While the Denver wrongful death case process may seem complicated and overwhelming, know that you do not have to face it alone. A seasoned Denver injury attorney can help to guide you through the necessary procedures while acting as an aggressive advocate for your compensation. Read on to learn more about what goes into the Denver wrongful death case process, as well as the ways a skilled lawyer can make a difference for you.
Initiating a Wrongful Death Case
When someone dies or is killed due to the negligence or misconduct of another individual, including murder, the surviving family members may sue for wrongful death. Most wrongful death lawsuits follow the wake of criminal trials using similar evidence, but with a lower standard of proof. It is usually wise to get an attorney involved very early on in the Denver wrongful death case process to ensure that the family does not receive low offers from insurance companies.
Investigating a Wrongful Death Case
When conducting an investigation of a wrongful death case, one must first review the death certificate in order to ensure that the claimant is in fact deceased. Second, an attorney should look over any and all police reports that can point to an officer’s opinion regarding the subject’s death. An individual’s objective is to figure out the surrounding circumstances that caused the individual to die, so a review of the autopsy report and the toxicology report is needed to discover the root cause of the death.
In general, an investigation in a wrongful death case might involve the use of crime scenes, forensic experts, accident re-constructionists, and witness testimony to understand the cause of death. Private investigators are helpful as well because they can gather expert, physical, and medical evidence, conduct DNA tests, and perform surveillance on the concerned party to uncover the truth.
Who Can Recover Damages
In Denver, the surviving spouse of the deceased is the only individual who may file a wrongful death claim in the first year after the death. During the second year after the death, both the surviving spouse and the surviving children of the deceased can file a claim. If the decedent left no surviving spouse and no surviving children, then their surviving parent may file a wrongful death claim in Denver. In addition to the claim filed by the surviving family members, the representative of their estate may file a claim to recover damages for certain types of losses to the estate. This claim is known as a survival action claim.
Length of a Denver Wrongful Death Case Process
A case can settle fairly quickly out of court, or it could last several years if the claim is being contested. A lot depends on the variable factors of the case, such as the surrounding facts and circumstances of the death. Factors that can affect the length of the Denver wrongful death case process include the type of wrongful death, the complexity of the case, the amount of money that is in question, and the number of involved parties. For example, a wrongful death case regarding the defective products of a drug manufacturer will probably take longer than a case involving a motorcycle-related death at the hands of an intoxicated driver.
Role of an Experienced Denver Wrongful Death Lawyer
Working with the right attorney will optimize the amount of money that the estate can recover. Additionally, a lawyer with experience handling these types of cases can streamline the case. Attorneys who have experience with wrongful death cases are better able to handle the needs of grieving families. If you have lost your loved one due to the negligence of another and require legal assistance throughout the Denver wrongful death case process, reach out to a seasoned lawyer today to schedule your initial consultation.