Planes are one of the safest forms of travel. However, small private planes sometimes fly too high or get caught in inclement weather. Unfortunately, these complications can have tragic consequences.
A recent plane crash involving New Hampshire residents shows the devastating toll a plane crash can take on a victim’s loved ones. As two recent news articles reported, family members are grieving after a plane crash killed a New Hampshire mother and daughter, along with their nanny and the pilot. The accident occurred near Waynesboro, Virginia, when a private plane went unresponsive to attempts by U.S. fighter jets and civilian aircraft to make contact. Crash investigators believe the pilot and passengers went unresponsive due to hypoxia, a shortage of oxygen that occurs when a plane reaches too high an altitude.
Can You Recover Damages for the Loss of a Loved One?
If you have lost a loved one in a New Hampshire accident, you may be able to hold the at-fault party responsible in court by bringing a wrongful death claim. Under New Hampshire law, a person can file a wrongful death lawsuit if they have an interest in the deceased person’s estate. In practice, this often includes the deceased’s immediate family. A deceased victim’s loved one can sue a defendant so long as the victim would be able to sue had they survived. In essence, a wrongful death claim puts plaintiffs in the victim’s shoes as if the victim brought the claim. However, in addition to the usual damages available in a negligence suit, the deceased’s spouse can also pursue damages for loss of consortium. This term refers to the loss of the deceased’s companionship and comfort. When bringing a wrongful death claim, the plaintiff must show it is more likely than not that the defendant was at fault for the victim’s death.