A wrongful death lawsuit is a legal action taken by the family or loved ones of an individual who has died due to the negligent or intentional actions of another person or entity. A Philadelphia wrongful death lawyer works with clients who have suffered a wrongful death due to circumstances such as medical malpractice, car accidents, workplace accidents, and defective products.
In a wrongful death lawsuit, the plaintiff seeks to hold the defendant responsible for the death of their loved one and to seek compensation for damages such as medical expenses, funeral expenses, lost income, and pain and suffering.
How Do You Prove Wrongful Death?
To prove a wrongful death claim, the plaintiff must typically establish the following elements:
- Duty of care: The plaintiff must show that the defendant had a duty of care to the deceased. For example, a doctor has a duty of care to provide a certain standard of care to their patients.
- Breach of duty: The plaintiff must show that the defendant breached their duty of care. This means that the defendant did not fulfill their duty of care, either through an action or a failure to act, and that this breach caused the death of the deceased.
- Causation: The plaintiff must show that the defendant’s breach of duty caused the death of the deceased. This means that the death would not have occurred if the defendant had not breached their duty of care.
- Damages: The plaintiff must show that they suffered damages as a result of the death of the deceased. This can include economic damages, such as medical bills and lost income, as well as non-economic damages, such as emotional distress.
To prove these elements, evidence such as witness testimony, medical records, and expert testimony may be used. An experienced lawyer for wrongful death who can help you build a strong case, navigate the legal process, and improve your chances of winning a wrongful death suit.
There are several reasons why hiring a lawyer for wrongful death can greatly improve your chances of winning a wrongful death suit. A skilled Philadelphia wrongful death lawyer at the Wieand Law Firm offers clients:
- Legal knowledge and experience: Wrongful death lawsuits can be complex and involve many legal issues. An experienced wrongful death lawyer has the knowledge and experience to navigate these complexities and build a strong case on your behalf.
- Investigation and evidence gathering: A lawyer for wrongful death can investigate the circumstances surrounding the death of your loved one, gather evidence, and interview witnesses to build a strong case. They can also work with medical experts and other professionals to evaluate the cause of death and assess damages.
- Negotiation and settlement: A Philadelphia wrongful death lawyer can negotiate with the defendant and their insurance company to seek a fair settlement on your behalf. They can also advise you on whether a settlement offer is fair or whether it’s better to take the case to trial.
- Trial experience: If the case goes to trial, a lawyer for wrongful death can represent you in court, present evidence, cross-examine witnesses, and make compelling arguments on your behalf. They can also help you navigate the legal process and understand your options at each stage of the case.
- Emotional support: Losing a loved one is a difficult and emotional experience. A skilled lawyer for wrongful death can provide you with support and guidance throughout the legal process, helping you navigate the complexities of the case and making sure your voice is heard.
In short, hiring a Philadelphia wrongful death lawyer can improve your chances of winning a wrongful death suit and obtaining the compensation you deserve for the loss of your loved one.
Who Gets the Money in a Wrongful Death Lawsuit?
In a wrongful death lawsuit, the damages awarded are typically paid to the surviving family members or beneficiaries of the deceased. The specific distribution of damages can vary depending on the laws of the state where the lawsuit was filed. In Pennsylvania, the money recovered is distributed to beneficiaries in proportion to their intestate share. Additionally, the beneficiaries do not owe liability to creditors of the deceased person under the statutes of the Commonwealth. Money recovered in wrongful death actions are not subject to Pennsylvania state inheritance tax.
Generally, the damages are meant to compensate the family or beneficiaries for the losses they suffered as a result of the death of their loved one. This can include economic losses such as medical bills, funeral expenses, and lost income, as well as non-economic losses such as loss of companionship and emotional pain and suffering.
It’s important to note that the damages awarded in a wrongful death lawsuit are meant to compensate for the losses suffered by the family or beneficiaries, rather than to punish the defendant. Punitive damages, which are meant to punish the defendant for their actions, may be awarded in some cases, but they are not typically awarded in every wrongful death case.
Once you have hired a lawyer for wrongful death and improved your chances of winning a wrongful death suit, your claim can be investigated to evaluate your losses. Pennsylvania recognizes both economic and non-economic damages. This means that your claim may include compensation for losses such as medical bills, but also for intangible losses such as loss of companionship. Common damages in Pennsylvania wrongful death claims include:
In Pennsylvania, damages that can be recovered in a wrongful death claim may include both economic and non-economic damages. Some common types of damages in Pennsylvania wrongful death claims include:
- Medical and funeral expenses: These are expenses that the deceased’s family had to pay as a result of the death, including medical expenses incurred before death, and funeral and burial expenses.
- Lost income: This includes the income that the deceased would have earned if they had lived, including wages, benefits, and other financial support.
- Loss of companionship and guidance: This type of damage compensates the family members for the loss of love, companionship, and guidance that they would have received from the deceased if they had lived.
- Pain and suffering: This type of damage compensates the family members for the emotional pain and suffering caused by the death of their loved one.
It’s important to note that the specific damages recoverable in a Pennsylvania wrongful death claim may vary depending on the facts and circumstances of the case. An experienced Philadelphia wrongful death lawyer can help you understand your legal options and seek the compensation you deserve.Top of Form
Contact the Wieand Law Firm Today
Losing a loved one is an incredibly difficult and emotional experience, and dealing with the aftermath can be overwhelming. If you believe that your loved one’s death was caused by the negligence or wrongful act of another person or entity, you may have grounds for a wrongful death lawsuit. A wrongful death lawsuit can help you hold the responsible party liable and obtain compensation for your losses.
Pursuing a wrongful death claim can be complex and challenging, and it’s important to have an experienced and compassionate Philadelphia personal injury lawyer on your side. Contact the Wieand Law Firm for help navigating the legal process, building a strong case, and seeking the justice and closure you deserve. Call 215-666-7777 today to speak directly with an attorney.