What Happened: As reported by the news website carolinalive.com, a two-car crash in Florence County, South Carolina (SC), just outside of Johnsonville, left one driver dead. The victim was tragically pronounced dead at the scene of the crash; he was reported as being one of the drivers of the two vehicles involved. The crash occurred on Highway 378 (East Myrtle Beach Highway); at the time of this posting, South Carolina’s Highway Patrol was still investigating the accident.
The accident occurred here, on East Myrtle Beach Highway, or Highway 378:
Our deepest condolences go out to the family of the deceased---losing a loved one in a car accident is always tragic and always shocking, and we have seen many tragedies in our capacity as injury laywers. While the full details of the incident are not yet available, it may be that the family of the deceased driver has grounds to file a wrongful death claim against the other driver.
Wrongful death, as defined by Justia.com, is when “a person or entity negligently or intentionally causes the death of another person.” A wrongful death claim is handled in civil claims court, instead of criminal court, and can be based on manslaughter, assault or murder. In the case of car accidents, for example, a wrongful death claim could be filed if a driver caused an accident while under the influence of alcohol or drugs, and the accident resulted in the death of another driver, passenger or pedestrian; the victim’s loved ones could then file the claim.
If you have suffered the tragic loss of a loved one, our sympathies are with you; we know how painful the process is. We have extensive experience with these matters; our personal injury lawyers have written an article explaining the fundamentals of wrongful death claims, and you can click here to read it. Note that the claims process may differ from state to state, but it generally follows a certain protocol regardless of where one lives. You can also read this article explaining the types of damages one may sue for in Carolina wrongful death cases.
You might also want to read this article that explains how state sovereign immunity interacts with wrongful death claims; a claim brought against a government entity can encounter significant difficulties due to various protections afforded local, state and federal governments.