Losing an loved one unexpectedly can change your life abruptly. Many times, the practical considerations in the wake of such a loss are overwhelming. You have to worry about planning a funeral, memorial service cremation or burial. There are major costs associated with those social grieving rituals. From there, you will have to settle the estate of your loved one and attempt to adjust your household budget to survive without the income he or she generated for your family.
Making a claim against the at-fault driver who cost a loved one his or her life may be the furthest thing from your mind in the days and weeks immediately following such a loss. However, filing a wrongful death lawsuit can protect your family from the financial fallout of an accidental death and also create accountability for the person who caused the death.
Ohio allows for two different kinds of wrongful death claims
Every state has its own approach that governs wrongful death claims and lawsuits. In Ohio, there are two kinds of wrongful death claims. Families may file a standard wrongful death claim. There are also survival actions that offer compensation as well.
These claims allow your family to obtain compensation for your losses that were caused by someone else's poor decisions or neglectful actions. Even if there was not enough evidence of intentional wrongdoing to secure a criminal conviction, you may have adequate evidence to support wrongful death or survival action claims in court.
Wrongful death claims focus on your family's loss
Wrongful death actions require that the death of your loved one involved a wrongful act, fault or neglect on the part of another person. These cases often involve motor vehicle accidents, but they can also stem from medical malpractice or premises liability claims, such as misdiagnoses, fatal falls or fires.
Family members, including spouses, children and parents, may bring wrongful death lawsuits against the responsible parties. Claims can include costs associated with losses of support and income, services, society and/or companionship, potential inheritance and mental anguish over the loss. These compensatory damages can help offset the financial, social and emotional difficulties that arise after a sudden loss.
Survival actions can provide justice for your loved one
Survival actions represent the legal claims the deceased would have had against the responsible party for injuries and property damages. If your loved one would have had a case for damages if he or she had survived, then you have a claim for survival action. These lawsuits bring attention to the injuries and damages your loved one suffered, allowing you to seek compensation for medical bills, as well as pain and suffering from the injuries prior to death.
Survival actions create a permanent record of how the responsible party impacted your loved one, as well as their death's impact upon your family. Winning survival claims against someone who caused a death can help you feel like your loved one received justice after all.