Wrongful Death Claims: Things you need to know
If another party’s negligence is responsible for your loved one’s untimely death, you may have a valid wrongful death claim. Expectedly, you are grieving and need time to deal with the loss. However, most states have a statute that sets the time limit or deadline for wrongful death claims. At the least, you should discuss the case with an attorney who practices personal injury law in your state. The step is more important when the death of the deceased has left you in a financial mess, where you are struggling with no income, funeral expenses, and other losses. Read more about wrongful death claims below.
Wrongful death vs. murder
Both wrongful death and murder involve the death of one person because of another and are a type of manslaughter. If it were voluntary manslaughter, it would be a case of murder that would require the defendant to face charges in criminal court. If they are found guilty of the crime, they will have to bear the consequences. A wrongful death claim is a civil case. If you file a lawsuit against the at-fault party, you are basically seeking compensation for their negligence that led to the death of a loved one. The defendant doesn’t have to face criminal charges. In certain cases, a party may need to face a criminal lawsuit and a wrongful death claim, where the latter is filed for a financial settlement.
What is wrongful death?
When someone was negligent, reckless, or careless and causes the death of another person, they can be sued for wrongful death. A wrongful death claim can be filed by the surviving family members, such as kids, parents, and sometimes grandparents of the deceased. If the claimant wins, the compensation will cover things like funeral expenses, medical bills before the death of the victim, and other losses. In some cases, a claimant may also get punitive damages.
Get an attorney
A wrongful death claim is complex for apparent reasons, and it is wise to have a lawyer who can fight for your rights, especially when you are hurt and angry. Lawyers know what it takes to prove the elements of your wrongful death claim, which may require them to investigate the case in detail. The excellent news is wrongful death lawyers work on contingency, which doesn’t involve an upfront or retainer fee.
You need to speak to a lawyer to understand what your wrongful death claim is worth.