If you have lost a loved one in an accident, a wrongful death suit could recover damages to compensation you. There are rules and limits governing just how can recover damages and for what, however, and knowing how wrongful death claims work in Arizona can help facilitate your claim. For more detailed information regarding wrongful death suits, a Scottsdale wrongful death attorney can help you learn more.
A wrongful death suit is in essence a personal injury suit in which the victim is unable to recover compensation personally. Claims may be brought against anyone responsible for an accident by means of a wrongful act or negligence.
The state limits who can file a wrongful death claim. Those permitted to do so include:
- Surviving spouse of the deceased
- Surviving child of the deceased
- Surviving parent or guardian of the deceased
- Personal representative of a deceased spouse, child, or parent
- Personal representative of the deceased person's estate
As opposed to a criminal case, in civil court, the guilty is punished solely in financial terms. Losses inflicted by the death upon the deceased person's estate are one category of damages which can be recovered.
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Pain and suffering endured before the death
- Value of lost wages and benefits the deceased would have earned if they had lived
- Medical bills
- Repair or replacement of property damaged in the accident
Other damages include those suffered by the family of the deceased due to the death. Damages are typically paid to the family members directly.
These damages include:
- Pain and suffering due to the untimely death
- Lost value of household services the deceased performed
- Loss of care, companionship, and guidance
Surviving family members need to choose how to divide the damages they are awarded among themselves. When family members cannot come to an agreement, the court can decide how the damages will be apportioned.
Arizona allows two years from the date of the death for those eligible to do so to file a wrongful death suit. After two years the Arizona statute of limitations will expire and survivors will be unable to recover damages.
Have you lost a loved one in an accident caused by another's negligence? If so, trusting your case to The Watkin Law Office could mean recovering needed compensation.