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What is wrongful death?

You may have heard the term before, but what is wrongful death? Wrongful death refers to a legal remedy available to help family members of victims of fatal accidents. Wrongful death refers to when a loved one has been wrongfully killed because of the negligence of another party. Wrongful death can occur in the context of medical malpractice, workplace accidents or car accidents, among other circumstances and situations. A wrongful death claim for damages enables surviving family members to seek compensation for the harm they have suffered.

A wrongful death claim is a claim brought on behalf of the lost loved one's estate for the benefit and support of surviving family members. Each state has a wrongful death statute that provides for how a wrongful death claim can be brought in that state, so it is helpful to be familiar with the wrongful death statute in your state if you have lost a loved one.

Damages that may be sought through a wrongful death claim included medical expenses, funeral expenses, lost prospect of inheritance and loss of support and services damages. The damages that the negligent party may be liable to compensate must be reasonably calculated and are based on the characteristics of the victim and the circumstances of the situation and surviving family members.

The loss of a loved one is never easy and is one of the most difficult experiences any family member can go through. It can be both emotionally and financially overwhelming, which is why wrongful death legal options are available for the protection of surviving family members of victims who have been wrongfully killed.

Source: FindLaw, "Wrongful Death Overview," Accessed April 10, 2018

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