Understanding Wrongful Death Lawsuits

in Death
When you have someone close to you pass away it can be very hard to understand how to deal with the death. There may be certain situations in which you can file for a wrongful death lawsuit and receive the proper compensation.

If your loved one was killed because of the wrongful actions of another individual you can file a lawsuit against the individual that was responsible for the death. Taking the time to understand what your rights are and what compensation you can receive is important.

As you are first investigating this you want to take the time to understand the statutes that have been laid out for your state. The can differ from state to state, but they will have the guidelines that will define who is able to sue for wrongful death.

These statutes may also lay out the limits that govern any award of damages. When the statutes were first created they were made so that widows and orphans would have the financial support that they needed if their parents or husband passed away.

Many people do not understand that a wrongful death accusation is much different than a criminal charge. When one is being charged for the criminal charges in someone's death, neither of the proceeding affects or controls the other.

When someone brings forth a wrongful death suit, it can be or either an intentional or an unintentional act. This act must result in an injury that results in death for an individual to be suing for a wrongful death.

For example, if someone is in a fight and takes a blow to the head which ends up resulting in death the act was intentional. On the other hand, when someone is killed in an automobile accident by a driver that accidently makes a mistake it is an unintentional death.

There are also omissions or failure to act statutes. This could include a family that does not enclose a swimming pool in the yard and a child sneaks into their pool and ends up drowning because they were able to get into the water.

Interestingly, a fetus does not have these same rights. It is not until a baby is born and alive that the individual has the rights that govern the rest of us and would be protected under the statutes of wrongful death.

Even if there was some action that caused the death of the baby before he or she was born, they are still protected. It is important to understand if your loved one was protected by the statutes that your state has set out.

You also have to make sure that you are the individual that can sue. Taking the time to understand where you fall legally is important because you will not be able to sue if the statutes do not deem you able.

Usually, the statutes will allow the surviving spouse, next of kin or children to sue. There are some states that will even allow the surviving spouse to bring this lawsuit to the court if even he or she was separated with the deceased.

There are few people that fall under the legal exception of being able to have immunity from a wrongful suit. You want to make sure that you understand who you are going to sue and if you have the legal right to sue them.

Traditionally, family members have been exempt from suing one another. You have to make sure that you understand where your state stands with this rule because many states have done away with this type of law.

When you are suing for wrongful death you have to have proof that there are acts or omissions of the defendant were the cause of the deceased's death. In most states this means that the defendant's wrongful actions have to have led to the injury that led to death.

There are also usually limitations to the damages that you can recover. You have to make sure that you know what limit the state has set on the money that you can recover in the suit so that you are not expecting too much from your lawsuit.

Some states do not have a limit to the damages that can be collected. Take the time to research as much as you can before you take your case to the courts so that you are able to be more prepared and capable of winning the lawsuit that you and your lawyer prepare.
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Terry Daniels has 1 articles online

Terry Daniels has been working with personal injury law in Utah for the past 10 years. He has written hundreds of articles dealing with the subject. He recommends this Utah injury lawyer.

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Understanding Wrongful Death Lawsuits

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This article was published on 2010/11/30