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If someone you love has lost their life due to the negligence of another person or party, you should contact a professional attorney as soon as you can. Such a terrible event is likely to have a lasting effect that no amount of money can fix, but it could help you to get justice. This is why talking to a lawyer is often one of the first steps you should take.
Nobody should have to bury someone they hold dear to them and suffer not just with the grief, but also the many costs that come with these types of situations. The sad truth is that countless individuals have suffered from events like this; from vehicle collisions, to accidents at the workplace. The Texas statutes are there to try and help family members to make a lawsuit against a party that’s responsible for the death of their loved one. A wrongful death action can be taken against someone who’s responsible for the incident, whether it’s due to neglect or carelessness.
How Do These Types of Claims Work in Texas?
A wrongful death petition can’t be made by just anyone. The only people who can take action are the parents, children, or spouse of the deceased. One person may file a claim on their own, or they can opt to do it together. If they don’t make a request within 3 months, the personal representative or executor can do so instead. Adult children can file a petition due to the loss of a parent. Also, adopted children may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit on the liable individual.
Under Texas law, siblings are not allowed to initiate a wrongful death claim for a lost sibling. Typically for these types of disputes it’s crucial to get an experienced attorney to take care of the initial paperwork. This is because the claimant will have to not only file the lawsuit directly, but also determine the monetary damages that the death has caused. For example, there may be criminal charges that are linked to the debt – and if so, a wrongful death application is considered to be a separate request. It’s also important to understand that not every incident will require a lawsuit to be filed, and that there are a few steps involved with taking legal action in these types of situations.
Hiring an attorney to investigate the incident can also be crucial too, as a professional may be able to pick up some valuable evidence. With all the necessary information, it will be far easier for you to decide which parties should receive financial recovery and who is liable – and in most cases, it’s a wise idea to get their insurance information. If the insurance company is responsible, the process could end here, as they may have to pay compensation sooner than an ordinary arraignment.
The next step in these types of cases is the litigation phase. Sometimes, you may find that you can’t proceed without taking action against one or more parties that you believe to be responsible. This process often starts when one party files a lawsuit against another (this is commonly known as a writ of summons or a complaint).
The next stage is often settlement discussion, which is where the insurance company or lawyer of the defendant will try to get you to agree to resolve the issue outside of court. In some instances, this can occur during any part of the dispute; from initial interrogations, to pre-trial phases. With all the difficulty that can come with trying to deal with a wrongful death lawsuit, it’s often recommended that individuals in this situation get the help of an experienced lawyer.
Why Should I Get a Wrongful Death Attorney?
In general, these kinds of proceedings are incredibly complex – and they can become even more difficult if insurance companies get involved. This is why getting a professional to help you get through the process (as well as offer advice along the way) can often be so important.
You should also consider the fact that having an attorney on your side dealing with the complicated legal issues, to negotiate settlements for you, and more will give you more time to grieve the loss of your loved one. A professional lawyer will be well equipped to take on the responsible party and be more than capable of answering any queries you may have during the trial, too.
Types of Wrongful Death Injuries
Wrongful death can be caused by a number of different incidents – and if an accident was brought about by another individual, there’s a good chance that you’ll be able to take action against them to get justice. Even if the individual didn’t die immediately or at the scene of the accident, you’ll still get the chance to make a plea. A truck driver who suffered severe injuries from a crash for example, may live for several weeks before they pass away. In this instance, that person’s loved ones can still make an application. A few common causes of these trials in Texas are:
- Construction and workplace accidents
- Medical malpractice
- Serious slip and fall injuries
- Vehicle collisions
How Does A Wrongful Death Claim Work?
One of the best ways to start making a claim is to get in touch with a professional wrongful death lawyer to help you with the paperwork. From there, your attorney is likely to investigate and gather any relevant information to help you with your case – and this can be any time after the initial paperwork has been filed when you initiate the plea. The defendant may offer you a settlement. Your lawyer will not only help you to negotiate prices, but also help you to determine whether or not offers are worth it. If you do opt to take the settlement and sign the agreement, your litigation will discontinue. In the event that you can’t come to a reasonable agreement, you’ll need to be prepared for the complex legal work that comes with going to trial, such as depositions and the hearing of motions.
What Are the Wrongful Death Laws in Texas?
It’s often a wise idea to understand what qualifies as a wrongful death claim – as well as if you’re able to file one. Depending on the situation, the Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code chapter 71 will allow certain individuals to file a lawsuit. This type of application can only be made by specific members of their family. In addition, Chapter 71 can allow an applicant to receive compensation for damages caused to the deceased’s estate, too. However, these are classed as recoverable survival damages and are separate to wrongful death petitions. For a case of this kind, an individual will have a limit of 2 years to file a legal request.
While there are a few exceptions to this rule, it’s generally best to consult a professional lawyer at the outset of your case. There are a number of things that you can earn compensation for, including (but not limited to) a loss of earning capacity, mental and emotional anguish, and lost love comfort. In some cases, other types of damages may also be available, too. If you feel like you need some help understanding, be sure to consult a professional wrongful death lawyer to help you clear things up.
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If you believe you have a wrongful death case, fill out the form on this page or call now to get in touch with our team today for a free consultation. We’re here to help you fight and get the justice you deserve. With our passion, dedication, and precision to detail, we’re sure that we will provide you with the most compensation for your case.
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At the Snapka Law Firm, we understand the devastating consequences of a serious injury resulting from another's negligent actions. Not only do we provide tenacious legal representation, we help you get through this trying time by dealing with the burdens of your personal injury case on your behalf. Every case we accept is handled personally by one of our attorneys who will be committed to helping you understand the process while preparing your case for resolution. As a small but highly focused firm, we provide a more personalized attention to detail that you won't often find with larger law firms. With decades of courtroom experience, the Snapka Law Firm has delivered our clients millions of dollars in compensation as a result of successful verdicts and settlements. With our personalized touch, extensive experience, and strong relationships with investigation specialists and industry experts, you'll be represented by one of the best personal injury law firms in South Texas.
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