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personal injury lawyerThe Orange County Register reports that Dieu Vu, a 72-year-old Westminster cyclist has been killed in an accident involving a raised pick-up truck and an adult tricycle. On Monday, March 23, 2009, a pick-up truck driven by Michael Sindar turned right at a green light and collided with Mr. Vu, who was riding an adult tricycle across the intersection.

Reviewing the OC Register story from the perspective of a personal injury attorney reveals a detail that may act as a starting point for a wrongful death lawsuit. The truck that struck and killed Vu sported over-sized wheels or a raised suspension. A wrongful death lawsuit based on this detail would revolve around proving that such willful modifications to the pick-up truck may have restricted the driver’s visual field and reduced his ability to operate the vehicle safely and responsibly, and thus contributed to the fatal accident.

Wrongful death suits are not synonymous with criminal homicide charges. Wrongful death lawsuits are civil actions which do not violate double-jeopardy rules and have a different standard of proof than homicide charges. A defendant may be found innocent of criminal wrong-doing, yet be liable for civil damages in a wrongful death suit.

It bears mentioning that unreported circumstances may be present in this case which may shield the driver from liability. In a wrongful death lawsuit, the defense would closely examine Mr. Vu’s actions in order to sway a jury to a favorable verdict for the defendant.

If you have any questions regarding wrongful death lawsuits, or how liability and negligence are determined in a civil court, please contact the Irvine Wrongful Death Attorneys at the Law Offices of  Samer Habbas.


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Samer Habbas is a California attorney with over 18 years of experience in personal injury law. Throughout his career, he has successfully recovered over $300 million for his clients, solidifying his reputation as a leading advocate in the field.

Samer swiftly gained recognition for his adept negotiation skills and unwavering dedication to his clients. His practice spans a wide range of personal injury cases, including car accidents, dog bites, funeral home abuse, premises liability, and wrongful death.

Samer is known for his compassionate approach and commitment to securing favorable outcomes for his clients. His expertise has earned him the trust and respect of both his clients and his peers within the legal community. He is also deeply invested in giving back to his community. He actively participates in pro bono work and volunteers his time to various charitable organizations. Samer is a champion for those who have been wronged, leveraging his extensive experience and expertise to make a meaningful difference in the lives of his clients and his community.