When someone you love dies because of someone else’s negligence, you are entitled to file a wrongful death lawsuit in New York. This process can seem complex and your visit to this web page suggests that you may have l questions about how filing a wrongful death case works. Please read on for answers to FAQs or you are welcome to call us if your concerns are not addressed here.
A lawyer from our firm will serve as your advocate and file a wrongful death claim or lawsuit on your behalf to recover compensation for your losses. We will also answer many frequently asked questions about wrongful death lawsuits, including:
What Is a Wrongful Death Lawsuit?
A wrongful death lawsuit is a civil action against a person or entity at fault for the death of a loved one.
To win a wrongful death lawsuit, you must prove the person or entity is liable for your loved one’s death because they were negligent. Examples of negligence include a drunk driver running a red light, a property owner failing to repair or remove a hazard, a government entity knowingly failing to repair a road hazard, and medical malpractice, meaning the failure of a medical treatment provider to conform to the generally accepted standard of care for a patient who was injured as a result of the departure. .
Many wrongful death lawsuits settle out of court because the liable party’s insurance provider risks having to pay out a larger amount if the jury returns a verdict in your favor. If yours does not, you could take the case to trial to pursue a jury verdict.
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How Much Time Do You Have To File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit?
If you lost someone you love because of someone else’s negligence, you are entitled to compensation for your losses and justice for your loved one. However, you are limited to a two (2) year window of time from the date of death to file a wrongful death lawsuit in New York, according to Estates, Powers & Trusts § 5-4.1.
If the statute of limitations runs out in your case before you file a wrongful death lawsuit, you will be unable to recover damages through the legal process. Starting a lawsuit after the deadline would be an exercise in futility, as the court would simply dismiss your case.
Our law firm will make certain that all deadlines in your case are met in a timely and technically proper manner, including filing a wrongful death lawsuit before the statute of limitations runs out. Consulting a lawyer as soon as possible means more time to investigate and build your case.
What Damages Does a Wrongful Death Lawsuit Cover in New York?
You’re filing a wrongful death lawsuit for a reason. You want to hold the negligent party accountable and get justice, but you also want to recover compensation to pay for your financial losses.
A wrongful death attorney will determine what damages apply to your case and calculate how much compensation you deserve. The types of damages a wrongful death lawyer will recover for you include:
- Medical bills: Compensation covers the costs of medical care your loved one received before death.
- Funeral expenses: Compensation typically covers the cost of a funeral.
- Lost income: Compensation covers the future income your loved one would have brought into your household.
- Lost inheritance: Compensation covers the inheritance surviving family members would have received.
- Pain and suffering: Compensation covers any conscious pain and suffering your loved one endured before their death.
- Loss of parental care and guidance: If the decedent had children, your family could be able to pursue compensation for the loss of parental care and guidance they will no longer benefit from.
The value of wrongful death compensation varies from case to case. The amount you receive will depend on which damages apply to you, the cost of your loved one’s medical bills, and how much income they were earning, among other factors.
However, New York does not cap the amount of damages you could receive, and our law firm has won multi-million dollar settlements and verdicts for many of our clients.
Who Is Allowed To File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in New York?
The decedent’s personal representative is allowed to file a wrongful death lawsuit in New York. This typically refers to the executor if there is a will or an administrator if there is no will. A family member cannot bring the case unless they are also the personal representative. An attorney will explain which family members are eligible to act as the personal representative of the decedent’s estate.
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Do You Recover Wrongful Death Damages for Your Own Pain and Suffering in New York?
Under current New York State law as of the time that this article is being written, you cannot recover compensation for your own pain and suffering after a wrongful death. The estate of your departed loved one is only able to recover compensation for the pain and suffering your loved one experienced before their death. The amount recovered would then be distributed among the surviving family members as per the will or, if there was no will, as per the laws of intestacy. (i.e., the laws that determine property distribution of estates where there is no will.)
How Long Does a Wrongful Death Lawsuit Take?
Most wrongful death lawsuits settle out of court. There is no average timeframe for these cases. However, going to trial usually lengthens the amount of time it takes to obtain a resolution.
Our law firm will prepare you for every possibility, so you know what to expect as your wrongful death lawsuit winds its way through the legal process.
Should You Hire a Lawyer to Fight for You?
You should consider hiring a lawyer to represent you throughout your wrongful death case. A wrongful death attorney from our firm will investigate the death of your loved one to determine liability. We will also:
- Calculate the value of your case
- Negotiate with the insurance provider on your behalf to reach a settlement that will adequately cover your losses
- File a lawsuit and represent you in court if necessary
You do not have to fight this battle alone. We will protect your rights and seek justice for you and your family.
Learn More About Filing a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in New York Today
We are here for you in this painful time in your life. You lost someone you love, and you deserve justice and compensation. A lawyer from our firm will travel to you if you can’t come to us, and we have the ability to assist you in ten different languages.
If you lost someone you love and you are ready to talk about filing a wrongful death lawsuit in New York, call for a free consultation with Friedman & Simon, L.L.P. today.