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Florida Passenger Dies in I-95 Crash

By Orlando Personal Injury Attorney on January 25, 2017

A Florida woman was killed over the weekend while traveling on Interstate 95. The victim, who was a passenger in the car, died when the Ford Expedition she was riding in hit a wire guardrail, drove into an embankment and, becoming airborne, crashed into a tree. The vehicle was traveling northbound on Interstate 95 in mid-afternoon when, according to police reports, it left the right lane. The driver is reported to have suffered from minor injuries.

Although little is known as to the cause of the crash or the relationship between the driver and the deceased passenger, the surviving family of the passenger could have the legal right to seek compensation for their loss. Such a legal action in Florida is called a wrongful death suit.

A wrongful death claim can be brought when the negligence or wrongful act of party (in this case, the driver) causes the death of another person (i.e., the passenger). Florida’s wrongful death statute is found in Florida Statutes section 678.18. According to this statute, “when a person’s death is caused by the wrongful act, negligence, default, or breach of contract of another person or some other entity, the estate of the deceased person may bring a civil lawsuit in Florida’s courts seeking a legal remedy for that death and the losses stemming from it”.

Florida law is somewhat unique in that it requires the estate of the deceased to file the lawsuit. However, one should not be confused by this requirement, as the personal representative of the estate files the suit on behalf of any surviving family members. That being said, Florida law does limit who qualifies as a ‘family member’ to:

  1. The deceased’s spouse, children and parents
  2. Any blood relative or adoptive sibling who is partly or wholly dependent on the decedent for support and/or services

Thus, the key to being able to file a wrongful death suit is to demonstrate that one was dependent on the deceased for income or some other form of support.

As Florida wrongful death claims are complex, it is highly advised that you seek the advice of an experienced Florida personal injury attorney. To learn more, contact the Law Offices of James O. Cunningham, P.A. today and schedule your free initial consultation.

James O. Cunningham

Since 1977, personal injury lawyer James Cunningham has provided effective legal advocacy to people who are injured through the negligent actions of another person or entity throughout the Central Florida area. He fights to obtain recoveries for his clients’ physical and emotional pain and suffering and pursues his clients’ personal injury cases with a commitment to excellence and impeccable preparation.

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Florida Personal Injury Office Locations

Main Office

Orlando Personal Injury Office:
3117 Edgewater Dr
Orlando, FL 32804
Phone: 407-425-2000
Toll Free: 877-FL-INJURY
Fax: 407-843-8274

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Lake Mary, FL 32746
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Kissimmee, FL 34741
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1301 Beville Rd., Suite 8
Daytona Beach, FL 32119
Phone: 386-243-4994

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465 Summerhaven Drive, Suite C
DeBary, FL 32713
Phone: 386-320-3911

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Downtown Executive Center
120 South Woodland Blvd.
Deland, FL 32720
Phone: 386-206-1264

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Inverness, FL 34453
Phone: 352-205-4341

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Lakeland Office:
1102 S. Florida Ave., Suite 104
Lakeland, FL 33803
Phone: 863-968-7551

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325 Avenue A, N.W.
Winter Haven, FL 33881
Phone: 863-968-7173

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Tampa, FL 33606
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Fruitland Park, FL 34731
Phone: 352-419-0825

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Mt. Dora Office:
602 East 5th Ave.
Mt. Dora, FL 32757
Phone: 352-436-4696

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900 W. Highway 50
Clermont, FL 34711
Phone: 352-503-4674

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Titusville Office:
506 S. Palm Ave.
Titusville, FL 32780
Phone: 321-222-7300

Cocoa Office:
96 Willard Street
Suite 206,
Cocoa, FL 32922
Phone: 321-757-1373