3 Common Signs You Might Have a Strong Wrongful Death Claim
Losing someone close to you is a challenging and heartbreaking experience. However, this loss can feel even greater if their death was the result of someone else’s negligence or wrongdoing. In these situations, you may have a right to file a wrongful death claim to recover compensation for your loss.
Due to their significant value, wrongful death cases are typically vigorously defended and will oftentimes require formal litigation. Under Florida law, there is also a limited amount of time to file these claims and only certain surviving family members have a legal right to wrongful death damages. Here are a few signs which may indicate that you have a wrongful death claim worth pursuing:
1. Your Relative’s Death Was the Result of Someone’s Negligence or Wrongdoing
To prevail in a wrongful death case, you will need to demonstrate that someone’s negligent actions or inactions were responsible for the accident that led to your loved one’s death. For instance, if your relative was killed in a wreck involving a distracted driver, the motorist would be considered negligent. Alternatively, if a defective product caused the injuries that ultimately led to death, the company responsible for manufacturing the product (as well as others) may be legally liable for your damages.
Even where liability seems clear, however, you will have the burden to gather all necessary proof to establish your claim and the fault of the other party. Evidence to support your wrongful death claim can come from various sources, including witness testimony, video evidence, photographs, medical documentation, surveillance video, electronically stored information on vehicles, company logs, and other records. While specific types of evidence you might need will depend on the circumstances surrounding your case, here are some forms of evidence typically used in wrongful death cases:
- Expert Witness Testimony.
- Eyewitness Statements.
- Photographs of an Accident Scene,
- Surveillance Camera or Dashcam Video,
- Blackbox Data.
- Medical Documentation (in the case of medical malpractice actions)
- Maintenance Records.
2. You Are Eligible for Compensation
Only certain people—based on their relationship to the deceased—are entitled to pursue damages after a wrongful death. In most cases, this right is limited to spouses, children, and parents of the decedent, though others may also be able to assert claims under certain circumstances. You should consult a Florida wrongful death attorney to help decide which family members, if any, have a legal right to pursue a wrongful death claim.
3. You Are Planning to File within The Statute of Limitations
In most states, there are strict deadlines for taking action after a wrongful death. In Florida, this timeframe is limited to just two years after your loved one’s passing, though the time may be longer or shorter depending on the facts of your case and your theory of liability. That is why is is important to consult an attorney quickly after any event leading to a potential wrongful death claim.
Discuss Your Case with a Miami Wrongful Death Attorney Today
If you lost someone close to you because of another party’s negligence or recklessness, it may be wise to schedule a meeting with an attorney. At Viñas & DeLuca, PLLC, we can assess your claim as part of a free case review during which we can help determine whether you have grounds to take action.
With over 40 years of combined legal experience, our attorneys have the necessary knowledge, skill, and resources to help you and your family hold the at-fault parties accountable for their actions. Call us today at (305) 372-3650 or send us a message using our contact page HERE to schedule a free case review with a Florida wrongful death attorney.