Losing a loved one is a devastating experience. It’s difficult to know what to do next. When someone else’s careless actions caused their death, it’s even worse.
Knowing your family member’s death could have been avoided is devastating. There are legal actions you can take to hold the at-fault party responsible for their behavior. Jonathan R. Brockman, P.C. might be able to represent you in your pursuit of compensation to cover the damages they caused.
In Georgia, a surviving family member has the right to pursue a wrongful death case if their loved one died because of another party’s actions. Depending on the circumstances, you might be able to hold more than one party liable.
We can explain more in a free consultation when you give us the details of your family’s circumstances. If you want to hold the parties that hurt your lost family member responsible for their behavior, call Jonathan R. Brockman, P.C. at 770-205-2231 to speak with one of our Fayetteville wrongful death lawyers.
A Wrongful Death Incident Can Happen Anywhere
Unfortunately, fatal incidents are all too common. Our firm sees Georgia clients who’ve been the victims of all the following kinds of preventable accidents.
Motor Vehicle Accidents
Fayetteville car crashes happen with deadly frequency. They can occur at any time of day in any location.
If someone’s negligence caused your loved one’s fatal car wreck, you have the right to pursue financial compensation. The most common causes of car accidents include:
- Distracted driving
- Defective car parts
- Dangerous road conditions
- Driving under the influence
- Drowsy or fatigued driving
Property and business owners have a responsibility to ensure their property is safe for their guests. If a hazardous condition injures someone and dies due to the incident, their loved ones can file a wrongful death claim.
Examples of premises liability cases Jonathan R. Brockman, P.C. can handle include:
- Slip and fall
- Malfunctioning escalator or elevator
- Dog bites
- Broken smoke or fire alarms
- Negligent security
- Poor lighting
- Falling debris
- Exposed electrical wires
Medical malpractice happens when a doctor, hospital, or healthcare professional injures their patient due to a negligent act or omission. The most common causes of fatalities from medical malpractice include:
- Prescription errors
- Surgical mistakes
- Misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose
- Medical device malfunctions
- Improper pre- and post-care
When a manufacturer or seller provides their consumer with a defective product that causes an injury, that’s known as product liability. Companies are supposed to design, manufacture, and test their products to ensure they’re safe for public use. When they don’t, they can be held liable for their negligence.
There are three main categories of product liability your attorney could use to prove your wrongful death claim:
- Manufacturing defects
- Design defects
- Failure to warn
Construction workers face risks every day. While they’re performing their jobs, they could encounter heavy machinery, sharp tools, and toxic chemicals. Passersby also have a right to be near construction sites safely.
If the company doesn’t provide a safe environment and a fatality occurs, loved ones can pursue compensation with the help of a Fayetteville wrongful death lawyer from Jonathan R. Brockman, P.C..
Various incidents could lead to a fatal accident on a construction site, such as:
- Fires and explosions
- Exposure to hazardous substances
- Faulty equipment or tools
- Inadequate protective gear
- Falling debris
Motorcyclists face higher risks of fatality than drivers in passengers in cars. If another driver caused your loved one’s fatal motorcycle crash, you could hold them financially responsible.
Common causes of motorcycle accidents are:
- Failing to check blind spots
- Passing too closely to a motorcycle
- Failing to yield the right of way
Nursing Home Abuse
Nursing home abuse is, unfortunately, a common occurrence throughout the country. It’s the caregiver’s responsibility to keep their residents safe and ensure they receive proper medical treatment.
If they cause any type of harm or fail to prevent harm and their resident dies, they could be held liable by surviving family members.
The major types of nursing home abuse include:
Dogs can cause severe injuries and fatalities when they attack. It’s up to the owner to follow local laws, so their dog doesn’t harm anyone.
If they ignore leash ordinances or fail to control their dogs, they could suffer the consequences after a fatal attack.
To seek compensation for your loved one’s death, you must prove the following under Georgia statute 51-2-7:
- The dog is dangerous or vicious;
- Your loved one did not provoke the attack; and
- The owner failed to control their dog.
