There are many important things to know about your wrongful death case, including:
- What constitutes wrongful death
- Your eligibility for compensation
- The types of recoverable damages in a wrongful death case
- The deadline for filing your lawsuit
Each of these steps plays an important part in the overall effectiveness of your lawsuit.
A lawyer in New York might be able to give you specific information on how these steps pertain to your case. While your family copes with its loss and starts to rebuild itself, your lawyer may help you cope with the immediate and long-term financial damage your family experiences.
Establishing Wrongful Death in New York
When your family loses one of its members because of another person’s action or because of their failure to act, you might have the basis of a wrongful death lawsuit. In general, a death that is caused by the wrongful act, carelessness, recklessness, or negligence of another person or entity may qualify as a wrongful death.
To build your lawsuit, you may need a plethora of documents and evidence that proves the at-fault party’s financial liability and your potential right to compensation. This evidence may include:
- Accident or incident reports
- Medical records and bills
- Birth and death certificates
- Employment records
- Tax forms
Your lawyer might be able to assist you in locating and compiling the required evidence. By filing a wrongful death lawsuit, you may be able to recoup many of the financial damages your family experiences.
Know Who Is Eligible for Financial Compensation
When the death of a loved one is tragic or otherwise unexpected, it may cause emotional turmoil throughout the family. Though all family members and loved ones might be negatively impacted by the loss, EPTL § 4-1.1 allows only specific individuals to pursue compensation from the at-fault party, including the following individuals:
- The decedent’s spouse
- The decedent’s child or children
- The decedent’s parents
Who survives the decedent determines how the wrongful death damages are distributed under New York law. Under certain circumstances, the decedent’s grandchildren or other biological or adoptive relatives might also be eligible to seek compensation.
A wrongful death lawyer might be able to help prove your familial relationship to your deceased loved one and establish your right to financial recovery due to negligence.
The Financial Expenses and Losses Available in a Wrongful Death Case
The loss of a family member might mean the loss of their income and other contributions to your family. It might also require you to hire household help to allow your family to function smoothly. A wrongful death lawsuit might help you recover:
- Your loved one’s injury-related medical care expenses
- Your loved one’s funeral and burial expenses
- Loss of inheritance
- Loss of companionship and counsel
In the aftermath of your loved one’s demise, assessing and accurately calculating your family’s financial damages might be challenging. A lawyer might be able to help you take an objective inventory of your recoverable expenses and losses and assign an accurate value to your wrongful death lawsuit.
Comply with New York’s Filing Deadline
Part of the potential success of a wrongful death lawsuit is ensuring it is filed on time. According to EPTL § 5-4.1, you typically have two years to file your lawsuit. The statutory clock starts ticking on the date of your loved one’s demise.
Failure to comply with the state’s timeline might mean you cannot file your lawsuit at all and that you may not be able to recover compensation for your losses.
It can take time for your family to recover from the loss of a loved one. While you concentrate on making final arrangements for your loved one and caring for your family’s emotional well-being, a lawyer in your area can start building your wrongful death lawsuit.
Let Us Help Pursue Financial Compensation for Your Family
The unexpected loss of a loved one might wreak emotional havoc on your family. Your family’s loss might also leave lasting financial damage in its wake.
When you are ready to seek compensation but need help identifying your next steps, Morelli Law Firm is ready to advocate for you. Let us help you understand the important things to know about your wrongful death case and your potential right to financial compensation.
For a free review of your case, contact the client intake team at Morelli Law Firm by calling (212) 751-9800 today. We serve clients in New York City, on Long Island, and in New York State up to Albany.