It is painful to lose someone you love, and it is even more heartbreaking when such a loss places you in financial peril. However, while there are legal tools to help make yourself whole, such as wrongful death actions, how do you seek justice for the person who died?
A survival action is not a lawsuit for the survivors in a family. Instead, the case is brought on behalf of the deceased to help rebuild their estate. Unlike with a wrongful death lawsuit, the executor of the estate will typically file a survival action.
Common Damages Filed in a Survival Claim
Many people are surprised to hear that pain and suffering are a part of a survival lawsuit. In fact, it may surprise many to see the similarities between damages brought in survival cases and those filed in personal injury claims.
The decedent’s representative can file for the recovery of medical expenses and property losses. However, the most significant damage set will focus on the loss of potential future gains through a job or other opportunities.
The Survival Action Clock
While the decision to file a lawsuit is complicated, representatives must understand that there is a statute of limitations in many states. Many jurisdictions will limit legal action to two years after death; although, some areas may make exceptions because of the complexity of survival suits.
The Right Attorney for the Job
Finding the right lawyer to take your survival action to trial or settlement negotiations is crucial to your success. An experienced and specialized attorney will face better odds during negotiations and will understand the law enough to make measured and rational arguments should a case go to trial.
Too many people hire a lawyer based solely on price, but if you do not review their trial experience and success rate, you risk the estate of the decedent. Instead of hiring the first lawyer you come across, make a list of the top ten or more, and consult with each. Ask for references and check reviews. Also, dig into the professional record of any favored attorneys by contacting the state bar association for record inquiries.
When filing a survival action, the case is about the deceased person and their estate; it is about rebuilding their estate for their beneficiaries. When researching attorneys, take your time and do not be afraid to contact several local estate lawyers to help narrow down your decision. If you need help with a wrongful death lawsuit, contact a lawyer, like a wrongful death lawyer from The Law Offices of Mark T. Hurt.