Who Can Sue for Wrongful Death in Buffalo, New York?

Who Can Sue for Wrongful Death in Buffalo, New York?
Calendar icon September 12, 2020

Losing a loved one will be the hardest thing you ever have to deal with. When their death is caused by a tragic accident, it’s even worse. If someone is negligent and it results in your loved one’s death, they need to be held accountable. In order for this to happen, you may need to file a wrongful death lawsuit. When this happens, you should reach out to a personal injury lawyer in Buffalo right away. They can focus on the legal side of things so you can spend time with your family.

There are all sorts of accidents that can take the life of your loved one. Nobody wants to think about this. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be prepared if something like this happens. Your family has rights in New York. And, a Buffalo injury attorney can help you protect these rights. The only way to get justice is to pursue the person responsible for your loved one’s death.
Here, we’ll talk about who can sue for wrongful death in New York. We’ll also touch on what sort of damages your lawyer can demand on your behalf. And, since you only have two (2) years to file a wrongful death suit in New York because of the statute of limitations. This means you’ll want to call our office sooner rather than later.

Only Immediate Family Members of the Personal Representative Can File Suit

In New York, as in many other states, only certain people are allowed to sue for wrongful death. Generally speaking, only immediate family can sue. Or, the personal representative for the decedent’s estate. Immediate family includes the following, in order:

  • the victim’s surviving spouse
  • If there is no spouse, then the decedent’s children
  • If there are no kids, the victim’s parents can sue
  • The last resort would be the decedent’s siblings filing suit

No matter what family members survive the victim, the personal representative of the estate can sue for wrongful death. Whatever damages they collect are to be distributed to the decedent’s heirs. The damages would be distributed in the same order as described above. Or, if the decedent has a will, the proceeds of the wrongful death lawsuit will be given to the people named in the will.

The courts will look to take care of the victim’s spouse and children before anyone else. These are the people who are most impacted by the loss of their loved one.

What Sort of Damages Can Your Buffalo Wrongful Death Lawyer Demand?

If your loved one is killed due to someone’s negligence, you may have a claim for damages. The damages you can demand include the following:

  • Funeral and burial expenses – You can only demand a reasonable amount for your loved one’s funeral and burial. You won’t be able to demand $50,000 or anything extravagant like that.
  • Loss of companionship and services – These damages can be hard to put a value on. However, if you’ve lost your spouse, you may be entitled to damages since you will no longer have them in your life.
  • Pain and Suffering – These damages are not meant to compensate your family. This represents the pain and suffering your loved one experienced prior to passing away.
  • Medical Bills – Of course, you can demand any medical bills your loved one accrued due to the accident and your loved one’s death.

It’s your Buffalo wrongful death lawyer’s job to get you as much money as possible. However, you can only demand certain types of damages. You can’t ask for punitive damages in most wrongful death lawsuits. Your attorney will let you know every type of damages you can ask for in your lawsuit. They’ll also make sure they try to negotiate a settlement that fully compensated your family.

Contact a Seasoned Wrongful Death Lawyer in Buffalo Today

If your loved one is killed in any sort of accident, you may have a claim for wrongful death. The only way to know for sure is to call and talk to a skilled wrongful death attorney in Buffalo. Call right away and schedule your free initial consultation. Sit down with someone who has your family’s best interests at heart. They can answer any questions you may have. They can also give you an idea of what your claim may be worth. You need to focus on grieving with your family. Let our Buffalo wrongful death lawyers handle the legal side of things for you.

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