What is Considered Wrongful Death? - The Mabra Firm

What is Considered Wrongful Death?

Atlanta wrongful death attorney

If someone dies because of the misconduct or negligence of someone else, their family members or survivors can contact an Atlanta Wrongful Death Lawyer and sue for wrongful death.

A wrongful death lawsuit seeks compensation for the survivor’s losses.

But what is considered wrongful death? How do you prove it?

In the article below, we will answer those questions and take a deep dive into wrongful death lawsuits.

What’s a Wrongful Death Claim?

A wrongful death claim is a type of lawsuit that can be filed when a person dies due to someone else’s legal fault.

The right to file a wrongful death lawsuit is a relatively new concept.

“Common Law,” which were the laws brought from England to the United States, didn’t include wrongful death.

But during the last century, both state and federal courts created the right to bring wrongful death suits.

Now every state in the country, including Georgia, has wrongful death laws.

Wrongful death claims can involve all types of fatal accidents,

Everything from a car accident to medical malpractice to product liability.

People, companies, and government agencies can all be found at fault for acting negligently and causing the death of another person.

Wrongful death lawyer in Atlanta

The Four Key Elements of Wrongful Death Cases

For you to bring a valid wrongful death claim, you have to prove four elements.

They are:

Negligence

For your wrongful death claim to be successful, it has to be proven that the death was caused either by part or in whole by the carelessness, recklessness, or the defendant’s negligent actions.

Breach of Duty

You will also need to prove that the defendant owed a duty of care to the victim.

For example, every time you drive your car, you have the duty to drive safely and follow and obey all traffic laws.

Medical health providers also have a duty to maintain a person’s health.

For a wrongful death claim to be successful, the plaintiff will have to establish that the defendant owed a duty of care to the victim and that the duty of care was breached due to their negligent actions.

Causation

Also, to prove that the defendant breached the duty of care, you will be required to demonstrate how the defendant’s negligence caused the death of your loved one.

Damages

The last step in proving a wrongful death case is generating quantifiable damages.

These damages are very similar to the type of damage that can be won in a personal injury claim if the victim had survived.

These damages can include:

  • Hospitalizations
  • Medical expenses
  • Burial expense
  • Any funeral expense
  • Loss of income
  • Loss of potential earnings
  • Loss of protection, guidance, and inheritance
  • Loss of Consortium
  • Pain and suffering of the victim before their death

Proving these damages in a wrongful death lawsuit may require the production of solid and convincing evidence, and some evidence may require the testimony of expert witnesses.

An experienced wrongful death attorney will help you build your case around the provided facts and evidence.

Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim?

A wrongful death claim is typically filed by a representative of the estate of the deceased victim.

It’s filed on behalf of the survivors who had a relationship with the victim and those survivors that can file varies from state to state.

In every state, a spouse can bring a wrongful death action on behalf of the deceased person.

The parent of a minor can also bring a wrongful death action if one of their children is killed.

Minors can also collect compensation if their parent is killed.

State laws start to differ when it comes to whether or not parents of adult children can sue, if adult children can sue for the wrongful death of their parents, if grown siblings can sue for wrongful death, or if extended relatives like cousins, aunts, uncles, or grandparents can sue on behalf of the deceased person.

The more distant the familial relationship is, the harder it will be to bring forward a wrongful death case.

In some states, marriage isn’t a requirement for a romantic partner to bring a wrongful death claim. Anyone who can show financial dependence on the deceased can bring a claim in some states.

Atlanta wrongful death lawyers

Who Can Be Sued for a Wrongful Death?

Wrongful death lawsuits can be brought on behalf of a deceased person against a wide variety of persons, companies, and government agencies.

In a fatal car accident involving a drunk driver and a damaged roadway, a wrongful death action could be brought against:

  • the drunk driver at fault in the automobile accident
  • the designer or builder of the faulty roadway
  • government agents that failed to provide adequate warnings regarding the road hazard
  • the person who served alcohol to the impaired driver
  • the owner of the premises where the drinks were served

Contact A Wrongful Death Lawyer In Georgia

Proving and then winning a wrongful death claim without an experienced attorney is extremely difficult.

Even if you manage to win it on your own, you still risk not receiving the compensation you deserve.

A Georgia wrongful death attorney will be well-versed in the state’s laws around such claims. 

The Mabra Law Firm has the expertise that will prove to be invaluable in proving your case and keeping it moving along throughout the process. 

Contact the Mabra Law Firm today to schedule your Free Consultation so they can help you through this difficult time.