It’s a sad reality, but people too commonly lose their lives due to the negligence and misconduct of an establishment or another individual. It’s a difficult topic to talk about, yet we see it in the headlines across the country every day. And while the media tells us the stories, it’s hard to really understand how the family will move on with their loss. But how does the individual who has had their life taken away recover damages if they cannot represent themselves in court? This is where the creation of the civil wrongful death laws in America comes to play. Wrongful death occurs when the family member or members of a person who has been killed by negligence of a person or establishment, can sue for legal damages. Each state has its own guidelines on the procedure of wrongful death, but most commonly it requires a lower standard of proof than the criminal trial. Here is a little background on wrongful death lawsuit settlements.
A wrongful death lawsuit can only be brought on by a personal representative of the descendant’s estate. If a settlement is awarded, the defendant must pay the personal representative damages ranging from personal injury, conscious pain and suffering, or expenses incurred prior to the descendants death. There are four main elements that are required to bring forth in a wrongful death lawsuit.
1) There must be a death of a human being
2) caused by one’s negligence
3) family members are suffering monetary injury as a result
4) an appointment of a personal representative.
Most common cases of wrongful death lawsuit settlements occur in the instance of medical malpractice, automobile injury, criminal behavior, and occupational exposure to hazardous materials. The damages that can be settled for wrongful death are based on “pecuniary injuries”. Pecuniary injuries are the main measure of financial loss that the defendant must pay back. Most states also include an interest rate for the amount of time since the descendants death has occurred. This is the general basis for wrongful death lawsuit settlements. The reality is that these things happen, and when they do it is highly recommended to find a reliable and trusted attorney. The pecuniary injuries and how the court and jury determine them can be a very daunting task that will get you the maximum recovery of your loses. While personal family loss can be a very difficult part of life, you are entitled for a settlement to help recover your losses and move on.
Author Bio: Do you need a wrongful death attorney in Phoenix metro area? Visit The Law Offices of John Phebus for a professional and reliable staff of attorneys that can help you recover the most of your loss.