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Elements of a wrongful death suit

When fatal accidents are the result of the negligence of another person or entity, the victim's family may have legal recourse. When medical malpractice, car accidents, workplace accidents or other forms of negligence play a role in a person's death, it is important that family members know whether or not they should seek legal help.

In these cases, a wrongful death suit could help compensate a grieving family for the losses they have suffered. These losses can include medical expenses that occurred before the victim's death, funeral expenses, pain and suffering, loss of companionship, lost wages and more.

In order to bring a successful wrongful death suit, four elements must be met. First, a human being must have died. Second, the person's death must have been caused by the negligence of another person. Negligence occurs when a person fails to act as a reasonable person would under the same or similar circumstances, leading to injury. Third, the family must have suffered financial damages as a result of the person's death. Fourth, a personal representative must be appointed to the victim's estate to bring the suit.

If the family members of the victim can prove these elements, they may be eligible for compensation in a wrongful death suit. These elements can be complicated and require specific evidence in order to prove. Therefore, family members should seek legal help in order to determine if they have a successful wrongful death case. With the right help, grieving families can get the money they need to move forward from the loss of a loved one without financial stress.

Source: Findlaw.com, "Wrongful Death Overview," accessed Oct. 6, 2014

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