When a terrible accident has claimed the life of a loved one, between the grief that you are struggling with and the care that you have to provide to your family, it is undoubtedly a difficult time for you to even consider thinking about wrongful death lawsuits. However, if you wish to hold the responsible party accountable for their actions and obtain justice for your lost loved one, you have a limited time to do so. In Oregon, surviving family members typically only have three years after the date of the injury that caused the death in order to file wrongful death lawsuits, though sometimes the time limit is much shorter, like a year for cases against public bodies. The sooner that you can contact a personal injury attorney with experience in wrongful death cases, the better it will be for your family and your future.
What are Wrongful Death Lawsuits?
Wrongful death lawsuits typically arise when a loved one has become a victim of another person’s or group’s negligence or misconduct. These actions may involve a product malfunction, an auto accident, medical malpractice, a workplace accident, outright malice, or even unsafe conditions. For example, a forklift operator may go to work under the influence of alcohol. In the course of his work he causes an accident that takes the life of a co-worker. He can be held liable for his actions in civil court through a wrongful death lawsuit. In some cases, such as in this example, the responsible party may also be held responsible for their actions in a criminal court.
What Will a Wrongful Death Suit Achieve?
The one thing that a personal injury attorney can really do for you and your family is to help you achieve the kind of positive results that will not only hold the person responsible for the death of your loved one accountable, but that will also help your family during an extreme time of need. Wrongful death claims are important, especially considering what they are expected to achieve for surviving family members. Wrongful death cases seek to accomplish several different things:
- First, wrongful death claims are intended to properly compensate surviving family members for any costs that they incur directly or indirectly, including medical costs as well as loss of future earnings.
- Second, wrongful death claims seek to compensate surviving family members for things like emotional anguish, loss of companionship, and other non-monetary damages.
- Finally, wrongful death claims seek to, at times, punish the responsible party for their actions, particularly if those actions are found to be especially malicious.
When you are in mourning for the loss of a loved one due to a wrongful death accident, the stress of filing a wrongful death lawsuit may prove to be very overwhelming. However, with the help of an experienced wrongful death or personal injury lawyer, you will find that the process is much easier for you to handle. These attorneys can be there for you, mediating on your behalf, and ensuring that you receive the compensation that your family deserves.