The Essential Fatal Accident Claims Guide

Last updated 30th June 2022. By Stephen Anderson. If your loved one has suffered a fatal accident due to third-party negligence, you may be able to claim compensation. This fatal accident claims guide answers questions such as, “who can bring a fatal claim?” and “what can you claim under the Fatal Accidents Act 1976?” It will also show the bereavement damages you may be able to claim and the nature of making dependency claims. 

Fatal accident claims guide

Fatal accident claims guide

Our advisors offer free legal advice, are available 24/7 and tell you if you’re able to receive compensation. Additionally, they can also provide you with an estimate. You can also be put through to our panel of specialised fatal injury solicitors who could help you make a successful claim. 

Please remember that you’re under no obligation to use our services should you contact us. However, you can contact us using the following details if you’d like to find out more. 

  • Call us on 0800 408 7825
  • Contact us using our website.
  • Please write to us using the Chat Window on your screen

Select A Section

  1. Our Essential Fatal Accident Claims Guide
  2. Who Can Bring A Fatal Accident Claim?
  3. Does The 3 Year Limitation Period Apply?
  4. What Can You Claim Under The Fatal Accidents Act?
  5. Get Help From A Fatal Accident Claims Solicitor

Our Essential Fatal Accident Claims Guide

This fatal accident claims guide will explain the ways you may be able to receive compensation through wrongful death claims if a loved one passed away because of third-party negligence. 

Fatal accident compensation claims revolve around proving that a breach of duty of care led to someone passing away. Certain third parties have a duty of care they are legally obligated to uphold. Therefore, if their actions don’t adhere to this and your loved one suffered a fatal injury because of these actions, you may be able to claim. 

Some of the parties you may be able to claim against include:

  • Your loved one’s employer if they passed away because of an accident at work
  • The occupier of a public place if their negligence led to your loved one passing away
  • The negligent road user if a road traffic accident led to your loved one dying
  • The relevant organisation (for example, an NHS Trust or a private healthcare facility) if they died as a result of medical negligence.

Please get in touch with us if you’d like to know more at a time that works for you. Our friendly, helpful advisors are available 24/7, can answer any questions you have about the claims process and quickly assess if you can claim. You can contact them with the above details.

What Is The Fatal Accidents Act 1976?

The Fatal Accidents Act 1976 (FAA) outlines the different damages that dependants of the deceased are able to make. There are a few different heads of losses under this act, and they are: 

  • Funeral expenses
  • Loss of financial dependency
  • A bereavement award

What Is The Law Reform (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1934?

The Law Reform (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1934 (LRMPA) describes the rights of the deceased person’s estate when claiming on behalf of the deceased. The estate can claim: 

  • General damages for the deceased person’s loss of amenity and their pain and suffering caused between the accident and their death. 
  • Special damages (financial losses) the deceased suffered between the date of the accident and their death.
  • A dependency claim on behalf of anyone financially dependent on the deceased when they passed.  
  • Funeral expenses. 

In many cases, the estate of the deceased will claim compensation for dependants, meaning that the claim covers both of the relevant Acts. However, if no claim has been made by the estate after 6 months, the dependants can pursue their own claim.

Read on in our fatal accident claims guide to find out who can bring forward a claim under the Fatal Accident Act. Otherwise, call our team today for more information.

Who Can Bring A Fatal Accident Claim?

This section of the fatal accident claims guide will answer, “who can claim under the Fatal Accidents Act 1976?” The legislation outlines who can be classed as a dependant. 

A dependant can be: 

  • A spouse or ex-spouse
  • The civil partner or ex-civil partner
  • Any person, spouse or civil partner who had been living with them for at least two years prior to their death. 
  • Parents or other ascendants of the deceased. 
  • Any person who has acted as a parent to the deceased. 
  • A child or any descendant of the deceased. This includes any person treated as a child of the family due to marriage or civil partnership. 
  • Any brother, sister, aunt or uncle of the deceased. 

The bereavement award that is outlined in this Act can only be claimed by:

  • A spouse of the deceased
  • Someone who was living with the deceased for 2 years before their death as husband and wife
  • The deceased’s parents if they were an unmarried minor.

Does The 3 Year Limitation Period Apply?  

In England and Wales, the Limitation Act 1980 clarifies the time limits you have to make any personal injury claim. This includes wrongful death claims. 

When Does The 3 Year Limitation Period Apply? 

