What Is Required in Order to File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit?
An Explanation from a Wrongful Death Lawyer Delray Beach FL Offers
When an individual is killed due to the recklessness or negligence of another party, an immediate family member might wish to file a wrongful death lawsuit against that party. In filing the lawsuit, the plaintiff will seek compensation for their financial and emotional damages. However, as a wrongful death lawyer in Delray Beach FL might tell you, the suit cannot proceed through the legal system unless four recognized elements are present in relation to the victim’s death. Below is a general overview. If you wish to know more about filing a wrongful death suit after the passing of a loved one, contact Law Office of Eric H. Luckman, P.A. to schedule a complimentary consultation with our wrongful death lawyer in Delray Beach FL.
The Four Elements of a Wrongful Death Lawsuit
Consult a wrongful death lawyer in Delray Beach FL from our firm to learn whether or not your case fulfills the eligibility requirements for filing a lawsuit. The four criteria or elements are as following:
- Negligence. The death of the plaintiff’s loved one must have occurred due to the negligent, reckless, or careless actions of the defendant.
- Breach of duty. The defendant must have owed a duty of care to the victim. Common examples of this include:
- A medical provider has a duty to offer quality care to their patients.
- A driver has a duty to drive their vehicle safely and not put others’ lives at risk.
- A property owner has a duty to make sure their premises are reasonably safe so that any visitors will not be put in harm’s way.
- Causation. The plaintiff’s wrongful death lawyer in Delray Beach FL must prove that the defendant’s negligence directly resulted in the death of the victim.
- Damages. The victim’s death resulted in quantifiable and substantial damages. Examples include:
- Medical care costs.
- Funeral and burial costs.
- Loss of potential earnings and other types of income such as benefits and stock options.
- Pain and suffering the victim prior to their passing.
Common Causes of Wrongful Deaths
Regardless of how your loved one passed away from a wrongful death, our wrongful death lawyer in Delray Beach FL may be able to help your family get justice and compensation for your damages. Some of the most common examples of wrongful deaths are these:
- Car, truck, pedestrian, or motorcycle accident.
- Medical malpractice.
- Defective or hazardous product.
- Occupational hazard or exposure to toxic substances.
- Premises slip and fall accident or any other type of accident that leads to a victim’s death.
- A criminal act such as murder whether it was premeditated or not.
- Birth injury.
- Assisted living facility abuse or neglect that leads to a victim’s death.
Filing a Wrongful Death Claim After a Deadly Motor Vehicle Accident
Millions of motorists travel U.S. roads on any given day. Of those drivers, many are distracted by technology, passengers, the radio and numerous other realities of life. Regrettably, millions of automobile accidents, causing injury and death, happen as a result of distracted, aggressive, drowsy and/or drunk driving. When the worst case scenario occurs and a loved one is lost in a motor vehicle accident, the Law Offices of Eric H. Luckman, P.A. is here to help. We handle each and every case with tact and diligence. If your loved one was involved in a car accident and died as a result of another driver’s poor decisions and/or reckless actions, please know that you are not alone. An experienced Delray Beach, Florida wrongful death lawyer can help.
Filing a claim
Wrongful death claims are regulated by state laws. All states allow for immediate family members to file the wrongful death claim:
- Parents of adult children who are not married
In addition, some states allow for additional family members to file a wrongful death claim:
- Life partners
The first legal step to taking when considering legal action involves contacting an experienced Delray Beach, FL wrongful death lawyer and set up a consultation. Wrongful death cases can be complicated, sensitive, and difficult to pursue. It is imperative that you have an attorney who can guide you through the process. During the consultation, the family will gain an understanding of the complexities of the case and a Delray Beach, FL wrongful death lawyer will explain what to expect as the case proceeds. This is only an initial conversation but such consultations are usually very valuable for all involved. These meetings are confidential and risk-free as they do not commit loved ones to file legal action if they ultimately decide against doing so.
In the case of negligence, there are generally three key elements that must be proven in order to prove liability on the part of the at-fault driver.
