When somebody dies or is killed because of another person’s misconduct or negligence, the survivors may sue for wrongful death. Such kind of lawsuit seeks compensation for the loss of the survivor like lost wages from the deceased, funeral expenses, and lost companionship. A wrongful death claim can be made if a person dies due to the legal fault of another person. This person could be the driver found to be at fault at a car accident or anyone found to be at fault of a person’s wrongful death. While the statutes for wrongful death vary by states, they generally define who may sue for wrongful death and if there are applicable limits in terms of the damage award.
The Right People who can Sue for Wrongful Death
State laws allow a surviving spouse, children, immediate family members, and even parents of a deceased fetus to gain recovery. It depends on the wrongful death statute of the state. In general, a personal representative of the estate of the deceased will bring a wrongful death suit. Also, they bring actions for personal injury, expenses, or conscious pain incurred before the death of the decedent. The estate gets the damage awards from such actions but the awards can also be passed to different parties depending on the will of the decedent. To make sure deserving parties get the fair awards, they must hire the services of a competent wrongful death lawyer such as one from killianlaw.com.
Common Wrongful Death Damages
In a wrongful death, financial or pecuniary injury is the primary measure of damages. Pecuniary injuries are interpreted by the court as including the loss of support, lost prospect of inheritance, services, medical expenses, and funeral expenses. The majority of laws emphasize awarding the damages for a wrongful death fairly for the pecuniary injuries that resulted from the death of the decedent. In case the distributees paid or are responsible for the funeral or medical care of the decedent, they may also recover such expenses. Lastly, a damage award will include interest from the date of the death.
What to Consider When Hiring a Wrongful Death Lawyer
Few wrongful death lawsuits are tried before a jury. Because of litigation expenses, attorneys usually work out settlement deals to avert costly trials. Often, lawyers can negotiate better plea bargains than the defendant could get by themselves. That is why defendants must hire an attorney that specializes in wrongful death cases.