There is no shortage of advice to deal with the death of a loved one, so much so that many people mistakenly believe that they are prepared to face any situation constructively. Unfortunately, when grief happens close to home and you lose a loved one to a wrongful death, everything you previously thought would help you through the grief turns out to be wrong.
The effects of death can be devastating, especially when the life of a loved one has been taken by a wrongful death. An experienced wrongful death attorney at Calvin Smith Law Macon has the experience to help you overcome the trauma of losing a loved one and, more importantly, to help you seek justice.
Our Macon ExpertPersonal Injury LawyersThey are committed to serving each customer and offering nothing less than the best possible service. We work to make you feel our sincerity and commitment. Call Calvin Smith Law today at (404) 383-7552 to schedule a free consultation.
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What is wrongful death?
As with many other types of cases, each state has its own definition and regulations on what counts as wrongful death. In the great state of Georgia, a wrongful death is the death of a person as a result of the criminal, negligent, reckless, or willful acts of another entity or party. An entity here refers to a business, an employer, or a hospital.
For the death to be considered wrongful, negligence must first be proven. Generally, negligence occurs when a duty of reasonable care is not observed and someone is harmed as a result.
Many families are overwhelmed with the thought of filing a lawsuit after the death of a loved one, in part because value cannot be determined. But a wrongful death claim is similar to a personal injury claim. That is, if the person who suffered the injuries survived the accident, they would have filed a lawsuit against the negligent party/organization and have an opportunity to be compensated for their damages and expenses. A wrongful death claim allows surviving relatives/family members to file a lawsuit on behalf of their deceased loved one so that all costs can be settled and the negligent party held liable.
Several types of accidents can result in loss of life in Macon. But regardless of the type of accident, if your loved one's death could have been prevented, you can take legal action with the help of a trusted wrongful death lawyer.
Unfortunately, car accidents in Macau are quite common, and most of these accidents are caused by reckless drivers, violating traffic laws, driving while intoxicated with controlled substances or alcohol, speeding, or being distracted by mobile devices. Cars and other consumer goods can also cause deaths if the manufacturer releases defective products.
When institutions such as nursing homes and hospitals act negligently, residents and patients are exposed to different risks. For example, a retirement home or assisted living facility may have rude and abusive caregivers who can harm residents. Additionally, a careless physician could act or fail to provide care and treatment, resulting in patient injury or even death. Either way, at Calvin Smith Law, we have the expertise, experience, and drive to advance your wrongful death claim.
Categories of Wrongful Death Claims
Wrongful death claims fall into two categories: a survivor claim and a wrongful death claim.
A survival action
Asurvival actionIt usually includes a claim for compensation for damage suffered by the patient before his death. These damages may include conscious pain, suffering, lost wages, and medical expenses incurred prior to the time of death. In order to successfully assert a survival claim, it is imperative that you show that the deceased survived the accident in question and experienced pain and suffering prior to her death. Therefore, not all wrongful death cases have a basis for survival measures.
wrongful death action
In a wrongful death action, a fight is made to repair the damage caused to the next of kin by the death of the deceased. These damages include funeral services, the grief of losing a loved one, financial losses as the deceased will no longer be able to financially support her family. Georgia statutes clearly define who is entitled to compensation in a wrongful death case. Restoration is made to the surviving spouse and children of the deceased. And if the decedent had no spouse or children, compensation automatically goes to immediate survivors, such as parents and siblings. For example, siblings can sue for damages after their brother's wrongful death if they did not have children and were not married. Children also have the right to seek compensation for the wrongful death of their parents.
Types of wrongful deaths
Terms used in a wrongful death lawsuit include:
- testator: the victim
- Perpetrator: The perpetrator or perpetrators
You could be compensated for a wrongful death claim if the circumstances that led to the death of your loved one fall into the following categories:
Negligent acts are those that could have been prevented or avoided. This means that the accident could not have happened if the cause of the damage had acted reasonably.
These are acts that are criminal and violent. Here the offender was aware that his actions could cause an accident, and yet he continued with his actions. In such cases, the criminal and violent acts are prosecuted by the state, which in Georgia is entirely separate from a wrongful death civil action.
