The death of a family member is never easy. The emotional toll is especially challenging when their death was caused by another person’s negligence. In addition to the emotional challenges, an unexpected passing could also cause financial chaos for anyone that depends on your loved one. A wrongful death lawsuit might help alleviate some burdens associated with an untimely passing. To learn more, contact a Palm Harbor wrongful death lawyer right away.
A compassionate personal injury attorney might be able to handle your wrongful death claim in a way that is respectful of your feelings, but thorough in its pursuit for compensation. Call whenever you feel ready to discuss your legal options.
Right to File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit
Every state approaches the right to file a wrongful death lawsuit differently. Most states have a complicated formula for selecting a family member to have priority in filing a lawsuit. Usually, in those states, a personal representative appointed by the deceased person’s estate only has standing to file a wrongful death suit when there are no living relatives who qualify.
In Florida, the opposite is true. A wrongful death lawsuit must be filed in Florida by a personal representative of an estate. In many cases, a will or trust assigns the task to a specific person. A Palm Harbor attorney with experience in wrongful death lawsuits may assist a personal representative in this process.
While a personal representative files the suit, it is the surviving family members that would receive any financial recovery. The lawsuit must list by name every family member that qualifies for compensation. These include the deceased person’s:
- Blood relative or adoptive sibling financially dependent on the decedent
Under Florida law, not all children are treated equally. A child always recovers from the death of their mother in a wrongful death case. However, a child would not recover from a wrongful death suit for their father if the parents were not married, and the father had never formally recognized the child.
Statute of Limitations
Every state has a statute of limitations. This statute sets out time limits on the filing of a lawsuit. The time limit varies depending on the type of suit, but the consequences of failing to comply with the statute are always the same. Courts have the power to dismiss a suit permanently if the plaintiff fails to file it during the statutory period.
Florida Statute Section 95.11(4)(d) governs the statute of limitations for a wrongful death lawsuit. According to Florida law, a plaintiff must file a wrongful death case within two years of the date of death. If a plaintiff does not meet this deadline, a wrongful death lawsuit would face dismissal before it ever gets started.
Experienced Palm Harbor wrongful death attorneys understand the importance of meeting every legal deadline. With the right legal counsel, you should be able to avoid the unnecessary dismissal of your claim.
Discuss with a Palm Harbor Wrongful Death Attorney
If you have lost a loved one due to another person’s negligence, the laws of the State of Florida provide you with a path to holding them accountable through litigation. When you put your case in the hands of an experienced Palm harbor wrongful death lawyer, you gain the opportunity to dedicate your time to your well-being. To learn how skilled legal counsel may be able to help your case, schedule your initial consultation right away.