The pain of losing a loved one can be devastating. What makes the situation worse is that the death is a result of someone’s negligence. If this happens to you, you may be entitled to get compensation for your loss. You can achieve this by filing a wrongful death claim against the responsible party. While this measure does not bring back life, it is meant to appease the bereaved members and deter would-be offenders. Read on to learn how to file a case after the wrongful death of a loved one.
To file a wrongful death lawsuit, you must be financially dependent on the deceased. In most cases, the children, spouse, or other dependents who are beneficiaries of the deceased’s estate are eligible to file this kind of suit. You can only file once you’ve proven that the individual’s death was caused by someone’s negligence.
For instance, if the death was a result of medical malpractice or negligent driving, you can file a lawsuit if you are eligible to do so. You should also prove that wrongful death has caused emotional, psychological, and financial damage. Not everyone is eligible to claim financial damage, so you should familiarize yourself with the provisions of the law.
Seek Legal Representation
If you want to hold the wrongdoer accountable for their actions, it is vital to enlist the services of a qualified personal injury lawyer. If you live in Pasadena, make sure you consult an attorney, so you know the merits of your case. If you engage an experienced wrongful death lawyer in Pasadena, they will evaluate your case to determine the likely outcome. Additionally, they will give you advice that can help you make a meaningful decision. The process of filing a lawsuit is time-consuming, so it is advisable that you seek legal representation to ensure a seamless process and to preserve your own peace of mind.
Investigate the Case
To begin a wrongful death lawsuit, you should conduct a thorough investigation with the help of your attorney. A good investigation helps to unearth the underlying circumstances that led to the death of your loved one. You should also identify the party or parties responsible for causing the loss of life. It will be crucial to hire medical experts who can evaluate the case and provide opinions about the likely causes of death.
File a Lawsuit
When your attorney collects enough evidence, they can begin the civil claim process. Your lawyer starts by sending a letter of demand for compensation to the defendant or their insurer. In this letter, your attorney spells out the reason for the claim and sets out facts that establish liability for the death of your loved one as a result of negligence. The letter also requests monetary compensation for the loss of life.
Financial compensation is meant to cover lost financial support to the dependents, loss of love, companionship, care, and maintenance. If the death was intentionally caused, the wrongdoer will be liable to pay punitive damages meant to deter other people from committing similar offenses. Settlement negotiation usually begins once the at-fault party receives the letter of demand. Both parties try to find a mutually acceptable settlement out of court to avoid the tedious process involved in litigation.
Proceed to Trial
Should the parties fail to reach an acceptable figure, it may be necessary to pursue the lawsuit for wrongful death in court and have a judge hear the case. The jury will decide whether you are entitled to compensation or not. Therefore, you should make sure you have a strong case against the defendant before proceeding to court. The litigation process is often time-consuming and rather expensive.
Statute of Limitations
Before filing a wrongful death lawsuit, you should know the statute of limitations in your state. This is the period you should file your lawsuit, or else you and other dependants will lose your legal right to compensation if you file a lawsuit after the expiration of the statute of limitations. This is why you should enlist the services of a professional lawyer to protect your legal rights.
There’s nothing more painful than having to deal with the loss of someone you hold dear to your heart. If someone causes the death of your loved one, you can file a wrongful death lawsuit to get compensation for the loss. You can only file this kind of claim if you are financially affected by the loss. To increase your chances of getting fair compensation, it is ideal to enlist the services of a personal injury lawyer.