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Frequently Asked Questions About Wrongful Death Cases

Written by Cooper & Friedman PLLC on March 6, 2022
Five Frequently Asked Questions about Wrongful Death Legal Cases


Wrongful death cases are cases that involve a claim against an individual or group of individuals who may be held liable for a person’s death. Wrongful death claims are brought forward via a civil action, often by family members and/or the executor of the deceased individual’s estate. Deaths that happen in a wrongful death case may be caused by a variety of factors including negligence, carelessness, omission, or some type of wrongful act.

The circumstances surrounding a wrongful death case are often nothing short of heartbreaking, especially in example that involve simple carelessness without intentional malice. Whether you have been personally impacted by a wrongful death case or are just trying to learn more information about how these cases are handled under the law, follow along for details from a personal injury law firm who has successful handled a wide variety of wrongful death cases involving both children and adults.

Five Frequently Asked Questions about Wrongful Death Legal Cases

1. Is wrongful death treated the same in every state?

No, states do not treat wrongful death cases in the same manner across the board. State laws vary on a number of factors, and this is something a qualified and experienced attorney will help you navigate. States have varying statues of limitations which require you to file your lawsuit within a set period of time. States also differ on the kinds of damages that they allow. Many states do not allow punitive damages in wrongful death cases, yet some do. For example, Kentucky allows punitive damages in situations where the wrongful death case is caused by what is described as gross negligence or an act that was deemed intentional. 

2. Can people sue for pain and suffering in a wrongful death case? 

Legal damages in a wrongful death lawsuit may sometimes include compensation for pain and suffering. Examples of pain and suffering include situations where a family member may experience shock or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) from bearing witness to the wrongful death of a loved one. Pain and suffering may also be used to describe the ordeal an individual suffers leading up to their wrongful death. In this instance, cases where people are thought to have been killed instantly may not garner the same attention as situations where a victim suffers a longer more tortuous death.

3. Can a business or organization be sued in a wrongful death case?

Yes it is possible that companies or  organizations may face wrongful death cases. This is particularly common in situations that involve defective products (so-called product liability cases). 

4. What types of damages can surviving loved ones receive through a wrongful death case?

Wrongful death cases may involve damages that are monetary or economic and non-monetary.  Economic damages include things like income that is lost, funeral expenses, lost benefits, household support, and more. Non-economic damages describe things such as loss of love, partnership, and companionship.

5. What is the process for pursuing a wrongful death legal case? 

If you are interested in learning more about a potential wrongful death legal case, it is always advisable to you reach out as soon as possible to an experienced injury attorney. After reviewing details of your case, there is specific documentation an attorney will gather, along with the summons and the petition. The summons notifies the individual, company or organization of the lawsuit, and the petition provides information about the legal reasons for the case based on specific facts.

If you have a loved one that has been killed in a situation that may qualify as a wrongful death case, get the legal help you need and deserve. For cases that occur in the state of Kentucky, the experienced attorneys at Cooper & Friedman PLLC are here to help.  Our team has decades of combined experience fighting for the rights of accident victims in Louisville, Kentucky and throughout the entire state. For a free case consultation or more information, call Cooper & Friedman PLLC now at 502-459-7555.

Posted Under: Personal Injury, Uncategorized, Wrongful Death

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