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What Are the Basic Elements of a Wrongful Death Lawsuit?

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3 Main Elements of a Wrongful Death Lawsuit

Wrongful death survivors can claim various economic and non-economic damages with help from an attorney who has the experience necessary to properly and successfully handle their wrongful death case. However, it is crucial for survivors themselves to have a firm grasp on the three basic elements that constitute a legitimate wrongful death suit, as described below.

Element #1

In order to pursue damages in a wrongful death claim, you must, first and foremost, establish the involvement of a negligent or wrongful act.

For instance, let’s say a group of people were on the deck of a hotel when it collapsed, resulting in one or more deaths. In an investigation, it was revealed that the deck did not comply with Building Code provisions – clearly an act of negligence.

Element #2

Second, you must prove that the negligent or wrongful act caused the death.

We can also illustrate this element using the example of the hotel deck. In this case, the victims died due to injuries sustained in the falling deck incident. Since shoddy construction led to the collapse, it could be asserted that the negligence of the contractor and/or the hotel owner directly contributed to the fatal injuries of the victims.

Element #3

Last but not least, you must establish the extent of the damages you have suffered as the result of your loved one’s death in order to obtain full and fair compensation. These damages can include:

  • Funeral and medical expenses
  • Loss of financial support (loved one’s earnings prior to death)
  • Loss of household services
  • Loss of love, companionship, moral support, etc.
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It is important that you consult with a trustworthy wrongful death attorney as soon as possible – before vital evidence fades, before the statute of limitations expires. The sooner a qualified legal professional gets started on your case, the better chance you’ll have at maximum recovery.

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