A wrongful death lawyer understands all of the elements necessary to succeed in a wrongful death claim or lawsuit.
What is a wrongful death case though, and how do you know if you have a claim or not?, by David Chester Ohio wrongful death lawyer.
This type of claim occurs when an individual dies due to any carelessness, negligence, or wrong conduct on the part of another individual, company, or even government entity.
Only the immediate family members of the deceased individual can be included in a claim for damages for a wrongful death action, and this is usually considered the spouses, children, and parents of the person who dies, but this varies by state.
An attorney can evaluate your case and determine whether you have a claim for wrongful death or not. This type of suit must be brought by the representative for the estate of the person who is deceased, and the laws and statutes for this type of claim can vary from one state to the next.
An experienced wrongful death lawyer will also usually advise you in any other types of claims that may arise from the same accident or event. The estate of the deceased may be able to recover for a number of damages suffered by the individual who died before their death as well, including any personal injuries, pain and suffering if applicable, any medical expenses arising from the event before death, and even damages for the knowledge that the deceased had that they were dying in some cases.
The cause of action that belongs to the person who dies and compensates for that person's pain before death is called a survivor claim in Ohio. Odd naming of a cause of action, but true. The survivor claim belongs to the person who does not survive and the wrongful death claim belongs to the people who did not die.
An attorney will help to protect the rights of the immediate family and estate if an individual was killed because someone was careless or negligent in any way. To be successful in this type of case a the lawyer will need to show that all of the required elements are met in your case.
A wrongful death lawyer can help evaluate whether all of the necessary elements are present in your specific case. For you to win your case the law firm that you have retained must show that each of the following elements are met.
What are the four elements of a wrongful death case that you need in order to win?
- An individual died
- This death was the result of either negligence or a malicious intent to cause harm
- The death has caused surviving family members to suffer injury
- A personal representative has been appointed for the estate of the deceased
Without even one of these four elements your lawyer can not be successful in any claim.
What are the ways that a wrongful death can occur?
- A medical mistake may be made causing a patient to die. Note: See this wrongful death case won by Chester Law Group, Ohio wrongful death lawyers, Medical Malpractice: Wrongful death: $850,000.00; failure to diagnose toxic kidney stone.
- A fatal accident involving vehicles of any type can occur.
- Criminal acts such as robbery or murder among others.
- Death during recreational activities that are supervised.
- Even being exposed to chemicals and toxins on the job.
How can a wrongful death lawyer help if you have lost a loved one because of negligence or maliciousness?
Obviously no one person can bring back the one that you lost, but you are usually entitled to pecuniary damages under the law if someone else's actions caused the death.
These are financial damages to compensate you, and they can be the result of a personal injury settlement, wrongful death settlement, or court award after trial.
The wrongful death law firm that you choose can help gather all of the evidence needed to prove the case, and to show all of the required elements that the law needs for your case to succeed.
This may be easy or difficult, depending on the specific circumstances. By consulting with legal counsel as soon as possible after the death in question your case can be evaluated much sooner and any available evidence and documented medical evidence can be collected.
Element number one of a wrongful death claim.
The first element of any wrongful death case may be very easy to prove. This element only requires that a death occurred, and that is usually a pretty simple thing to prove with the death certificate and medical records showing the events leading up to the death being declared.
Element number two of a wrongful death case.
Element number two may be harder for a wrongful death attorney to prove; because it must be shown that the death was either the result of negligence or maliciousness.
In some cases this is done through witness testimony, police reconstruction reports, and other evidence. Expert witnesses may be called by your lawyer if the wrongful death is the result of medical malpractice or certain other factors are involved.
If this element cannot be proven then no claim can be made for damages, and many experienced wrongful death attorneys understand which defenses are frequently used by the other side and how to eliminate them. It makes sense. For someone to be financially liable for a death, they had to have done something wrong to cause the death, either by action or inaction if they have a duty to act.
Element number three of a wrongful death claim.
Element three means that your lawyer must be able to prove that the family members suffered damages due to the death.
Even if the deceased was a stay at home mom and housewife there are damages caused by the death.
The hardest part of this element is putting a value on pain and suffering family members suffer and will suffer because of the loss of their family member.
Financial loss is easier to calculate. An experienced attorney in wrongful death cases can show that the death caused the need for services to be acquired and paid for which would have otherwise been provided at no cost if the death did not occur.
Lost wages, funeral expenses, the loss of guidance and companionship, these are just a few of the damages that you may be entitled to because of the death. A competent and experienced lawyer can help you recover the money you deserve in a wrongful death case.
Fourth Element of a wrongful death case.
The fourth element that your attorney will need to show is simple to meet because it is procedural in nature.
A personal representative for the estate must be appointed before any wrongful death claim can be considered.
Meeting all of the elements of a wrongful death claim is not always difficult when you have chosen a qualified wrongful death lawyer to represent the estate. If you have lost a family member because someone else was negligent or maliciously harmful then you need someone who will fight for your rights.
Ohio wrongful death law firm Chester Law Group have attorneys who are experienced in wrongful death claims. They have 16 offices in Ohio for your convenience if you would like to meet with them to discuss a possible case.
The featured Chester Law Group office for this article is their main office in Akron, Ohio.