Personal Injury Attorney Ben Schwartz answers a viewer’s question, what happens to my personal injury case if I die?
Hi, I am attorney Ben Schwartz,
Today we are going to answer a question from a viewer, the viewer is a friend of mine named Lucky Taylor. He is from Kent County, Delaware. Lucky this video is for you buddy.
So, basically Lucky asked me if I would do a video about this question, “What happens to my case if I die? Well, what happens to your personal injury case when you die, and does it end, is it over? Is the case, you know, not able to go forward or does the case continue?”
So, this is a really good question. It is not a question that I think we have ever done a video on before. It is not a question that I can remember anyone ever asking me before, but it is a great question. You know what happens if say I am rear-ended in a car accident. I am stopped at a red light and somebody is texting and driving going 65 miles an hour and smashes into the back of me, they injure me, but I survive. I go to the hospital, I go to the doctor, I’m in physical therapy maybe I have surgery and then a year later let’s say that I passed from some other reason, you know old age. I am feeling kind of old these days. Let’s say I pass; I die from some other reason other than the injuries from this car crash. Does my case continue, my case against the at-fault driver? The answer is yeah, I think it does at least if this happens, let’s say this happens in Delaware I can tell you that there is a law called Title 10 Delaware Code Section 3704, personal injury actions. It says no action, which means an action is a civil lawsuit, no action brought to recover damages for injuries to the person by negligence or default shall abate. That means no civil lawsuit shall go away by reason of the death of the plaintiff, but the personal representatives of the deceased may be substituted as the plaintiff and prosecute the suit to final judgment and satisfaction. That means if you are a plaintiff in a Delaware personal injury case and you die, your personal representative, someone’s going to go open an estate for you, they are going to be your representative and they are going to be able to continue with your personal injury lawsuit even though you are no longer on God’s green earth.
Lucky, I think it is a great question. If you are watching this video and you have a question for me, feel free to leave your question in the comments to this video or you can send me an email. Even though I am giving the answer from the perspective of whether it is a Delaware case, we handle cases in personal injury cases in a bunch of different states, Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey we have attorneys, that handle cases in all four states. So if you have a question about your state’s law or even the law of a state outside that geographic area, we can either get you an answer to your question or we can route you to an attorney who may be able to help.
Thanks for watching, I am attorney Ben Schwartz!