In the most tragic situations, a negligent act or omission may lead to death. When this happens, some surviving family members of the deceased could have a cause of action for a wrongful death lawsuit. The untimely death of a loved one is painful. Having the emotional turmoil and grief compounded by financial concerns can make healing seem impossible.
If you believe negligence caused a loved one’s death, you may benefit from speaking with a compassionate Franklin County wrongful death lawyer. Our dedicated personal injury attorneys can provide more information regarding wrongful death lawsuits, how to file a claim for maximum compensation, and who is eligible to file a wrongful death lawsuit. This can be a complicated area of the law, so it is important that you obtain legal counsel as soon as possible. Allow our legal team to help you pursue justice for your loved one.
Who Can Recover Compensation in Franklin County?
Following a wrongful death, only certain people are able to bring a claim against a negligent party. Your relationship to the deceased will determine whether you may bring forward a wrongful death claim.
The first category of individuals who may file a civil suit under a wrongful death action is immediate family members, as detailed by Missouri Revised Statutes § 537.080. This category includes the deceased’s husband or wife, children, or parents. If no one in the first category is entitled to bring forth a claim, a sibling would be able to file next. If the first two categories are exhausted, the court may appoint someone to represent the wrongful death claim.
There are various expenses to consider when determining the value of damages in a wrongful death action. A wrongful death attorney in Franklin County can help you evaluate the cost of funeral expenses, the loss of consortium, loss of companionship, and loss of support. During a trial, the jury may consider the suffering or pain the deceased individual experienced prior to death. Depending on the circumstances, a jury could choose to award damages for this pain and suffering as well.
Causes of a Wrongful Death
When someone dies due to another’s failure to exercise reasonable care, there may be cause for a wrongful death claim. Negligence that leads to neglect of a nursing home resident or a traffic accident may qualify for a wrongful death lawsuit. Mistakes made by a doctor or a hospital, or illnesses caused by dangerous drugs may also result in a negligence lawsuit for wrongful death. Even dog attacks and slips and falls may lead to an at-fault party being held liable for a person’s passing. For this reason, a Franklin County wrongful death lawyer could help investigate the cause of death and evaluate a potential claim.
A dedicated lawyer can determine if you are eligible to file a claim and help guide you through the filing process. Since Missouri maintains a time limit for filing claims related to wrongful death, it is important to act promptly to ensure that a claim is filed within the time allotted by law. Generally, a wrongful death lawsuit must be filed within three years of the day the deceased individual died.
Call a Franklin County Wrongful Death Attorney
After the passing of a loved one, pursuing legal action may be the last thing on your mind. However, understanding the options available may help you make an informed decision about how to proceed. Seeking compensation and justice from a wrongful death action could help cover the cost of necessary expenses and support you during this difficult time.
A Franklin County wrongful death lawyer can walk you through the process for recovery, answer any questions that you may have regarding negligence and liability, and zealously represent you in court. Allow a compassionate trial attorney to handle the legal battle for you so you can concentrate on the process of moving forward.