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Wrongful Death

When a person dies because of what another person or company did, a wrongful death lawsuit should be considered.  Family members might be able to receive money for their loss for such things as future lost income the deceased family member would have earned, funeral expenses, medical expenses, and loss of their relationship.

Wrongful death claims can result from many types of fatal incidents such as car crashes, injuries from a company’s product or a medical provider’s medical negligence.  Persons, companies, and government agencies can be held responsible when they act in a way that causes death to a family member.

Many different circumstances can be considered a wrongful death claim such as:

  • A Medical provider’s negligence that causes a death
  • Exposure to hazardous substances or conditions
  • Automobile or airplane crashes
  • Death during a supervised activity 

Who can sue for Wrongful Death?

Generally, a wrongful death claim has to be made by a “representative” on behalf of the family or family member who has suffered because of a wrongful death.  Usually, the representative of the estate of the person who died makes the claim.  Persons who might be able to make a wrongful death claim are:

  • Immediate family members such as spouses and children (including adopted children), and the parents of unmarried children all can recover damages under wrongful death actions.
  • Distant family members such as brothers or sisters, or grandparents.  For instance, grandparents who are raising a child.
  • Life partners, financial dependents, and putative spouses. In some states a domestic or life partner, or anyone who was financially dependent on the decedent, can recover.  “Putative” just means someone who had a good faith belief he or she was married to the decedent.

Who can be sued for a Wrongful Death?

People, companies, and government agencies can be sued for a death because of their negligence.  For example, if a person has been fatally injured in a car crash that involves a semi-truck with a tire blow-out.  Wrongful death claims could include the following defendants:

  • The driver at fault for the crash itself
  • The tire manufacturer
  • The automobile manufacturer for not providing a safe tire.
  • A manufacturer, distributor, or installer of a dangerous or faulty part of the vehicle
  • The trucking company who did not properly train the truck driver

Need more answers?

Call us at Mountain View Law Group for a free consultation to get your questions answered.

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