4 Tips for Winning a Wrongful Death Claim
Wrongful death is a term describing a death caused by another person's recklessness, negligence, or intentional act. Under the law, the surviving family members of the deceased have the right to bring a wrongful death lawsuit against the person responsible.
A wrongful death claim is filed when someone dies due to somebody else's legal fault. It can stem from fatal accidents, including complex medical malpractice, product liability, or car accident cases. It can also be possible if the act that resulted in the loss of life was intentional.
A wrongful death lawsuit can be filed by the deceased's estate, immediate family members, financial dependents, putative spouses, life partners, distant family members, and anyone who suffers financially from the death. This article outlines four tips for winning a wrongful death claim.
Hire a Wrongful Death Lawyer
Wrongful death claims can be complex because the facts involved are often clouded. These cases involve multiple legalities, and missing them can weaken your case. Fighting a wrongful death lawsuit without any legal background, knowledge, and experience can jeopardize your winning chances. However, hiring a wrongful death attorney from a reputable firm, such as The Tinker Law Firm PLLC, can increase the possibility of succeeding.
A wrongful death lawyer can scrutinize the circumstances that resulted in your loved one's death, help you understand your legal rights, figure out liability, and file a case on your behalf seeking compensation for losses arising from your loved one's passing. With the help of your attorney, you can prove your claim and win the case.
Prove Every Element of a Wrongful Death Claim
Your wrongful death case can't succeed without the requisite elements. To win the claim, your lawyer should prove the following:
Negligence: In a wrongful death claim, your attorney must prove that your loved one's demise was either partly or wholly due to the defendant's recklessness, carelessness, or negligence
Causation: This involves establishing how the defendant's negligence resulted in your family member's death
Breach of duty: To succeed in a wrongful death case, your attorney should prove beyond reasonable doubt that the defendant owed the victim a duty and establish how that duty existed and that it was breached due to negligent actions
Damages: To prove your claim, the victim's death should cause quantifiable damages, including medical expenses, hospitalizations, burial costs, loss of income and potential earnings, the victim's pain and suffering before death, and loss of guidance, inheritance, and protection
Present Evidence of Intention
While most deaths are accidental or natural, some can be caused intentionally. Proving that there was a deliberate intention by the defendant to cause your loved one's wrongful death is an effective way to strengthen your claim. While wrongful death and murder often go hand in hand, they're different and are treated as such by the court. Murder is treated as a capital offense. Alternatively, wrongful death gets into the picture once the defendant is acquitted of the murder charges but may still be held responsible for wrongful death.
Stick to the Statutes of Limitations
Statutes of limitations put stringent time restrictions on your legal right to file a wrongful death claim. Every state has varying regulations regarding statutes of limitations. Familiarize yourself with your state's laws to ensure your claim is filed on time.
Wrongful death cases can be quite emotional and challenging because they constantly remind you of the loss of a loved one. This makes it even harder to put together a successful lawsuit. However, implementing these tips can help you win a wrongful death claim.
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Under the law, the surviving family members of the deceased have the right to seek financial compensation for their losses, including medical costs, lost wages, loss of companionship, and funeral expenses. When a wrongful death suit is successful, the deceased's family may be awarded monetary damages that will help them to recover and move forward. This can provide much-needed closure and a sense of justice for the grieving family members.
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