Losing a loved one is one of the most devastating things a person can experience. It’s even more traumatic when that death was preventable. When you lose a loved one, you have countless issues to deal with, and many things to handle, such as funeral planning and expenses, will and probate issues, and deciding what to do with your loved one’s belongings. This doesn’t include the emotional healing and processing that you will be going through.
We understand how overwhelming it can be, and we want to do everything we can to help you. If you believe you have a wrongful death claim and are looking for wrongful death lawyers in Stuart, Martin County, don’t hesitate to reach out to Crary Buchanan. Call 772-287-2600 today for a free consultation.
You can also easily schedule a free consultation online with our simple to use the contact form. We’re hopeful that this article can help you in the meantime.
How Do You Prove Wrongful Death?
When you hire a lawyer for a wrongful death suit, there are several elements they will be required to prove in court in order for you to get the compensation and justice that you deserve. Wrongful death suits are generally brought under the claim of negligence. In order to prove negligence, your attorney has to establish the following:
1. Breach Of Duty. In order to be successful in a wrongful death claim, there has to be a duty owed to the decedent. For example, in a wrongful death suit relating to medical malpractice, your lawyer will have to show that the doctor owed the decedent a duty. They usually do this by showing that the doctor was actually treating the decedent, creating a doctor-patient relationship.
2. Causation. In order to be liable for someone else’s death, the plaintiff has to have caused the death. Using the same medical malpractice wrongful death example, causation can be shown by presenting evidence that a doctor administered the wrong medication to the decedent, and this caused their death.
3. Damages. Lastly, your lawyer must show that the person filing the lawsuit suffered damages. They can show that the loved one’s death caused the plaintiff monetary damages in a number of ways. If the decedent was the only one working and the loved one stayed at home with the children, the plaintiff clearly suffered damages due to the wrongful death.
What Types Of Damages Can I Receive?
In a wrongful death suit, there are several types of damages that can be awarded, including the following:
1. Medical expenses
2. Burial costs
3. Funeral expenses
4. Loss of income
5. Loss of future earnings
6. Loss of protection and companionship
7. Pain and suffering that the decedent suffered before they passed away
Wrongful Death Damages Caps
In Florida, there are limits on how much a person can be awarded if they are successful in a wrongful death claim. For economic damages, such as medical expenses and lost wages, there is no cap. This means the plaintiff can recover as much money as is needed to cover all of these expenses.
Other types of damages may have caps depending on the specifics of the case. For example, in a medical malpractice case, if either the doctor or hospital where the negligent care was given were employees of the county or the state, liability is limited because of sovereign immunity. There are many nuances with damage awards, so it’s always a good idea to contact a wrongful death lawyer in Stuart, FL, right away.
Burden Of Proof
A wrongful death lawsuit is a civil issue, not a criminal one (though there might be criminal charges at some point as well). In a criminal case, you must prove your case beyond a reasonable doubt. When proving wrongful death which is more often a civil case, the standard is lower than and it’s not quite as difficult to prove your case.
Who Can File A Wrongful Death Suit?
In Florida, several different people are permitted to file a wrongful death suit. The decedent’s spouse, parents, and children can file a lawsuit. Additionally, any blood relatives or adopted siblings who were financially dependent, partially or in full, can file a wrongful death claim. If you’re in the Orlando area and you aren’t sure if you can file a wrongful death suit, contact wrongful death lawyers in Stuart, FL, for help.
Common Causes Of Wrongful Death Claims
To win a wrongful death case, you will need to prove that the defendant was negligent, regardless of the cause of death. Some of the most common causes of death in wrongful death claims include the following:
1. Medical malpractice
2. Birth injuries
3. Automobile accidents
4. Work accidents
5. Product defects
6. Abuse or neglect at nursing homes
7. Criminal activity, such as shooting or stabbing
Contact Us Today
Crary Buchanan is a general practice law firm dedicated to providing quality legal services in the state of Florida. Our lawyers have significant legal experience in virtually every major area of law, and most of our associates are Board Certified by the Florida Bar in their areas of expertise. This breadth of legal experience, coupled with our years of service and dedication in our community, means Crary Buchanan attorneys are miles above the rest.
If you have more questions or need dedicated wrongful death lawyers in Stuart, FL, to help you, call 772-287-2600. You can also easily schedule a free consultation online with our simple to use the contact form. We have successfully resolved hundreds of wrongful death cases over the years and can boast of many satisfied clients. You can always depend on Crary Buchanan for our honesty, trustworthiness, hard work, and experience. Call today.
The information in this blog post is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended to be legal advice. You should not decide whether or not to contact an attorney based upon the information in this blog post. No attorney-client relationship is formed, nor should any such relationship be implied. If you require legal advice, please consult with an attorney licensed to practice in your jurisdiction.