If a loved one dies in an accident that was caused due to the fault or negligence of another person, the close relatives of the deceased are entitled to bring a civil suit demanding compensation for their loss. This is to recompense them for the pain and suffering, loss of income, care, guidance and companionship, any medical expenses that might have been incurred, funeral expenses, etc.
Criminal action can be instituted against those responsible as well. However, even if the person responsible is found guilty in a criminal case, the family of the victim still faces a huge financial burden and grief and deserves compensation which can be the only way to assuage their suffering. Wrongful death suits are most commonly filed against a corporation or company that caused the death but they are also filed against persons and government agencies. Families of the deceased must contact a personal injury lawyer immediately to understand and safeguard their rights.
The Most Common Causes of Wrongful Death
Typically, some of the most common causes that lead to wrongful death include:
Automobile Accidents: Traffic fatalities are the most common cause of wrongful death. In most cases, these accidents are caused because the driver was under the influence of drugs/alcohol, fatigued, inexperienced or distracted. Poor visibility, bad weather and road conditions, defective automobile parts, inadequate signage etc are other reasons for fatal auto crashes. Death of the driver/s, co-passengers and pedestrians may result and the relatives of victims are entitled to receive compensation. Pedestrians are particularly vulnerable, especially seniors and children. Our accident injury lawyers available 24×7 can conduct independent investigations and establish the fault.
Medical Malpractice: includes dental, clinical malpractice caused by physicians, health-care providers, institutions etc. Common types include failure to diagnose or mis-diagnosis, anesthesia-related problems, wrong treatment/medication etc. which lead to death. Our free consultation injury lawyer can assess your claims, examine the circumstances, get them evaluated by independent medical experts and assist you with seeking compensation.
Work-place Accidents: Work-place is another area where wrongful death occurs. It could happen on a construction site, a busy factory, an office-space, garage or shop premises. Many work-place accidents or injuries are caused by the working conditions themselves or are connected in some way to them. For instance, factory-workers exposed to hazardous substances, nurses working round the clock or death caused by malfunctioning machinery/equipment, etc can result in wrongful death.
Criminal Acts: People who murder others can be sued in a civil court, quite separately from the criminal court proceedings.
Defective or malfunctioning products, unsafe premises, lack of security etc are other reasons for wrongful death.
Those Who Can File Wrongful Death Claims
A claim of wrongful death can be brought only by certain specified people, based on their relationship with the deceased and their interest in the case. Usually, a representative, legal heir or executor of the deceased’s estate files the case and these people are known as the real parties in interest. However, who is entitled to be known as the real parties in interest may vary from country to country, state to state. Our personal injury lawyers can clarify the legal aspects.
Typically, the suit is brought by:
• Close family members: including spouses, parents and children. Adopted children are also eligible.
• Partners/Companions, Dependents: Some states allow live-in partners, partners who in good faith believe that they were married to the victim and others who were financially dependent on the victim.
• More distant family members: Siblings, grandparents etc who were in a close relationship with the victim.
• Anyone who was financially dependent.
• Parents of a deceased fetus.
Those who can be sued by the representatives of the deceased for wrongful death include:
• At-fault driver of the vehicle/s involved in the collision
• Owners of the at-fault vehicle
• Building/road-way contractors
• Municipal or government agencies
• Manufacturer and distributor of defective parts
• People who sold, served liquor to DUI driver and the premises owner
Certain governmental agencies in some countries/states have immunity that prevents them from being made a party in a wrongful death suit. Our experienced personal injury lawyers can advise you on these matters.
Types of damages
Our immediate injury lawyer available for consultation can advise that damages include economic and non-economic damages for expenditure incurred before the person died, funeral expenses and loss of present/future income, loss of care, guidance, companionship, compensation for the household chores the person did and the pain and suffering caused by the loss. Often, the judges award punitive damages in very severe cases, where the driver/at-fault party’s behavior or negligence was particularly outrageous.
If you, your family or a friend has been injured in an accident, please feel free to speak to one of our injury lawyers for a free consultation about how we are able to assist in making a personal injury claim. We consult in all cities across Ontario with a no win no fee guarantee. Our personal injury lawyers have helped victims secure millions of dollars in personal injury cases. Call us Toll Free On our 24/7 Injury Hotline: 1 – 844 495 7333 or Text a Personal Injury Lawyer 24/7 and get instant help.TM (416 807 3486)
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