On an urban street in Hampton Roads, the driver of a van was killed when he was rear-ended by a truck. The speed limit for the road he was driving on was 35 mph but the truck driver’s speedometer needle was stuck at 45 mph after the crash. The husband who was killed was ejected from his vehicle into the road and died at the accident scene.
In the wake of the death, the family of the van driver hired Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers to represent them in a wrongful death lawsuit against the driver of the truck and the company that employed him. In a wrongful death lawsuit, a family can claim for a range of grief losses and economic harms such as funeral expenses, medical expenses to treat the person before death, the future income of the deceased, and financial contributions in the future that family members were deprived of due to a death. The dead man left behind a widow and three children whose ages ranged from seven to twelve.
Attorneys, John Cooper and Jim Hurley, discovered alarming medical evidence related to the truck driver who caused the accident. He lacked a valid CDL medical certificate at the time of the crash and potentially suffered from sleep apnea, a disease that can make a driver drowsy behind the wheel. During the course of the case, our legal team also uncovered hours of service violations by the truck driver who was moonlighting at a second job in the weeks before the wreck. The federal hours of service regulations are intended to protect other drivers from fatigued truckers. We hired experts in commercial truck driving to prove the safety rule violations.
Insurance lawyers acting for the delivery company attempted to present a contributory negligence argument. They claimed the man whose family we represented made a right hand turn from the left lane in front of the truck before the impact. This claim was likely untrue, but our person was dead and could not explain what he did. The insurance company lawyers also tried to say that the cause of the wreck was our driver having alcohol in his system.
John Cooper and Jim Hurley argued that alcohol was not the cause of the accident in which the husband was rear-ended. The physical evidence, including marks in the road, showed the delivery driver was the real cause of the accident.
The case was resolved without trial. The claim was settled for $1.5 million which was a compromise agreed to because of the risks to both sides if the case was tried. Our client, the wife of the man who died, was able to pay off the family home and secure the financial future of her sons.