The loss of a loved one is an emotionally devastating experience, especially if it stems from someone else’s negligent actions. To make matters worse, survivors are often left to handle leftover finances, and many find themselves in unfortunate financial predicaments.
A compassionate Centennial wrongful death lawyer could help you file suit and seek compensation for expenses and losses related to the death of your loved one. All citizens and entities have a legal obligation to ensure the safety of others and when they do not, a personal injury attorney could work with you to hold them financially accountable.
Establishing Liability in a Wrongful Death Case
To prove a person or entity is liable for wrongful death, survivors and any Centennial wrongful death attorney they elect to retain must establish the following in court:
- A person has died
- The person filing the wrongful death claim is a representative of the deceased person’s estate
- Negligence or maliciousness by the defendant directly caused the death
- The loss caused the person filing the claim to suffer a financial loss to some degree
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to wrongful death cases, and they could be filed under a variety of circumstances. However, the aforementioned representative of the deceased’s estate must usually be an immediate family member or spouse of the deceased person.
Wrongful death cases are always filed in civil courts. Importantly, the burden of proof is not as great in civil courts as it is in criminal ones, so it is possible for a person to be held liable for wrongful death even after they are cleared of any criminal charges.
Recoverable Compensation Following a Wrongful Death
On top of being emotionally traumatic, losing a loved one can unfortunately be expensive as well, especially when the deceased person was the primary breadwinner in the household. Funeral costs, lost wages, medical bills, and basic living expenses can place immense strain on even the most financially secure family.
If a survivor wins their wrongful death suit, the court may award them pecuniary damages which equate to monetary compensation. Factors such as the salary, investments, savings, and personal character of the deceased individual might be taken into consideration when determining pecuniary damages. The court may also award punitive damages, which are meant to punish the responsible party and discourage them from engaging in similar actions.
Get in Touch with a Centennial Wrongful Death Attorney
If the irresponsible or careless actions of another person have resulted in the death of your loved one, there is no amount of money that can make up for what you have lost. However, if someone else is to blame for your loved one’s death in any capacity, you should not have to bear any associated financial burdens alone.
You may have a limited amount of time to file a wrongful death claim in Colorado, so if you would like to pursue civil restitution from another person or entity, it may be critical to take action as soon as possible. When you are ready, contact a Centennial wrongful death lawyer to learn more about your legal options.