There is a cultural attitude toward the people who file lawsuits that seems to imply that seeking financial compensation for a personal loss is greedy or somehow inappropriate. Especially in cases where people have lost a loved one, others may scoff and crassly assume that person wants to profit off of the suffering or death of someone else.
In reality, a wrongful death lawsuit is a form of justice for those left behind when someone causes fatal injury or illness to someone in their family. Wrongful death claims not only penalize someone for causing injury and death to another but also hold that person or business accountable for the ripple effect that loss can have on the lives of those who survived.
Many times, wrongful death claims are the only viable option
Situations that cause the death of a person can arise because of the action, inaction or negligence of another person or a business. It is all too common for law enforcement officers and prosecutors to struggle to bring criminal charges after a fatal accident.
The burden of proof for criminal court may be too high given the circumstances. The prosecutor may not be able to prove intent or may not be able to bring charges at all if the responsible party is a business, not an individual.
Wrongful death claims have a lower standard of evidence, which can help people seek justice if the criminal courts could not secure a conviction. Additionally, people can bring wrongful death claims against businesses, which is important in a case where corporate negligence or malfeasance played a role in your loss.
Losing a loved one affects your finances for the rest of your life
There is nothing inappropriate about acknowledging the fact that a tragic, unexpected loss will have dire financial repercussions for your family. You likely relied on the income provided by your deceased loved one or on the services that they provided to you.
Unpaid work around the home, ranging from cooking, cleaning and child care to lawn maintenance or vehicle repair can be prohibitively expensive to outsource after losing a member of your family. A sudden death can mean thousands of dollars of medical expenses, funeral costs and lost wages as you take time off of work to care for your loved one or arrange for their memorial service.
Wrongful death claims can allow you to seek compensation for lost wages, the pain and suffering of your loved one, and any other viable financial claim that the deceased or their estate could bring against the responsible party who caused their death either through negligence or intentional actions.