The definition of wrongful death is when the negligence or intentional act of an individual causes the death of another. There are laws in place to provide an outlet for legal recourse when a family member has had a loved one lost due to a wrongful death situation. In every state within the US, the statutes will vary for wrongful death claims, including how the survivor of the individual can file a claim, who can file and what will be provided by way of damages.
Types of Incidents That Can Qualify for a Wrongful Death Claim
The term wrongful death can have a broad definition as it does not cover one particular type of incident. In general terms, the reckless behavior or negligence of another has to be the reason behind the loss of life. This can include several scenarios.
Examples of incidents that can qualify for wrongful death claims include:
- Car accidents due to texting, drunk driving or other negligent behavior
- Workplace accident due to lack of supervision or training
- An assault, attack or criminal action that led to death of an individual
- Malpractice of a physician
- Drowning accident due to premises liability or property damage
- Defective product or medication that caused death
At Cueria Law Firm, we have experience in wrongful death claims. The unfortunate death of your loved one may qualify as wrongful death based on the specifics of the case. If you have lost a loved one, we will discuss the accident with you and guide you through the claims process.
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim?
If an accident is qualified as an incident involving wrongful death, it does not mean that you qualify for a claim. Only certain people have the right to file a wrongful death claim to recover damages for their loss. Survivors who do have a right to file a claim will include:
- Children of the deceased
- Spouses or life partner of the deceased
- Parents of the deceased
- Siblings of the deceased
- Other dependents
The primary right to file a claim is given to the children and spouses of an individual who passed away in a wrongful death situation. If a child or spouse is filing a claim, then a parent or sibling will not likely be pursuing a claim or have the right to.
Wrongful Death Suit Evidence
To file a wrongful death suit, substantial evidence must be presented. Key legal elements will be needed in order to prove the validity of a wrongful death claim. This can include proving that the negligent party owed a duty of care to your loved one and breached that duty, resulting in the death of your family member. In a criminal action case, the intent will have to be demonstrated or proven to win the claim. An attorney is needed in order to recover evidence, research witness testimony and expert opinions to assist in your case.