What is Wrongful Death
By legal definition, a wrongful death happens when a person dies due to the negligence or misconduct of another party or parties. Those who were dependent on the deceased, the family of the deceased, or a beneficiary of the deceased may be entitled to monetary damages. There are many instances in which wrongful deaths occur including medical malpractice, automobile or heavy truck accidents, assault, faulty products, workplace accidents, and many others.
Wrongful Death Claims in Baytown
In the city of Baytown, children, spouses, and even the parents of the deceased can file a wrongful death lawsuit on behalf of the loved one they have lost. Baytown wrongful death cases are usually filed for by a lawyer on behalf of the family seeking damages for their loss. This attorney should be familiar with the laws of the state and have experience filing these types of suits. Damages for wrongful death can be paid for the pain and suffering of the deceased, medical expenses incurred prior to their death, burial costs, loss of future wages, and even loss of companionship can be brought by the family of the deceased.
Proving Negligence in a Baytown Wrongful Death Claim
Although there are many different causes and scenarios that can result in the wrongful death of a person or persons, Baytown and Texas require that certain criteria be met. The following must be clearly proved via data, testimony, and other forms of evidence in order to collect any type of settlement:
- Duty of Care – The plaintiffs must present sufficient evidence in order to demonstrate to the court that the responsible party used poor judgement or negligence at the time of the accident leading to the wrongful death. In workplace deaths, plaintiffs must show the employer failed to comply with federal and/or state safety regulations. These regulations apply to numerous parties including property owners, vehicle operators, physicians and other healthcare providers, workplace supervisors, and product manufacturers and distributors. It must be shown that they were not following established standards that contributed to a preventable and lethal accident.
- Breach of Duty of Care – The plaintiffs and their attorney must prove that the party responsible for the wrongful death breached the mandatory duty of care that was in their responsibility to adhere to. Examples include disregarding traffic safety rules, not having property or workplace conditions up to current code, faulty products with defects, or manufacturing errors made by the plant or distributor.
- Causation – In addition to proving the negligent party acted illegally or irresponsibly, it must also be evident that this behavior directly resulted in the wrongful death of another. These negligent actions need to be shown to be directly connected to the death in order for the surviving family to collect compensation.