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Who’s at fault in a wrongful death suit?

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

In a perfect world, death would always be preventable, and no one would be blamed or held liable for the demise of others. The unnecessary loss of loved ones upsets the natural course of life. If you believe a person, a group of people or an organization contributed to or caused the demise of a spouse or family member, you should get in touch with a wrongful death attorney in Melbourne.

In Florida, a wrongful death may arise from intentional or negligent acts. In some cases, a wrongful death may intersect with the criminal justice realm. Imagine two men getting into a bar fight after work in Titusville; one of them pushes his opponent into an old jukebox and kills him. Even if the killer never intended to take anyone’s life, he may not avoid getting arrested by deputies from the Brevard County Sheriff’s Office, and he may not escape prosecution. This situation could lead to a wrongful death lawsuit based on the intentional nature of his actions.

An example of a negligent act that leads to a wrongful death would be a Palm Bay doctor who leaves a surgical instrument inside a patient before suturing an incision. If the patient develops a deadly infection caused by the foreign object, there may be sufficient cause to file a wrongful death lawsuit based on a negligent action.

Another legal doctrine that may be applied to wrongful death cases is known as strict liability. An example would be a death caused by the attack of a dog that is not leashed as a dog owner is strictly liable for injuries or death caused by his animal.

FINDING CULPABILITY IN WRONGFUL DEATH CASES

To determine if individuals or entities are to blame in a wrongful death case, law firms thoroughly investigate the causes of the event and present evidence of intentional act, negligent behavior or strict liability to the court. Not all situations will be cut-and-dry; for example, if a woman dies in a head-on collision after exiting I-95, Melbourne wrongful death lawyers will keep an open and analytical mind when investigating the facts surrounding the case. It is important to determine what the other driver may have been doing right before the car crash; perhaps he was drinking, distractedly driving and replying to text messages or otherwise not paying attention to the road. There may even be another vehicle that caused the woman to lose control and crash. In such cases, the blame is not absolute as it may be shared among various defendants.

Once blame has been determined, lawyers can address the issue of compensation for the survivors, which may be awarded to the estate of the decedent or directly to survivors. The compensating factors may include loss of earning capacity, medical expenses, funeral expenses, loss of protection, pain, suffering, and loss of economic support. The damages may be of a compensatory or punitive nature.

Call Couture Law today if someone you love was killed due to someone else’s negligence.

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