Study Shows Ride Sharing Increases Fatal Car Accidents – What to Do When A Loved One Dies

By Greg Kohn

A recent article in Business Insider cites an unpublished study that claims fatal car accidents increase after rideshare services are launched in a city. The results of the study, conducted by researchers from Rice University and the University of Chicago, have been challenged by Lyft and Uber as “deeply flawed.” However, there is no disputing that ridesharing has its share of fatal car accidents. Our New Jersey car accident attorneys discuss what you can do when a loved one dies in a rideshare accident.

Fatalities in Car Accidents Before and After Ridesharing

Researchers examined government data related to traffic fatalities before and after ridesharing services were introduced into several cities. The data shows that fatalities from traffic accidents were at their lowest number in 2010 since 1949. The researchers state in the paper that the “arrival of ridesharing is associated with an increase of 2-3% in the number of motor vehicle fatalities and fatal accidents.” Researchers admit that it may be too soon to tell if the trend they identify is a short-term adjustment to the increase in traffic or a long-term pattern.

What Should Family Members Do When a Loved One Dies in a Traffic Accident?

The consequences for a wrongful act by a negligent or careless party can have numerous long-term effects for a family. The family members experience an emotional hardship as they process the sudden loss of their loved one. However, the family may also experience a financial hardship as the death of a primary wage-earner for the family threatens the family’s financial security.
Family members can seek compensation from the party or parties responsible for the death of their loved one under New Jersey’s wrongful death laws. Although a monetary award cannot undo the tragic loss of a family member, it can help to prevent a lasting financial burden for the family. A wrongful death lawsuit also helps the family seek justice for themselves and their loved one.
If your loved one has died in a motor vehicle accident, three important steps to take include:

1. Gather Important Documents Necessary for a Claim
An attorney can help you gather the documents necessary for filing a wrongful death claim. However, you can begin gathering some information as you prepare to meet with a New Jersey personal injury attorney. Examples of important documents needed for a claim include the death certificate, the coroner’s report, and accident reports prepared by police officers or other government agencies.

2. Open a Probate Estate
You need to work with the probate court to open a probate estate so that a personal representative can be appointed to administer the estate. If you are unsure how to open a probate estate, a probate attorney can provide advice and guidance.

3. Consult with a New Jersey Personal Injury Attorney
After the unexpected loss of a loved one, a New Jersey personal injury attorney can help the family evaluate the merits of a wrongful death lawsuit. Because you have a limited time to file a wrongful death claim, it is best to consult a New Jersey personal injury attorney as soon as possible to discuss filing a wrongful death lawsuit. Schedule a consultation with our New Jersey car accident lawyers today. Our attorneys provide continued guidance and support as you seek to hold the person responsible for the death of your family member accountable for the party’s negligent acts.

About the Author
Greg Kohn is a partner at Nagel Rice and specializes in complex civil litigation cases, including professional malpractice, personal injury, class actions, wrongful death, products liability, and commercial litigation.  He has extensive experience representing clients in both state and federal court. Greg has tried many jury trials to verdict and has recovered over $50 million in settlements and verdicts in all types of personal injury matters including automobile accidents, wrongful death cases, slip and falls, and other catastrophic injury cases. Greg also handles medical malpractice cases, involving misdiagnoses, wrongful birth, and delayed cancer diagnosis. If you have questions regarding this article, you can contact Greg here.