A wrongful death claim allows surviving family members to hold the at-fault party legally accountable in a civil court case.
If you lost a loved one due to someone else’s negligent or intentional actions, you might be able to seek damages through a wrongful death claim or lawsuit.
Types of Wrongful Death
Many different circumstances can be considered a wrongful death. Your loved one may have been killed in a car accident that was not their fault. In that case, the other driver, auto parts manufacturer, or even the local government may be held liable if there was a defect in the road or a traffic signal was not working properly.
Your family member may have suffered a slip and fall on someone else’s property and passed away as a result of their injuries. If you can prove the following, you may have the basis of a wrongful death claim:
- The property owner had a reasonable duty of care to keep visitors safe from harm.
- The property owner violated their duty of care.
- The property owner’s violation caused your loved one’s injuries and subsequent death.
- Your loved one’s injuries and/or passing resulted in financial losses for you.
If your loved one passed away following a botched medical procedure and you can prove it was due to the doctor’s negligence, you may have a claim for wrongful death. Wrongful death cases can be complex and difficult to navigate on your own. This is where a personal injury attorney can help by gathering the evidence and facts needed to build a strong case on your loved one’s behalf.
For a free legal consultation, call (404) 888-8888
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim in Georgia?
In Georgia, the law is specific as to who can bring a wrongful death action. Typically, that person is the surviving spouse, or the child, if there is no surviving spouse. If there is neither a spouse nor child, a parent of the decedent can file a wrongful death claim.
Sometimes there is a personal representative of the deceased’s estate who can bring forth a civil action if no living relatives are available. In this case, if any compensation is recovered in a lawsuit, the funds would be held by the estate for the deceased’s next of kin.
Recoverable Damages in a Wrongful Death Claim in Georgia
Georgia acknowledges two different types of cases when it comes to wrongful death claims. The first recognizes the “full value of the life of the deceased.” This is filed on behalf of the surviving family members and includes economic and non-economic damages related to the deceased loved one’s life, including:
- Lost income and benefits/promotions your loved one would have made if they were still alive
- Loss of companionship family members would have benefited from if your loved one was still alive
The second claim involves financial deficits the estate has suffered due to the decedent’s unexpected death. These include:
- Medical bills related to your loved one’s terminal illness or injury
- Burial and funeral costs
- Pain and suffering related to what your loved one endured leading up to their death
This is no doubt a difficult time for your family. You must take the time to grieve your loss even though you want to seek justice on behalf of your loved one. A wrongful death attorney in Atlanta can handle all aspects of your claim from start to finish so you can focus on healing.
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Time Limits on Filing a Wrongful Death Claim in Georgia
It is important to keep in mind that every state has a limit on the amount of time you have to file a wrongful death claim. The amount of time varies from state to state and is typically between two and four years from the date of death. However, there are exceptions. It is best to check with an attorney who is familiar with the statute of limitations in Georgia and to ensure all paperwork is filed in a timely manner.
If the window of opportunity closes, the court may refuse to hear your case. At that point, you would not be able to seek compensation. A lawyer will also be able to explain any exceptions to the laws and statutes that apply to your unique case.
Contact Bader Scott Injury Lawyers for Help
There may be nothing more painful and shocking than losing a loved one due to another individual’s negligence. However, there are steps you can take to seek justice on behalf of your family member. Call Bader Scott Injury Lawyers at (404) 888-8888 to discuss your case with a member of our team.
The initial consultation is free. Additionally, we do not charge any upfront fees. We only get paid if we secure a settlement on your loved one’s behalf. Reach out to our team to hear more about how a wrongful death claim works in Georgia.