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When can a family sue for wrongful death?

The unexpected loss of a loved one can be a traumatic experience for any family. Families can face emotional turmoil surrounding the death and wonder if there was anything that could have been done to prevent the loss of their loved one.

A wrongful death lawsuit is where a family can hold someone else responsible for the death of a loved one. If a person dies as the result of someone else's negligence the responsible party can be sued for wrongful death.

In order for families to successfully bring a wrongful death lawsuit there are some factors that need to be met. These include the death of a person, the death needed to be caused by another person. The cause could be from injury inflicted by another including murder, a car accident or medical malpractice. Also, the surviving family members are suffering from a financial loss because of the death. This can be the result of loss of wages, funeral expenses or medical expenses. Finally, there is a personal representative for the estate that brings the wrongful death suit.

A wrongful death lawsuit can bring financial recovery for families. The compensation can be for pain and suffering, funeral expenses, medical expenses, loss of wages and other damages. The compensation received can help families move on in the grieving process without having to worry about financial losses.

If the death was the result of a medical error, the medical professional can be held accountable. Wrongful death for medical reasons can include birth injuries, surgical errors, doctor mistake, medication errors, failure to diagnose a condition and other reasons.

Source: Findlaw.com, "Wrongful death overview," Accessed on Nov. 11, 2014

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