Grounds for a Wrongful Death ClaimWrongful death can occur in many different settings if negligence was involved in the person's passing. One of the most common sources of wrongful deaths is motor vehicle accidents. If a driver fails to exercise their duty of care, their negligence can easily turn into a fatal accident. A wrongful death may also arise from medical misconduct and dangerous commercial surroundings. At the workplace, unsafe working environments can lead to wrongful death. In some cases, unsafe products may lead to wrongful death. Whatever the accident, you can bring a civil action case against the negligent person. In some cases, a wrongful death case may include the government. If that is the case, the process may become even more complex. A wrongful death lawyer can help you identify who exactly the claim is against, and they can then help you pursue legal action against that party. To help strengthen your case, your lawyer may conduct extensive investigations. Through the investigation, an attorney can collect evidence that demonstrates the defendant's negligence.
The Procedure of Filing a Wrongful Death ClaimUnder O.C.G.A. § 51-4-2, the family of the deceased can file a wrongful death claim. There are restrictions on who constitutes family. Under Georgia's code on wrongful death, only certain persons can bring a wrongful death claim. First is the surviving spouse of the victim. A restriction here is that a surviving ex-spouse cannot file the claim. This means that a divorced partner is not eligible. The surviving children of the victim can bring the claim. This usually applies in the event no partner is alive. If there is no child or spouse, the next group in line is the parents of the victim. If none of the above groups exist, a representative of the deceased's estate can make the claim. According to Georgia's law, the recovered damages should go to the deceased's beneficiaries. A Savannah wrongful death lawyer knows the ins and outs of Georgia's wrongful death law. They can therefore give you more detail regarding its application to your case.
Recoverable Damages in a Savannah Wrongful Death CaseDamages refer to the monetary compensation you receive for the losses you and your family incurred. You may receive compensation for the pain and suffering you endured because of your kin's death. However, this kind of compensation is only available to some family members—for example, the surviving spouse and younger children. You can recover damages for the loss of support that the deceased gave while alive. This may encompass the loss of guidance and companionship. Again, this only applies to certain family members. It is also possible to recover damages for the loss of the deceased's financial contribution. Before your family member passed on, they may have been receiving treatment for the injuries they received from the accident. You can recover damages for medical costs. Compensation will also cover the costs of burying your family member. A lawyer can help you value your wrongful death claim. They can then help advocate for your right to recover fair compensation.
Determining the Value of Your Savannah Wrongful Death CaseThere are two main reasons for which you and your family may file a wrongful death claim. One is to get justice for your family member's sudden passing. The second reason is to help you as a family to regain your financial footing. To achieve either or both goals, you may need to know how much compensation you can receive. There is no universal figure that can be given to answer that question. The value of the wrongful death claim depends on a variety of factors that are unique for every case. Thus, the value of your claim will also be unique to your specific case. These factors include:
- The pain and suffering the victim faced before death
- The associated medical and burial expenses
- The gravity of the defendant's atrocious acts