If your loved one passes away in an accident and you believe that someone else is to blame, you may want to file a wrongful death suit. Only certain family members can file a lawsuit though. It’s important to meet with a Corpus Christi, Texas wrongful death lawyer to learn more about this process and whether you’re eligible to pursue damages.

Who Can File the Wrongful Death Suit and Pursue Damages?

The first person who can file a wrongful death suit is the spouse of the deceased. If there is no surviving spouse or they do not file a suit, then the children of the deceased can file a claim. If the decedent has no spouse or children, their parents can sue for compensation.

There is one more person who can make a wrongful death claim, but they must wait until three months after the death occurs. If no one else files a claim, the personal representative of the decedent’s estate, also known as the executor, may take legal action.

Can More Than One Person File a Wrongful Death Suit?

No, it is not possible for more than one person to make a wrongful death claim. A surviving parent cannot decide that they also want to sue after a surviving spouse has filed their suit.

What Kind of Damages Are Awarded in a Wrongful Death Suit?

The damages in a wrongful death suit are meant to make up for the financial costs incurred and the emotional and psychological damage caused by the accident. A fair compensation award would help address things like:

  • Your loved one’s final medical costs
  • Burial and funeral costs
  • The decedent’s income and future income
  • Loss of companionship or guidance
  • Emotional and psychological distress
  • Pain and suffering

In some cases, a defendant could even be hit with punitive damages. These are meant to show that their behavior was particularly egregious and that others should not emulate it. Someone who made a simple mistake and contributed to a car accident would probably not be made to pay punitive damages, but someone who drove while drunk and caused deaths and injuries as a result could certainly be hit with a judgment that awards the plaintiff punitive damages.

Will I Have to Go to Trial?

It is unlikely that you will have to go to trial. Many cases like these get settled out of court through negotiations between lawyers and insurers. We will do our best to get you a fair compensation offer, and if the settlements offered are not adequate we are certainly ready to fight for you in a courtroom.

Talk to a Lawyer Today

When you are ready to file a wrongful death suit, contact Sahadi Legal Group and ask about our free case consultations. We can take the time to learn more about your situation and tell you how our attorneys may be able to help.