If you’ve suffered the tragic loss of a loved one, the wrongful death lawyers at GKT can help. Determining whether you have a wrongful death case is the first step in protecting you and your loved one’s future and obtaining the compensation you deserve. It is extremely important to act quickly with a wrongful death case. A wrongful death lawyer like those at GKT will act immediately to investigate your case and preserve your rights. Call (304) 845-9750 to talk with a GKT wrongful death lawyer, live chat 24/7 at GKT.com, or contact us online .
Any loss of life is tragic, but perhaps nothing is more tragic than when someone is killed due to another person’s carelessness of wrongful actions. Not only are the person’s family and friends left confused and devastated by such a sudden and avoidable loss, but the practical ramifications become front and center.
How will I pay for my loved one’s medical bills, funeral costs, and other expenses? How will I make ends meet with my loved one’s loss of income? How do I recover from the mental and emotional anguish? These questions and more are sure to come up.
That’s where a wrongful death lawyer can help. When a loved one is killed by another person’s negligence, the law allows certain family members and others to recover compensation for their loss. If you’ve suffered the tragic loss of a loved one, you might be wondering whether you have a wrongful death case. Read more below to find out if you may have a case.
Was the Death Caused by the Fault or Negligence of Another?
A person will only have a case if their loved one was killed by the wrongful act or fault of another person or an entity such as a business. Typically, the basis for a wrongful death case is that one person’s negligence caused the death of another person. Negligence simply means that a person was not acting as a reasonably prudent person would have acted.
The typical example is a work accident. Let’s take an example. Assume that a worker is killed when he becomes entangled in a piece of heavy machinery or equipment that did not have the proper safety devices. Putting aside any workers’ compensation issues, the worker’s death may be attributable to his employer’s failure to provide the necessary safety device, another worker’s removal of the safety device, or the manufacturer of the equipment or machinery under certain circumstances. The worker’s estate would have a case against any of these persons, the manufacturer, or any other business that would be at fault for the worker’s death.
While an entanglement workplace accident is generally more likely to be the basis of a wrongful death case, other work accidents can cause death. Those accidents may occur due to mistakes, errors, negligence, haste, cost cutting, or poor design and engineering. Car and truck accidents are also a common basis for wrongful death claims.
Unfortunately, whether someone was killed through the fault of another person or entity is rarely clear. A knowledgeable and experienced wrongful death lawyer, like those at GKT, can determine whether you may have case. Contact GKT now to schedule a free consultation with one of our attorneys.
Are You a Family Member or Person Who Financially Relies on the Person Killed?
Even if your loved one was killed by the fault, wrongful action, or negligence of another, only the estate of the deceased person is able to file a wrongful death lawsuit. Once a wrongful death case is won or settled, the persons are entitled to the compensation varies from state to state.
West Virginia’s wrongful death law is found at W.Va. Code § 55-7-6. Under West Virginia’s law, the following people may obtain wrongful death compensation: (1) a husband or wife; (2) children (including adopted children and step children); (3) parents; (4) siblings/brothers and sisters; and (5) any person who is financially dependent on the person killed.
It’s easy to determine whether you are a spouse, sibling, or child of the person killed. However, if you are not, how do you know whether you are financially dependent on the person killed? That will be a fact-intensive inquiry. Contacting a skilled wrongful death lawyer can help determine the answer.
Ohio’s wrongful death law is found at R.C. 2125.02. Under Ohio’s law, the following people may obtain wrongful death compensation: (1) a husband or wife; (2) children (including adopted children); and (3) parents.
Thus, Ohio’s law is much more restrictive than West Virginia in that it does not allow siblings and financially dependent people to recover.
Are You Entitled to Wrongful Death Compensation?
While the information above may help you determine whether you are entitled to compensation, you won’t know for sure unless you contact a knowledgeable and experienced wrongful death attorney.
The lawyers at GKT have represented countless people who have suffered the tragic and sudden loss of a loved one to the fault of another. Our death attorneys will not stop fighting until our clients receive justice and the compensation they’re due.
If your loved one has been killed by the fault of another person or business, call GKT today at (304) 845-9750, live chat 24/7 at GKT.com, or contact us by using our online form. Our lawyers are always available and will travel to meet you whenever and wherever it is convenient for you—whether on the weekend or in your home. Let us know how we can best help you.