Questions about Wrongful Death
Posted on behalf of Phillips Law Group on Sep 08, 2015 in Personal Injury
A wrongful death case is a common type of personal injury lawsuit. Each state has rules governing wrongful death lawsuits, leaving family members and loved ones with questions. Do they have the right to file a lawsuit? What kind of compensation could a family receive after the unexpected loss of a loved one?
Below are answers to some of the questions you may have about wrongful death cases.
What does wrongful death mean?
Wrongful death refers to the death of a person as a result of someone elses intentional actions, negligence or wrongdoing. In this case, the decedents family members may file a wrongful death lawsuit. Parents, spouses, children, and other family members can file this type of lawsuit.
Are murder and wrongful death the same?
While both involve someones death due to anothers actions, murder is a criminal charge while wrongful death is a civil claim. It is easy to get the two confused, especially if the responsible party is also being held criminally liable. If criminal charges are not filed against the responsible party, a wrongful death claim can still be pursued. If you win your wrongful death lawsuit, the defendant will be ordered to pay monetary damages to your family.
What are damages?
Damages refer to compensation for the defendants wrongdoings. When you file a wrongful death claim, you are asking a judge to order the defendant to pay compensation for damages that arose surrounding your loved ones death. Damages may be awarded for lost wages, lost financial support, pain and suffering, loss of companionship, and loss of consortium, depending on the nature of your relationship with the decedent.
How are wrongful death claims won?
Each wrongful death claim is unique, and your attorney will determine what supporting evidence will be used to prove the merits of your claim. All wrongful death lawsuits must be filed according to state law, and procedural and substantive rules may apply.
If you have lost a loved one due to the negligent actions of another, you may be entitled to file a claim.