Miami Wrongful Death Lawyer
801 Brickell Avenue, Suite 900
Miami, Florida 33131
It is one of the sadder aspects of our lives that there will be deaths
among our families that are both sudden and tragic. When such deaths occur
it is only natural that we try to understand why such things happen. In
most of these deaths we find that there is some medical reason, such as
a heart attack or a stroke, that caused death to come suddenly. But there
are also times that we find there might have been a reason for death that
could have been prevented.
When there is a cause of death that could have been prevented if someone
could have foreseen that the consequences of their actions would have
resulted in harm to another, it is said that a wrongful death has occurred
and the person or persons responsible for the wrongful death can be forced
to pay damages to the victim’s survivors.
Examples of wrongful death are:
- A man stops at his neighborhood tavern and spends a few hours drinking
with his friends. After leaving he veers into oncoming traffic and strikes
a car, killing the driver. The impaired driver is responsible for the
wrongful death of the other driver because he could have foreseen that
driving while impaired was a danger to others.
- A car parts manufacturer makes brake liners for automobile brakes and uses
substandard materials. When the brakes on a family car fail, killing a
passenger, the manufacturer can be sued for wrongful death because they
deliberately sold defective parts that led to a death.
Legal Requirements For A Wrongful Death Lawsuits
It would be immoral, and bordering on slander, to name someone as the defendant
in a wrongful death suit without sufficient evidence to support such an
accusation. Accordingly, before a wrongful death lawsuit can be pursued,
four conditions must be satisfied:
- The death of a specific individual: This is often the least-contested part
of a wrongful death lawsuit because someone obviously died and that fact
is easy to confirm.
- The death of the individual was caused by negligence or with intent to
harm: This part is the part that is often the most contested by those
named as being the cause of the victim’s death unless the cause
of death is obvious, as in the example of the impaired driver.
- Surviving family members suffered financial injury as a consequence of
the individual’s death: The survivors must be able to show that
have saddled with a financial burden as a result of the death. Usually
the survivors will claim loss of wages that would have been earned by
the person who died as justification for the lawsuit.
- A personal representative decedent's estate: The personal representative
is the individual who actually files the wrongful death lawsuit and acts
as the survivors’ agent in the lawsuit.
What Types Of Damages Can Be Claimed In A Wrongful Death Lawsuit?
Damages are divided into two types: actual and punitive.
Actual damages are those which compensate for lost income, funeral expenses,
emotional distress, or loss of personal property.
Punitive damages are those that are awarded to punish the party or parties
whose negligence or willful actions led to the victim’s death. Punitive
damage awards are often much larger than the actual damages.
How To File A Miami Wrongful Death Lawsuit
A sudden death is always a shock to those who are left behind. In many
cases it is often months later that something comes to light that seems
to suggest that your loved one’s death may not have been the result
of natural causes.
If you have lost a family member, and you feel that negligence or carelessness
might have been involved in that death, you should contact the wrongful
death lawyer the Doan Law Firm by calling (786) 671-0000 whenever it is
most convenient for you. Our wrongful death lawyer will review the facts
in your case and suggest a course of action.
Your first consultation with our wrongful death attorney is always free
of charge and does create an obligation on your part. If you do decide
to have us represent you, we will not ask you to make any payments for
any aspect of your case and we will cover all expenses necessary for us
to win your case in exchange for a percentage of your final settlement.
The Doan Law Firm
801 Brickell Center, Suite 900
Miami, Florida 33131