- Duty of care- when it comes to driving a car, each driver has a certain duty to practice safe driving. This may include obeying the speed limit, stop signs, pedestrian crossings and traffic lights.
- Breach of duty of care- when that duty is breached by speeding or ignoring other road safety rules, there is a breach of duty of care.
- The breach of duty of care caused the death. A link must be shown between the breach and the death of the individual.
Wrongful death compensation
The types of compensation that most states agree are fair and necessary for the families of wrongful death victims include:
- Medical bill compensation
- Lost income from the time of the accident to estimated retirement if the person had lived
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Lost health insurance and other benefits
Other damages that some states allow include:
- Loss of consortium- the loss of the relationship of the individual and the family members
- Pain and suffering of the family members
- Loss of the individual’s help around the house with caring for children, daily chores and other responsibilities
If you have lost a loved one as a result of a motor vehicle accident, you likely have numerous legal options available for you to evaluate with the assistance of an experienced Delray Beach, FL wrongful death lawyer. Please contact our firm sooner rather than later to set up a consultation. The sooner we speak to you, the better we can ensure that your legal options remain protected.
Contact a Wrongful Death Lawyer in Delray Beach FL from the Law Office of Eric H. Luckman, P.A.
If you lost an immediate family member because another party acted recklessly or negligently, you may have grounds for a wrongful death lawsuit. To learn if your case is eligible for litigation against the responsible party, contact us at Law Office of Eric H. Luckman, P.A. immediately. We offer a free initial consultation. Call us today to speak with a knowledgeable wrongful death lawyer in Delray Beach FL.
Wrongful Death: Were you Financially Dependent on Your Loved One?
If you are struggling with the pressures of staying on top of bills after your loved one’s untimely death and that death was caused by the actions of another party, consider contacting a wrongful death lawyer Delray Beach FL families trust. Are you looking for the person responsible to pay punitive damages? If the answer is yes to any one of these questions, a wrongful death lawyer in Delray Beach FL from the Law Office of Eric H. Luckman, P.A. may be able to help. For more than 30 years, we have been advocating for families in wrongful death lawsuits and we may be able to help you obtain compensation you are in desperate need of.
What Are Punitive Damages?
You may be wondering what punitive damages are and whether or not you are entitled to receive them. It will be important to sit down with a wrongful death lawyer Delray Beach FL residents recommend and go over the specifics of your particular case to help determine the total compensation you may be able to collect.
- Punitive damages are in place to punish the person for their actions that caused the death of your loved one.
- We will be able to calculate with you our best estimate of what we think could be awarded in punitive damages when we meet for our consultation. Call (561) 737-3133 to schedule your initial appointment with us.
Who Can File for Wrongful Death?
You may be wondering if you are entitled to file a wrongful death claim if someone you know and loved has passed away. Additionally, you may be wondering how situations where multiple family members file claims with the courts are managed. These are questions that a wrongful death lawyer Delray Beach FL clients prefer will be happy to answer for you. Generally speaking:
- In almost all cases, if you are the spouse of the person who passed away, you can file a wrongful death lawsuit.
- Anyone who was financially dependent on the person who has died
- Parents of a minor can file a lawsuit on their behalf
- Parents of the person who passed, especially if your loved one was a child.
- The representative or executor of the estate can file a wrongful death lawsuit on behalf of the family members of the deceased. Usually the executor is identified in the estate plan. If there isn’t someone already identified, the court will appoint someone to fill this role.
Managing a wrongful death suit on your own will be stressful and can be challenging due to the layers of legal complexities. Moving through the process of a wrongful death lawsuit as swiftly and easily as possible is another reason to call a seasoned wrongful death lawyer Delray Beach FL offers from Law Office of Eric H. Luckman, P.A. They can help ease your fears by personally evaluating your case at our first consultation. Call us today so that we can help you.
Upon our first meeting, your Delray Beach FL wrongful death lawyer will be able to look at the details of your case and further explain how we can represent you based on your unique situation.
Contact us today. There is no risk to you as we offer the first consultation free of charge. Let a wrongful death lawyer Delray Beach FL provides help you get the compensation that is owed to you.