Long Island Wrongful Death

Wrongful death suits can be messy and complicated, so it is important to get expert legal advice and support when pursuing damages after the accidental death of a loved one. For people living in Long Island, New York, particularly Nassau County and Suffolk County, Divins & Divins can help. They offer free consultations and put all their experience, energy, and expertise into pursuing a solid case with winning results.

Definitions

The legal definition of wrongful death is “the taking of the life of an individual resulting from the willful or negligent act of another person or persons.” Wrongful death cases were originally intended to provide financially for the orphans and widows left behind after the death of a loved one. They also sought to encourage public safety and prevent injury. In a wrongful death case, civil charges are brought to bear rather than criminal ones. The prosecution need bring only a “preponderance of evidence” rather than definitive evidence “beyond a reasonable doubt.” A suit can be brought against individuals, entire companies, and government agencies and/or their employees, though some immunities are in place for government agencies and their employees. There are three primary classes of wrongful death, including medical malpractice, car accidents, and product liability, such as harmful medications, cleaning agents, or pesticides. Malpractice is the number one culprit in wrongful death cases in America; in fact, 90% of malpractice lawsuits involve a wrongful death or a permanent disability. No matter the circumstances, a wrongful death case allows an individual to sue for damages.

Damages

Though tort laws vary from state to state, it is generally recognized that only spouses, children, or another close relative can sue for damages. And most states impose a limit on the amount of damages a family member can receive. A good lawyer will sue for economic as well as non-economic damages. Economic damages include medical and funeral expenses as well as expenses incurred by the wrongful death, including but not limited to lost wages and lost benefits that the family would have otherwise received. Non-economic damages incorporate pain and suffering, the loss of care once provided by the deceased, and loss of companionship. Some cases may even pursue punitive damages to punish the defendant for especially negligent or harmful behavior.

In most states, the statute of limitations for wrongful death suits is about two years. With so much at stake, it is crucial to get expert legal advice from a professional and trustworthy law firm. Long Island, Nassau County, and Suffolk County have such an advocate in Divins & Divins.

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