The Basics of a Wrongful Death Action

When a person dies because of the misconduct of another individual or company, then you may be able to pursue a wrongful death action. Wrongful death actions are lawsuits that you can use to seek the damages and compensation that you deserve from lost wages, future expenses and other costs.

Filing Wrongful Death Claim

When it comes to filing a wrongful death claim, it is crucial that you have an attorney to advocate for you. This can streamline the entire process. He or she will hep you provide all of the appropriate and important documentation. He or she will know the statute of limitations and the filing rules within the specific court.

If your suit ends up going to trial, then the attorney will also have experience in these kinds of trials. You can bring a wrongful death suit if you are an immediate family member or dependent of the decedent. In most cases, the beneficiaries allowed to file a wrongful death claim include:

  • Spouses
  • Children
  • Parents

If the decedent does not have these relatives, then grandparents, siblings or other dependents may file a wrongful death claim against someone. Now, in some instances, the wrongful death claim will not accompany any criminal trial. For instance, if a person acts negligently or does not follow through with regulations and hence causes the death of your loved one, there may be no more than civil charges filed. However, in some cases, some people file a wrongful death suit when another person does face criminal charges for death.

There is no such thing as double jeopardy between criminal and civil courts. If someone is charged with the death of another person in criminal court and is found not guilty, you can file a wrongful death action against that person or company. The burden of proof is less when it comes to civil court.

Proving Wrongful Death

Once you file a wrongful death claim, you have to be able to prove that wrongful death occurred.  In order to win, you have to prove that the person did, in fact, die, due to negligence or intent to harm. In addition, you have to prove that the family suffered an injury due to death. This often refers to monetary injury.

When it comes to personal injury claims, you should have a lawyer to help you decide how to file the action and how to prove your case. Lawyers have the experience necessary to navigate the courtroom. To find out more about your wrongful death action, contact a wrongful death lawyer today.