Any death can be a tragedy, but this is particularly applicable when the death was caused by the negligence of another person. In a wrongful death case, the survivors of the victim will have legal options available for pursuing justice, but a lack of accurate information can prevent individuals from being able to effectively pursue justice.
Myth: You Can Only Claim Damages That Directly Results From The Wrongful Death
One of the most common assumptions about wrongful death lawsuits is that it will only be possible to claim the damages and losses that directly results from the accident. However, there are actually many types of secondary damages that can also be claimed. For example, the lost wages that the deceased would have contributed to the family can also be considered as well as punitive damages designed to punish the party responsible. Due to the complexities in determining the damages that can be claimed, individuals are always advised to speak with an attorney before they start estimating the value of their case. Otherwise, it can be easy for an inexperienced person to under or overestimate the damages that they may have suffered.
Myth: Anyone That Knew The Deceased Will Be Able To File A Wrongful Death Lawsuit Against The Party Responsible
There are strict limits in place governing the parties that will be eligible for filing a wrongful death lawsuit. This can greatly reduce the number of people that will qualify to bring this type of suit. In most instances, these limits restrict a wrongful death lawsuit to those that were in the immediate family of the deceased. Some states may allow business partners to also pursue this type of claim, but this can vary. One important factor to consider about bringing this type of lawsuit is that only one party will be able to pursue this matter, which will usually be the party that had the closest relation to the deceased.
Myth: A Wrongful Death Lawsuit Will Lead To Criminal Prosecution
Due to the fact that death is involved, there are people that assume a successful wrongful death lawsuit will always result in criminal proceedings. However, the civil and criminal aspects of a wrongful death case will be handled separately. While some individuals may be frustrated that their successful civil case does not trigger criminal proceedings, keeping these aspects separate can allow for individuals to pursue justice when the case may not rise to the level of criminal activity.
Learn more from a law firm such as Forstman & Cutchen LLP.