Prosper Wrongful Death Lawyer
When a person is injured, there are often numerous routes to hold the responsible party accountable and recover damages for the injuries. In the case of a wrongful death, however, the only avenue for recovery for the decedent’s surviving family is through a wrongful death lawsuit. With the help of a compassionate personal injury attorney, surviving spouses or children may be able to recover fiscal damages from the person responsible for the death of their loved one.
In many cases, surviving relatives lose an essential source of income that the family needs to survive. A Prosper wrongful death lawyer may be able to help secure the financial resources you and your family need.
What is Wrongful Death?
Like all states, Texas allows for wrongful death lawsuits. According to Texas Statute 71.001, a death brought about by a “wrongful act, neglect, carelessness, unskillfulness, or default” may lead to a wrongful death claim.
In other words, a victim’s surviving family may have a viable wrongful death claim when a person’s negligent or intentional acts causes the death of the decedent. There are crucial limitations on filing a wrongful death suit, including restrictions on who may file suit, which a wrongful death attorney in Prosper could help explain.
Right to File a Wrongful Death Claim
When it comes to a wrongful death claim, a surviving spouse, child, or parent has the right to file a lawsuit. Many states set out a hierarchy so that at any given time there is only one person with the right to file a wrongful death lawsuit. In Texas, however, any one of the parties entitled to pursue a wrongful death claim may do so.
In some cases, the deceased person’s estate has the right to file a claim. If none of the surviving children, spouses, or parents file a lawsuit within three months of the death, the decedent’s estate may file a wrongful death suit unless the surviving relatives object.
Texas law treats legally adopted children the same as biological children. If legally adopted, they share the same right to file a wrongful death suit as the decedent’s natural children. Siblings are not entitled to file a wrongful death claim for each other, however. This is true regardless of whether the siblings were related by blood or through adoption. For more information, contact a knowledgeable lawyer.
In a wrongful death suit, many forms of damages common in injury lawsuits are available. The surviving family can seek compensation for the medical bills or property damage losses of their loved one. But wrongful death lawsuits can also seek other types of damages.
In some wrongful death cases, “exemplary claims” may be available. Exemplary claims are another name for punitive damages. These damages are added to the standard recovery in a wrongful death case and are designed to punish the responsible person.
Punitive damages are only available in cases where “grossly negligent” conduct caused the death of the victim. Juries rarely award punitive damages in Texas, but it may be valuable to discuss the possibility with an experienced Prosper wrongful death lawyer.
Contact a Prosper Wrongful Death Attorney
The decision to proceed with a wrongful death lawsuit can be difficult, especially during a time of grieving. However, there is an urgency mandated by state law that requires decisions to be made within three months of the death of your loved one. When you are ready, contact a Prosper wrongful death lawyer.