Families of those who died in unexpected accidents are left at the mercy of powerful insurance companies, corporate doctors, attorneys, and biased investigators. As if grieving the loss of your loved one is not enough, there are still medical costs, funeral expenses, and daily bills to manage. The Pendleton Law Team can intervene and simplify your recovery process.
While our wrongful death attorneys won’t be able to hasten your emotional process, we can expedite your legal one by filing a wrongful death claim in Suffolk on your behalf. You don’t deserve to face this legal dispute alone and at such a tragic time. Our Virginia-based wrongful death legal practice serves Suffolk and nearby communities for all personal injury reasons.
Choosing a law firm, you can rely on after a loved one has passed away to seek the justice you are entitled to doesn’t have to be a challenge. Meet with us for free and experience compassionate legal support that won’t settle for less.
Wrongful Death Lawsuit: Frequently Asked Questions
Losing a loved one is not easy, and your mind is probably swarming with questions for guidance and comfort. Our wrongful death lawyers are here to help your Suffolk case any way that we can. We have compiled a list of commonly asked questions regarding wrongful death cases so that you know what to expect from the upcoming legal process.
What Type of Accidents Qualify for a Wrongful Death Investigation?
Any accident where a person or entity’s negligent actions resulted in the unexpected death of another person qualifies as wrongful death and can be investigated further. There are critical steps to take after a wrongful death that will improve your chances of winning your case, but the following accidents are examples of accident types that could be grounds for investigation:
- Vehicle collisions: The relatives of the deceased individual may be eligible to file a wrongful death case if the deceased person was killed in an automobile accident resulting from another motorist’s negligence.
- Medical malpractice: If a patient dies as a result of a healthcare provider’s carelessness or mistake, the patient’s family members may be able to make a wrongful death claim.
- Workplace accidents: If a person passes away as a result of an accident at work, surviving family members may qualify to sue their employer or another party that contributed to the life-taking accident.
- Product liability: If a person dies as a result of a defective product, their family members may be entitled to sue the product’s producer or distributor for wrongful death.
- Criminal acts: The decedent’s family may be entitled to bring a wrongful death claim against the offender if they believe that their loved one was killed as a result of a criminal act, like aggravated assault.
Which Surviving Members are Eligible to Receive a Wrongful Death Settlement?
Upon filing a wrongful death claim, who receives the settlement and to what extent is one of the most commonly asked questions. Each state has its own rules as to how wrongful death compensation packages are awarded. Virginia Code section 8.01-53 categorizes beneficiaries by tier level, awarding surviving members in the following order:
- The surviving spouse
- The surviving children
- The surviving parents, siblings, or additional family members that lived in their home
- Other surviving relatives listed as heirs to their estate under the state’s intestacy laws
How Much Money Can I Receive From My Loved One’s Wrongful Death Settlement?
The amount awarded in a Suffolk, VA, wrongful death lawsuit will greatly depend on a variety of factors, such as:
- Extent of injuries
- Pre-existing health conditions
- Where the accident occurred
- Wrongful death incident type
- The decedent’s age and earning capacity
- If multiple parties were at fault
- The capability of the wrongful death attorney handling your Suffolk claim
After this has been determined, damages are generally categorized into economic or non-economic factors. Economic factors refer to financially taxing losses such as medical costs, funeral and burial expenses, and lost income. On the other hand, non-economic damages consist of intangible losses like pain and suffering, emotional trauma, and loss of support.
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Common Factors That Eliminate or Reduce Your Chance of Collecting a Settlement
Your chances of winning a settlement in a wrongful death case may be eliminated or diminished by a number of factors. Some of these elements could be:
- Limited insurance coverage: It could be challenging to obtain compensation if the at-fault party does not have enough insurance. The accountable party might be uninsured in particular circumstances.
- Lack of evidence: Receiving compensation for your claim may be challenging if insufficient evidence supports it. This can be due to a dearth of witnesses, loss of records, or loss of tangible evidence.
- Contributing negligence: In some places, a deceased person’s family members may not be allowed to get compensation if they contributed to their own death. It’s referred to as “contributory negligence,” and Virginia is one of the few states that upholds this law.
- Uncooperative defendants: Collecting a settlement may be challenging if the defendants in the case are uncooperative or refuse to settle. This can result in a drawn-out and pricey court case.
- Time restrictions: There is a finite window of opportunity to bring a wrongful death claim. It might be impossible to collect compensation if Virginia’s wrongful death statute of limitations deadline is missed.
This is why working with an experienced unexpected death attorney on your Suffolk wrongful death case is crucial. You need legal representation to guide you through these unknowable issues and help you develop a compelling case. Our attorneys can assist with the collection of evidence, deal with insurance providers, and, if necessary, advocate for your interests in court.
Let the Heavy Hitters® Take On Your Case 804-250-5050
We Understand Your Pain and Want To Help You Gain Closure
As hard as it is to endure loss, holding the negligent party or entity liable can bring you closure and financial safety during such an uncertain time. Don’t allow the insurance company, doctors, or other lawyers to intimidate you if you feel that you have a case. The market for a Suffolk wrongful death attorney may be vast, but the Pendleton Law Team is a high-rated firm.
Our attorneys have extensive experience in handling wrongful death cases against corporate entities and are not afraid to be the “Heavy Hitters®” during negotiations or in the courtroom. For legal guidance you can trust, contact a member of our team and schedule a risk-free consultation today.
The Pendleton Law Team Is Here For You 804-250-5050