When the negligent actions of a person or party result in death the matter can be brought to the courts in a civil lawsuit called a Wrongful Death case. In such a situation, it is the surviving relatives of the deceased that will sue the at-fault party, typically a spouse or a minor child. Wrongful death can happen for a large number of reasons including medical malpractice, accidents on the job, traffic accidents, defective products, and many others.
As you may imagine, these cases are complicated and involve a wide range of eligibility laws and a statute of limitations that must be observed. For this reason, it is important to get in touch with an experienced Holiday wrongful death lawyer at your side to aid in your quest for rightful compensation for your tragic loss. Call (888) 373-7770 to learn how our injury attorneys can help your claim.
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How is Wrongful Death Defined in the State of Florida?
Under Florida’s Wrongful Death Act, a wrongful death lawsuit can be filed against another party who is at fault for another person’s death because of breach of contract or warranty, default, or negligence. Therefore, the lawsuit must name a person or party as responsible for the death because of intentional acts, breach of contract, negligence. Some of the situations that may call for a Florida Wrongful Death Lawsuit include:
- Defective or mislabeled products – When products like drugs, appliances, medical devices, electronics are defective they can lead to wrongful death and the possibility for liability claims.
- Medical malpractice – wrong descriptions, misdiagnosis, and surgical errors can lead to wrongful death claims.
- Errors in construction and engineering can lead to workplace hazards.
- Acts of criminal intention such as assault, battery, or homicide can also be cause for a liability lawsuit.
- Car accidents and pedestrian accidents
- Sanitation issues in commercial establishments.
- Improper alcohol service, for example, serving alcohol to an intoxicated person.
Who is Qualified to File A Wrongful Death Claim in Florida?
In a case where one party was killed by the actions of another person, a wrongful death lawsuit may be filed against the at-fault party by the surviving relatives of the deceased. This typically falls to the personal representative of the deceased person as stated in the will or estate plan of the deceased.
If there is no estate plan, the courts will appoint a representative who will file the claim on behalf of the surviving relatives of the deceased. It is important that the representative represents all those with interests in this case.
The following parties can file a lawsuit according to Florida’s Wrongful Death Act:
- Deceased person’s spouse, child, or parent.
- Dependent blood relative or adoptive sibling
- An out-of-wedlock child
What Types of Damages are Recoverable?
Wrongful death lawsuits express liability in terms of economic damages. According to statutes of Florida law Sec. 768.21 states the rules for awarding damages to either the estate or the survivors of the deceased.
The survivors can be awarded damages for:
- The values of support and services the deceased person provided.
- Loss of companionship, guidance, and protection from the deceased person.
- Emotional and mental pain and suffering following the loss of a child or parent.
- Medical and funeral expenses
The deceased person’s estate can also recover damages for:
- Lost wages and other earnings, this includes those earnings that the deceased person could reasonably accrue if not for their untimely death.
- Lost net accumulations or the value of earnings that would have been collected by the estate.
- Medical and funeral expenses paid for by the estate.
How is Negligence Proven in a Wrongful Death Case?
Florida law requires that a few elements be present to prove that negligence was responsible for a wrongful death:
The case must prove that the defendant owed the deceased a debt of duty of care that would have protected the deceased from misfortune.
The next step will be to prove that the defendant was in breach of their duty to care for the well-being of the deceased. This can be proven by highlighting a specific action that represents the defendant did not practice the same reasonable caution anybody would have applied in the same circumstance.
The defendant must prove that the actions of the defendant were the cause of death and not some other cause.
Finally, it must be shown that the survivors suffered damage or loss, such as funeral expenses or pain and suffering, because of the wrongful death.
How Do You File a Wrongful Death Claim in Florida?
Under Florida Law, it is the personal representative of the deceased that must file the wrongful death claim and this must happen within the two-year statute of limitations. Although looking for stout legal assistance may not be the first thing on the mind of the bereaved in such a situation, it is a good idea to sign on with an experienced lawyer promptly. This will greatly improve your chances of success in a case like this.
An experienced wrongful death attorney will understand the complex legal process required to obtain your compensation. Their vast knowledge of the way the legal system works will allow them to build you a strong case. Furthermore, the lawyer’s experience will allow you to be most direct through the circuitous system of legal documents and tight deadlines that must be addressed effectively during this process.
Let Our Holiday Wrongful Death Lawyers Help You With Your Claim
If you have a loved one that has been killed due to the negligent actions of another party, you will need expert help to file a lawsuit effectively. At Winters & Yonker, we have a team of experienced wrongful death attorneys just waiting to take on your case. The laws that separate you from your objectives are complex and rigid. A legal professional from our law offices can provide you the guidance that maximizes the value of your case and ensures the highest chances of success. Furthermore, if your case is brought to court, we ensure the best performance on the court floors that will give you the best chances of recovering damages.
We also fully understand the gravity and desperation of such a situation. Therefore we offer the best legal representation so that you can free your mind from the intricacies of the legal code and take time to grieve and connect with the ones you love in this dark hour. Call us today and we will schedule a free consultation with our qualified Holiday Wrongful Death Lawyers.