In the next two sections, this fatal accident claims guide will outline the different timescales for claiming compensation. In most instances, you need to begin claims proceedings within three years of the accident or three years from the date you became aware that the death was caused by negligence. 

Therefore, in a standard case, if you attempt to claim compensation outside of this three-year period, you will most likely not be successful. However, there can be exceptions to this rule. 

If you have any questions about claiming for wrongful death that this fatal accident claims guide doesn’t answer, please don’t hesitate to get in touch. Our team are helpful and available 24/7. They offer free legal advice and can even provide you with a compensation estimate over the phone. Contact them using the above details.  

Compensation Payouts In Fatal Accident Claims

You may be wondering how much compensation for a fatal accident you could potentially receive if you are able to make a claim. In this section of our fatal accident claims guide, we’ve included a table of compensation brackets which can provide some indication on potential compensation payouts for different fatal injuries.

Work from the Judicial College can give you a better idea of the amount you could receive for the deceased’s pain and suffering. The Judicial College have created compensation brackets by analysing previous payouts and comparing them to the nature of the fatal injury. Please see a list of injuries and their respective compensation brackets below. 

Injury TypeBracket Compensation AwardAdditional Details
Fatality with add on claimsUp to and over £550,000 This award may include compensation for the pain and suffering of the deceased as well as losses suffered by dependents. For example, loss of income of the deceased might be included.
Quadraplegia£324,600 to
£403,990
Different factors will be considered to determine the bracket of compensation that will be awarded. For instance, age and level of pain.
Paraplegia£219,070 to
£284,260
Different factors will be considered to determine the bracket of compensation that will be awarded. These factors might include the extent of any pain as well as any psychological effects.
Psychiatric Damage£54,830 to £115,730(a) Severe cases that see the injured person experiencing significant issues with various aspects of their life. They will also have a poor prognosis.
Reactive Psychiatric Disorder£59,860 to £100,670(a) Severe cases will see all aspects of the injured person’s life badly affected.

Please remember that we cannot guarantee you’ll receive these compensation amounts for the injuries listed above. This is because the compensation amount for any successful case is calculated on a case-by-case basis. 

What Can Be Claimed?

This section of the fatal accident claims guide will clarify the other types of compensation you may be able to receive. 

Funeral Expenses

As part of claiming compensation for wrongful death, you may receive compensation to cover the funeral costs. This can be claimed through either the LRMPA or the FAA; however, funeral costs will not be double-paid.

As well as the actual cost of a funeral, you may be able to claim back the cost of a wake, a gravestone or special religious or cultural ceremonies. 

As with any claim involving financial losses, you need to supply evidence to show the value of the loss. You can do this by providing receipts, invoices or bank statements.

Bereavement Awards

You could receive the bereavement award of £15,120. This is a set amount designed to compensate you for the damages caused by the loss. If there is more than one person looking to claim a bereavement 

Furthermore, you could also receive compensation due to having a financial dependency on the deceased person. For example, you may be unable to cover your mortgage payments because you’re no longer receiving your spouse’s income. 

Get Help From A Fatal Accident Claims Solicitor

The advantages of using a No Win No Fee solicitor from our panel include:

  • Only paying their legal fees if your claim is successful. They will take a legally capped percentage of your compensation. 
  • Not paying any of their legal fees upfront or during the claims process. 

If you still have questions after reading this fatal accident claims guide, please contact our advisors for free legal advice. They’re available 24/7 and can tell you in one phone call if you’re eligible to claim. Additionally, they can also put you through a No Win No Fee fatal accident solicitor from our panel who could help you receive compensation. 

  • Call us on 0800 408 7825
  • Contact us through our website.
  • Please write to us using the Chat Window on your screen

Related Fatal Accident Claims Guides

If you have more queries or would like support after a loved one’s death, please refer to the links below. 

Visit the NHS website to know more about getting support for grief after bereavement or loss. 

The Department for Transport provides road accident and safety statistics for Great Britain. 

The Government also provides more guidance about bereavement help and support, which you can find on their website. 

Would you like to know more about making trauma compensation claims? If so, please visit this article on our website. 

If you would like to read more about how to make fractured skull injury claims, please read this article. 

Please read this guide to see if you can claim for accidents at work

We hope you’ve found this fatal accident claims guide helpful. If you have more questions or queries, don’t hesitate to contact our advisors for free legal advice at a time that works for you using the details above. 

Guide by AU

Publisher ET