Feeling upset and wronged after the death of a loved one is a natural reaction. It’s also natural to want to find someone at fault and feel spiteful toward other loved ones left behind or the people who cared for the person before their death. Everyone deals with grief differently and lashing out is common. You may even have file a wrongful death claim, which enables you to seek out damages for your loved one’s death. However, it’s important to understand wrongful death cases in Georgia and your likelihood of succeeding in receiving damages.
Wrongful Death Laws in Georgia
Georgia considers a death wrongful if it is a death resulting from a crime, negligence, or defective property. These causes can be the result of one person or an entity. Those who are eligible to file this lawsuit in Georgia include the person’s spouse, followed by their children. If the person has no spouse or children, their parents can file, followed by the executor of the estate. No other family members are allowed to file a wrongful death lawsuit.
Common Wrongful Death Causes
When determining whether you have a wrongful death case after the loss of a loved one, it’s helpful to look at common causes of wrongful death in the eyes of the law. Understanding what creates a successful wrongful death claim can help you determine if you have a case. Here are some examples:
- Death as a result of a negligence-based incident, such as if a person or entity fails to follow the proper safety regulations, fails to warn of dangers or hazards, or behaves carelessly. This includes incidents such as car, truck, or motorcycle accidents. It also includes cyclist and pedestrian accidents and premises liability accidents, such as slip and fall accidents — where a person or entity was responsible for safe grounds and failed to clear it of hazards.
- Medical malpractice, or when a doctor, nurse, or hospital fails their duty of care. If a medical professional had errors or mistakes in treating someone and it results in someone’s death, a wrongful death claim might apply. This situation also includes accidental medication errors that result in poisonings and overdoses.
- Death from a defective product. Manufacturers of a product have a duty of responsibility toward those who use their product. Whether the fault is the failure of warnings, unsafe design, or manufacturer mistake, if your loved one died from using the product, you could have a wrongful death claim.
To eliminate the guesswork and ensure you don’t make any missteps or fault assumptions, it is a good idea to speak with a wrongful death attorney. They can learn the specifics of your individual circumstances and determine if you have a wrongful death case. Personal injury cases are complicated in themselves, and wrongful death cases are even more so. By ensuring you have a qualified professional on your side who understands personal injury law, you can make sure your case is strong.
What You Can Gain From a Wrongful Death Claim
Gaining damages in Georgia comes in two distinct avenues. One way is by compensating family members for the economic value lost, such as lost wages, and other benefits. Economic value is also meant to cover intangible losses like care and companionship. The second avenue for damages is for the expenses related to taking care of the death. This type of claim requires the executor of the estate to file it, and it provides compensation for medical expenses from before a person’s death, funeral services, and burial services. To ensure you get the most compensation as possible for your loss, contact our professional attorneys today. Our team at Lamar Law Office is here for you.