Losing a Loved One Due to Wrongful Death

paramedics strapping woman to stretcherThe loss of a loved one is always difficult, no matter how or why it happened. It can be particularly painful if a loved one’s death was caused by another’s negligence and could have been prevented.

The grieving process can involve many different emotions and reactions from surviving family and friends, including:

  • Anger
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Bouts of depression
  • Denial
  • Social withdrawal or isolation
  • Guilt

Mourning the loss of a loved one could go on for quite a while, and sadness is often triggered by special occasions or things that remind survivors of the one they lost, such as the loved one’s favorite song or a place he or she used to go.

There are resources available to help support those who lost loved ones. For example, you may be able to meet with a therapist to talk about the grief you are experiencing. There are also support groups for those who lost loved ones. Sometimes it can be very helpful to share feelings with other survivors as you look to process what you are going through.

Can You File a Wrongful Death Claim?

Filing a lawsuit may be the last thing you want to think about after losing a loved one. However, taking legal action may allow you to hold the negligent party liable and obtain compensation for out-of-pocket costs, along with emotional damages. Recovering compensation can be very important in the healing process.

The Phoenix wrongful death lawyers at Phillips Law Group have extensive knowledge of wrongful death claims, including filing deadlines, validating a case and the damages that may be available.

There are many factors to consider when trying to determine if you may have a case. For example, your loved one’s death must have been caused by a breach of duty of care by the at-fault party. A duty of care is a legal obligation to take reasonable steps to help prevent injuries to others.

Our civil rights attorneys must also determine the damages you suffered to determine what your claim may be worth. In a wrongful death claim, surviving family may be able to pursue compensation for loss of wages your loved one would have earned, funeral costs, loss of companionship, and loss of care and guidance, among other potential damages.

What is the Deadline for Filing a Wrongful Death Claim?

This is a very important aspect of a wrongful death claim ”“ if you do not file a claim before the deadline, you may lose the right to do so.

The standard deadline is two years from the date of death, but there may be exceptions, depending on many factors. If your loved one’s death was the result of government negligence, you may have one year from the date of death to file a claim against the government entity responsible. Notice of your claim must be provided within 180 days of the date of death.

There is also something called the “discovery rule” that can affect the deadline for filing a claim. For example, you may not learn about the potential for filing a claim until some time after your loved one’s death. When this happens, the two-year clock does not start until the date you know, or should you know, you may have the basis for a lawsuit.

You may be concerned about how a criminal case related to your loved one’s death may affect the deadline for a civil claim, but these two things are unrelated. You are also not prohibited from filing a civil claim if a criminal claim is unsuccessful.

Call an Experienced Attorney to Discuss Possible Legal Options

There is no cost or obligation to meet with Phillips Law Group’s experienced attorneys to discuss possible legal options. If you have a case and decide to move forward, there are no upfront fees.

For more than 27 years, we have been protecting the legal rights of Arizona injury victims. We have been able to recover more than $1 billion in compensation on their behalf.

Call 602-222-2222 anytime to set up your free consultation. No risk or obligation to you.