Georgia wrongful death law
Did you know that in the United States, claiming compensation for the wrongful death of a loved one was not always a right? In the mid-19th century, the law adopted by England held that claims for damages died with the injured. This means that only living people can bring civil actions against those who caused the damage. Thus, there was no legal basis to bring a wrongful death penalty, as survivors in the state of Georgia and the rest of the country could not seek compensation.
But Georgia followed in the footsteps of other states, later changing the outdated common law rule and adding statutes that set forth a clear reason for the action. The currentwrongful death lawin Georgia it was adopted about 100 years ago and has undergone some major changes since then. Today, the latest Georgia Wrongful Death Law will be covered in the 5 code sections listed below:
- O.C.G.A. § 51-4-1: Covers definitions
- O.C.G.A. § 51-4-2: Murder of parent or spouse; survival action
- O.C.G.A. § 51-4-4: Death of a child
- O.C.G.A. § 51-4-5: Execution by the executor or administrator of the testator
- O.C.G.A. § 19-7-1: Compensation for Death of Child; parent power
What are common causes of wrongful death?
Homicide is the most serious form of personal injury and can be caused by several types of accidents. To successfully handle these cases, you must enlist the help of a highly qualified and experienced personal injury lawyer.
In the United States, including the city of Macon in the great state of Georgia, car accidents are the leading cause of wrongful death cases and include:
- pedestrian accidents
- truck accidents
- car accidents
- bike accidents
- motorcycle accidents
Other causes of wrongful death lawsuits include:
- product liability
- Medical negligence
- Tour bus crashes
- criminal offences, as well as murder and acts of violence
- Use of prescription or medical advice
- air accidents
- The shuttle crashes
- Nursing Home/Assisted Living Community Neglect
- patrimonial responsibility
- adherence to fire
- boating accidents and drowning
- Accidents in private transport
- Work accidents
- animal bites
- Public transportationincluding school buses, trains and buses
What should be done after the wrongful death of a loved one?
It is easy to feel lost and overwhelmed after your loved one has been taken from you due to wrongful death. Fortunately, there are steps to guide you:
examine the area
Even if homicide detectives are still conducting their investigation, make sure the right professionals investigate the crime scene as soon as possible. Cameras are pretty much everywhere these days. Dash cams are also present in parking lots, near buildings, intersections, and most vehicles. These can help with the investigation.
talk to witnesses
In personal injury cases, including wrongful death cases, witness testimony is vital. Therefore, it is essential to cross-examine witnesses and review their testimony. Memories often fade quickly, so act quickly while the details of the accident are fresh in your mind.
Stay up to date on witness information as well. Even if a Witness moves or changes her address or other contact information, you still have a way to communicate with him this way. Some wrongful death lawsuits take years to resolve, either due to a lengthy process or lengthy settlement. Therefore, having updated witness information is imperative.
Important evidence is the clothing of the deceased, the vehicle involved in the accident, etc. Although law enforcement often impounds the vehicle and holds the evidence for a while, important pieces of evidence can still be discarded or lost.
Open an estate account
You must designate a personal representative to handle the testator's claims. The candidate must be a surviving family member or next of kin of the victim, such as a spouse or parent.
Of course, before you can open an estate, first handle wrongful death claims. You don't want to waste much-needed time with an estate attorney. While opening an estate is important, it is not considered an urgent matter.
Who is entitled to compensation for the loss of a loved one?
Under Georgia state law, the victim's spouse has the right to file a wrongful death lawsuit. If there is no spouse, the children of the deceased are entitled to compensation. And if both the spouse and children are not in the picture, the executor of the estate has legal grounds to file a wrongful death petition.
According to the law inMacon, GeorgiaIf a spouse of the decedent files a claim and there is no will, you should be sure to distribute the compensation you received from the wrongful death case to the victim's children. Also, under Georgia law, the spouse can keep 1/3 of all proceeds from a wrongful death claim. If the deceased's child is a minor, the right to claim damages rests with the parent or guardian until the child reaches the age of majority (generally 18 years of age).
Why Should You Hire a Macon, GA Wrongful Death Lawyer?
