Court orders NY state to pay sons for dad's fatal crash on I-81

Written by
Abraham Jaros
Updated on Saturday, Sep 2, 2023

When a loved one dies due to someone’s negligence, the family wants justice. New York City wrongful death lawyers know that no amount of money can bring back a loved one, but they also understand that the costs associated with the death can be exorbitant and overwhelming for a grieving family. A New York state court agreed with this sentiment in a recent wrongful death case that stems from a 2004 snowy car accident on I-81 in Syracuse. A 50-year-old man was driving on the highway when he began to lose control while crossing a bridge. There was a guardrail on the bridge but it did not operate as designed because of snow piled up against it. When the man’s car hit the pile of snow it went off the bridge and plummeted 50 feet to the ground below. The man’s two sons sued the state claiming that the New York Department of Transportation was negligent in its failure to remove the snow that piled up against the guardrail. The family argued it was the DOT’s negligence that caused the fatal accident. The judge agreed with the family and awarded the man’s estate $3.5 million. Most people are familiar with the concept of awarding compensation to cover funeral or medical expenses and other costs associated with a loved one’s wrongful death. These types of monetary damages are an important part of a family’s compensation. However, what is not always obvious to folks is that a family may be entitled to the lost income their loved one would have earned. This compensation is based on that person’s future earning potential had they not met an untimely death because of someone else’s negligent act. Source: The Wall Street Journal, “NY state ordered to pay $3.5M in motorist’s death," Oct. 10, 2012

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