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 for 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 damages 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.
Other kinds of wrongful deaths may result from the following:
- Defective products
- Medical neglect
- Intentional wrongdoing
- A drunk driver
- Construction accident
Any of these and more can lead to fatal injuries and may qualify for a wrongful death suit. An experienced lawyer from Bader Scott Injury Lawyers can help you throughout the claims process. You deserve a fair settlement for your loss and we will stand by you during this difficult time.
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Wrongful Death FAQsHow Hard Is It to Prove Wrongful Death?How Does a Wrongful Death Claim Work?What Is the Statute of Limitations on Wrongful Death?What Is a Wrongful Death Claim?How Much is a Wrongful Death Lawsuit Worth?What Happens After a Wrongful Death Deposition?
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.
Economic damages are economic losses that can be determined through family records, tax forms, pay stubs, and the like. These damages may include:
- Loss of income
- Loss of benefits
- Future promotions and the increased pay your loved one would have earned if they were still alive
- loss of inheritance
Non-economic damages are less tangible losses. The compensation for these losses will be determined by the unique circumstances of your case. These compensatory damages may include:
- Loss of companionship family members would have benefited from if your loved one was still alive
- Loss of guidance
- Loss of consortium
- Emotional distress
- Pain and suffering
The second type of claim involves financial deficits the estate has suffered due to the decedent’s unexpected death. These may include:
- Medical bills related to your loved one’s terminal illness or injury
- Burial costs
- 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. This is known as the statute of limitations and it is vital to filing a claim.
The amount of time allowed varies from state to state. In Georgia, O.C.G.A. § 9-3-33 states that you have 2 years from the date of death to file a wrongful death claim against the responsible party. However, there are exceptions. It is best to check with an attorney who is familiar with Georgia state law 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.
The experienced lawyers at Bader Scott Injury Lawyers are ready to help you through this stressful time in your life. We can take care of all of the paperwork while you focus on recovering from the tragic loss of a loved one. You do not need to stand alone. We are here to help.
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 to discuss your case with a member of our team.
The initial consultation is free. Additionally, we do not charge any upfront fees. We work on a contingency fee basis only. No hourly charges, and no additional 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.