Wrongful death attorney Miami

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When a loved one has died at the hands of someone else's negligence, it is important to seek legal advice from a wrongful death attorney Miami law firm. These expert attorneys have experience protecting the rights of the survivors. Wrongful death attorney Miami specialists deal with cases that involve fatalities caused by other people's carelessness or break of legal duty. These attorneys know the laws of Florida and are not afraid to fight for adequate compensation. Although an unexpected death of a friend or family member brings pain and emotional turmoil, it is essential to stand up and make sure the guilty parties are held responsible. A wrongful death attorney Miami professional will explain your rights and represent you during your quest for justice.

What does wrongful death mean?

The legal definition of wrongful death is when a willful act of one person takes the life of another person. This may result from a number of situations, but causes great despair and upheaval to surviving loved ones. Since acts of wrongful death are preventable, they differ from other injuries or causes of mortality.

Circumstances where you need to hire a wrongful death attorney Miami

There are many circumstances when it is essential to hire a Miami injury lawyer. For example, automobile accidents account for the highest number of wrongful death cases. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, approximately 40,000 people are killed on the roads every year. Besides actual crashes, these cases may include death caused by car manufacturing defects.

Medical Malpractice is another reason behind wrongful death cases. Nurses and doctors have duties to provide positive health services. However, when careless things happen, serious injuries or death may occur.

Product liability is a part of wrongful death where victims were harmed by the manufacturing, distribution, or design of defective products. Also, when a manufacturer fails to warm the public about a known defect, the maker can be held accountable for incurred injuries.

Accidents in the workplace are common. In severe cases, they may result in death. For instance, explosions, burns, and equipment malfunctions are grounds for wrongful death suits. Employers have obligations to maintain safe work environments. When there is a blatant disregard for employee safety, punishment must be swift to prevent further harm to others.

Wrongful death lawsuit

A wrongful death lawsuit was designed to allow surviving family members to collect restitution for damages that led to the death of their loved one. This type of legal action is a civil case that determines the amount of compensation the guilty parties are responsible for paying to the decedent's family. To successfully win a wrongful death lawsuit, surviving family must prove their loved one's death was caused by the other party's negligence, and the death caused emotional and financial hardships.

Who can file a wrongful death lawsuit?

Under Florida Statute 768.20, wrongful death lawsuits can only be brought by a personal representative of the decedent's estate on behalf of the survivors. These individuals include a spouse, children, parents, blood relatives who received support, and adoptive family members dependent on the decedent.

Wrongful death damages

There are different types of damages available to survivors involved with wrongful death suits.

  • Economic Damages: Death can be expensive. There are medical and funeral bills that must be paid. Also, the victim's death may cause economic concerns for his or her dependents. For instance, a spouse may lose pension money or insurance coverage.
  • Non-Economic Damages: These damages cover non-tangible items. For example, mental anguish, loss of care, and loss of companionship are emotional damages that deserve compensation.

Punitive Damages in wrongful death cases

Punitive damages punish the guilty party for bad behavior. For example, if an elderly person dies from nursing home abuse, punitive damages may be awarded to deter similar future negative actions.

Wrongful death lawsuit settlements

After a wrongful death lawsuit is filed by a Miami injury lawyer, it can be fought at trial or settled out-of-court. No matter the method, the victim's family can be awarded a large sum of money. The exact amount depends on a number of factors. The state of Florida places limits on non-economic damages. The award cannot exceed $1 million against medical practitioners or $1.5 million against non-practitioners. There is also a limit on non-economic damage amounts. Circumstances that include medical care cannot exceed $150,000 against practitioners and $750,000 against non-practitioners. When punitive damages are included in the suit, certain judges award large settlements to discourage future negative behavior on the part of the guilty party.

Wrongful death lawsuit settlements average

Each wrongful death case is unique and has a set of factors that helps determine the monetary award. A judge considers the age of the deceased person, the amount of support this person provided to his or her family, and the extent of the circumstances that surrounded his or her death. For example, the family of a young man who has numerous years ahead to work and raise his children may be awarded more than the family of an elderly widowed man who has reached retirement and lives alone. When punitive damages are part of a settlement, the amounts vary as well. For instance, a large corporation may end up paying a heftier amount than a smaller entity. Since each case is different, it is not possible to estimate an average wrongful death settlement amount.

How long does a wrongful death suit take?

Every wrongful death lawsuit is different and takes different amounts of time to complete. Some cases are settled quickly after insurance companies process the claims. However, others may take longer, especially when the exact amounts of compensation are not obvious.

After you consult with a Miami injury lawyer, this expert will conduct an investigation to uncover who was responsible for the fatality. Usually, if police gather evidence from the scene, the process proceeds quickly. However, certain cases may be more difficult to investigate. Experts may be needed to reconstruct the accidents. It also takes time to establish the damages family members are allowed to receive.

A high number of wrongful death cases end with settlements. However, if a case proceeds to court, it may take months to gather evidence and have the lawsuit heard at trial. Also, when insurance companies are involved, they may try to settle unfairly, or they may try to delay paying. This is why it is essential to have a Miami injury lawyer expert on your side.

Wrongful death statutes under tort law

A wrongful death claim is a tort held against someone who may be liable for another individual's death. Since a deceased person cannot pursue a lawsuit, a wrongful death charge is a tort filed against the responsible party on behalf of the decedent's survivors who are entitled to recover damages. This claim is not a criminal charge, so there is no need to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. Instead, this claim must simply show negligence caused the decedent's death.

Wrongful death statute of limitations Florida

In the state of Florida, there are time periods when the decedent's family can file a wrongful death claim. In most cases, it is necessary to file a claim within two years from the date of the accident. However, there are certain exceptions. For example, if the wrongful death was caused by negligence, the statute of limitations for negligence must be followed. Also, if the wrongful death occurred out of state, the statute of limitations for that state applies. For a case of medical malpractice, the limit is two years from the time the problem occurred and must not exceed four years from the time of the original incident. In Florida, if a wrongful death suit is filed against a government entity, a person has four years to file.

Wrongful death action vs criminal charges

When a person is charged criminally, the individual will face possible jail time. After criminal charges are filed, it is possible to begin a wrongful death civil action. A decedent's family does not recover damages from a criminal case. However, it is possible to use the evidence presented in a criminal case to help the civil suit. Usually, when a criminal is convicted, it helps bring successful results to a civil case.

A Wrongful death attorney Miami handling your wrongful death claim

If you recently lost a loved one due to someone else's negligence, it is essential to seek assistance from a Miami injury lawyer. This expert understands the laws in Florida regarding wrongful death cases. This situation can be extremely confusing, so you need someone who will see you through the process and bring you successful results. You have a right to receive compensation, and a Miami injury lawyer from our office will work with you, aggressively present your case, and fight for justice. Even though money will not bring back your loved one, it will help you return to a more normal life. Contact us for a consultation today.