Wrongful Death Lawyers in Augusta Making Matters Right for Grieving Families
When someone dies in an accident caused by negligent behavior, that qualifies as a wrongful death case in which surviving family members can seek compensation. A wrongful death lawyer will be able to determine the liable party who is responsible for your loved ones passing. You will essentially be asking this liable party to compensate you for wrongful death damages, as well as pain and suffering damages. There are some cases where punitive damages will be explored if there was an intent to harm. These damages will be calculated and an award will be given to the plaintiff.
What Should I Do Following My Loved One’s Death?
When you are starting a wrongful death claim, the very first step that you will likely need to do is have a consultation to determine if you in fact are eligible to bring a claim. There are some requirements that your circumstances would have to match for you to be able to have a case. There will need to be a liable party that was directly responsible for the passing of your loved one, and your attorney will have to be able to prove that there was negligence involved in the accident.
How Is Liability Determined?
There are two ways someone could be responsible for an accident. They either could have done something to harm or failed to do something to protect. An example of doing something to harm would be if someone was in their car, ran through a red light, and hit their loved one. An example of failing to protect would be a drug manufacturer marketing a product without detailing the risks of taking that medication. Your lawyer has to be able to show that the actions of these people were directly linked to your loved one’s passing. That is called the burden of proof.
Our Augusta wrongful death lawyers are skilled in these cases and understand the work that goes into making a wrongful death case successful. There is a lot of evidence that needs to be gathered and protected, too, and only a lawyer with the right experience is going to know how to utilize that evidence to maximize your case results.
What Damages Can I Recover?
You may be wondering how you are going to recover damages from your wrongful death case. There are a few things that are covered by damages. You will be able to receive compensation for medical bills and funeral expenses, as well as punitive damages, in some cases. Those punitive damages will be given to surviving family members if the liable party acted with intent to harm, and it is usually illicit activity. These damages are designed to punish that liable party for wrongdoing.
A comprehensive list of possible wrongful death case damages include:
- Your lost loved one’s pain and suffering
- Any lost wages and future earning capacity
- Loss of relationship with your loved one
- Loss of work-related benefits including pension, 401k, etc.
It is the state law that determines who would be allowed to recover the damages in a wrongful death claim. Georgia statute says that the possible plaintiffs are limited to:
- The victim’s spouse
- The victim’s minor children (if previous doesn’t apply)
- The victim’s parents (if previous doesn’t apply)
- The victim’s executor (if previous doesn’t apply)
Georgia state law also says that, if a spouse is to receive wrongful death compensation without a will, they are obligated to allocate that award to the victim’s children. If those children are minors at the time, this award will be protected until they reach 18 years of age.
Call Our Augusta Wrongful Death Lawyers Today?
If you are searching for dependable and knowledgeable Augusta wrongful death lawyers to represent you and your family, please give Nimmons Malchow Johnson office a call to get your free, initial consultation.