What To Expect When Filing A Wrongful Death Suit
Few things in life are more momentous, or life altering, than losing someone you love. There are factors that can make an already-terrible situation even worse. The death of a loved one can be especially terrible if their death was sudden and untimely. Or if the death was preventable. If the death was due to the misconduct or downright negligence of another person.
In many of these situations, the law allows you to assert a claim against a party that you believe is responsible for causing a death. These suits, called wrongful death claims or wrongful death suits, are often complicated and no two are precisely the same. You will want to hire competent and supportive legal counsel to guide you through the process. The below has been written to give you a general idea of what to expect if you move forward with a wrongful death claim.
What Should I Expect in a Wrongful Death Suit?
Every case is different, and in something as serious as a wrongful death suit the details of a case will matter and potentially affect the outcome. However, generally speaking, under Florida law a wrongful death suit can be filed against someone whose misconduct or negligence resulted in another person’s death.
The first step in a wrongful death suit is asserting a claim against the party you believe is responsible for the wrongful death. Oftentimes the person being sued might have insurance coverage for the act that caused the death – for example, medical malpractice insurance, or car insurance.
If the defendant in the suit has insurance coverage for the act that caused the death, then that insurance company will review the claim and can either offer a settlement or deny liability. If you believe that the settlement offer is unfair, or if the insurance company denies liability, then you can file a wrongful death suit with the court.
After filing the lawsuit the parties exchange information about the incident through a procedure called “discovery.” The court may schedule multiple hearings to address various motions filed by either party. Pursuing a suit in court does not prevent you from continuing to attempt to resolve the matter through settlement. The parties are allowed, and often encouraged, to settle the matter out of court via settlement discussions/mediation. If the case cannot be resolved to the satisfaction of the parties then a trial will be held to determine if the defendant is liable for the death and, if so, what amount of damages to award.
Contact the Musleh Law Firm
If you find yourself struggling after the loss of a loved one and you believe that the loss was due to another’s misconduct or negligence, rummaging through minutia of law and filing endless court files as you try to hold someone accountable is likely the last thing you want to be doing. It is important to recognize and work through grief and wrongful death cases can be complicated. When the time is right, know that the knowledgeable and experienced Ocala wrongful death lawyers at the Musleh law firm can provide the legal support you need, and help guide you through your wrongful death suit.