If your loved one has been killed in a personal injury accident, you will want to file a wrongful death lawsuit. However, you need to read this article to find answers to frequently asked questions about wrongful death lawsuits. You can then discuss this information with your personal injury lawyer while you are crafting the lawsuit.
How does personal injury law define wrongful death?
Your personal injury lawyer will tell you that personal injury law defines a wrongful death lawsuit as a civil case that is filed against a person or entity that has directly caused the death of another person. There are many causes of wrongful deaths. These include:
● Negligent or careless conduct. Good examples are medical malpractice and drunk driving
● Defective products
● Reckless or gross negligence – driving while high on pot would be a good example of this
● Intentional assault.
The laws that govern how and when wrongful death lawsuits can be filed differ by state. These laws spell out who can file these cases, the types of wrongful deaths that you can get a settlement from and the statute of limitations is also dictated by the states.
Can any relative file a wrongful death lawsuit?
Your personal injury lawyer in Rosemead will tell you that this depends on the laws of the state in which the wrongful death lawsuit is being filed in. the dead person’s estate is generally the entity that files the lawsuit, but close relatives, including spouses and children, can file a wrongful death lawsuit.
How is the amount of damages determined?
Personal injury lawyers know that different states use different formulas when determining the number of damages to be paid in a settlement in wrongful death cases. The party bringing forth the lawsuit must provide sufficient evidence that proves that future earnings and lost wages/economic losses have caused them substantial economic hardship. This party will generally need to have solid testimony from expert witnesses. People who bring forth these types of lawsuits can receive compensation for the following:
● Lost wages and earnings/income
● Pain and suffering and loss of consortium
● Costs of pre-death medical treatment
● Costs of funeral and/or burial expenses
Can you discharge a wrongful death lawsuit in bankruptcy?
It depends on the type of accident that caused the wrongful death. The defendant can usually be released from a settlement payout when filing for bankruptcy in an ordinary accident, but this is not the case where gross negligence like a DUI is involved.
What is the difference between murder and wrongful death?
Murder cases are filed in criminal courts and the state is the entity that files the charges. The defendant is almost always jailed if found guilty. Wrongful death cases are filed in civil courts and the defendant (if found guilty) generally only pays out a settlement amount. In a criminal case, the guilt must be established beyond a reasonable doubt. In a wrongful death case, only preponderance of evidence needs to be established.
What is the statute of limitations?
This can vary by state but is generally two years.Now that you have some insight into wrongful death laws, your likelihood of winning a wrongful death case in a civil court has just increased dramatically.