How To File A Wrongful Death Claim In Florida
If your loved one has died suddenly because of someone else’s negligence, you are entitled to file a wrongful death lawsuit. Contact a wrongful death attorney in Boca Raton to see if you have grounds to file a lawsuit. In Florida, the surviving members of the victim’s family are eligible to seek monetary and, in some cases, punitive damages. Contact Bernstein|Polsky to get started.
Family Members Who Can File A Wrongful Death Lawsuit
Under Florida law, the victim’s surviving family members can file such a lawsuit for money damages. This includes the spouse, parents, children, and any blood relatives or adopted children who depended on the victim. The personal representative of the estate and any heirs are also entitled, which in most cases, are the surviving family members.
You will be entitled to the following recoverable damages:
- Funeral expenses
- Medical bills
- Lost wages
- Pain and suffering
- Value of lost support
- Value of lost earnings the deceased would have earned
You may also be entitled to punitive damages. Also known as exemplary damages, this is designed to punish the defendant for his/her misconduct and deter them from engaging in similar acts, such as driving while under the influence. You may be entitled to punitive damages if:
- The death was caused by intentional conduct (the defendant knew the actions were wrong)
- The death was caused by gross negligence (the defendant was indifferent to the safety of others)
Being awarded for punitive damages is rare. When you speak with your wrongful death attorney in Boca Raton, s/he will determine whether to pursue punitive damages and how best to move forward.
What Qualifies As A Wrongful Death?
As with any civil lawsuit, there are certain criteria that must be met for the accident to be considered a wrongful death. To have grounds to file a successful lawsuit, the following must be met:
- A person died
- A person died because of someone’s negligence, or intended harm
- The surviving family members are suffering from monetary injury
- A representative is appointed for the descendant’s estate
When these criteria are met, it is far more likely that your case will be successful. The most common causes of wrongful death are:
- Car accidents
- Medical malpractice
- Premise’s liability claims
- Product liability claims
- Intentional harm
You may still have a case even if the victim was not involved in any of these accidents. As long as you can establish that a person died because of someone else’s negligent or intentional actions, and you and your family have sustained an economic injury as a result, it is recommended to contact Bernstein | Polsky to speak with a wrongful death attorney in Boca Raton.
Don’t Wait – Act Now
We understand this is a difficult time for you and your family, but it’s important to put the wheels in motion if you have decided to file a wrongful death claim. There is a statute of limitations in every state, which gives you a time limit for filing. In Florida, the statute of limitations for wrongful death is within two years of the date of death, with just a few exceptions. Once a personal representative of the deceased has been appointed, you must hire an attorney to investigate the details of the case and gather evidence to prove the liable party is at fault.
What To Look For In An Attorney?
As with any lawsuit, choosing the best lawyer for the job will increase your chances of a successful result. The attorney you hire should have the experience to handle your case. This includes:
- Trial experience in the event your case isn’t settled outside of court (most wrongful death cases are settled outside).
- Experience with wrongful death cases, particularly with circumstances similar to yours.
- Proven results and a track record of obtaining large settlements for their clients.
- Degree from a reputable institution (helpful, but not always necessary).
- From a small firm, as they can provide the attention and dedication most large law firms are unable to provide.
- Only gets paid when you win.
In addition to this level of experience, the wrongful death attorney in Boca Raton should sympathize with your difficult situation, as this translates into patience and the ability to answer questions honestly.
Contact An Accident Lawyer In Boca Raton
Your fight is our fight. We have a team of experienced trial lawyers with a reputation for powerful advocacy and outstanding results. For a wrongful death attorney in Boca Raton, contact Bernstein|Polsky. Call 954-997-9947 for a consultation.