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When a loved one—spouse, child or parent—dies prematurely, it leaves a void that remains forever. However, the void is amplified even more if the person’s death is due to someone else’s negligence, poor judgment or even intentional act. If your loved one died because of reckless behavior or other negligence, then you may have the ability to file a wrongful death claim to hold the person responsible for the death accountable. Our Tacoma wrongful death attorney has a history of helping grieving families get the financial compensation due to them when their loved one is taken away too soon in life.

No amount of money could ever take away the sorrow, grief, and anger that comes with having a loved one die at the hands of another person. The wrongful death award is designed not to make up for that personal, intimate loss, but rather to hold the accountable party to task for their actions while easing the financial burden that the person’s parting leaves on his or her family. A wrongful death award encompasses both economic and non-economic damages, including:

  • Loss of income contribution from the deceased
  • Loss of value of services provided by the deceased
  • Loss of consortium and love
  • Mental anguish and emotional suffering

If the act resulting in your loved one’s death was particularly heinous, courts may also award punitive damages as a form of punishment for the responsible party. This is seen as a deterrent to future acts that might affect other victims in the future.

Defining Wrongful Death

When a death is caused by someone else’s actions, it is generally classified as wrongful. The responsible party may be an individual, a company, or even an agency of the government. For instance, a doctor who provides care below the acceptable care standard may be subjected to a wrongful death claim when his patient dies as a result. A company that puts out a dangerous product may be sued for wrongful death is the product ends up causing a fatal injury. A driver driving drunk who crashes into an innocent person may be held liable for the injuries caused. Keep in mind that wrongful death claims are civil claims. Any criminal actions resulting from the death of the loved one are separate, and it is possible to win a wrongful death suit even if the responsible person was found not-guilty in a court of law in regards to the death.

It is most usual for the spouse of the decedent to file a wrongful death claim. Still, surviving children, including adopted children, the decedent’s parents or other beneficiaries can also file if they have a right to recover damages under the law.

Working With a Wrongful Death Attorney

The death of a loved one leaves a hole in your life that is difficult to fill. No matter the amount of compensation, it will never be enough to replace your loved one who was taken too soon. However, easing the financial burden caused by the loved one’s departure can help you find some closure. Contact Russell and Hill and our Tacoma wrongful death attorney now to weigh your legal options during a free, no-obligation case review.

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