Accidents were the third-leading cause of death in the state of North Carolina in 2017, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). When an accident claims the life of your loved one, it is only natural to want an answer to this question: Who is responsible?
If you would like assistance seeking the party or parties responsible for your loved one’s sudden passing, and to possibly bring legal action against those parties, then we can help. Call our team at Farmer & Morris Law, PLLC, today at (828) 286-3866 for a free consultation.
Defining a Wrongful Death in North Carolina
North Carolina state statutes define a wrongful death as:
“…The death of a person [which] is caused by a wrongful act, neglect or default of another, such as would, if the injured person had lived, have entitled the injured person to an action for damages therefore, the person or corporation that would have been so liable” (Statute 28A-18-2.)
In other words, actions that could warrant a victim to bring a personal injury lawsuit generally also warrant a wrongful death lawsuit if those actions result in a death. If your loved one was the victim of one or more negligent acts by one or more negligent parties in Lincolnton, then you may have the right to bring a wrongful death lawsuit in their name.
Possible Forms of Compensation From a Wrongful Death
The legal system may generally look upon a wrongful death even more seriously than a severe injury because:
- A wrongful death results in the loss of life, which is not repairable or replaceable.
- There is no chance of recovering from death.
- The actions that resulted in the wrongful death must be prevented in the future, and civil damages are one way to deter similar negligent actions.
- The family of the deceased may suffer a plethora of losses that must be replaced in the name of justice and fairness.
If you have lost a loved one, you could be facing losses that are:
Some of the more specific losses that you may have experienced because of your loved one’s death could include:
- The loss of the physical presence of your loved one, and the benefits that come from being able to interact with them
- The loss of the financial support that your loved one provided, especially if you are the spouse of the deceased and particularly if you have children
- The loss of comfort and companionship that the deceased provided to you and perhaps to other family members
- The loss of parental guidance that the deceased provided to their children
There may be additional costs that come directly from the accident that caused the deceased’s passing and the death itself. These may include:
- Medical bills for the deceased
- Funeral costs
- Pain and suffering of the deceased and your family
Pain and suffering may be especially great in a wrongful death case, as losing a loved one can leave a significant void in multiple people’s lives. If you want to learn more about taking legal action in response to your loved one’s passing, call our team at Farmer & Morris Law, PLLC, today at (828) 286-3866 for a free consultation.
Assessing Liability for a Wrongful Death
The circumstances of your loved one’s death will be vital to assessing who is liable for any negligence that contributed to their passing. Some of the scenarios and actions that could result in fatal injury include:
- Workplace accidents, as the state of North Carolina is home to several potentially dangerous industries such as construction, manufacturing, and transportation
- Dog bites, which may lead to potentially fatal infections
- Motor vehicle collisions, which increased in both frequency and the number of resulting fatalities in 2018
- Medical error, also referred to as medical malpractice
- Unsafe premises, which may cause slip and fall injuries, trip and fall injuries, and negligent security-related injuries
- Injuries resulting from construction or design defects
- Pedestrian and bicycle accidents
- Defective products, including defective medical devices
These are just some of the potential causes of death that may compel you or others to bring a wrongful death lawsuit. Based on these or other circumstances that led to your loved one’s passing, a lawyer can often help you answer questions such as:
- Who was responsible for the circumstances that caused your loved one’s death?
- What did the responsible parties do that exposed your loved one to an unreasonable risk of harm?
- What losses have resulted from negligent actions that caused your loved one’s death?
- How much are those losses worth?
How a Lawyer May Help You Bring a Wrongful Death Lawsuit
Should you choose the assistance of a lawyer at Farmer & Morris Law, PLLC as you prepare to bring a wrongful death lawsuit against one or more responsible parties, you can expect them to:
- Provide a free initial consultation to assess your lawsuit
- If you mutually agree, move forward with your legal case
- Handle all the legal aspects of your wrongful death lawsuit
- Pursue any compensation that you could be entitled to
Some of the more specific duties that your lawyer may fulfill include:
- Creation and filing of legal documents
- Correspondence with attorneys for the defendant(s) or with adjusters for the liable party in your case
- Correspondence with the judge in your case
- Evidence collection
- Consultations with experts that may benefit your case
- Representation in settlement negotiations and any trial that proves necessary
- Defense of your rights
You may find that these services are of great assistance to you during your time of extreme hardship. Do not hesitate if you would like assistance from a legal advisor and representative as you consider acting after a wrongful death.
Call Our Team at Farmer & Morris Law, PLLC, Today
Our team will handle your legal representation with empathy, imparting the dignity that your loved one’s memory deserves. Call our team at Farmer & Morris Law, PLLC, today at (828) 286-3866 for a free consultation.