Wrongful Death Lawsuits

If you have lost a loved one, your life becomes overturned with grief. Your life may also be overturned with worry: worry about how you are going to pay bills or take care of the house, car, and children without the aid of your loved one. Your grief may be worse knowing that someone caused your loved one’s death through carelessness or in the name of profit. A wrongful death lawsuit allows you to get compensation for your loss, which can pay bills and free you up to focus on the emotional process of recovery. It also makes those responsible pay for what they have done.

A wrongful death lawyer can help you pursue compensation after the loss of a loved one. Please contact AccidentAttorneys.org to learn about your options.

Accidental Death and Wrongful Death

Wrongful death refers to a death that was caused by the negligence or misconduct of another person or persons. You may think of your loved one’s death as an accident, but often accidents are due to the choices made by others. Cases in which your loved one’s death may have been avoidable include:

When considering a wrongful death lawsuit, think of the people who caused the accident, and think of what actions they took (or didn’t take) that lead to your loved one’s death. If you are having trouble distinguishing between which actions played minor roles in the accident and those that played major roles, talking to a lawyer can be very helpful.

Who Can File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit

A wrongful death lawsuit must be filed by the executor of the state. It is actually filed on behalf of the deceased, not the surviving relatives. It cannot be filed by the spouse or child, unless that person is also the executor.

Damages in a Wrongful Death Lawsuit

The damages available in a wrongful death lawsuit vary from state to state. In general, you may be able to get compensation for:

  • Loss of potential wages

  • Loss of assistance with daily or household tasks, including child care and cleaning

  • Loss of companionship, advice, and emotional support

  • Diminished inheritance due to medical bills

  • Grieving and other emotional pain due to loss

Talking to a lawyer will tell you whether your state recognizes all these as valid damages.

Since none of these types of damages can be calculated objectively, your lawyer will make a big difference in the damages requested and those you can receive. That means you must choose your wrongful death lawyer with care.

At AccidentAttorneys.org, we have selected local attorneys from across the country that have been recognized by their peers and by independent ratings organizations as being leaders in their field.

To talk to one of our select lawyers, please contact AccidentAttorneys.org today.

Wrongful Death Justice

Wrongful Death Accidents Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Difference Between a Wrongful Death Case and a Murder Case?

Wrongful death is a civil matter, not a criminal matter. The differences are vast. Wrongful death is meant to compensate the loved ones of the decedent, rather than to punish the wrongdoer. You do not need to establish proof beyond a reasonable doubt, just that it is more likely than not that the defendant was responsible for the death. It is very difficult to win a murder case, and much easier to win wrongful death.

You do not need to prove intent. Most wrongful death cases are based on negligence rather than intentional wrongdoing, although you can also bring a wrongful death case if the death was the result of intentional wrongdoing. Wrongful death laws apply even when there was no crime involved.

Loved ones and/or the estate can receive monetary compensation through a wrongful death lawsuit. Any criminal case, if one exists and if it is successful, still does not provide monetary compensation and does not help loved ones and dependents with the very real financial burden stemming from the death.

What is the Difference Between Wrongful Death and a Survival Action?

Although each state is different, in general, wrongful death is meant to compensate family members for their losses resulting from the death of a loved one and a survival action yields compensation for the losses and suffering incurred by the decedent between the time of injury and death.

You do not need to sort it out on your own. An experienced wrongful death attorney can help you with both wrongful death and any survival claim.

What if the Deceased was Not a Breadwinner?

You can still recover wrongful death compensation, if the decedent was not earning money. Wrongful death laws are very complex and very different from one state to the next, and there are many factors to be considered when calculating damages. Damages in wrongful death include more than just the money that the decedent would have contributed, but the value of the service they no longer provide, such as childcare and home maintenance.

You may also be able to recover for lost companionship, love and protection as well as for your suffering and grief.

Commonly, damages are lower in cases where the decedent was elderly, a minor child, or an adult with no spouse or children.

Can I Sue for the Wrongful Death of My Fiancé or Common-Law Spouse?

If you can prove that you were truly in a legally binding common-law marriage, you have the same rights as any other spouse in your state. Contrary to popular belief, a common-law marriage can only be formed in a few states, and in those states the marriage is not established by merely living together for a certain amount of time or having a child together. You will definitely need the help of an experienced wrongful death attorney.

Unfortunately, fiancés do not qualify as spouses in any state and are not considered to be family members of any type. However, if you are named in the will, you may still be able to benefit from damages recovered by the estate.