When a family member dies due to the negligence or mistake of another person or entity, it adds a layer of complexity and pain. In such cases, family members have the right to seek justice and compensation through a lawsuit. At KDLM, we can help you explore the importance of understanding the law, the process of filing a claim, and the significance of engaging the best wrongful death lawyers in New York to navigate this challenging legal journey.

What is Wrongful Death?

Wrongful death is a legal concept that holds individuals or entities accountable for the death of another person due to their mistake,wrongfull death negligence, recklessness, or intentional actions. These tragic incidents can occur in various contexts, each with its unique set of circumstances. Understanding the scope of law in New York and the situations in which it can arise is crucial for those seeking justice and compensation for the loss of their loved ones.

Car accidents & Truck accidents are a common cause of wrongful death. When a driver’s negligence, such as speeding, distracted driving, or driving under the influence, leads to a fatal accident, family members may have grounds for a wrongful death claim.

Medical malpractice is another significant cause of wrongful death. When someone dies as a result of someone else’s mistake, such as a healthcare professional, it is often because they failed to provide the standard of care expected in their field. Examples include misdiagnosis or delayed diagnosis of a serious condition, surgical errors, medication errors, and anesthesia-related complications.

Workplace accidents can also result in wrongful death claims. Construction site accidents, industrial accidents, and occupational hazards can lead to fatal injuries. Employers are responsible for maintaining a safe working environment, providing proper training, and adhering to safety regulations. If an employer’s negligence or violation of safety protocols causes a worker’s death, family members may have grounds for a lawsuit.

Defective products can be another cause of wrongful death. If a product is inherently dangerous, poorly designed, or manufactured with defects, and it leads to someone’s death, the manufacturer, distributor, or retailer may be held liable. Claims in product liability cases can involve defective vehicles, dangerous pharmaceuticals, faulty machinery, or other hazardous products.

Acts of violence, including assault, homicide, or manslaughter, can result in wrongful death claims. When a person intentionally or negligently causes the death of another person through violent acts, family members can file a wrongful death lawsuit.

In all of these situations, the ultimate goal of a claim is to hold the responsible party accountable for their actions or omissions.

How To File A Wrongful Death Lawsuit: Wrongful Death Claims by Siblings and Other Family Members

In a wrongful death lawsuit, the claim is typically filed by a family member, such as the deceased’s spouse, parent, sibling, or child. These individuals are known as the “plaintiffs” and have legal standing to pursue the claim. The specific laws regarding who can file a wrongful death lawsuit vary by jurisdiction, so it is essential to consult with an attorney knowledgeable in the applicable law for wrongful death.

Compensation for the Loss of a Loved One

When a family member experiences wrongful death, one of the primary purposes of a wrongful death claim is to seek compensation for the losses resulting from the death. While no amount of money can truly compensate for the loss, financial compensation can help ease the financial burdens and provide some level of support to the family members.

Wrongful death compensation in NY is strictly for economic and pecuniary damages. That means that the survivors of someone who dies as a result of the negligence of another can only receive economic compensation. While that loss includes the loss of earnings and loss of income occasioned by the decedent, it is not limited to that. instead, economic damages or wrongful death in New York include loss of voluntary assistance, loss of services, loss of inheritance, and loss of parental care and guidance. These economic losses can often be very significant, even if the loved one who died was not a wage earner.

In addition to wrongful death damages, the estate of the decedent is entitled to recover for the pain and suffering, including emotional distress, experienced by the decedent after being injured and before death. Such recovery may be had so long as the decedent has some level of awareness. In this circumstance, the recovery is for the decedent’s conscious pain and suffering.

KDLM Law Firm’s Remarkable Verdicts & Settlements Leading the Way in Justice

  1. $121 Million Verdict: Historic Compensation for Brain-Damaged Woman

KDLM Law Firm achieved a landmark victory in the New York Supreme Court – Suffolk County, securing $121,000,000 for a woman who suffered brain damage due to the hospital’s failure to timely diagnose and treat Stevens-Johnson Syndrome. This verdict stands as the third-largest medical malpractice verdict in New York State history, showcasing KDLM’s unparalleled dedication to obtaining justice for their clients.

