New York City Wrongful Death Attorney
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In the event that an injured victim does not survive an accident caused by the negligence of another, wrongful death has occurred. If you are a surviving family member of a wrongful death victim, you have the legal right to seek compensation for your loss.
These tragic circumstances usually require the help of an experienced wrongful death lawyer so that you, as a family member of the deceased, are "made whole.” We work hard to help you obtain compensation to cover medical bills, funeral arrangements, lost income, and other costs associated with the death of your loved one.
Call (212) 577-9325 today for your free consultation with a "Best Law Firms" rated practice. Our wrongful death lawyers in NYC are here to help you through this difficult time.
Do I Have Grounds to Pursue a Wrongful Death Case?
If an accident victim would have been justified in bringing a personal injury claim had they lived, then a wrongful death claim is usually appropriate. This type of claim can be filed by surviving family members or legal dependents of an individual who has died due to another party’s negligence, carelessness, or misconduct.
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in New York?
Family members who can make a wrongful death claim include spouses of the deceased, parents who lost children, and children who lost parents. In some cases, siblings or other close relatives can file the claim. If the person filing the claim is a minor, they may require an adult guardian in order to file a lawsuit. Depending on the situation, other legal dependents and members of the victim’s family may be able to pursue a wrongful death claim in New York.
Establishing Fault in a Wrongful Death Case
Family members must show several different elements of their wrongful death case, including:
- The defendant had a legal obligation to the deceased. People have a general legal obligation to avoid high-risk behaviors. For example, drivers must exercise reasonable caution and manufacturers have an obligation to ensure that their products are safe. Establishing a legal duty can be shown if there was a relationship, however tangential, between the deceased and the defendant.
- The obligation was breached. There is a negligence standard generally used to make this determination. How would a reasonable person have acted in a similar situation? If they would have been more careful, the defendant is considered to be negligent.
- The breach directly caused the death. Did the defendant’s actions lead to the death? If so, a wrongful death claim can be made.
- There is something for which you can be compensated. These costs include medical bills or pain and suffering. Wrongful death cases allow you to recover money for both economic and non-economic losses.
If you are bringing a wrongful death claim, you have the burden of proving each of these elements. To make a strong claim, you will need the services of a knowledgeable attorney to help gather the necessary evidence for your case.
Seeking Compensation for the Loss of Your Loved One
If your family member has died due to the negligence of another, your first priority should be contacting a lawyer who can help you maximize your compensation by going to court or negotiating a settlement with the defendant. In New York, there is a statute of limitations restricting the amount of time you can file a wrongful death lawsuit.
In addition, determining appropriate compensation for your loss can be a complicated process involving many factors that establish what your case should be worth. At The Perecman Firm, our experienced wrongful death attorneys in New York City can lead you through this process with clarity, informing you of your rights and options.
Damages due to a wrongful death include:
- Funeral costs
- Loss of companionship
- Medical bills that were paid prior to the death
- Lost financial support that the deceased would have provided
Is It Possible to Secure Compensation for Emotional Distress?
New York law rarely permits a recovery of damages for emotional distress in wrongful death lawsuits, except in specific situations. One of these situations is if the family member witnessed the injury or death of their loved one firsthand. In these cases, that person may be able to file a claim to seek compensation for emotional distress.
To learn more about your case and how we can help, contact our firm for a free, no-obligation consultation.
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