What is a Wrongful Death?
When someone’s negligent acts take the life of your loved one, they should be held responsible for their actions. Wrongful death – or the loss of another person’s life resulting from someone else’s actions – is the most serious type of personal injury we face as attorneys.
Legal representation is only a part of what a wrongful death attorney provides. The most important job of a wrongful death attorney is to counsel loved ones through the tragedy they suffer.
At Hutchison & Stoy, PLLC, we have helped many innocent, grief stricken family members deal with the loss of a loved one. For us, the grieving process is more important than collecting compensation for loss of life. This means that we don’t just sign up clients and settle their cases. We realize that a trial often provides loved ones with the relief they need and are more than willing to take our clients’ case before a jury. Trials can be both cathartic and overwhelming.
Accordingly, we spend days preparing our clients for the trials so that those who are responsible are held accountable. Our firm practices a type of therapy and technique called “psychodrama” which helps grief stricken family members deal with death in a present sense.
Who Do We Go After in Wrongful Death Case?
In a wrongful death case, we pursue claims against anyone is at fault for your loved one’s death. This includes the driver or operator of a truck, car or heavy piece of machinery. In addition, we typically sue the company for whom the negligent party worked for. Often times we find that the negligent operator had a history of bad conduct which makes the company responsible not only for its employee’s negligent operation of the vehicle but also negligent hiring, supervision and training.
We will also pursue a claim against the manufacturer of a defective product responsible for a death. Bottom line, we look for anyone and everyone who should be held accountable for your loss.
Who Can Bring a Wrongful Death Claim in Texas?
Under Texas law, a surviving spouse, child or parent of the deceased may file a wrongful death claim. Each person may bring the claim individually or they may all group together and file as one. We realize that sometimes feuding family members each loved the deceased equally, but can’t bring their claims jointly because of their natural disdain for one another. In such circumstances, often each claimant must obtain separate counsel.
What Damages Can Be Collected in a Wrongful Death Claim in Texas?
Claims for damages of each wrongful death claimant named above differs depending on who they are. However, as a general rule, the following types of damages may be collected in a wrongful death action:
- Past and future loss of earning capacity
- Loss of care, support, services, advice and counsel
- Mental Anguish, pain and suffering
- Loss of love and companionship; loss of consortium
- Loss of inheritance
- Punitive or Exemplary Damages
Why Should I Consult a Wrongful Death Attorney?
If you think you may have a wrongful death claim, you should consult a Fort Worth Wrongful Death Attorney to determine if the claim is in fact viable. If you do in fact have a wrongful death claim, you should contact an experienced attorney to help you guide you though not only the legal aspects of the claim, but the emotional parts as well.
In addition, an attorney can help you fight the insurance companies and collect the compensation you deserve. Often insurance companies will offer what seems like a large sum of money to a wrongful death claimant hoping that he or she will accept it before consulting an attorney. The claimant, not wanting to pay a portion of the settlement to an attorney, will accept the claim. The insurance company will often even remind the claimant that an attorney will have to pay a fee to an attorney.
Don’t fall victim to this ploy. Insurance companies are in the business of making money. One way they do that is by not adequately paying claims. In almost every instance an attorney will be able to collect much more money than what the insurance company offered an unrepresented claimant. For more information about your wrongful death claim, contact a Fort Worth Wrongful Death Attorney today at (817) 820-0100 or fill out a free case evaluation online.