Wrongful Death

Mar 18

Many accidents occur due to a person’s own carelessness; however, many more happen due to the negligent or reckless act of someone else.

Acting or behaving in ways that will not endanger anyone is the fundamental duty of every person. Those who rather choose to disregard the safety of others and cause them injury can very well be recipients of a civil lawsuit, which will enable innocent victims (or victims’ families) to seek and receive compensation from them.

An injury, which is a result of negligence, is called personal injury; it may be physical, emotional or mental. Personal injuries can happen through many different ways, including, but not limited to: car accidents; motorcycle accidents; truck accidents; construction accidents; medical malpractice; defective products; slip and fall accidents; and, nursing home abuse or negligence. While many accidents result to severe (personal) injuries, there are cases wherein their effect is much more damaging, leading to a victim’s wrongful or untimely death.

In the event of a wrongful death, the family or dependents of the deceased may file a lawsuit for the purpose of seeking justice. This legal action, which is called a wrongful death claim, is for the benefit of the “real parties in interest,” meaning, the surviving family members and the decedent’s other dependents. A wrongful death claim is a special kind of personal injury lawsuit that is intended to seek compensation for whatever pecuniary or financial damages the dependents may suffer, like loss of the decedent’s financial support, services and companionship, lost prospect of inheritance, and medical and funeral expenses.

Filing a wrongful death claim can be done by a representative, who would act on behalf of the “real parties in interest.” While these “real parties in interest” would obviously mean the decedent’s immediate family, which includes his/her spouse, child/children and/or adopted children, there are other individuals who, based on their relationship with the deceased victim, are also considered by some states as having the right to be included under the “real parties in interest” group. They are the decedent’s: parents; distant family members, like brothers and sisters, and grandparents; financial dependents; and, life partner or putative spouse.

According to the Abel Law Firm, filing a wrongful death claim is sometimes the only way for a decedent’s family or survivors to cope with the financial problems that may result from the loss of their financial provider. The processes involved in a wrongful death lawsuit, however, are not simple, despite the obvious cause of death of the deceased victim.

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