When someone suffers an untimely death as a result of another person or party’s carelessness, the situation can be especially difficult to navigate through. State law allows surviving family members to hold the responsible parties accountable when their actions cause a wrongful death.
A Clayton County wrongful death lawyer from our firm could review your situation and explain your options for recovery after losing a loved one due to the negligence or reckless conduct of another person. One of our compassionate personal injury attorneys could help answer your questions and concerns during this difficult time
Who Can Bring a Wrongful Death Claim in Clayton County?
State law primarily allows a surviving spouse to file a wrongful death claim. Under Official Code of Georgia Annotated §51-4-2, if the deceased person is not survived by a spouse, then any surviving children may seek recovery.
In situations where there is no surviving spouse or child, a parent may bring a wrongful death claim. Finally, if none of these family members are available, a personal representative of the decedent may file a claim for damages. A lawyer who practices in the Clayton County area could help any of these parties recover compensation after a loved one’s untimely passing.
The person filing the lawsuit may not necessarily receive some or all the proceeds from the claim. For example, a personal representative would use a portion of the compensatory award to pay claims against the estate, and the remainder would be distributed to heirs or those named in the will.
Understanding When a Death Constitutes a Lawsuit
Family members may recover compensation for a wrongful death when a person’s passing is considered a “homicide” under the definition provided by O.C.G.A. §51-4-1. Although many people in Clayton County associate homicide with murder, the statute defines this type of death much more broadly.
In civil liability laws, a homicide includes death caused by criminal actions as well as negligence. A death may be considered the result of negligence when it is caused by someone’s failure to act responsibly. Therefore, a person who causes an accident through reckless or irresponsible behavior may be held liable for the injuries or deaths that result.
Recoverable Damages in a Wrongful Death Lawsuit
A Clayton County wrongful death attorney could help family members recover compensation for economic factors as well as intangible losses. O.C.G.A. §51-4-2 allows surviving loved ones to recover the full value of the deceased person’s life through monetary compensation referred to as damages.
Damages might include amounts for the loss of companionship and guidance of the decedent, as well as the loss of income they would have earned if they had survived the accident. Additionally, the decedent’s estate may recover damages to cover funeral expenses and burial costs.
Call a Clayton County Wrongful Death Attorney Today
While no amount of compensation can make up for the loss of a loved one, a wrongful death claim can help bring closure to the situation and help you and your family move forward. A Clayton County wrongful death lawyer could investigate the cause of the decedent’s passing and help recover compensation to provide for your family’s future needs. To talk to an attorney about what may be possible in your case, call to schedule a consultation.