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What are the Different Types of Wrongful Death

November 3, 2021 By Flora Templeton Stuart

A wrongful death claim arises when a company or individual is negligent in causing the death of another person. These injury cases usually occur from car and semi-truck accidents but can be the result of a slip & fall, dog bite, gunshot wounds, nursing home accidents, medical malpractice, and death caused by the negligence or intentional conduct of another.

Following the passing of a loved one, it is understandable if you were considerably distraught. This is particularly true when the death is unforeseen or sudden. What’s worse is when the deceased’s family feels that the death was a result of an act of negligence.

Despite this grief, it would be prudent that, given the particular circumstances, the deceased’s family embark on the legal process that is filling a claim of wrongful death.

Most Common Types of Wrongful Death Claim

At the tenet of a wrongful death claim is the belief that the passing of the individual in question was due to the actions or negligence of another. The most common types of wrongful death claims include:

Car & Truck Accidents

Following a car or semi-truck accident in which someone passes away as a result of the injuries suffered or the accident, it is essential to document the chain of responsibility. Since the deceased is no longer able to relate how the accident occurred, getting an experienced Kentucky wrongful death attorney is important to investigate and establish liability.

Example of Car Accident Wrongful Death Lawsuit

When you can prove that the liable party was speeding, driving recklessly or that they were distracted, you have the prerequisite for a wrongful death lawsuit. What’s more, if your personal injury lawyer can prove that the wrongful death as a consequence of a car or truck accident was as a result of road defects, road repairs and associated construction activities, drunk driving, or auto defects, you may recover greater damages such as punitive damages for gross negligence.

Medical Malpractice

When you visit a medical practitioner, you have faith that they are good at their job. What happens when the said practitioner acts in a manner that results in the death of their client?

Example of Medical Malpractice Wrongful Death Lawsuit

A medical malpractice wrongful death lawsuit can occur when the deceased’s family can prove that medical error occurred. This could include errors during diagnosis, medication dosage, treatment, health management, or aftercare. Overall, when you can prove that the death resulted from substandard treatment, you are viable for some form of compensation.

A medical malpractice wrongful death lawsuit may also be filed when it is proven that the medical practitioner failed to provide the proper standard of care.

Premises Liability

Before you even set foot onto someone’s property, you have the expectation that the property is safe. Now suppose your loved one passes away because a property owner or manager knowingly neglected their responsibility to safety. In that case, you may be able to file a premise liability wrongful death lawsuit or settlement agreement.

Example of Premise Liability Wrongful Death Lawsuit 

You can sue for a premise liability wrongful death lawsuit if it is proven that the property owner or manager failed to remove hazards that caused the death of your loved one as a result of, for example, slip-and-fall or animal attacks. Slip and fall cases often occur at businesses, whereas dog bite cases most commonly occur with homeowners.

Products Liability

All parties along the chain of manufacture of any product are liable in the event that the product causes death. These parties include the manufacturer of the component parts, the party involved in the assembly of the product, the wholesaler, and finally, the retail store owner who is at the bottom of the supply chain. Companies must sell safe products subject to state and federal regulations.

Example of Products Liability Wrongful Death Lawsuit

Suppose it is proven that a product contained some inherent defects that resulted in the death of the consumer. In that case, your legal team can embark on a product liability wrongful death lawsuit. In some cases, an experienced injury lawyer can establish that the negligent company knew or should have known the product was unsafe, such as tobacco and breast implant cases.

A Prima Facie case is one in which the defendant is proven to have sold a defective product to the plaintiff. The lawsuit will be based on whether negligence, strict liability, or breach of warranty of fitness can be proven. The investigation into your case will be looking to see if the product had inherent design defects, manufacturing defects that occur during the production of the items, or defects within the market due to improper giving and following of instructions or failure to warn the consumer of the latent danger.

Nursing Home Abuse

There has been an increase in reports of elder abuse and neglect in institutions like nursing homes and long-term care facilities. This is particularly concerning because nursing homes are expected to keep their elderly residents safe by providing proper care.

Example of Nursing Home Abuse Wrongful Death Lawsuit

Suppose your loved one dies following a proven assault, dehydration, improper medical care, malnutrition, or medication error at a nursing home. In this case, you can call on the services of a lawyer to file a wrongful death lawsuit. Additionally, if you can prove that the nursing home lacked proper fall prevention or was negligent to the extent that the elderly in question suffered bedsores, you have what it takes to file for a wrongful death lawsuit.

This type of wrongful death lawsuit will involve either the suing of the nursing home, the practitioner, or both. The former is liable if you can prove that the establishment was at fault. On the other hand, a caregiver is sued when it can be proven that their handling of the deceased elderly individual is what caused their untimely demise and was the result of abuse or neglect.

Statute of Limitations in Wrongful Death Cases

In Tennessee, the state for wrongful death is one year. In Kentucky, you have two years to file a wrongful death suit for an accident with a car or semi-truck, and one year for all other cases.

How is a Wrongful Death Case Handled?

In a wrongful death case, the court will appoint an administrator to represent the estate. This is usually a family member, such as a spouse parent, sibling, or adult child. The administrator, usually with their attorney, will settle or litigate the case and dispense the recovery to the spouse and children for the deceased after payment of the funeral costs, litigation/court costs, and attorney fees.

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Why Hire A Wrongful Death Lawyer

Wrongful death cases are complex and retaining an experienced wrongful death lawyer immediately after the accident is crucial in obtaining maximum recovery. At Flora Templeton Stuart Accident Injury Lawyers, with 45 years of experience handling wrongful death cases, we have recovered millions for the families of those who were killed by the negligence of another.

If you live in Bowling Green or within the larger Warren County, we invite you to contact Flora Templeton Stuart attorneys in the event that you feel there is cause for a wrongful death lawsuit. We conduct a free initial consultation and develop a course of defense that should see you get a fair compensation. Call us at 888-782-9090 or chat with our attorneys today for free legal advice and guidance in your wrongful death case.

Author Photo

Flora Templeton Stuart

Flora Templeton Stuart is the lead attorney and founder of the law firm Flora Templeton Stuart Accident Injury Lawyers, established in 1976. Flora goes to work every day to make a difference in her community and the lives of her clients. When you call you will get a personal representation and an attorney who truly cares.