After the death of a loved one, no amount of money can fill the void left behind. However, if your loss was caused by the negligence, carelessness, or wrongful acts of another individual, a wrongful death claim can help you find financial stability and begin moving forward. In addition to lost income and medical expenses related to your family member’s death, you may also be able to seek damages for sorrow and emotional anguish, burial costs, and loss of companionship.
How to Tell if You Have a Valid Wrongful Death Claim
In most states, including Virginia, any situation that could have resulted in a valid personal injury case may provide grounds for a wrongful death claim. Whether your loved one died in an auto accident as a result of medical malpractice, or after an assault, you may be able to bring a wrongful death case to court. Product liability cases and dangerous premises accidents are also common causes of wrongful death claims.
Each state has different eligibility requirements for filing a wrongful death claim. In Virginia, for example, the surviving spouse, children, or grandchildren of the deceased have primary rights. If the victim didn’t have a spouse or children, their parents, siblings, or any family member who relied on them for financial support may file the claim instead.
Every state has a statute of limitations on wrongful death claims, after which you will most likely be unable to collect damages, regardless of the strength of your case. In Virginia, you must take action within two years, although you may have longer if the cause of their injuries was not discovered until later.
The legal professionals at the Ritchie Law Firm PLC have over 40 years of experience and a commitment to helping victims and their families receive the compensation they deserve. With locations in Staunton and Charlottesville, they’ve built a reputation throughout the region for excellent service and aggressive representation. Visit the website to learn more about filing a wrongful death claim, follow the Facebook page for more legal information, and call (540) 886-6124 to discuss your case with a member of their team.