Your Florida Wrongful Death Attorneys
Unfortunately, not everyone survives a bad accident. Thousands of people die every year, leaving behind a grieving spouse, children, and parents. When an accident victim passes away, their lawsuit does not die with them but instead, certain family members can bring a civil lawsuit on behalf of the victim for compensation. If you are a family member to a victim that has passed away as a result of a wrongful death, your attorneys at Borkovic Law Group will gladly review your case to determine whether you are able to bring forth a wrongful death claim. Borkovic Law Group has represented many family members in wrongful death lawsuits against people or entities responsible for their loved one’s death, and has been successful in recovering favorable settlements and verdicts.
What Is a “Wrongful” Death?
Not all deaths that result from accidents are wrongful under the law. Fla. Stat. § 768.21 identifies a wrongful death as one caused by any of the following:
- Wrongful act
- Default; or
- Breach of contract
Most wrongful death cases that we handle involve negligent or reckless conduct. Wrongful death cases as a result of negligence are common in vehicular accidents while driving carelessly or dangerously, such as driving while under the influence. Negligence is based on the premise that one has a duty to exercise reasonable care, and when someone fails to exercise due care and breaches that duty, then they may be responsible for any damages as a result of their breach, such as a wrongful death.
While negligent wrongful deaths are a civil wrong, wrongful deaths can also be criminal. For example, if your loved one was shot to death intentionally, you might be able to sue the defendant civilly as well even though it was a crime. In this instance, the person at fault would be prosecuted criminally by the state, and he or she would also be pursued civilly based on a wrongful death action.
Who Brings a Wrongful Death Suit?
Surviving family members are the ones who typically receive any compensation in a wrongful death suit, and they would be the ones to bring forth this suit. However, the estate’s personal representative of the deceased victim is responsible for actually filing the lawsuit in court. If your loved one left behind a will, then the name of the personal representative should be named in it. If there was no will, or if in the rare event there is a will but no mention of a desired personal representative, then the probate judge can appoint someone. The probate judge usually appoints the surviving spouse or another family member that is next of kin. To find out more on how to bring a wrongful death suit or if you have any questions, meet with one of your attorneys at Borkovic Law Group.
What Compensation Do I Get for My Losses?
Losing a loved one is a very traumatic and painful experience, and no amount of money can ever replace a loved one. Nevertheless, our attorneys understand that the loss of a loved one can result in significant financial strain, such as perhaps losing a loved one who was the sole income provider in the household. Our goal is to ensure that surviving family members are protected after their loss and to soften the financial burden as much as possible. Fla. Stat. § 768.21 provides that family members might qualify for the following money damages as a result of a wrongful death:
- The value of the services a loved one provided. For example, a spouse might have cleaned, cooked, and cared for the family, and surviving relatives can receive money to make up for this loss.
- The value of financial support. For example if the breadwinner of the family passes away, and surviving household family members experience a dramatic drop in income.
- The loss of guidance, companionship, and protection provided by a loved one.
- Any medical or funeral expenses paid by a family member for the deceased.
- If a child passes away, then any emotional/mental pain experienced by the parents.
The estate can also bring suit to recover certain losses, such as:
- Medical and/or funeral expenses that the estate paid.
- Lost wages or income that the deceased reasonably could have earned had he or she lived.
Call experienced Florida wrongful death attorneys at Borkovic Law Group (727) 798-5291.
Borkovic Law Group has represented many spouses, children, and parents in wrongful death cases. Please contact us today for a free consultation. We can explain the steps necessary and begin building a case for compensation. We are often able to negotiate a favorable settlement with the person or entity to blame for your loved one’s death.