In Florida, a wrongful death is a civil action that is similar to other negligence cases, however, it has resulted in the death of the injured party or the victim in the case. The legal requirements of all personal injury cases exist. A statute of limitations is four years for wrongful death case in Florida. This means a person still needs to have a breach of duty, causation, and then damages. The damages in a wrongful death case are unfortunately a fatality. In other words, a person that has a duty to act in a prudent manner, breached that duty by not acting in a prudent manner, and caused the death of the injured party.
If your loved one has passed away as a result of their injuries sustained in a personal injury case, contact a Tampa wrongful death lawyer to begin the process of holding the negligent party responsible for their actions.
There can be many different ways that a wrongful death is caused. A lot of car accident cases, unfortunately, result in a fatality of the injured party, Medical malpractice and nursing home cases commonly result in wrongful death claims. Additionally, some pedestrian versus car or motorcycle accidents that also result in wrongful cases.
Elements of Proof
The way wrongful death cases are handled in Tampa is the attorney and claimants have to prove the elements of negligence as well as that the death resulted from those elements of negligence, not just that a death eventually happened in the case.
The plaintiff has to prove the at-fault parties’ duty, what their breach of duty is, and how that breach caused the death of the injured party.
Regulations of Estates in Absence of Will
If a person suffers a wrongful death and they do not have a will to manage the affairs of the estate there are legal measures in place. Many times the estate goes to the next in line, their descendant if they have a child, or their spouse first and then the children.
If there are no living children or multiple living children, the judge would choose one of the children to be the trustee. A person can open up an estate after the wrongful death case happens to represent the estate of the deceased party and stand in the shoes of the decedent throughout the litigation.
The wrongful death case can be settled either before, during, or after the trial and claim submission. The difference in each of these steps often comes down to the settlement amount and elements of the trial process.
It is the cheapest to settle a wrongful death case before it goes to court because a person pays less in attorney’s fees and costs, less to the experts, and with the most net to the clients. So, many times it is beneficial to settle before it goes to court.
If it has to go to court then a person has to pay filing fees, for the deposition, for experts, and increased attorney’s fees will also when a case goes to court. Many times even if it is a larger gross settlement number, the net amount for the descendant to take home may not be larger if the case has to go court and trial because of the additional costs.
However, if the other side is not making any fair offers, sometimes a person does not have a choice and must litigate the case, taking it all the way to trial. If the defendants are making reasonable offers, it should be considered earlier in the case because the costs of litigation are cheapest the earlier a person is in the case.