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Wrongful Death: What Exactly Is It?

Posted by Scot D. Goldberg | Jul 25, 2017 | 0 Comments

Goldberg Noone wrongful death attorneys

You can imagine that the loss of a family member can be a tragic and devastating occurrence, especially when the death is the result of a car or motorcycle crash. But when the person who caused the crash is found to have acted in a negligent, careless or deliberately reckless manner, the pain and anguish felt by the family members can be overwhelming.

Immediately following a serious accident that results in losing a loved one, you're immersed in grief, completely uncertain of your future. If you have lost the breadwinner of your family, you'll be scared and wondering how you and the remaining family members will be able to financially get on with your lives. At that stage, you may think the last thing you should be concerned about is filing a wrongful death lawsuit against the at-fault party. You may be wondering if that is worth the time and effort, and if the result will be worth your trouble.

As Fort Myers wrongful death attorneys, we fully understand that obtaining a financial settlement after the sudden loss of your loved one will never replace that person, no matter how large a sum of money you may receive. But, especially after your initial grieving period starts to fade and you're faced with the harsh realities of moving forward with your life, you may find yourself unable to pay for any remaining medical bills from the accident, or to just pay your normal living expenses.

This is why you should speak to a skilled wrongful death law firm immediately after losing a family member.

There are a number of serious legal issues that arise for those seeking to file a wrongful death lawsuit. Your attorneys must be able to prove a number of things in order to help you obtain any financial compensation for your losses. A wrongful death lawsuit is a civil case, not a criminal case. You may have a situation in which the at-fault party is being tried on a criminal charge in the death of your loved one, like driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Even if they are found not guilty in a criminal procedure, you are still entitled under Florida law to file a civil wrongful death case against them. In order to establish the basis of a wrongful death suit, you must be able to prove:

  • The at-fault party had a duty of care to the deceased
  • The at-fault party committed an act or acts that in some way breached that duty of care
  • The actions, or inactions, of the at-fault party were directly responsible for the death of your loved one
  • You were subjected to damages as the result of the death of your loved one.

How Do I Know What My Damages Are in a Wrongful Death Case?

Several key factors are considered when you are contemplating filing a wrongful death lawsuit. Things like the specific relationship the person filing the lawsuit had with the deceased, what losses you may endure as a result of the deceased no longer being in your life, the value of that person's loss of service to you in the future and the normal life expectancy of deceased, and of those family members left behind.

Not everyone is entitled to financial compensation following the unfortunate loss of a loved one. Surviving children must be of a certain age, and a surviving spouse needs to prove how the deceased person was an integral part of their lives. A long-time companion who is not legally married to the deceased at the time of their death is not entitled to financial compensation, no matter how long they may have been together. There are also time limits as to when you can file a wrongful death claim – this is why it's absolutely critical that you speak with a qualified wrongful death attorney as soon as you possibly can, before the statute of limitations expires, leaving you with no ability to receive financial compensation.  Surviving spouses or family members may be entitled to monies for things like loss of income, medical bills incurred by the deceased, loss of companionship, emotional pain and suffering and other items.

There are so many variables that determine whether a person can file a wrongful death lawsuit, and you can get free answers to all of your questions with just one simple phone call to our offices.

As to the actual amount of financial damages that may be awarded by a jury in a wrongful death trial, the jurors will be asked to consider several factors. If the deceased was in their thirties and was responsible for financially supporting minor children, that financial award may be more than if the deceased were a sixty-year old man who was about to retire.  

The Types of Wrongful Death Cases Handled by Goldberg Noone, LLC:

  • Unsafe or defective consumer products – An incorrectly-manufactured tire or other automotive or motorcycle part can be found to cause a serious crash resulting in death
  • Car or motorcycle crashes- Some crashes are the result of the at-fault party speeding, driving aggressively, or operating a vehicle while under the influence of drugs, alcohol or both
  • Accidents at the workplace – An employer owes you a duty of providing a safe working environment
  • Medical malpractice – A doctor or other medical practitioner may be found to have been negligent in the care or treatment of the deceased
  • Acts of violence – Someone who fires a weapon and strikes an innocent person may be found responsible in a wrongful death case

How Do I Hire a Fort Myers Wrongful Death Attorney?

The attorneys at Goldberg Noone, LLC, never charge a penny to speak with you, and review all of the facts and unique circumstances surrounding your case. We will explain, in simple language, exactly whether we feel you may have a case for financial compensation. And, we never take a case we don't feel we can win – so we'll tell you straight-up if we feel you do not have a case, also.

One call, and we'll handle it all. Your problems instantly become our problems, and you can rest easy, knowing that the wrongful death attorneys at Goldberg Noone are in your corner every step of the way.

Call our main office at 239-461-5508, or just fill out this simple form.  

About the Author

Scot D. Goldberg

Local People. Local Practice. Local Knowledge. Scot Goldberg is a founding partner of the Goldberg Law Firm. See his attorney profile for more information.

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