After a fatal car accident takes the life of your family member or loved one, you may not know what your options are moving forward. Dealing with the loss of a loved one can be extremely trying and emotional, especially if the person was the primary wage earner for your family. While nothing can ever replace your lost family member, an attorney can help you to file a wrongful death claim for damages.
What is a wrongful death claim?
A wrongful death claim can be filed if the deceased’s death was caused by the “wrongful act, neglect, carelessness, unskillfulness, or default of another,” according to Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code Title 4, Chapter 1, Subchapter A. To recover damages, you’ll have to prove the neglect of the at-fault party.
If the wrongful death occurred after the victim had already filed a personal injury claim against the offending party then it may become a survival action.
Parties Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim
A wrongful death claim can only be filed by the deceased’s spouse, children, or surviving parents. If none of the above are alive, or if none of the above file the claim within three months’ time of the date of death, then the personal representative for the deceased’s estate can file the claim instead.
Damages Available in a Wrongful Death Claim
Each wrongful death claim is unique in its specific amount of damages. The types of damages that are available for recovery are listed below.
- Noneconomic damages like pain and suffering
- Loss of earning capacity of the deceased
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Medical expenses
- Loss of companionship
- Loss of inheritance
- Loss of advice and counsel
Damages are typically divided up amongst applicable surviving family members (spouse, children, deceased).
How to File a Wrongful Death Claim
The first step to filing a wrongful death claim is to ensure that your claim is filed within two years after the date of the victim’s death, per the Texas statute of limitations. Then, you’ll want to contact an attorney as soon as possible.
Because you’ll be in charge of proving negligence of the at-fault party and will be going up against a big insurance company, having an attorney on your side can be the difference between whether you win or lose your claim.
Contact a Texas Wrongful Death Attorney Today
The sooner that you get in touch with the attorneys at the Law Office of Julie Johnson, PLLC, the sooner that we can get to work. We collect evidence, pursue damages, and negotiate a settlement amount or gather data for litigation. To reach us now, call 214-290-8001.