Suwannee County Wrongful Death Attorney
Any time you lose a loved one, it is a traumatic experience. When someone you love passes away as a result of someone else’s careless actions or inaction, you will feel many different emotions. The feelings of sadness and anger are often overwhelming. You can take certain steps to hold the negligent party liable for their actions and to recover your financial losses. Knowing what to do while you take these steps during a time of grief is not always clear. Our Suwannee County wrongful death attorney can advise you of your legal options and help you through the process.
Defining Wrongful Death in Suwannee County
The definition of wrongful death according to Florida law is any death that occurs as a result of negligence, a wrongful act, breach of contract, or default of another person. For example, a motorist may drive while impaired and cause an accident that results in a fatality. Or a landlord may know about the presence of mold in an apartment building but not fix it, resulting in a tenant suffering a fatal asthma attack. When a wrongful death occurs, the deceased’s estate can file a claim against the negligent party to recover financial compensation.
Wrongful Death Claims are Civil Cases
A wrongful death can be a result of criminal actions. For example, if a drunk driver hit a pedestrian, that could cause a wrongful death. The impaired driver may face criminal charges and be prosecuted for the wrongful act. However, this is a criminal proceeding, and it does not provide a way for the estate or loved ones to recover the compensation they need.
Wrongful death claims fall under tort law, so they are civil actions. You do not have to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant acted negligently. The standard of proof in civil court is much lower and is based on a preponderance of the evidence. As a result, even if the defendant is acquitted in criminal court, it may still be easier for you to claim damages.
The Personal Representative of the Estate Must File a Wrongful Death Claim
Only personal representatives of the estate can file a wrongful death claim in Suwannee County. This person may be named within the deceased’s estate plan. If a personal representative is not named, the court will appoint one. The personal representative can then file a wrongful death claim on behalf of the surviving family members. Any damages awarded are distributed to beneficiaries such as the deceased’s spouse, children, parents, and other family members.
Our Wrongful Death Attorney in Suwannee County Can Help During this Difficult Time
If you have lost someone due to another person’s negligence, our Suwannee County wrongful death attorney at Meldon Law can provide the sound legal advice you need. Our skilled attorneys are dedicated to helping families obtain the compensation they deserve to offset the financial burden of the loss, and we want to help you, too. Call us today at 800-373-8000 or fill out our online form to schedule a free consultation and to learn more.