We’re told to trust that members of law enforcement will keep us safe. Unfortunately, some interactions with police officers turn deadly. You might be able to pursue fair compensation.
If your loved one’s death occurred during a police search, arrest, or another encounter, contact one of our Fayetteville wrongful death lawyers for help.
Commercial trucks can cause severe injuries and damage. Occupants in smaller vehicles are at risk of fatality during the crash.
Various parties could be responsible depending on the circumstances surrounding the accident, including:
- Truck drivers
- Trucking companies
- Vehicle parts manufacturers
- Cab or trailer owners
- Maintenance and repair companies
- Parties responsible for loading the cargo
Pursuing Compensation in a Wrongful Death Claim
Your lawyer will need to prove that the at-fault party was negligent to hold them responsible for the death of your loved one. Negligence is the failure of one party to prevent another party from harm.
There are five elements we’ll show existed:
- Duty: The at-fault party owed your loved one a duty of care to act as a reasonable person would under similar circumstances to prevent injury or death;
- Breach of duty: They breached their duty of care;
- Cause in fact: If it wasn’t for their actions, your loved one wouldn’t have died.
- Proximate cause: Your loved one’s death was the direct result of the at-fault party’s breach; and
- Damages: There are damages associated with the fatal incident.
When you hire one of our Fayetteville wrongful death lawyers, we can file the claim on your behalf and perform a thorough investigation. We’ll collect sufficient evidence that proves the negligent party’s actions are to blame.
Some of the evidence we’ll obtain to build a strong case includes:
- Police or incident reports
- Accident scene photos
- Eyewitness statements
- Video surveillance
- Your loved one’s medical records
Georgia law only allows specific people to pursue a wrongful death case in the civil court system. Since the victim can’t seek legal action themselves, a surviving family member or personal representative of their estate is allowed.
The first family member eligible to file a wrongful death lawsuit is a surviving spouse. If there are minor children involved, they must represent the child’s interests. The surviving spouse must receive no less than one-third of the total compensation, no matter the number of children.
If there isn’t a surviving spouse or child, the following parties can file a wrongful death lawsuit:
- Surviving parent or parents; or
- The personal representative of the estate.
Damages You Might Be Entitled To in a Wrongful Death Case
If you choose to pursue compensation, you can claim two types of damages. Damages are losses related to the victim’s accident or injuries. Monetary damages include the financial losses associated with your loved one’s life.
Examples are the following:
- Total value of the companionship, care, and other benefits provided by the deceased to loved ones that they can no longer provide
- Lost wages and benefits, including what they would have earned if they survived
The other damages aim to compensate losses the estate suffered because of the victim’s death. This includes the:
- Cost of the funeral and burial
- Medical expenses related to the fatal injury
- Pain and suffering endured due to the accident
If you want to file a lawsuit against the negligent party, you must follow the statute of limitations. It’s a strict deadline for pursuing legal action in court.
The statute of limitations for wrongful death in Georgia is two years. That means you only have two years from the date of your loved one’s death to file. If two years pass, you could lose your right to compensation.
There are special situations when you can pause the clock on the statute of limitations.
- If the victim’s estate hasn’t gone through probate, you could pause the statute for a maximum of five years.
- If there’s a pending criminal case against the at-fault party, the statute will begin when it concludes.
At the law offices of Jonathan R. Brockman, P.C., our Fayetteville wrongful death lawyers know the pain that our clients experience. Losing a loved one is traumatic, especially when the person who caused their death could have done something to avoid it.
When you hire us, we’ll aggressively fight against the liable party and make sure they pay the financial compensation your family needs and deserve.
Our legal team will provide support to help you get through this difficult situation. You can count on us to take care of every detail of your case. We won’t give up until we recover the maximum compensation necessary to cover your damages.
If your loved one died due to another party’s negligence, call us at 770-205-2231 today to schedule a free consultation.