When your loved one has lost their life in a preventable accident, that accident can be considered a wrongful death. It is always hard to come to terms with losing a loved one. With a wrongful death lawsuit, you would have the chance to seek justice for your loved one.
The person who caused your loved one’s death needs to be held accountable in some form or fashion. A wrongful death lawsuit is a way for you to fight for the justice your loved one deserves. At Zanes Law, our Phoenix wrongful death damages attorneys can help you recover the damages your loved one would be entitled to.
Wrongful Death Claims
Many often confuse wrongful death claims with criminal charges like homicide and murder. While a wrongful death lawsuit involves taking a life, there are certain differences between the two charges. One of the most important aspects of a criminal homicide charge is the defendant’s mental state.
In criminal court, it must be established that the defendant had the mental intention to commit the act of homicide. In a wrongful death lawsuit, the defendant’s mental intentions do not matter. Even if it was an accident, the defendant could still be liable for wrongful death.
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Elements of a Wrongful Death
Another key difference is the way that wrongful death is classified. While the loss of any person’s life is sad and unfortunate, not every death will be considered a wrongful death in civil court. For your loved one’s death to be considered wrongful, it must meet two critical factors.
The first factor is that the death must occur as negligence on the defendant’s part. That means a person’s reckless actions must be directly connected to your loved one’s death.
The second factor is that your loved one’s death must result from the defendant’s intentional action. An intentional act can include an intent to cause harm to another person.
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Who Can File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit
Another unique characteristic of wrongful death lawsuits is that you, as the survivor of your loved one, are allowed to file on your loved one’s behalf. In a regular personal injury lawsuit, the party harmed by accident is the only party who can file a lawsuit. Because your loved one was killed and cannot possibly hold the defendant responsible for their injuries, you have the right as the survivor to seek justice for your loved one.
Burden of Proof
In a wrongful death lawsuit, you, as the plaintiff, have the responsibility to provide the burden of proof. In a wrongful death lawsuit, the burden of proof that you must prove is the preponderance of the evidence. The preponderance of the evidence is the legal barrier that proves that more likely than not, a chain of events took place.
As far as percentages are concerned, you would have to prove that there is at least a 50% chance that your loved one’s death occurred due to the defendant’s negligence.
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What a Wrongful Death Damages Attorney in Phoenix Can Do for You
Proving that the defendant in your lawsuit is responsible for your loved one’s death can be challenging. You want an experienced advocate who has experience proving a defendant’s liability in wrongful death. A Phoenix wrongful death damages lawyer can ensure your loved one’s death is not in vain.
A wrongful death damages attorney can ensure that you and your family recover damages from your loved one’s accident. There are certain damages that you and your family can be financially compensated for due to your loved one’s accident.
Seeking Damages for the Death of a Loved One
The reason wrongful death is considered a personal injury claim is that the victim of the accident is still entitled to damages from the accident. If your loved one’s death resulted from a personal injury accident, you, as the survivor, can recover the damages that they would be entitled to if they were alive.
While no money can bring your loved one back, the damages you can be compensated for can reduce the financial strain caused by your loved one’s accident. Some of the damages that you can recover from a wrongful death accident include:
Before your loved one passed away, he or she probably sought medical attention for their injuries. Those medical expenses will still have to be paid, even though your loved one lost their life. In a wrongful death lawsuit, you would be able to list the current medical expenses that they still had to pay as damage.
Another damage you can list in your wrongful death lawsuit is the burial expenses it took to lay your loved one to rest. These damages include the cost of the coffin, the cost of cremation, and other burial-related expenses.
Loss of Future Wages
The loss of your loved one’s future wages is another common damage in a wrongful death lawsuit. In today’s age, where all families have to rely on both partners to bring income into the household, losing your loved one can create a serious financial burden for you and your family. You can list the future wages your loved one would earn from their position as damage in your lawsuit.
Loss of Companionship
Another damage that you can sue for in your lawsuit is the loss of companionship. Losing a loved one unexpectedly will have several emotional consequences for you and your family. Your loved one was someone’s mother, father, sister, brother, or spouse.
The loss of their presence can cause severe emotional trauma for you and other family members moving forward. You would be able to sue for this intangible damage in your lawsuit.
Call a Wrongful Death Damages Lawyer in Phoenix Today
At Zanes Law, our Phoenix wrongful death damages attorneys want to fight as aggressively for your loved one as you do. We understand that your loved one’s death could have been prevented and that the accountable party needs to be legally liable for the loss of your loved one.
Call us today, or fill out a free case evaluation to schedule your free consultation.