After losing someone in an accident, you may be wondering what to do next. If the negligence or intentional conduct of another person or entity is the reason for your loved one’s death, you may be entitled to compensation. However, these cases can be emotionally overwhelming and legally complex.
An experienced High Ridge wrongful death lawyer can assist in your case and fight for the compensation you deserve. Speak with our skilled attorneys today to get started on your claim.
Common Types of Fatal Accidents
There are many types of accidents that have the potential to be fatal. Although, certain situations are much more likely to result in death, such as accidents that involve heavy machinery or high-speed vehicles. Common scenarios that lead to wrongful death cases include:
- Motor vehicle collisions
- Pedestrian and bicycle accidents
- Acts of medical malpractice
- Defective product accidents
- Hazards on private property
The type of accident that led to the victim’s death may influence how an attorney handles the case. Given that every case is unique, it is crucial to work with a legal professional familiar with wrongful death claims.
Understanding State Law for Wrongful Death Claims
Missouri Revised Statutes § 537.080 specifies when a wrongful death claim is appropriate under state law. These types of claims may be filed when the defendant’s negligent actions would have warranted a personal injury case had the victim survived.
A defendant may be considered negligent and legally liable if they breached the duty of care they owed the other person, directly causing an accident that led to their death. A qualified attorney could help a plaintiff determine whether a wrongful death claim is appropriate in their situation.
Who May File for Wrongful Death?
State law sets forth only specific people who may file a wrongful death claim, and they typically are given priority in a certain order. Those who may file a claim include:
- The surviving spouse or children of the decedent
- Any surviving parents of the decedent
- Surviving siblings of the decedent, if no other surviving family members precede them
- The personal representative of the estate, if there are no siblings
- A “plaintiff ad litem,” if there is no personal representative
The specific order in which a party is permitted to file may be complicated depending on the surviving family members. A consultation with a seasoned attorney can help an individual understand whether they are allowed to file a wrongful death case and proceed with legal action.
Seek Compensation with the Help of a High Ridge Wrongful Death Attorney
Enduring the loss of a loved one is difficult enough without dealing with the financial difficulties caused by that death. If someone else caused your relative’s death, you and your family could be entitled to compensation.
To understand your rights in filing a lawsuit, contact an experienced High Ridge wrongful death lawyer. Our law firm has handled numerous cases like yours and is prepared to help you fight for justice. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and begin discussing your legal options.