Personal injury law covers everything from car accidents to slips and falls. When a person is injured by the actions of another, he or she often must go through medical treatment. The injury often means that the victim is forced to miss work and suffer from a loss of income. The mental health of the injured party may also be affected. Those affected by personal injury file lawsuits in an attempt to recover some of the losses incurred by the injury. This process has been in place for many centuries as a means to provide compensation to those who have been wrongfully injured.

car accident resulting in accidental death

There is no greater loss than to lose a loved one suddenly from another person’s negligence or recklessness. Most of the time, a person who harms another by accident was not behaving with malicious intent, but the loss is there just the same. Anyone who has been through the sudden death of a loved one will understand the shock and the gripping pain such a loss brings.

Wrongful death can occur in a wide variety of ways. Below is a list of some of the most common.


Machinery such as saws and mixing vats pose unique risks to those in their vicinity. In 2009, 29-year-old Vincent Smith was standing on a platform at Cocoa Services in New Jersey while loading chunks of raw chocolate into a melting vat nine feet below. No one is certain how he fell, but he somehow slipped and landed in the vat that was mixing the chocolate. Smith was struck in the head by one of the paddles and was killed instantly. His body was recovered from the eight-foot vat by firefighters.

Medical Malpractice

Medical malpractice claims the lives of up to 500 people every year. Every time a person undergoes surgery, there is a risk that they may not come out alive. Even the best doctor on earth cannot guarantee that you will make it safely through surgery. You could also be injured by your medical practitioner if you are given the wrong type of medication or an overdose. Always pick a doctor that you trust to help you with your health, and be sure to do your research.


While small children are especially at risk of drowning, adults often drown as well. Many adults do not know how to swim and should take special precautions when around bodies of water. Children can drown in as little as one inch of water. Young children should wear life jackets and flotation devices when in a pool.

Poison Gas

Poison gas can be anything from fuel to natural gas to propane to kerosene. Gas leaks in apartment buildings can be deadly for the inhabitants while also posing an extreme fire hazard.

Motor Vehicle Accidents

Motor vehicle accidents claim the lives of more than 43,000 per year. In fact, they are the leading annual cause of accidental death. Even if you are a careful driver, you could still be the victim of another person’s recklessness or negligence.


Falls are another very common cause of accidental death with almost 15,000 deaths yearly. Fatal falls can occur from falling down a flight of stairs, plunging down a cliff while hiking or a misstep on a ladder. If the fall could have been prevented, you may be entitled to some form of compensation.

The wrongful death lawyers at Jack Bernstein, Injury Attorneys fully understand the deep loss felt over a wrongful death. Our lawyers have been fighting for the rights of families who have unjustly lost loved ones for over 36 years. We have observed how families lay aside their differences and come together to grieve and to heal. Each time we witness this, we are motivated to ensure that all our clients are able to focus on the healing process. Let us take care of all the paperwork and the legal documentation. No grieving family member should have to handle the legalities, the technical documents and the highly-skilled professionals that inevitably crop up when handling a wrongful death case. In many instances, these professionals will be working against the grieving family as they seek to limit the liability of their clients.

Our team will efficiently handle all of these pressures and stresses for our client families. We will directly speak with any insurance companies who are involved in the aftermath of a sudden death case. To help protect the privacy and the space of our clients, we let everyone involved know that they need to send any messages or communication for the family members through us. We will do whatever is necessary to ensure that they claim moves forward smoothly and will negotiate a fair settlement with the opposing side. If a fair settlement is impossible, we will not hesitate to file a lawsuit and take the case all the way through a trial to ensure that you get the compensation that you deserve.

ambulance in an accidental death

If you have lost a family member to sudden death over the faulty actions of another person, it is of paramount importance that you have the opportunity to spend time with other grieving friends and family members. To help protect this precious time, we stand ready to help you handle all the legal proceedings.

When contact our firm, we will offer you an initial consultation at no charge. Let the law offices of Jack Bernstein, Injury Attorneys help you obtain the help and compensation you deserve during this difficult time in your life.

Accidental death is both a legal concept and a type of insurance. When a tragic accident occurs, you need to know what resources are available to help your family. Get answers to your FAQs from our Tampa accidental death lawyers at Jack Bernstein, Injury Attorneys.

What Is Accidental Death?

Accidental death is when a death occurs because of an unnatural cause. It is when someone passes away in a way that is not predictable, not expected and unplanned. Deaths due to natural causes are not an accidental death, but most other kinds of deaths, such as car accidents, falls, defective products, malfunctioning machinery and the like, are included as an accidental death. Compensation may be available to survivors through an insurance policy or an accidental death lawsuit.

What Is Accidental Death Insurance?

Accidental death insurance pays a claim when someone loses their life as a result of an accident. It may be called Accidental Death and Dismemberment insurance. Typically, it covers injury as well as death. Accidental death insurance provides payment to help individuals through a period of upheaval caused by the sudden loss or injury of a loved one. It may allow the family to pay final expenses and cover the cost of living when they need assistance because of an unexpected event.

How Does Accidental Death Insurance Compare to Life Insurance?

Accidental death insurance is often a workable option when a person cannot obtain life insurance. If someone has a medical history that prevents them from passing an exam, life insurance may not be a possibility. However, accidental death insurance typically doesn’t require a medical exam. Life insurance may cover any manner of death, excluding suicide, while accidental death insurance covers only specific causes. There are a number of ways that an individual may be covered by an accidental death insurance policy. An individual may take out their own private policy. They may purchase it individually, or it may be something that’s offered supplementally as a part of their employment benefits package that they can elect. Some employers provide policies without contribution from the worker. Finally, employers may carry insurance for their workers that covers travel-related accidents.

