Filing A Wrongful Death Claim After A Loved One Is Killed In An Accident
Unexpectedly losing a loved one can lead to a profound sense of grief and loss. When that loved one was a main contributor to family finances, their loss often also results in financial hardships for the family. Just as you are facing funeral expenses and medical bills related to the accident, you are suddenly without the financial contributions of your loved one. If your loved one was in a fatal accident caused by the careless, reckless or negligent actions of another, you deserve to get compensation for your losses.
At the Indianapolis office of Lipinski Law, we offer compassionate guidance through the wrongful death claims process. We make sure you are comfortable and understand the process as we explain the steps we need to take to move forward. While we can’t bring your loved one back, our attorney can help you hold the person responsible for their death accountable for their actions.
Common Accidents That Lead To Wrongful Death Claims
Any time someone is killed in an accident that was caused by negligence or recklessness, it can be grounds for a wrongful death lawsuit. Motor vehicle accidents, overly aggressive law enforcement, workplace accidents and negligent health care providers are some of the more common issues behind wrongful death cases. However, toxic substances in the environment may also be at the root of your loved one’s death. Workplaces and government-owned buildings are notorious for failing to properly contain toxic substances that can be inhaled or absorbed through the skin. If you suspect that any of these factors may have led to the death of your loved one, a wrongful death suit is worth looking into.
The Basics Of Filing A Claim
Indiana law has different guidelines for who can file a wrongful death claim based on whether the person killed in an accident was an adult or a child. If it was an adult, only a personal representative can file a claim. When the deceased has a will, the personal representative is the person named as the executor of the will. If there is no will, the court will appoint a personal representative. When a wrongful death claim involved a child, one or both of the parents or a legal guardian can file a claim. If the parents are divorced, the parent with primary custody has the right to file a claim.
The following types of compensation can be claimed:
- Medical expenses related to the accident
- Funeral and burial costs
- Expenses related to grief counseling
- Loss of companionship
Under Indiana law, the amount of time after the death that a wrongful death lawsuit can be filed is limited to two years. However, the sooner you file a claim the better the chances of building a strong case.