When a person dies due to the negligence or misconduct of another, the surviving family members may be entitled to sue for wrongful death against those responsible for the decedent's death. The wrongful death lawyers at Alley, Clark & Greiwe have been consistently recognized for their expertise in litigating personal injury claims, and unfortunately many of the claims involve wrongful death. The types of wrongful death lawsuits litigated by our attorneys include motor vehicle accident fatalities, deaths from surgical errors and other types of medical malpractice, or deaths from unsafe prescription drugs or defective medical devices.
Wrongful Death Lawsuits
Lawsuits involving wrongful death are very different from other types of claims in that the Plaintiff in the lawsuit must be the Personal Representative of the decedent’s estate. Each state has wrongful death statutes which establish the procedures for filing a wrongful death lawsuit and also outline who may sue for certain types of legal damages. Under the Florida Wrongful Death Act, only a Personal Representative can initiate the lawsuit to recover benefits for the decedent's survivors. Additionally, the Florida Wrongful Death Act specifically defines who qualifies as a survivor to recover benefits, and there are numerous exclusions and complicating factors.
The purpose of a wrongful death lawsuit is to obviously compensate surviving family members who have lost financial and emotional support and services due to their loved one’s death. Determining the amount of damages involves many variables and generally requires expert testimony of economists. Compensation may include awards for loss of companionship and protection, loss of support and services, mental pain and suffering, loss of the decedent’s income and future wages, medical expenses, and funeral expenses.
The lawyers at Alley, Clark & Greiwe have over three decades of experience handling wrongful death lawsuits. Because these claims usually involve a considerable amount of damages, it is important to retain an attorney who has a track record of successfully litigating these types of lawsuits.
Statute of Limitations in Florida
With every lawsuit, there is a specified time period in which a claim must be filed. In claims involving wrongful death, it is a very short period of time. While taking legal action may not be a priority for those who have lost a loved one, it is important for survivors of the decedent to consider retaining a lawyer as soon as possible. In the State of Florida, there is a two year statute of limitations period to file a lawsuit. If a lawsuit is not filed within two years of the decedent's date of death, a survivor’s legal right to sue will forever be lost. The two year statute of limitations cannot be extended for any reason.
Who Can Sue for Wrongful Death in Florida?
Florida law strictly limits who can bring a claim and what damages can be recovered if one dies as a result. Laws in the State of Florida govern who is entitled to recover certain damages under Florida's Wrongful Death Act. The lawsuits are designed to provide compensation for relatives who depended upon the deceased for financial and/or emotional support. Typically, in Florida, if there is no surviving spouse or minor children, adult children are unable to bring such claims unless they were financially dependent upon the deceased parent for support.
Our Tampa Wrongful Death Lawyers Can Help
If someone you love has recently died due to wrongful death, please contact the law firm of Alley, Clark & Greiwe in Tampa for a consultation regarding your legal rights with our Tampa wrongful death lawyers. There is no charge for our legal consultation. If we accept your case you owe us nothing unless we make a recovery for you.