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.
Can You Sue an Employer for An Employee’s Negligence?
Under New Hampshire law, you may be able to sue an employer for an employee’s negligent conduct that led you or your loved one to suffer harm. This claim often arises in transportation accidents involving truck drivers, bus drivers, or pilots. New Hampshire plaintiffs can pursue a negligence lawsuit against the vehicle operator’s employer through a legal doctrine called vicarious liability, also known as respondeat superior. Under this theory of recovery, a plaintiff can hold an employer responsible if they can prove its negligent employee acted within the scope of employment at the time of the accident. Typically, employees act within the scope of employment when they work at their assigned workspace during their assigned shift and perform some activity that furthers their employer’s business, such as completing a scheduled delivery. If plaintiffs can prove these elements, they can pursue a negligence claim against the operator’s employer.
Have You Lost a Loved One in a New Hampshire Plane Accident?
If you have lost a loved one in a New Hampshire plane accident, contact Peter Thompson & Associates to understand your options. While filing a lawsuit may be the last thing on your mind, it may bring closure and help compensate for the financial consequences of your loved one’s accident. The dedicated and compassionate attorneys at our personal injury firm will work tirelessly to fight for the compensation you deserve. To learn more and schedule a free initial consultation, call our office today at 800-804-2004 or use our website.