Grieving the premature passing of a loved one is always difficult and always takes time. The sense of grief can be even more pronounced when the loss involves the acts of another person rather than nature taking its course. When you find yourself in this position, you know all too well that nothing can recover the loss—certainly, no amount of money can replace your loss of companionship and support.
There are financial difficulties associated with loss as well. Leander wrongful death settlements may be available to help recoup these financial losses. An experienced attorney can help determine what recovery may be available to you.
According to Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code § 71.002(b), a wrongful death claim exists when a person’s death is caused by another’s negligence, carelessness, or wrongful actions.
Any wrongful death settlement in Leander will come from a civil lawsuit, not a criminal prosecution. A wrongful death claim will not lead to imprisonment for the person who caused the death. On the other hand, this also means the actions that caused the death did not have to be a crime and the person who caused the death does not have to have moral culpability. Instead, showing the defendant acted negligently is enough.
This does not mean that criminal penalties for the defendant are not a possibility. Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code § 71.006 specifically allows a wrongful death claim to proceed while a criminal trial related to the same event is ongoing.
A wrongful death lawsuit is meant to compensate the deceased’s family for their loss. A criminal trial is meant to punish the wrongdoer. The two legal actions operate independently. When someone is killed by another’s actions, either or both proceedings may occur simultaneously.
Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code § 71.003 makes it clear that the point of a wrongful death lawsuit is to allow a claim only if the deceased would have been able to bring a claim had they survived. Wrongful death claims extend an injury claim from the decedent to the decedent’s.
Wrongful death lawsuits are commonly filed in many of the same situations as other injury suits, including:
A Leander attorney who specializes in wrongful death settlements can advise a family regarding when it might be beneficial to bring a claim.
State law limits the class of survivors who may directly bring a wrongful death claim. The only people entitled to file a claim are any surviving parent, child, or spouse of the deceased person, according to Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code § 71.004.
However, if ninety days pass after the death and no one from that class of people has brought a claim, the person in charge of distributing the deceased’s estate may file a wrongful passing suit. In this case, any payments or settlement from a Leander wrongful death claim would be split equally among each beneficiary of the deceased’s estate, which could include a much broader group of family and friends depending on the deceased’s wishes.
When you have lost a loved one, you deserve the ability to focus on processing your grief and supporting your family—not worrying about how to pay for medical and funeral expenses. A Leander wrongful death settlement may be available to help meet these costs. Make an appointment with an experienced attorney to see how we can help you recover what you are owed.