Chattanooga Wrongful Death Attorneys
Although every personal injury case is life-changing and unfortunate, Tennessee wrongful death claims can be especially difficult. Thankfully, after you’ve lost a loved one, you don’t have to pursue a wrongful death claim all by yourself. When you let one of Wettermark Keith’s Chattanooga wrongful death attorneys handle your case, you can get back to focusing on the grieving process.
We’ve been through this process before, so we’ve compiled some resources to help you.
What Qualifies as Wrongful Death?
Wrongful death is the death of a person due to an individual’s or a company’s deliberate or negligent actions. Those who die from wrongful death did not die because of their own actions, and their death could have been avoided. That’s what makes wrongful death cases so painful, but it’s also what makes these cases eligible for financial compensation and insurance claims. Depending on the state, wrongful death claims can be made from family or the estate of the deceased.
A wrongful death may be a claim in and of itself, but in many cases, it can also be attributed to other areas of personal injury law, including:
- Pain and suffering
- Car accident
- Truck accident
- Workplace injury
- Nursing home abuse
- Defective products
- Construction accident
- Railroad accident
- Pedestrian accident
- Slip and fall or severe injury
- Medical malpractice
To truly know if your case qualifies as wrongful death and to have the easiest time filing a wrongful death claim, we strongly recommend hiring wrongful death lawyers, Chattanooga.
Who Has the Right to Sue for Wrongful Death?
Depending on the state, different parties can sue for wrongful death. In Tennessee, there are four main groups of people who can claim wrongful death:
- The deceased’s children
- The deceased’s spouse
- The deceased’s parents, if the deceased was a dependent at the time of death
- The deceased’s estate representative
Others, like siblings or close friends, cannot sue for wrongful death in Tennessee. In certain circumstances, an individual may be made a representative of the deceased’s estate in order to sue for wrongful death. When in doubt about your eligibility to sue for wrongful death, consult a Chattanooga wrongful death attorney.
We’ll note here that filing a claim isn’t the same as suing. A lawsuit involves going to court, whereas a claim will usually result in financial compensation from the other party. Cases progress from claims to lawsuits if the two parties cannot reach an agreement. While not all personal injury lawyers will go to court, Wettermark Keith’s wrongful death lawyers (Chattanooga) will, making sure to get justice for you and your family.
What Compensation Can You Seek Through a Wrongful Death Claim?
The situation of your loved one’s passing may have left a financial burden on your or your family in the form of medical bills or loss of insurance. Seeking compensation for your death can help to relieve this burden and the emotional burden as well. As part of your claim, you can seek maximum compensation for:
- Funeral expenses
- Pain and suffering
- Punitive damages
- Medical bills or other medical expense
- Loss of benefits, including insurance
- Loss of consortium (another way of saying companionship)
What Should I Know About My Wrongful Death Claim?
Legal matters are very minute and detailed, and wrongful death law is no different. However, there are some additional things you should know if you’ve experienced the wrongful death of a loved one.
- There is a statute of limitations to file a wrongful death claim. In other words, you need to file your wrongful death claim as soon as possible to avoid never being able to take action. It will be hard to do this while grieving, but good wrongful death attorneys will take care of the process for you.
- It’s unlikely the case will go to trial. Most wrongful death claims are settled within a couple of months to a year. If you’re worried about testifying to a jury, know that you will not likely have to.
- Many clients are worried about paying for a lawyer’s help upfront. At Wettermark Keith, we have a promise to each one of our clients: You won’t pay anything unless and until we win your case. We do this because we know how financially difficult these times can be for you, and because we’re very confident in our ability to do our jobs well.
Do You Have Grounds for a Wrongful Death Claim in Chattanooga?
In order to prove wrongful death, your claim needs to have four components.
- Duty of Care, or the obligation to protect the deceased from harm and a responsibility to their wellbeing.
- Breach of Duty of Care, or the breaking of the expectation that the deceased would be effectively protected from harm.
- Causation, or that the actions of the other party directly resulted in the death of your loved one due to negligence or intention.
- Damages, or the loss of emotional or monetary health due to the wrongful death of the individual.
Would My Loved One Really Want Me to File a Wrongful Death Claim?
This is a question that we’ve seen show up online frequently, and it often haunts families who have lost someone. Perhaps your loved one had expressed a lack of desire to defend their rights through legal services, or they simply didn’t “seem” like the kind of person who would want you to work with Chattanooga wrongful death attorneys.
While we can’t speak for your loved one, we will reassure you that your loved one would also probably not have wanted you to experience injustice or suffer more because of their death. There are lots of ways to counteract the negative consequences of losing a family member, including counseling and fundraising, but we would also recommend not letting the opportunity to hire a wrongful death lawyer to pass you by, either.
When it comes to wrongful death, action is probably better than inaction.
Wrongful Death Lawyers: Chattanooga, TN
Wettermark Keith Law Firm has worked with wrongful death cases for many years, and over the course of time, our team has learned how to treat cases with the utmost compassion while still getting settlements that help clients in the middle of such dark times. We’ll deal with the other parties and the insurance company so you don’t have to. Our experience will make the process easier and more worthwhile for you. Don’t wait too long, but when you’re ready, we’ll be ready to help. Just fill out the contact form below.