If a loved one has died due to a third party’s negligence, you may be allowed to sue to recover damages for lost wages, as well as for pain and suffering. There are three criteria that must be met before a relative can file a wrongful death lawsuit: proof of death, proof that a third party is responsible for that death, and proof that that the family is suffering as a result of the death. Here is a better explanation about each of those steps:
Proof of Death
This step is relatively straightforward – you are required to present a death certificate showing your loved one is deceased. Florida law allows two years from the date of death to file a wrongful death case with the court. After two years, your family is time-barred from pursuing any legal action.
Proof that a Third Party is Responsible
This is the most difficult step of them all, particularly if all you have is a reasonable suspicion that a third party caused this wrongful death. Find witnesses, photos, and human resources files that describe the situation at hand. Get certified copies of police reports and medical records. A strong wrongful death case can show that your loved one died because a third party did not exhibit the appropriate degree of reasonable care.
Proof of Family Suffering
Grief can be difficult for any family. Prior to filing a wrongful death claim or seeking counsel with an attorney, attempt to quantify the financial damage that this death has had on your family. Specifically, add up lost wages, property damage, and lost future earnings and retirement contributions. If the deceased was a primary breadwinner, you can also add the costs of education and professional training for other family members who would need to return to work.
The death of a loved one can have far-reaching implications on your entire family. If negligence played a part in their death, you may have a legal claim in court. Only an experienced wrongful death and personal injury attorney can full apply the law to your unique situation. Florida residents should contact Farrow & Pulice P.A. by calling (941) 924-0993 to schedule a free case evaluation today.