Caring and Competent Representation Across New Mexico

An overview of wrongful death lawsuits, Part 1

by | Feb 27, 2017 | Wrongful Death

Wrongful death suits, unlike homicides, are civil suits over the wrongful death of a person. A person’s death can be “wrongful” without being criminal. But, most criminal deaths are likely also wrongful in the civil code. Wrongful death suits are notorious for their unusual provisions which trip up unsuspecting plaintiffs and attorneys. This post will go over the quirks in wrongful death suits.

Wrongful death suits are limited by who can bring them. Most states limit potential litigants to immediate family members, parents, children, grandparents. Some states allow siblings to file suits but not all. Also consider, the representative of the deceased person’s estate can file suit, as a “stand-in” for the person who passed away.

Wrongful death suits also limit the type of damages that you can recover. For example, pain and suffering typically constitute a substantial portion of any tort judgment, that isn’t necessarily true in wrongful death suits. Pain and suffering damages are high because the person continues to endure pain. In wrongful death suits, while the person may have suffered pain, it isn’t known, and it is even harder to prove because the primary witness is deceased.

If you lost a loved one, then you may want to pursue a lawsuit. If you are considering filing a suit, you should contact an attorney first. Wrongful death suits are subject to several restrictions which severely limit who can file suit and what they can recover. It may sound morbid, suing over the death of a loved one, but there are many reasons to pursue these suits. Some families seek justice because the offender escaped criminal justice or there was insufficient reason to charge. Other families need the money to replace the lost income from the lost loved one. Regardless of the reason, a lawyer can help you get just compensation.