Who can file a wrongful death lawsuit?

Published: February 15, 2022

A wrongful death lawsuit allows you to claim compensatory damages from the liable party for your loved one’s untimely death. The compensation won’t bring back the dead or ease your emotional suffering. 

However, it can help you address some financial troubles through that challenging period.

Florida law has some requirements for a person to become eligible to file a wrongful death lawsuit. And you should satisfy those requirements as presented in this article to claim the rightful compensation. 

Contacting a Florida wrongful death lawsuit lawyer helps determine your eligibility too.

Are you Eligible to File a Wrongful Death Claim?

Florida law requires a deceased’s estate to choose a representative to file a wrongful death claim. The representative will seek compensation through the lawsuit and distribute the settlement to the deceased’s family and dependents.

The court will first consider the identified representative in the deceased’s last will or estate plan. The court will appoint a representative if there is no estate plan.

The thing is that the law favors the deceased’s primary family members to file a wrongful death lawsuit, including:

  • Parent
  • Spouse
  • A biological or adopted child who is above 25 years old

However, in the absence of primary family members, blood relatives dependent on the deceased can file the lawsuit. It refers to blood relatives who partially or fully depended on the decedent before death.

A reliable wrongful death lawyer in Florida may help clarify if you are eligible to file a wrongful death case or not.

Statute of Limitations for Wrongful Death Lawsuit

It’s easy to miss the Florida statute of limitations for wrongful death claims, especially when grieving over a loved one’s death. In most cases, an estate representative can only file a wrongful death lawsuit within two years after the deceased’s date of death.

A notable exception is a medical malpractice resulting in the death of a person. You must file a case within two years of the medical procedure that caused complications and death. You may also file within two years of discovering malpractice done by a medical professional to your loved one, even after the procedure’s date.

These time restrictions make it crucial to hire a Florida wrongful death lawsuit lawyer as soon as possible. They can handle the lawsuit on time while you face the challenges of losing a loved one.

Compensations You May Claim from a Wrongful Death Lawsuit

There are significant differences between the wrongful death compensation claimed on an estate’s or a family member’s behalf.

  • Compensation Claims on Behalf of a Family Member

The deceased’s family members can claim these compensations:

  • Medical, funeral, and burial expenses
  • Financial support the decedent could have provided between the time of sustaining injuries to the time of death
  • Lost financial support from the time of death
  • Emotional pain and suffering
  • Loss of companionship
  • Loss of guidance 

Parents may also claim compensation for pain and suffering if the deceased was a minor child.

  • Compensation Claims on Behalf of the Estate

The deceased’s estate may recover the following compensation:

  • The deceased’s lost income between the time of sustaining injuries to the time of death
  • The deceased’s lost income starting at the time of death
  • Medical, funeral, and burial expenses

A professional wrongful death lawyer will help you calculate the correct compensation for a deceased’s family member or estate. Contact a lawsuit lawyer in Florida immediately for assistance.

Steps on Filing a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in Florida

Now, here are the general steps to follow when filing a wrongful death claim:

1. Know your eligibility to file a wrongful death lawsuit or determine a suitable estate representative. Remember the points mentioned above as a guide.

2. Hire an attorney to serve as your legal counsel. They will help you collect evidence, talk with witnesses, and calculate the compensation. They will also represent your case in court.

3. Your lawyer will officially file the case in court containing essential details like the accused’s information, the evidence, and the compensation you claim.

4. You and your lawyer will attempt a pre-trial settlement negotiation with the defendant’s party. The case will go to court if you fail to reach an agreement during this period.

Hire a Wrongful Death Lawsuit Lawyer in Florida Immediately

A wrongful death claim can become complicated, especially when you are still emotionally suffering because of a loved one’s untimely passing. However, taking legal action is essential to get the compensation you deserve.

So, contact a Florida wrongful death lawsuit lawyer to file your case.