Who May Recover in a Wrongful Death Lawsuit

Wrongful death suits may only be filed by some such as a surviving spouse, the next of kin or the children of the person suddenly killed.

Wrongful death is never an easy thing to deal with. The sudden news that your spouse or significant other family member has died for reasons you may not understand, coupled with struggling over that catastrophic loss are enough to bring anyone to their knees. At times like this, the devil is in the details.

When you have a better grasp of what did happen to cause your loved ones death, it is time to talk with a qualified wrongful death attorney. For a wrongful death suit, which is filed under the Wrongful Death Statute, you need to provide your lawyer with as many specific details as possible. The rest of the process is up to your lawyer.

It doesn’t matter how your loved one died – as the result of medical malpractice or in a motorcycle or car crash – you have the right to ask for compensation from the courts for pain and suffering. If the death is the result of someone else’s negligence, and that is successfully proven, you may also be able to seek compensation in other categories at trial. E.g. loss of wages.

Only an experienced wrongful death lawyer is able to walk you through the legal system to obtain the best settlement you are entitled to. Understand that filing a wrongful death suit is not a criminal matter. A suit such as this is a civil action that charges someone with liability for causing death by reason of negligent actions or with the failure to act which could foreseeably end in death.

In Texas, a wrongful death lawsuit means the burden of the proof is on the plaintiff to show that but for the negligent actions of the defendant, your loved one would not have died. Wrongful death statutes do not apply to an unborn fetus unless they are born alive and subsequently die as the result of an injury inflicted prior to birth.

Most states have wrongful death statute, however some of them are applied differently than the statute in Texas. For instance some statutes preclude a parent recovering for the death of a married, financially independent adult child. In other states only minor children may sue for the death of a parent.

You may recover various damages from your wrongful death lawsuit including compensation for pain and suffering prior to death, punitive damages, property damage, loss of consortium, medical expenses and funeral expenses.

If you have any doubts about the circumstances surrounding the death of your loved one, speak with a competent wrongful death attorney. While it will not bring your loved one back, a wrongful death suit may award you damages that will enable you to get on with your life.

Lance Sharp of The Sharp Firm is an Austin personal injury lawyer specializing in personal injury and accident law in Austin Texas. The lawyers at The Sharp Firm have a collective 40 years experience in being Austin injury lawyers. To learn more visit http://www.sharpfirm.com.

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Friday, October 24th, 2008 Blog Entries

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