What is Wrongful Death?
Posted on Friday, April 3rd, 2020 at 10:24 am
In a Georgia personal injury case, an injured victim can bring a claim for damages against those responsible for the harm caused in the accident. What happens when an accident is so serious that the victim dies as a result of their injuries? In these cases, the family of the victim is allowed to bring a claim of wrongful death. Georgia law is particular about wrongful death claims, which is why it is critical that you have an experienced wrongful death attorney represent your claims. At Jonathan R. Brockman, P.C., our team of dedicated legal professionals is here to help your family get the compensation they deserve after a fatal accident. Call or contact our office today to schedule a free consultation of your case.
What is Wrongful Death?
Georgia law defines wrongful death as the death of a person due to the negligent, reckless, intentional, or criminal acts of another person or entity. To put it another way, if the same accident had not killed the victim, that person would be able to file a claim for personal injury against the person or entity responsible for the accident. However, because the victim can no longer bring a claim for damages, their loved ones do so instead.
Who May Bring a Claim?
The law has a specific order of who may bring a wrongful death case for a fatal accident. The spouse has first priority when bringing a wrongful death claim, and the spouse can also represent the interests of any minor children. If there is no surviving spouse or children, any surviving parents may bring the case. Finally, if there are no surviving parents the representative of the victim’s estate can file a wrongful death lawsuit on their behalf.
When can a Wrongful Death Claim be Filed?
According to Georgia law, a wrongful death case must be filed within two years of the date of death of the victim. Known as the statute of limitations, if a lawsuit is not filed within this window of time the case can be thrown out of court and the family barred from collecting any compensation for their claims. However, the two year statute of limitations can be extended in certain circumstances, including if criminal proceedings for the accident are taking place or if the estate is not probated.
Compensation for Wrongful Death
Compensation for wrongful death can include a claim for the full value of the life of the deceased as well as to remedy the financial cost of the fatal accident. Damages can include compensation for all final medical expenses, funeral and burial costs, pain and suffering, loss of wages and benefits, and for the loss of love, care, companionship, and guidance.
Call or Contact Our Office
If you have lost a loved one in a fatal accident in the Atlanta area, call or contact Jonathan R. Brockman, P.C. today to schedule a free evaluation of your wrongful death claims with an experienced attorney.