Dealing with the death of a loved one is unbelievably painful. Things are worse if you believe that someone else’s negligence or intention was what led to your loved one’s death. You may wonder what steps to take next and if you should file a wrongful death claim in an effort to seek justice and compensation for the loss of your loved one. The following are a few things to consider.
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit?
The family of the deceased are traditionally the people who can bring forward a wrongful death lawsuit, but it can be anyone who was close to the victim or financially dependent on them. You can pursue a wrongful death lawsuit if a loved one dies because of another person’s negligence. Situations could include a car accident, medical malpractice, a business owner that did not keep their property up to code, or put their workers in danger.
Each state has its statutes for all who can file a wrongful death claim and the amount of time they have to file the suit after the death of a loved one. Wrongful death lawsuits are designed to provide financial support for surviving family members and loved ones.
What Are Examples of Wrongful Death Lawsuits?
A wrongful death lawsuit may apply if someone intentionally kills your loved ones or does so through their own negligence. The wrongful death civil suit is different from the criminal charges the defendant will face, and is another option for a legal charge to be brought against them should others fall through.
Some examples of what could be covered under wrongful death lawsuits include things like medical malpractice. Medical malpractice is when a doctor does not diagnose a person’s condition or does not provide a patient with the proper care or the correct type of medication because of negligence. Surviving family members may file a claim against the doctor and other medical providers based on established medical malpractice statutes.
A wrongful death attorney may also be asked to file a wrongful death lawsuit in the event of an accident. Investigators may learn that the accident happened because someone responsible for the upkeep or construction of the car behaved negligently. If there were two cars involved and the perpetrator of the accident’s car failed due to their lack of upkeep, they could be sued for their negligence. Some other examples of negligent driving include reckless driving, driving under the influence, or ignoring traffic laws. Put simply, if it was preventable, they’re liable to be held accountable for causing the accident.
Components of Wrongful Death Lawsuits
Wrongful death lawsuits require the person’s death to be caused by another person’s negligence or their intent to cause the deceased person harm. There must be monetary injuries connected to the event. Finally, a personal representative must be appointed for the deceased individual’s estate. For a wrongful death lawsuit to be valid, the case needs to be filed within the time constraints set forth by the statute of limitations.
Suppose someone you loved has died because of an accident or injury involving the negligence or misconduct of an individual or company. In that case, you may be able to file a wrongful lawsuit against the responsible parties. That being said, wrongful death losses can be complicated cases. An attorney can give you an idea of the type of compensation you may be able to receive for the loss of your loved one and the guidance you need to achieve it.
Kara Masterson is a freelance writer from Utah. She graduated from the University of Utah and enjoys writing and spending time with her dog, Max.