When a person suffers an untimely demise due to a negligent or wrongful act, a claim for money damages can be made against the individual or entity responsible. At The Licatesi Law Group in Brooklyn, our skilled attorneys pursue these claims on behalf of the deceased’s estate and surviving family members. We investigate fatal events, such as car accidents, medical malpractice, slip and falls and defective product mishaps, and take all steps necessary to obtain full compensation.
A wrongful death suit must be brought within two years of the person’s death. It must allege that:
In New York, a wrongful death suit may be brought only by the personal representative of the decedent’s estate, such as the executor. Surviving family members — such as the deceased’s spouse, children and parents — have no standing to file their own suit, but the personal representative can sue on their behalf. Even if the representative is a family member, the suit is filed in his fiduciary capacity.
A wrongful death lawsuit seeks compensation for losses to the decedent’s estate as well as for losses sustained by surviving family members. Available money damages include:
The lawsuit recovery is enhanced by interest running from the date of death, calculated at 9 percent.
Whether your loved one was killed in a car accident, by a defective product, due to a medical professional’s malpractice or through any other catastrophic injury, there may be several parties responsible. For example, a multi-car accident due to brake failure on a road in poor condition gravely injures a passenger, who is taken to a hospital but dies on the operating table. Those potentially liable include the drivers, the manufacturer of the car with bad brakes, the government entity responsible for road repairs, the EMTs that provided first response and transportation and the surgeon whose actions may have contributed to the patient failing to survive.
In New York, defendants in a wrongful death lawsuit share in liability based on their determined percentages of fault. The comparative negligence of the deceased is also factored in and reduces the recovery accordingly.
It can be tempting to settle your wrongful death case on your own, but remember that an insurance company will often try to pay out as little as possible on a claim. Consider how much the insurer would be willing to pay if faced with a thoroughly investigated case and an attorney as powerful as its own. Don’t make an irreversible mistake by accepting a settlement without strong representation from a knowledgeable personal injury attorney.
The Licatesi Law Group handles wrongful death cases in Brooklyn and throughout New York City. We have successfully tried cases for more than 40 years. For a free consultation and case evaluation, call us now at 516-227-2662 or contact us online.
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