What is a wrongful death lawsuit?
When a person’s death is caused by the negligence, recklessness or intentional act of another person, company or group, a legal cause of action may be brought by one of the family against the person or company that directly or indirectly caused the death of the family member.
What is the purpose of the wrongful death lawsuit?
A wrongful death lawsuit is a civil claim for financial damages caused by an untimely death. It is not a criminal action to protect society from deviant behavior.
What types of damages may be collected in a wrongful death case?
The plaintiff in a Georgia wrongful death suit may recover “the full value of the life of the decedent without deducting for any of the necessary or personal expenses of the decedent had he lived.” The statutory language includes the actual economic loss of income and the value of decedent’s enjoyment of life.
Who can file a wrongful death suit?
According to Georgia wrongful death law, a surviving spouse has the right to sue for damages. If there is no surviving spouse, the children have the right to file the wrongful death claim. If there is no surviving spouse or children, the parents of the decedent may file the wrongful death suit. If there is no surviving spouse, children or parents, then the administrator of the decedent’s estate can sue on behalf of the estate. The surviving spouse is required to share any recovery equally with any surviving children.
How long do I have to file wrongful death action?
The statute of limitations for filing a wrongful death suit in Georgia is two years from the date of the death. Given these time constraints, you should consider consulting a wrongful death attorney immediately.
Do I need a lawyer to file a wrongful death suit?
Technically you do not need a lawyer for any legal action. However, most non-lawyers do not have the expertise necessary to comply with all the deadlines, court procedures and regulations that rule lawsuits. Wrongful death suits can be complicated and may require extensive research and fact-finding. A seasoned attorney can help make the difference between success and failure.
How long does a wrongful death suit take?
Many cases will settle before trial. Some cases settle during litigation. If a suit goes to a full trial, it may extend for a few years.