The most difficult challenge facing a family is the death of a loved one.
The worst outcome of a car accident is the death of a loved one. It is the hardest challenge that any family can face. When the death is caused by the misconduct or negligence of another person, the loss seems even harder to bear. Those who find themselves in such a situation question how to hold the at-fault person responsible. Family members of the deceased person can file a wrongful death lawsuit against the at-fault driver. There are several key steps involved in the process.
The term “wrongful death” is used to refer to the death of a person as a result of someone’s misconduct or negligence. Each state has a statute that governs wrongful death claims. In the state of Missouri, “wrongful death” is defined as “the death of a person resulting from any conduct, act, transaction, occurrence, or circumstance which, if death had not ensued, would have entitled the person to recover damages in respect thereof.”
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim?
The surviving spouse, children, or grandchildren can file a wrongful death claim. The next in-line would be the parents of the deceased. If the claim involves the death of a minor, the parents have the right to file a claim. If none of the aforementioned individuals have survived the deceased, then a sibling can file the wrongful death claim. In the state of Missouri, survivors can seek damages on behalf of the deceased and recover compensation for their own personal losses that result from the untimely death of their loved one.
Compensation for Losses
The purpose of a wrongful death claim is to obtain financial compensation for the losses incurred as a result of someone’s death. The following damages can be recovered:
- medical bills related to the deceased person’s injury or illness
- funeral and burial expenses
- pain and suffering experienced by the deceased
- value of wages or benefits the deceased person would likely have earned
- “reasonable value of the services, companionship, consortium, instruction, comfort, guidance, training, counsel, and support” the deceased person provided to the family members
St. Louis Auto Wreck Law Firms
There is a statue of limitations of three years for filing a wrongful death suit. Wrongful death claims are often complicated claims to litigate. Protect your legal rights and the compensation needed for all your economic and non-economic losses. Contact a St. Louis auto wreck attorney from The Hoffmann Law Firm, L.L.C. For a free consultation, call us at (314) 361-4242.