One of the hardest aspects of a wrongful death legal matter is that the family impacted, will have to pursue legal action within two years. This may sound like a decent amount of time, but to build a successful case, you will need as much time possible. This means, while you are still mourning the loss of your loved one, you’ll have to take a more in-depth look at what happened and who was at fault, which can be hard for family members to do.
At King Law, we help survivors of wrongful death victims find peace of mind and justice when terrible incidents take place. If you have found yourself in this situation, we encourage you to reach out to our wrongful death law firm in Naples so we can help you through this unfortunate time.
In this article, we are going to explore what a wrongful death lawsuit is, the process and other additional details that will be helpful when working through this legal matter.
Florida Wrongful Death Defined
One entity may bring suit against another person/entity in a civil court if they can provide evidence of negligence. This means that the person/entity accused will have acted negligently, and had a duty to the other person to not cause harm to them. Wrongful death will also have to prove that the person/entity breached that duty of care and caused the death to occur. These factors will have to be established in a lawsuit. A Naples wrongful death attorney will be able to decipher the laws and details, so you know how to pursue your case.
Party to File Wrongful Death Suit
While a person will likely be the one filing a wrongful death suit, they do so on behalf of the deceased’s estate. If someone is named in a will, that person will take the lead in the wrongful death legal matter. If there isn’t a designated person, the court will appoint someone to handle these responsibilities.
Examples of Wrongful Death Lawsuits
- Traffic accident fatality
- Slip and fall accident at a business
- A medical complication during surgery
- Defective products
- Death resulting from an altercation
How Damages are Assessed in Wrongful Death
A Naples wrongful death lawyer can walk you through the specifics of how your particular case will be assessed for damages, but here are some basic principles to keep in mind.
- Economic Damages – Often, there is a financial burden that is placed on the survivors of a victim, and an attorney can assist in calculating what those are and how you should be compensated.
- Emotional Damages – These damages are referred to as “pain and suffering” and are harder to calculate. However, your Naples wrongful death lawyer will be able to walk through this process and create an appropriate calculation with you.
- Loss of Life – This is similar to that of emotional damages but also takes into account the loss of relationships among those outside of the spouse, how the death impacts a business, how the loss impacts children and their emotional and financial wellbeing, etc.
Another Note on the Statute of Limitations
As we mentioned, you have only two years to file a wrongful death lawsuit, and this can be a tight deadline for your legal team to construct an undeniable case for you. They need time to gather evidence, interview witnesses, consult with specialists and gather documents to support your claim. These things can take a significant amount of time, especially if some of this evidence requires the cooperation for the entity being sued. There are very few exceptions to have that time frame extended, and you’ll need a skilled wrongful death law firm in Naples to help you through that if needed.
The Basic Process of a Wrongful Death Lawsuit
Now that you have a better idea about what a lawsuit like this is and the factors that are involved, let’s look at the basic process of filing a claim.
- You Know or Suspect Wrongful Death – When you feel you have this sort of case, you will want to contact a wrongful death attorney in Naples as quickly as possible. The statute of limitations begins on the date of your loved one’s death.
- Investigation of Claim – Once you bring your case, details, and supporting evidence to your attorney they will begin their investigation. This may include specialists, private investigators, document recovery and other types of evidence gathering.
- File the Lawsuit – Your attorney will then file the actual lawsuit in a civil court where all parties involved will be alerted to the claim.
- The Discovery Period – During this process, both sides of the lawsuit will request information and evidence to support or deny the claim. This period can take longer as getting documents is a tricky legal back and forth. Your lawyer will decipher what should or shouldn’t be shared with the defense or what information may need to be protected by filing for privilege.
- Discovery Closes Triggering the Start of Trail – After the discovery period ends, your lawyer will prepare for trial, and a date will be set. There is no telling how long these proceedings will take. The length of a trial is determined by how complicated the case is.
- A Verdict – Once both sides have made their closing arguments, a judge or jury will determine the outcome of your wrongful death lawsuit. If you believe the case didn’t reach the right result, your attorney can file an appeal.
We are here to help you through a wrongful death lawsuit, and we are sorry for your loss. We hope by working with King Law, we can help ease the pain of this tragedy by getting the justice you deserve. Call or connect with us today if you feel we can help you.