Articles Tagged with wrongful death

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It seems every other week, another mass shooting is in the headlines. No matter where you stand on the contentious gun control issue, pretty much everyone can agree these incidents are tragic. They leave families not only bereft, but often drowning financially. Those we lose are often people in their prime, wage-earners who help support their families. Those who survive may incur astronomical medical bills and endure months-long recovery or lifelong disability. wrongful death lawyer

But aside from the shooters in these incidents, is there anyone really to blame? The gunmen in these cases (and they are almost always men) often commit suicide or are killed. If they do survive, their punishment will be handled within the criminal justice system. That case could be accompanied with an order of restitution, but it’s often not nearly enough to cover the damages of so many – and that assumes defendant would ever be able to pay it. Unlike a car accident or a dog bite or slip-and-fall at a store, intentional acts of violence are generally not covered by insurance companies. It’s an almost universal exclusion.

Pretty much the only way victims of crime can seek compensation is through third-party liability, usually on the theory of premises liability. This theory holds that property owners knew or should have reasonably foreseen the risk of such a violent act and taken reasonable steps to prevent it.  Continue reading →

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In most Florida wrongful death lawsuits, it’s often a simple matter to link defendant (the person alleged to be legally at-fault) with the conduct that resulted in death. For example: A drunk driver swerves off the road and slams into a tree, killing a passenger. The defendant’s negligent conduct caused the passenger’s death.wrongful death

It can get complicated, though, when we’re dealing with liability for a loved one’s suicide. This is where that causal link (referred to in court as “causation”) becomes difficult to prove. A person who commits suicide is the direct cause of his or her own death. But the question becomes: Was defendant’s action or inaction a substantial factor in decedent’s suicide? Courts will also ask whether decedent’s actions were reasonably foreseeable. There are no hard-and-fast rules for when a defendant may be legally liable for someone else’s suicide, but we have noticed an increase in such cases.

Recently in Wakulla County, the parents of a 15-year-old who tragically committed suicide have filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the school and one of his middle school teachers. The lawsuit alleges the teacher and the school are party to blame for the teen’s death following allegations of inappropriate contact between the teacher and the 8th-grader. Continue reading →

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When personal injury or wrongful death is caused by the reckless or careless actions of another, a negligence action may allow those affected to recover damages. However, plaintiffs (those who were wronged) need to pay careful attention to the statute of limitations in their case. That means knowing exactly what kind of case they have, who the defendant is and when the cause of action occurred. wrongful death lawyer

A good wrongful death attorney can help you navigate this complex field of law to ascertain what your rights are and when you must act. Failure to take action within the allotted time will result in total forfeiture of the claim. A plaintiff might have the strongest case ever, but if it isn’t timely filed, it will be forever barred.

A recent case out of Alaska had this unfortunate outcome, illustrating why it’s so important to seek prompt legal assistance with your case. Alaska, like Florida has strict limitations when it comes to when a personal injury or wrongful death claim can be filed. In Florida, F.S. 95.11 prohibits any personal injury lawsuit from being filed after four years of the cause of action (time of injury) or two years for any wrongful death action. Alaska also has a two-year statute of limitations on wrongful death cases. The time limit varies from state-to-state.  Continue reading →