Losing a family member is always devastating. That is especially true when that loved one died too soon as a result of someone else’s negligence.
Depending on the circumstances surrounding the person’s death, you could file for wrongful death to get the highest settlement possible. The alternative is you and your kids suffering financial loss and compiling unexpected debt.
Criminal charges are a potential option, but the killer may not have had malicious intent. The law does not treat negligence the same as murder and understands they had no motivation of harming your loved one.
We still believe you can find closure in this difficult situation and obtain the compensation you need by learning who can file for wrongful death.
How does a wrongful death lawsuit work?
A wrongful death occurs when someone dies due to the negligence of a person, business, or organization. Some common situations where you can file for wrongful death suits are car accidents, medical malpractice, and product liabilities.
These claims allow family members to obtain civil recourse after their loved one’s death.
There are statutes of limitations for wrongful death lawsuits that vary from state to state. Most areas have a 2-year limit that you must file under for the courts to consider your case.
To win a wrongful death case, the filer must meet the same burden of proof as if the victim was still alive. That means proving the killer’s negligence encourages the judge to have them party the damages.
Who can file a wrongful death lawsuit in Alabama?
Every state has their own regulations on who can actually submit a wrongful death lawsuit.
Instead, only decreased person’s executor can file a wrongful death lawsuit. They are the personal representative of your loved one’s estate. The judge either names them in the will, or the court appoints them if the family member never enacted one.
It is important to note that the executor is not the only person receiving payment from the cause. You and your relatives are the most affected by the death and also get fair compensation.
Who can file a wrongful death suit instead of the executor?
Even though some states require an executor, many others allow family members to file for wrongful death.
The following people can execute wrongful death claims in Georgia and similar states:
- Surviving spouse
- The parent of a minor
- A minor in the death of a parent
Some states allow the parents of adult children or even extended relatives like grandparents, cousins, aunts, and uncles to file suits.
The law firm you work with must be able to not only investigate and prove your case but understand the legal rules in the state where you file the case. That’s why it’s crucial to work with an experienced wrongful death attorney.
Types of damages in a wrongful death case
Although it’s impossible to replace your loved one, the law provides settlements for wrongful death so your family can obtain compensation. That will cover the relative’s loss of income and prevent financial ruin from the tragedy.
The types of damages you can win vary depending on the circumstances involving the decedent’s death, the size of the decedent’s estate, and many other factors.
Common damages include:
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Medical bills for the decedent as a result of the defendant’s actions or negligence
- Loss of inheritance or expected income
- Deceased person’s suffering and pain
- Loss of care, nurturing, love, and companionship
Medical expenses, funeral costs, and other bills are easier to calculate since they are quantitative damages. Others, including the loss of care and nurturing and love, are much harder to assess.
Not to mention the punitive damages the killer may owe you.
Alabama wrongful death lawyers and other state attorneys can provide the legal advice you need.
Experienced wrongful death attorneys
We understand the many emotions that you are feeling right now as you try to lead your family through this difficult loss.
By establishing close attorney-client relationships, our team supports you every step of the way and takes the burden of the case off your shoulders.
We also review the deceased person’s estate to file an estate planning case too if they did not have a will.
It’s our job as experienced wrongful death lawyers to tackle all aspects of your lawsuit and deliver results in court. We will employ doctors, private investigators, and other professionals to get you the highest settlement possible.
You can reach out at (334)-269-3230 so we can hear your tragedy in a free consultation. Our team can also assist with personal injury and auto accident claims that didn’t lead to death.