How Do You Prove Someone Caused Wrongful Death?

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Personal Injury LawyerPersonal Injury Lawyer

If you are dealing with the aftermath of losing a loved one, you are likely still trying to understand how they could have been taken away so soon. Perhaps you are putting everything you have into planning their funeral or memorial service so you do not have to face the fact that they are gone. Or, perhaps some time has passed since their funeral and you are trying to come to terms with how to move on with your life without them here. When you believe that your loved one was taken too soon as a result of someone else acting negligently, it is important that you speak with a lawyer about filing a wrongful death claim. While this will never make up for the fact that they are gone, it can help to cover the costs of different expenses and ease some of the burdens that may be on your shoulders. 

Is filing a wrongful death claim like pursuing criminal charges? 

When you choose to move forward with a wrongful death claim it is not going to be the same as filing criminal charges against someone. When you file a wrongful death claim, you are pursuing damages for the surviving family members after your loved one has passed away. You are not setting out intentionally to punish the person who caused the accident to happen. That said, a prosecutor or other party could also choose to pursue criminal charges against the person who caused your loved one’s death. In doing so, they may face other types of punishment like prison time or hefty fines. 

What is the plaintiff trying to prove in a wrongful death case? 

If you are filing a wrongful death case, you are known as the plaintiff. When you work with a lawyer, like a personal injury lawyer from a law firm like Barry P. Goldberg, you will be attempting to show that the defendant had: 

  • A duty of care that they owed your loved one. 
  • They breached this duty of care. 
  • By breaching this duty of care, they directly caused your loved one’s death. 

You will also need to show that as a result of your loved one’s death, you (and potentially other family members) have been burdened in some way. This could be through needing to pay for their funeral, through their hospital expenses before they passed away, or for things like the loss of enjoyment of life or the loss of your loved one’s care and guidance. A lawyer can help you to understand more about what types of damages could be awarded in your specific scenario. 

If you are seeking help after your loved one has died a wrongful death, reach out to a local law firm team you can trust now.