit related to a fatal accident

Damages are the amount that must be paid to the victim for losses. The family can receive compensation related to any final medical treatment that the victim needed between the accident and the time of death. It is also possible that they will receive non-economic compensation for emotional pain and suffering caused by their loss. Wrongful death cases are also unique in terms of allowing compensation for funeral and burial expenses. 

Like other personal injury lawsuits, a wrongful death case will likely result in a settlement that pays out damages rather than requiring a full trial in court. This can save time and money, and the victim’s family will receive most or all of the compensation that they require through the terms of the settlement. 

Information from a local attorney in Iowa

Eells and Tronvold Law Offices is a firm that focuses on helping injured clients throughout the state of Iowa. People who need to speak with a lawyer can contact the firm and schedule a meeting to receive legal advice. 

Firm contact info:

Eells and Tronvold Law Offices

1921 51st Street NE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52402-2400



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