Tragedy can strike at any time. However, sometimes death can occur because of the negligence of others. When another person is at fault, even if it’s an accident, it’s known as wrongful death in a civil case. In these instances, proof must be shown that a person was acting in a negligent manner that caused the death of another. In most cases, the person suing the defendant is a direct family member. There are many factors to consider in a wrongful death case. Each state has its own specific laws in place governing how much compensation can be awarded and other determining factors.
What is Wrongful Death?
Wrongful death is when someone dies by accident through the negligent actions of another. There are many instances where this can occur. When speaking of wrongful death, it refers to the civil proceedings that occur when the deceased’s family decides to pursue compensation for losses. Some of the losses that can qualify for compensation include loss of income and other benefits. It’s important to know that when a person decides to pursue legal action in a wrongful death claim, they must adhere to the state guidelines that provide remedies for the family member. There are unique laws for each state, and the attorney representing the case must be familiar with those laws to have a successful or ideal outcome.
North Carolina Wrongful Death Laws
According to North Carolina law, the persons pursuing damages from the defendant may use their estate and estate assets to cover the costs associated with the case. This cost does not include the attorney and legal fees. There is a two-year deadline to file the claim when it comes to the statute of limitations. Some recoverable damages can include funeral expenses, the monetary value of the defendant, punitive damages, income, and more. This is up to the court to decide and will usually be based on the family member’s current circumstances and future needs. There is no current cap on the number of damages the court can request from the defendant in North Carolina.
Most Common Causes of Wrongful Death in Asheville
There are several causes of wrongful death in Asheville, NC. However, a few instances lead to the statistics for that city. Consider the following top reasons why there is commonly a wrongful death situation.
Medical malpractice or some type of medical error tends to be the top cause of wrongful death cases in Asheville. In these instances, a doctor, nurse, or other medical professionals can make mistakes and unintentionally cause death. In some cases, this is due to oversights or carelessness. An example would be if a doctor left medical equipment or accessories inside a person during surgery. That person can become gravely ill and die suddenly as a result. That would be a case where the family members could sue for damages and compensation from the doctor or the attending medical professionals.
Another situation that happens too commonly is errors made by nurses in assisted living facilities and rehab centers. There are cases where a worker or a nurse may be careless or abusive to a person who lives in such a facility. There may even be cases where medication is given unintentionally or at an improper dose that can cause death. The family can sue the person who cared for the individual or the facility to seek compensation.
The second most common cause of wrongful death is traffic accidents. There are many scenarios where this could take place. One common instance is when someone gets behind the wheel while impaired by drugs or alcohol. An impaired driver may cause an accident or run someone off the road while driving. The intoxicated person would be at fault, and the deceased’s family members can seek compensation. The judge may award punitive damages to punish the person in these cases. When the court considers punitive damages, they consider the circumstances and the severity of the person’s crime.
A prime example of a case where a judge may award punitive damages is if the person was acting recklessly with no regard to life while on the road. An example would be racing or speeding wildly in traffic while intoxicated.
Slip and Fall
When a person slips and falls somewhere, especially in dangerous conditions, the property owner is usually liable. If the person dies, the family may have a wrongful death case if they can prove the property owner acted in a negligent manner. An example would be if they have dangerous equipment or debris in the area that poses a known risk, and the property owner left it there without posting notices or trying to keep people out of the area.
Get Legal Help
If you or someone you know has been the victim of a wrongful death case, they may have a way to get compensation for damages. You need to secure legal representation from a top legal firm or attorney who specializes in these cases to get started. A wrongful death attorney can help guide the family member through the process to help ensure they get the best possible outcome. Their services can provide the surviving family with the resources and funds they need to overcome obstacles and financial issues relating to the loss of their loved one. Now is the time to reach out and get a consultation to find out if you qualify to begin the process of getting compensation.