The decision to file a wrongful death in Macon, GA can be quite overwhelming, especially when taking action against a business or community. Not to mention, you'll still have a hard time coping with the death of a loved one.
Our experienced Macon attorneys can step in and handle your wrongful death claim, including:
- Act as liaison with the offending party/organization and their attorneys.
- Investigate your case thoroughly in order to make irrefutable statements
- Communication with insurance companies and their representatives
- Use a straight accounting technique to highlight all your losses
- Cut through the red tape and red tape that accompany wrongful death trials and fight on your behalf.
What are the benefits of a Macon wrongful death lawsuit?
Although our attorneys at Calvin Smith Law know that filing a wrongful death petition will not bring your loved one back, we believe that you are entitled to the justice and compensation you deserve. That's why we don't stop short when it comes to advocacy, making sure you and your family get the financial recovery you need to start a new chapter in your life. Your wrongful death case also plays an important role in preventing equally dangerous acts of medical malpractice and negligence from ruining other people's lives.
What should you expect from Macon in a wrongful death lawsuit?
Whenever a potential client walks into our offices after losing a loved one, the first task is to determine if their case is viable. For a claim to qualify as admissible, the other party/organization must have caused the fatal accident through negligence or willful intent.
Our licensed Macon attorneys must show that the defendant person or entity had a duty not to harm the decedent and that they waived that duty. This is the best way to prove negligence.
For example, healthcare professionals such as doctors, nurses, and caregivers must provide a certain level of care to patients. Therefore, if the level of care provided is substandard and the patient dies as a result of her actions or the provision of services, the doctor could be held liable.
After that, our attorneys at Calvining Smith Law must prove that dereliction of duty was the cause of death. We often consult medical experts to establish the connection between the doctor's negligence and the patient's death. We must also prove that the rest of the decedent's family has suffered pain or other harm as a result of the death of their loved ones. Some of the damages we must prove include financial and non-financial losses, as highlighted below.
Do you suspect that your loved one has been the victim of a wrongful death? In this case, our attorney at Calvin Smith Law can help you sue the person, business, or entity responsible for your loss. After establishing liability and gathering much-needed evidence in the case, we consult with financial experts who help us determine the extent of the losses suffered.
If the person or organization responsible for the death of your loved one refuses to accept a settlement offer, we will seek witnesses and use the services of investigators and specialists to appear at trial. At Calling Smith Law, we pride ourselves on our attorneys, who do not hesitate to go to court and get the relief our clients deserve.
Involuntary manslaughter damages
In a wrongful death lawsuit in Macon, GA, the victim's surviving family can seek reimbursement for medical bills, funeral services, and other punitive damages. However, punitive damages are available if the defendant violated the law during said act, resulting in a wrongful death. The punishment could be severe for hideous behavior.
Some of the most common damages in a Macon wrongful death lawsuit include:
- loss of future wages
- Mental pain and suffering for family members
- Compensation for the suffering of the deceased before his death
- Loss of pensions and employment benefits.
- relationship compensation
Under the statutes of the great state of Georgia, only a select few people are eligible to file a wrongful death case and seek relief for the death of their loved one. They include:
- The patient's spouse
- The victim's children (if you do not have a spouse)
- The parents of the victim (if there are no children or spouse)
- The executor (if there are no surviving children, parents, or spouse)
Additionally, Georgia statutes state that if there is no will and the spouse is ultimately awarded, they must share the reimbursement with the children. And if the children are under the age of 18, the proceeds of the lawsuit must be held in the name of the parent or legal guardian until the children turn 18.
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The statute of limitations for wrongful death in Georgia
This refers to the time limit for making a legal claim. If the specified time limit elapses and your complaint is not filed and notified to all relevant parties by that date, the case will be barred from any compensation. The statute of limitations for wrongful death in Georgia is two years. From the day of death the clock begins to tick.
- car accidents
- bike accidents
- Brain injuries
- bus accident
- dog bite
- Medical negligence
- motorcycle accident
- negligent security
- pedestrian accidents
- patrimonial responsibility
- spinal cord injuries
- truck accidents
- about accidents
- wrongful death
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