In general, the executor or administrator of the deceased’s estate should bring a fatal accident claim. The executor or the person named as administrator can make a claim on behalf of the deceased’s dependants. However, there may be other persons entitled to bring a claim and we would advise anyone who thinks they may have a claim to speak to our legal advisers as soon as possible.
If it is possible to prove financial loss as a result of the person’s death, the following people may be able to bring claim:
- The spouse of the deceased;
- The civil partner of the deceased;
- Anyone who lived with the deceased at the time of death and who had been living with them for at least two years prior and was dependant on them financially;
- The parent of a child under 18;
- A child under the age of 18
An executor or administrator can also make a claim on behalf of themselves or an entitled person for what is known as the bereavement award. The following are entitled to the bereavement award:
- The surviving spouse of the deceased
- They are the married parents or single mother of a deceased child (who is under the age of 18).
When the person who died leaves a will, the executor of the will has the right to bring a claim on behalf of the deceased’s estate. As the claim progresses, it may be necessary to obtain a grant of probate. Your solicitor will advise you about this as needed.
If the person died intestate (without leaving a will), then the claimant may need to obtain letters of administration, which will allow the person named in them to pursue a claim.
Whether either a grant of probate or letters of administration are necessary in your case, your solicitor will help you obtain the required documentation.