  1. $31 Million Verdict: New York State’s Largest Medical Malpractice / Wrongful Death Verdict of 2018

Attorney Judith Livingston secured a groundbreaking $31 million wrongful death verdict from a Bronx jury on behalf of the family of a 70-year-old woman. The case stemmed from an incorrect heart procedure at Montefiore Medical Center, making it one of the most substantial verdicts in New York State for the year 2018.

  1. $9,932,159 Settlement: Compensation for Tragic Truck/Auto Crash Victims

In another triumph for justice, KDLM Law Firm obtained a settlement of $9,932,159 for the injuries and wrongful death suffered by a 38-year-old mother and her 20-year-old daughter. The tragic incident occurred in an unfortunate truck/auto crash that forced their vehicle off the highway in Upstate New York.

  1. $7,000,000 Settlement: Queens County Action for Post-operative Complications

In a significant Queens County action, KDLM Law Firm secured a $7,000,000 settlement for the injuries and wrongful death of a 33-year-old husband and father. The case arose from the failure to diagnose and treat a post-operative bleed following a laparoscopic appendectomy.

  1. $8,300,000 Settlement: Justice for Dental Implant Surgery Complications

In a noteworthy Westchester County action, KDLM Law Firm obtained an $8,300,000 settlement for the injuries and wrongful death of a 57-year-old husband and father. The case was centered around complications arising from dental implant surgery, underscoring KDLM’s commitment to delivering justice for victims and their families.

Proving Wrongful Death Claims

Hiring a wrongful death lawyer can help families overcome the limitations of wrongful death claims and succeed in a wrongful death lawsuit. A successful wrongful death claim must be filed within the allotted statute of limitations for wrongful death outlined in New York law. Specifically, the plaintiffs must establish the following elements:

  1. Duty of Care: The defendant owed a duty of care to the deceased. For example, in a car accident case, all drivers have a duty to operate their vehicles safely and follow traffic laws.
  2. Breach of Duty: The defendant breached their duty of care through negligent or intentional actions or omissions. This could involve reckless driving, medical malpractice, or other forms of negligence.
  3. Causation: The breach of duty directly caused the death of the individual. The plaintiffs must demonstrate that the defendant’s actions were a substantial factor in causing the death.
  4. Damages: The death of the individual resulted in measurable damages caused by the defendants. This includes both economic and non-economic losses.

Because death cases can be complex, it is always advisable to gather as much evidence as necessary to support these elements, which may include accident reports, medical records, witness testimonies, and expert opinions. Engaging a skilled attorney is essential to navigating the legal process and building a strong case.

Understanding Wrongful Death Law: The Role of a Wrongful Death Lawyer

Wrongful death cases are complex, emotionally charged, and require a deep understanding of the law. Hiring a wrongful death attorney to pursue a wrongful death claim, protect the rights of the surviving family members, and maximize the chances of a successful outcome can significantly increase your chances of fighting the at-fault parties. A knowledgeable attorney will handle various aspects of the case, including:

  1. Legal Guidance: An attorney will explain the applicable laws and legal processes, helping the family members understand their rights and options. They will guide the entire legal journey, ensuring the family members are well-informed and prepared.
  2. Investigation: The attorney will conduct a thorough investigation to gather evidence, interview witnesses, consult with experts, and reconstruct the events leading to the death. This evidence will help establish liability and prove the elements of the claim.
  3. Negotiations: In many cases, claims are resolved through negotiations and settlements. An experienced attorney will represent the family members in negotiations with insurance companies or the responsible party’s legal representation. They will work diligently to achieve a fair settlement that adequately compensates the family for their losses.
  4. Trial Representation: If a fair settlement cannot be reached, the case may proceed to trial. A skilled wrongful death attorney will represent the family members in court, presenting the evidence, arguing the case, and advocating for their rights. They will navigate the complexities of the legal system and strive to secure a favorable verdict.

Finding the Best Wrongful Death Lawyers in New York

If you are in New York and seeking legal representation in a claim for wrongful death, it is important to find the best wrongful death lawyer who specializes in this area of law like KDLM. Contacting a wrongful death attorney with a proven track record in handling wrongful death cases, extensive experience, and a deep understanding of New York’s wrongful death laws. Our law firm has a compassionate approach, providing personalized attention and support to grieving family members while fiercely advocating for their rights.