Identifying negligence after fatal accident can be enormously frustrating for loved ones coping with the loss. To begin with, the negligent party will often be hesitant or refuse to take responsibility for actions or inaction that contributed to a death, which can make it difficult to get full, accurate answers. It can also be a challenge to determine who is actually liable for the conditions that lead to a fatal accident.
For example, after an accident on a dangerous roadway, you might not know who is responsible for injuries suffered in an accident because you can be unsure of who does what when it comes to keeping these areas safe.
Identifying liability in these cases can be difficult, particularly because there are laws of which you may be unaware, including the Georgia Tort Claims Act that protects the state government from being sued. Oftentimes, public areas like roads and walkways are maintained by state agencies, so you might not be sure of what, if any, legal options you have.
However, you should know that in many cases, there are exceptions that allow victims of accidents and their families to file a lawsuit against state government agencies, as long as certain criteria are met.
But before you decide to try and sue the government, you must first confirm that it is the appropriate party to hold accountable. In some cases, any negligence that occurred can fall on the shoulders of other individuals or third parties like product manufacturers. For instance, if someone is killed by a train, the negligent party could be a state agency who failed to maintain safe premises or it could be the train operator or manufacturer of defective crossing signs.
Unraveling the details of an accident to establish liability for a fatal accident can be much more complex than you expect. Because of this, it can be critical that you work with an attorney who is familiar with state laws, negligence claims and the legal system and can guide you through the complicated process of holding the liable party accountable for wrongful death.