No amount of money can ever make up for the tragic loss of a loved one following a fatal accident. As such, we would like to begin by extending our sincere condolences at this distressing time.
While taking legal action may not be a priority for you right now, we know how important monetary damages are in helping families cope financially in the absence of their loved ones. This guide explains how to seek compensation from the responsible party through civil action and how our wrongful death lawyers serving Sarasota can help.
What Is a ‘Wrongful Death Lawsuit’?
A wrongful death claim is a civil lawsuit entirely separate from criminal prosecution. Its purpose is to compensate the deceased’s surviving family for their loss following a death caused by the negligence or misconduct of another person or organization. Wrongful death actions can be filed for a variety of reasons, stemming from:
- Auto accidents involving cars, trucks, motorbikes, or boats
- Workplace accidents
- Dangerous or defective products
- Fatal slip and fall accidents
- Medical malpractice
The key to proving a wrongful death lawsuit is building evidence that demonstrates the responsible party was negligent. To do this, you or your lawyer will need to show that:
- The defendant (the at-fault party) owed your loved one a duty of care
- The defendant breached that duty (they did or did not do something that most people in the same situation would)
- Your family member died as a result
- As surviving family members, you suffered damages due to the loss of your loved one
Our wrongful death attorneys are sensitive to the grieving process, so we know you are going through a most difficult ordeal right now. Let us take on the responsibility of building and pursuing your case with as little intrusion on you and your family as possible.
For a free legal consultation with a wrongful death lawyer serving Sarasota, call (561) 995-1966
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in Sarasota?
Like most states in America, Florida has specific rules for wrongful death action regarding who is eligible to file a claim and how long they have to begin legal proceedings. Most wrongful death lawsuits must be filed within two years per the state’s statute of limitations Florida Statutes § 95.11. It is filed by the Personal Representative of the estate seeking to recover damages on behalf of:
- Younger children (defined as being under the age of 25)
- Adult children (if there is no surviving spouse)
- Both parents of a deceased minor child or baby
- The parents of the deceased, when there are no other survivors
Other relatives who depended on the deceased for financial support may also be eligible after the primary beneficiaries listed above file a claim.
Sarasota Wrongful Death Lawyer Near Me (561) 995-1966
What Financial Damages Are Recovered in a Wrongful Death Claim?
In Florida, there are several ways damages are calculated in a wrongful death claim. For example, calculating lost income damages would depend on the deceased’s net income and measured against what they would have contributed during their natural lifespan. Bonuses, commissions, or other work-related benefits are also considered. Other financial damages may include:
- Loss of care, support, guidance, and companionship that would otherwise have been provided had the accident not occurred.
- Pain and suffering caused to the victim before they passed and to the bereaved family afterward.
- Medical bills related to the negligent accident
- Funeral expenses
Additionally, in 2014, the Florida Supreme court ruled that caps (limits) on non-economic damages were unconstitutional; therefore, there is no financial cap on wrongful death claims.
How Our Wrongful Death Attorneys Support Bereaved Families
When our clients hire us to represent them in wrongful death claims, their needs and best interests are our top priority. We want you to know we will go the extra mile for you during this extremely distressing and sad time by managing every aspect of your claim and getting you the answers you deserve.
We offer a free initial consultation and provide our legal services on a contingency fee arrangement. This means we provide the financial resources to build and pursue your claim and only recover our fees when we achieve a favorable outcome for your case via a settlement or court verdict.
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Examples of Situations That Could Give Rise to a Wrongful Death Lawsuit
Many circumstances result in fatal accidents, which could be the basis of a wrongful death lawsuit. Examples include:
- Motorists who drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Drivers who use their smartphones to text behind the wheel
- Reckless driving, such as speeding
- Commercial trucking companies who fail to maintain their fleets properly
- Companies who cut corners when manufacturing or testing the safety of their products
- Companies who fail to list warnings about their products on labels or instructions
- Construction site accidents involving electrocution, falls, explosions, or crush injuries
- Fatal slip and fall accidents caused by unattended wet floors, uneven pavements, or poor lighting
- Medical negligence such as failing to diagnose, surgical errors, or mistakes with medication
- Companies who fail to train their staff properly
- Companies who fail to conduct proper background checks before hiring an employee
Whatever the nature of the accident that caused your loved one’s passing, if it was the result of another’s negligence or misconduct, you have the right to take legal action and pursue compensation.
Reach Out for Support and Advice from Our Compassionate Team Today
Our wrongful death attorneys provide compassionate support for our clients, blended with aggressive representation during wrongful death litigation. We are honored to have been helping families who lost a loved one in an accident caused by someone else since 1995. We are keen to help you, too. If you have questions or want to know more about your legal options, schedule a free initial consultation with our team today.