Fatal Crashes and Wrongful Death

Steve Vaccaro helped Amy launch a movement to end traffic violence.

Losing a family member to traffic violence is an unspeakable horror and injustice. You may casually say goodbye to your child, spouse, parent or other loved one in the morning, only to learn later that day that it was your final goodbye. All too often, you are then plunged into a system in which police, prosecutors, lawyers, and perhaps even friends are impatient with your grief, urging that “accidents happen,” you must “get on with your life,” or simply “move on.” The difficulty of facing the loss may be compounded by more practical problems like medical bills, loss of income and estate issues that eclipse your need to grieve and cope in your own way.

Vaccaro Law has represented many families torn by traffic violence. We can help set up an estate and deal with insurers, police and prosecutors to make sure that they fulfill their roles and do their jobs. Compensation, accountability and justice are not necessarily easy or quick to obtain, but we will listen to your concerns, answer your questions, give you our best advice, and work diligently to move forward with your case. We will be guided by your decision as to how much compensation for your family is fair, how much accountability for the driver is right, and when it feels like you have achieved justice. While no result is guaranteed, we will work together to achieve the best possible outcome in a bad situation.

During and after the conclusion of their case, many of the families we represent have worked to give meaning to the loss of their loved one to traffic violence. Vaccaro Law supports the families of fatal crash victims in many ways. We helped the Liao and Cohen-Eckstein families form Families for Safe Streets, a movement of and for families torn by traffic violence. We have required drivers to issue written letters of responsibility to our clients in addition to paying out their available insurance and making a personal contribution to compensate for the harm they have caused. For the Liao family, we required the driver who killed Allie Liao to refrain from driving for years, and won a retraction of the Daily News headline that wrongly blamed Allie for her own death. We helped Martha Valenzuela, Erika Lefevre, Kymberlee Goldfeld and many other of our wrongful death clients write and deliver statements to elected officials that made our streets safer. It is our client’s choice whether and when to do these things, but if they so choose, we often can help them obtain a measure of non-economic justice that feels right to them and makes our streets safer for all families.

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