Wrongful Death Settlements & Compensation
Last updated Wednesday, June 28th, 2023
File a Wrongful Death Civil Suit to Obtain Justice
There are so many ways a wrongful death can occur that it would be difficult to name them all. Generally, somebody else owed a duty of care to refrain from harming your loved one and breached that duty, either through carelessness or with intention.
In addition to the pain and suffering you are experiencing, there are funeral costs, the loss of your loved one’s companionship, loss of their future income contribution, and in many cases medical expenses. You are left with a feeling that you have been terribly wronged, but nobody has taken responsibility or paid for the harm they did to you and your family.
Whether it was a company that failed to protect workers from toxic chemicals, a medical professional who breached their duty of care, a pharmaceutical company’s callous and unlawful act(s), a driver who failed to yield or was driving at an excessive or unreasonable speed, or a crime such as murder or drunk driving, you want a way to bring a measure of justice to your situation and make the person(s) responsible pay for the damage they caused. Many people have turned to civil litigation to recover financial damages and obtain justice.In addition to the pain and suffering you are experiencing, there are funeral costs, the loss of your loved one’s companionship, loss of their future income contribution, and in many cases medical expenses. You are left with a feeling that you have been terribly wronged, but nobody has taken responsibility or paid for the harm they did to you and your family.
When you hire an experienced wrongful death law firm to handle your case, your attorney will take steps to ensure you will recover the maximum damages amount you are entitled to under the law. The stronger the evidence is to support your case, the more money your attorney may demand on your behalf, especially when gross negligence or crime was involved.
Your lawyer will begin a thorough investigation immediately. Depending on the facts of your case your attorney may:
- Review police reports/medical records;
- Investigate everybody who is liable for your loved one’s death;
- Subpoena witnesses;
- Depose all those involved, all witnesses, and anybody with knowledge or evidence to support your case;
- Send interrogatories to the other side;
- Demand production of all documents, records, and communications including electronic production (emails; files; phone conversations and texts, social media passwords, etc.);
- Do accident reconstruction;
- Do scene investigation;
- Review the criminal records of all involved;
- Review any past behavior of those responsible including malpractice complaints.
In most cases the liable party’s insurers or attorneys will offer to settle, either before or after you file a complaint or claim. Sometimes the settlement offer comes early when it is evident the party is responsible for your loved one’s unlawful death. In these cases the insurance adjuster or attorney almost always offers you a much lower amount than you are entitled to by law.
In effect they are adding insult to injury by treating you like you are ignorant of your rights. You can vindicate their assessment of how low an offer you’ll take by accepting the first offer they make, or you can choose to fight back by talking to a skilled wrongful death lawyer.
You don’t have to speak to these people at all. The faster you get a lawyer the sooner you can redirect them to speak with your attorney. And the sooner your lawyer can begin to investigate the facts of your case, before the evidence is altered or witnesses forget what they saw, in some cases because they were coerced.
Damages you may recover in a wrongful death case depend on many factors. Some of these include:
- Your loved one’s earning capacity;
- Whether there are children, now deprived of the love, care, comfort and guidance of a parent;
- Whether there was gross negligence, a cover up, or criminal behavior warranting punitive damages;
- The pain and suffering your loved one was forced to endure because of the other person’s wrongdoing;
- Medical bills;
- How strong your case is.
Juries are unpredictable, but have been known to award huge amounts in punitive damages, sometimes tens of millions of dollars to punish gross negligence and other bad behavior. The defendant is aware of this, and if your case is strong enough your attorney can demand that they settle for maximum damages or roll the dice with a civil trial. Punitive damages are not allowed in wrongful death actions in some states, so it is crucial to speak to an experienced lawyer before filing your case. For example, Kentucky specifically provides for punitive damages if the act was willful or the negligence gross.
The standard of proof in a civil lawsuit is 51%. You must prove that the defendant(s) are more likely than not responsible for your loved one’s death. Though it may seem like a slam dunk, it is sometimes hard to do, especially when going up against a powerful insurance company or medical provider. Civil litigation can be expensive and take months, with lengthy discovery and numerous motions before the trial begins. You need an experienced law firm in your corner who will bear the cost of the legal process for you.
There is no real wrongful death settlements lawsuit average because each case is different and requires a different approach. In some states there’s a cap on medical malpractice settlements, but an experienced attorney may be able to demand more money than the limit. The outcome of your case usually depends on the skill and expertise of your legal team, and whether they are willing to fight to get your a fair and just settlement or, if necessary, jury award.
Contact Isaacs & Isaacs Wrongful Death Lawyers
Isaacs & Isaacs has recovered over $1 billion in damages for our clients in Kentucky, Ohio and Indiana. We will represent you on a contingency fee basis. If we don’t get you your money, we don’t get paid!
We understand the strict deadlines to file a wrongful death case or claim, and we have the experience and tenacity to go up against the biggest opponents, including:
- Pharmaceutical companies;
- Trucking companies;
- Medical Providers;
- Insurance Companies.
Let us take this burden from your shoulders so you can go forward and heal. We are available for a free consultation and case evaluation at any time of the day and night. Call 800-333-9999 now to speak with a wrongful death attorney, or fill out the form.