If someone you love has suffered from a wrongful death, there is a right and a wrong way to go about filing a lawsuit.
When someone you love dies at the hands of an accident, or of someone else, it can be a harrowing experience. Not only do you have the grief and loss to deal with, but you also must think about how you are going to pay for the medical bills and cope with the loss of their earnings into the household.
It might seem callous to consider the financial implications of a family death, but for many of us there is not any other choice. If we do not want to be left fitting the hefty medical bill for a wrongful death, we need to start placing blame.
With that in mind, here are our top five mistakes you should avoid if you must file a wrongful death lawsuit.
5 Mistakes to Avoid During a Wrongful Death Lawsuit
If someone you love suffered from a wrongful death, be sure to avoid these five common mistakes of the lawsuit.
1 – Not Hiring Representation
You are grieving, you are exhausted, and the chances are you do not know much about the law. This is where hiring an attorney for wrongful death becomes vital. They are your voice when you cannot speak for yourself. They also know what to file and when to file it… take advantage of this by getting them to represent you so you can focus on funeral arrangements and the grieving process.
2 – Not Calculating Damages
Damages for a wrongful death come in two forms. They come in the form of medical bills and expenses incurred while your loved one was still with you. They also come in the form of the damages done after they are gone. The funeral costs, the missed work, the loss of your loved one’s income and even the pain and suffering your family are going through… all of it has a monetary value. Fail to calculate it correctly and you will not be fully compensated.
3 – Do not ignore the statute of limitations
If you happen to be in Florida, you can only file a wrongful death lawsuit for up to two years after the death date. In other states this time limit changes, but if you wait beyond it there is absolutely no way to get any recompense. Judges are hard and fast with this rule to stop historical charges being brought with little way to prove themselves.
4 – Posting on Social Media
Keep all details within the family. Do not speak about them openly with anyone not directly involved. Especially – stay away from social media rants. All of this will be gone through with a fine tooth comb by the opposition. All with the intention of being used against you if it goes to trial.
5 – Take the First Offer
If you take that first offer, it is usually too low. Lawyers of the defense will try to give you a low-ball offer in the hopes that you go away, and they save their client from too many losses. Some firms do not want to go to court because of the damage to their reputation. Usually, if they are making an offer, they either do not want to go to court because of this, or because they think they are going to lose.
Either way do not accept it… you already have them running scared.