If your family has lost a member, it’s likely that a lawsuit isn’t on your mind at all. With that said, in cases where the death occurred because of negligent behavior, filing a lawsuit may be your best course of action. A wrongful death suit can be a way to ensure that the negligent party is held responsible for their actions. Winning a case like this can ease a family’s burdens and can even provide some measure of closure.
The Brookhaven wrongful death lawyers at Cellino Law can assist you if you’ve lost a loved one. We understand how difficult this can be, and we’re happy to provide guidance and expertise. There are strict deadlines for making a wrongful death claim, which is why fast action is so important. Thankfully, our legal team can work with our clients and speed up the process. We know this is a hard time for any household, and we’ll do everything in our power to make this easier for you. Contact our Brookhaven injury firm today at (800) 555-5555.
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What Makes A Death Wrongful?
If a death was caused by a party’s misconduct or negligent behavior, that death could be classified as wrongful. Wrongful deaths may occur because of medical malpractice, construction accidents, vehicle accidents, or nursing home neglect. The individual representing the estate of the deceased can choose to make a wrongful death claim against the party or parties responsible.
The purpose of these lawsuits is to seek damages for surviving family members. The surviving members could include:
- The victim’s spouse or romantic partner
- The victim’s surviving children
- The victim’s parents if the victim was still a minor
Building A Case For A Wrongful Death Lawsuit
When making a wrongful death claim, you will need to establish that the death was untimely and that it was caused because of the misconduct or negligence of the party responsible. It must be demonstrated that the negligence or misconduct directly caused the death or contributed to it.
If a person shows misconduct, they are disregarding the harm their behavior may cause to others. Negligence, however, means that the party did not reasonably address or respond to a situation. For example, in the case of elder abuse, an employee at a nursing home could have shown negligence by not providing a patient with care in an appropriate amount of time.
In order to establish a strong case, there are two different things that need to be proven. If Cellino Law takes on your case, they will work to establish the following things:
The Responsible Party Owes A Duty
All individuals are obligated to behave responsibly. Individuals are responsible for the consequences of their own behavior. To protect people around them, individuals are legally obligated to avoid behaviors that can harm others.
The Defendant Breached That Legal Duty
It is necessary to show evidence to support that the defendant engaged in recklessness or carelessness and that their behavior was unreasonable. It must be demonstrated that their negligence or misconduct led to wrongful death.
Who Has The Option Of Filing A Wrongful Death Suit In Buffalo?
In New York State, the only individual that has the right to make a wrongful death claim is the personal representative of the deceased’s estate. The County Surrogate’s Court appoints that representative. This individual could be the estate’s administrator or executor. If there is a will, it may name an individual as an executor of the estate. If there is no executor specified, an administrator will be decided on by the Surrogate’s Court.
In Brookhaven, NY, these families members are able to make a wrongful death claim:
- Biological or adopted children
- The spouse of the deceased
- Any living blood relatives that were financially dependent on the deceased
- The deceased’s parents
What Can Be Recovered By A Wrongful Death Lawsuit?
Money can’t make up for the loss you’ve experienced if someone you love has passed away. Because of this, claims in Brookhaven typically look at the economic impact that death has had. The damages in wrongful death claims can be divided into two main categories. The first category involves the pain and suffering experienced by the victim. Typically, a forensic pathologist will analyze the case and provide testimony. Survivors may find it hard to learn about the suffering their loved one went through before their death. However, this testimony can be crucial when seeking compensation.
The second category related to the financial contributions the victim made to their household and their future earning potential. Financial records will be evaluated to better determine the financial impact the death has had on the household. Many types of damages can be a part of a wrongful death lawsuit, such as:
- Medical expenses the deceased needed because of the accident
- Funeral and burial or cremation costs
- The value of services that were provided by the deceased, including child care or healthcare coverage
- Loss of future wages
- The loss of inheritance or any additional assets the victim may have had
- The loss of a parent for any surviving children
During the calculation of economic damages, there are two main factors that are looked at: the age the victim was at the time of death, and the life expectancy of a victim. These factors hold a great deal of weight when it comes to a loss of wages. If a child loses a parent while they are still young, they lose financial support that they would have relied on as they grew toward adulthood.
Sadly, the pain and the suffering of the surviving family members is not something that New York state currently considers when assessing damages. This is unfortunate and is not as compassionate as it should be. Our lawyers are proficient in wrongful death cases, which is why we are working hard to pressure New York into considering emotional damages when calculating damages. Currently, however, we will work to get you the maximum compensation available under the law.
Reach Out To Cellino Law For Help From A Brookhaven Wrongful Death Lawyer
It’s important to remember that wrongful death claims are subject to time limitations. If the representative has decided that they want to take legal action, it’s crucial to respond swiftly to avoid these time limits. If public authorities are involved in the case, these limitations will be more strict. Since it is not possible to have the statute of limitations extended by the courts, survivors must take immediate action. Reach out to our Brookhaven personal injury lawyers so that we can get things started for you.