Can You Sue for Accidental Death?

Yes, you can sue for accidental death, depending on how it occurs. If another party is at fault for the wrongful death, the spouse, children and parents may recover financial losses, pain and suffering, and loss of companionship. Others who have a family relationship who rely on the deceased for support may also be able to sue for accidental death. Florida law 95.11 [1] requires the family to initiate the claim within two years of the victim’s death. There are exceptions to the deadline, but they only apply in very rare circumstances.

What Is Considered Accidental Death?

Some examples of accidental death include:

  • Car accidents
  • Truck, motorcycle, bicycle and pedestrian accidents
  • Choking, suffocation and poisoning
  • Slip and falls, falling from elevated surfaces
  • Fires and electrical accidents
  • Machinery malfunctions
  • Pool accidents
  • Trampoline accidents
  • Public transportation accidents including buses, trains, airplanes, ferries and taxis

What Are Tampa, Florida’s Accidental Death Laws?

If an accidental death occurs because of the negligence, recklessness or intentional conduct of another, the victim’s survivors may have a claim for financial compensation. The responsible party legally owes damages, and the victim’s estate may take steps to claim them. Florida’s accidental death laws are a part of Florida wrongful death laws.  Florida law 768.19 [2] says that where a death is caused by the wrongful act, negligence, or breach of contract of another person, the action survives as if that person had lived. Under Florida law, the victim’s representative brings an action on behalf of survivors and the estate. Defenses may apply that would have applied to the victim’s claim.

What Damages Are Available Under Florida’s Wrongful Death Laws?

Damages that are available under Florida’s wrongful death laws include:

  • Funeral expenses
  • Other final expenses of the victim
  • The value of support that family members received from the victim
  • Loss of companionship and guidance
  • Mental anguish, emotional suffering
  • Losses in both the past and projected in the future

Does Life Insurance Cover Accidental Death?

Life insurance generally covers accidental death. Typically, life insurance covers any form of death that is not intentional. Accidental death is just one type that is included. Many insurance policies also have a rider that adds an extra amount of payment if the death occurs because of accidental death. The rider may sunset when the insured party reaches a certain age.

Is a Heart Attack Considered an Accidental Death?

No, usually, a heart attack is not considered an accidental death. Typically, a heart attack occurs because of natural causes, which means there is no accident involved. Of course, if the heart attack is a secondary event that occurs because of an accident or because of accidental poisoning or a similar event, it could be considered accidental. However, this is unlikely. Most heart attacks are not regarded as an accidental death.

Is Sepsis an Accidental Death?

Sepsis is usually not an accidental death. Most accidental death insurance policies exclude infection, including sepsis. While it depends on the exact wording of the insurance policy, typically, policies state that bacterial and viral infections as a cause of death are excluded regardless of how the victim contracts them. It may depend on whether the sepsis results from an underlying accident or event, but in most cases, sepsis is not an accidental death.

Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Accidental Death?

Homeowners insurance covers accidental death in that it may cover personal liability for an accident that occurs on a property. When an individual dies because of a dangerous condition on a property, the person’s homeowners insurance may cover the accident as an accidental death. If the property owner has an accident, it’s generally not covered.

More Questions About Accidental Death?

Contact the attorneys at Jack Bernstein, Injury Attorneys, to see if you qualify for accidental death compensation. Our experienced Tampa team is here to help you navigate the complexities of the legal system and fight for the financial support you deserve. We offer free, no-obligation consultations to see if you qualify to file a claim.


[1] FLA. STAT. § 95.11 (2020) [2] FLA. STAT. § 768.19 (2020)

Free Consultations With Our Accidental Death Attorney

If you and your family are suffering from the untimely loss of a loved one in Tampa, FL due to an accident, our attorneys can help. Jack Bernstein and his experienced team don’t let the responsible party get away without facing justice. Remember, You won’t have to pay any fees unless you win. Contact us today for a free consultation and to begin your claim.

Tampa Car Accident + Personal Injury Lawyers

Jack Bernstein Personal Injury Attorney

For more than 40 years, personal injury lawyer Jack G. Bernstein has protected the rights of individuals who have been injured in a variety of circumstances. Throughout his career, Bernstein has been a strategist thoroughly dedicated to the idea of protecting the rights of his clients. Mr. Bernstein is a member of the Florida State Bar Association, the Hillsborough Bar Association and the Clearwater Bar Association.

Mr. Bernstein has the experience and expertise to handle a wide range of injury cases. Among the types of plaintiffs Mr. Bernstein represents are individuals involved in car accidents caused by drunk drivers or other exhibiting negligence, medical complications resulting from carelessness caused by a physician or a medical facility, including brain injury, bicycle, motorcycle, moped and truck accidents, admiralty law and cruise ship accidents, accidental drownings, all types of wrongful death lawsuits, along with most injury, catastrophic occurrences and legal malpractice issues.

Our firm handles every type of personal injury and accident case, using negotiation and litigation tactics effectively. We handle cases throughout Tampa, Sarasota, St. Petersburg, and Clearwater, FL. With a staff of approximately 40 people, including six lawyers and 34 support personnel, we have the legal resources to get the justice you deserve and the maximum recovery for your losses. Schedule your free consultation today; we are always here to help.

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