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Who Is Entitled to Wrongful Death Benefits?

Death is a natural part of life, and every individual goes through different mourning stages. If a loved one has passed, the initial stages of grief can be quite difficult. If a loved one died because of the misconduct of another person, it can make matters even more difficult, and you might be able to seek justice. Belushin Law Firm, P.C. provides representation to those who have experienced a wrongful death.

Wrongful death claims are brought against a defendant who has caused someone’s death, either due to negligence or as a result of an intentional action. Wrongful death claims let the estate and those who are close to a deceased person file a lawsuit against the party legally liable for the death. All states have statutes that codify the right to recover for wrongful death, but the particulars on who is allowed to file vary from state to state.

In New York, the personal representative of the estate of a lost loved one can file a wrongful death lawsuit against the responsible party. Damages can be awarded to immediate family members, including surviving spouses, children, or the deceased’s parents if no spouse, children, or grandchildren are present. Generally, the following individuals can file a wrongful death claim to seek justice for any wrongdoing:

  • Immediate family members, including spouses, children, and parents of unmarried children
  • Distant family members like siblings and grandparents
  • Domestic or life partners
  • Financial dependents and those who suffer financially as a result of the death

What Qualifies as Wrongful Death?

There are a variety of different circumstances that can constitute a wrongful death lawsuit, like medical malpractice, motor vehicle accidents, toxic torts, manufacturing defects, or criminal activity. If we represent you in this case, we will need to prove that the death was caused by another’s negligence or intentionally wrongful actions and that the surviving loved ones suffered losses because of the death. A decadent’s survivors can also maintain a “survival action” in cases in which a decadent does not die immediately from an accident, which can become a personal injury lawsuit.

How Long Does a Wrongful Death Lawsuit Pay?

The wrongful death settlement ranges from $500,000 to over $1 million. The damages can include economic damages, like medical costs, funeral costs, the loss of the decadent’s financial contributions, and non-economic damages that can include compensation for the grief and loss of companionship. Settlement amounts can vary, but Belushin Law Firm, P.C. believes that every life is valuable and deserves compensation when taken wrongly. A typical wrongful death settlement depends on the circumstances surrounding the case and the personal circumstances of the victim. To determine a wrongful death settlement amount, the following factors are taken into consideration:

  • The victim’s last medical expenses
  • Burial expenses
  • Future financial support that the deceased would have provided
  • Future household services that the deceased would have provided
  • The age and health of the deceased person
  • Needs of the surviving dependents
  • Whether or not exemplary damages are appropriate

Wrongful death settlements are paid out by insurance providers who provide liability coverage for the individual or entity for whom the death is blamed. Insurance policies have a policy limit amount, and if you go above that amount, the insurance company will not pay and the individual is held liable. If the responsible individual does not have enough insurance coverage, they will be responsible for a judgment or settlement amount and accrue legal fees. If you disagree with the settlement, you can go to trial and prove the right to damages.

Some settlements might come to a close quickly or within a matter of months, but other personal injury or wrongful death lawsuits can take an average of one to four years to fully resolve. Even if your case does not go to trial, settling it takes time, but we will help produce the best results for your case in the quickest amount of time possible.

If you need legal support with a wrongful death case or another personal injury matter, call Belushin Law Firm, P.C. at (888) 918-9890 or contact us online.