Losing a loved one in an unanticipated and preventable way can be devastating for a family. Although filing a successful wrongful death claim will not erase the trauma surrounding the loss, it can protect your family's financial security in the aftermath. Many wrongful death and personal injury claims follow similar protocols. If your loved one sustained an injury or death after a construction accident, car collision, or bike accident, the guide below details more information about wrongful death claims.
Understanding Wrongful Death Claims
How Do Wrongful Death & Personal Injury Cases Relate?
The basis for both a personal injury and a wrongful death claim is proving negligence, recklessness, or malicious conduct. In a personal injury claim, the defendant must prove that all three grounds caused a debilitating injury that affects their lives, such as not being able to work due to the injury. In a wrongful death claim, the deceased’s family must prove that the person’s death was caused by all three factors. Generally, a family will be able to file such a claim if the victim would’ve had grounds for a personal injury suit if they had survived.
How Do You Prove Wrongful Death?
To build a winning wrongful death suit, you must prove four elements. First, you must demonstrate how the defendant owed the deceased a duty of care. Second, you must show how they breached this duty. Third, you must illustrate how the breach was directly responsible for the death. And fourth, you must provide proof of the damages your family incurred as a result. Thankfully, a resourceful personal injury attorney can help you gather evidence of all of the above.
What Damages Are Recoverable in a Wrongful Death Claim?
In the state of Massachusetts, wrongful death claimants may seek funds for reasonable funeral and burial expenses. They may also pursue compensation for non-monetary losses like the care, comfort, companionship, guidance, counsel, and advice they will no longer receive from the deceased. And if they relied on the victim for financial support, they can seek lost income, lost benefits, and the loss of any anticipated inheritances.
If your relative sustained a personal injury in a car accident, on a construction site, or while riding a bike that leads to death—and you believe you have grounds for a wrongful death suit— contact the attorneys at Bellotti Law Group, PC. With offices in Boston, Cambridge, and Quincy, this firm has been helping accident victims, and their loved ones pursue the compensation they need to rebuild their lives. Founded in 1989, they practice in several areas, including family law, civil litigation, estate planning, and criminal law. To browse their personal injury services, visit their website or call (617) 225-2100 to schedule a consultation.