The sudden death of a loved one could raise a number of questions including the obvious one of why it happened. While you may not be able to bring the loved one back to life or in any way fill the void they left behind, there is solace in unraveling the mystery surrounding such a significant event and at least receiving compensation for the monetary aspects of the loss.
Wrongful death can be pretty complicated for novices in the field of law. You may not really know who to file the claim with or if you are in a legal position to do it in the first place. More importantly, you could be asking yourself questions such as, “what is the statute of limitations for wrongful death claims?” and “How long does it take to settle wrongful death claims in Georgia?” All those have been answered in the article. Read on for a basic acquaintance with the main elements of a wrongful death claim.
The statute of limitations for wrongful death claims
In Georgia, you have exactly two years from the day your loved one died to file a claim. There are exceptions, however. For instance, if the case involves a criminal filing as well, the statute of limitations will only start counting once the criminal case is over. In cases where your loved one succumbed to their injuries weeks or months after sustaining them, the statute of limitations will be calculated from the day the negligent act was committed.
Who can bring a wrongful death lawsuit?
Wrongful death claims have a lot in common with personal injury claims. The most conspicuous difference and particularly what makes the two any different from each other is that, in a wrongful death claim, the injured party won’t be there to file the claim for themselves. A wrongful death claim in Georgia can be filed by the surviving spouse, children, or parents of the deceased. If none of those exist, a representative of the deceased’s estate will be eligible to bring the claim.
Damages in a wrongful death claim
Georgia’s wrongful death laws seek to establish the value of the deceased’s life and the financial losses suffered by kin to calculate the worth of the claim. Damages may include medical expenses before death, funeral expenses, the pain and suffering they had to endure following the injury etc.
The plaintiff may also be awarded damages for;
- Lost inheritance
- The deceased’s lost wages, including what they may have earned in the future
- Loss of support, counsel, care, and knowledge for the decedent’ s kids
- Loss of consortium, i.e. the decedent’s companionship, love, and care
- Punitive damages when the defendant is found to have been grossly negligent prior to the accident that caused the decedent’s death.
With so many factors to consider in a wrongful death case, the chance of undervaluing your claim is considerably high. Don’t navigate the claim alone. Seek the services of a wrongful death attorney today and maximize your chances of finding the true worth of your claim.
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