Wellington Wrongful Death Lawyer
Losing a loved one is always difficult. When you have lost a loved one due to the negligent or careless actions of another person though, it is even more frustrating and upsetting. You may be able to file a wrongful death claim to recover certain damages the loss has cost you. Wrongful death laws in Florida are very complex, however. Before filing a claim, it is important to work with a Wellington wrongful death lawyer that can help you secure a fair settlement.
What is a Wrongful Death?
A wrongful death occurs when the negligent actions of another person or company causes a death that would otherwise have been avoidable. Wrongful death cases are civil claims and are separate from the criminal justice system. So, while a person could file a wrongful death claim if their loved one had been murdered, the outcome of the criminal case would have no bearing on the civil claim.
Why Does Wrongful Death Occur?
Tragically, wrongful deaths occur for a variety of reasons. The most common of these include:
- Bicycle accidents
- Boating accidents
- Car accidents
- Cruise ship accidents
- Golf cart accidents
- Medical malpractice
- Motorcycle accidents
- Nursing home neglect and abuse
- Pedestrian accidents
- Premises liability accidents
- Defective products
- Truck accidents
- Workplace accidents
Any time a person loses their life due to one of the above reasons, they can file a claim for compensation.
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim?
Unfortunately, not everyone can file a wrongful death claim, even after they have lost a loved one. Some states allow certain close relatives to file a claim, but this is not the case in Florida. In the Sunshine State, only the personal representative of the estate can file a wrongful death claim. The personal representative of a person’s estate is typically named in the will or in another part of the estate plan. If the deceased did not have an estate plan or did not name a personal representative, the court will appoint one.
If the personal representative is successful with their wrongful death claim, the estate then makes the decision about who will receive the compensation. Certain relatives, including parents, children, and spouses, are named within the Florida statute, but each case is unique and the facts must be reviewed before determining who can receive compensation.
Damages Available in Wrongful Death Claims
Although a wrongful death lawsuit can never bring your loved one back, they can help ease some of the financial burden the death placed on you. Damages available in wrongful death claims include loss of income the deceased contributed to the household, medical costs, funeral and burial expenses, and lost support and services. The damages are divided between the estate and the beneficiaries, depending on whether surviving loved ones suffered a loss, or the deceased.
Call Our Wrongful Death Lawyers in Wellington Today
At Lesser, Lesser, Landy & Smith, PLLC, our Wellington wrongful death lawyers can help you through this difficult time and ensure you receive the fair settlement you deserve. Call us today at 561-472-8165 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.