Wrongful death is a legal term for the unfortunate and unexpected death of a person caused by someone else's actions or negligence. In such cases, the victim's family or heirs have the right to file a claim against the responsible party for compensation. However, it is critical to understand when to file a wrongful death lawsuit to avoid jeopardizing the case.
1. Gather Facts and Evidence
The first step in filing a wrongful death lawsuit is to gather all the necessary information and evidence related to the incident. Depending on the case, evidence could include police reports, eyewitness testimony, medical records, or any other relevant information. Gathering evidence is critical in a wrongful death case since it helps to determine who is liable for the death and how the victim died. Therefore, it is vital to start collecting evidence as soon as possible.
2. Statute of Limitations
The statute of limitations is the legal time limit when the plaintiff must file a lawsuit. Each state has a different statute of limitations for wrongful death claims, ranging from one year to several years. The court will likely refuse to hear the case if the claim is not filed within the allotted time. Therefore, it is crucial to consult an attorney as soon as possible to avoid missing the statute of limitations.
3. Waiting for Investigation Results
In some wrongful death cases, an investigation may need to be conducted to determine who is liable for the victim's death. In such instances, waiting for the investigation results before filing the lawsuit is essential. Filing a lawsuit prematurely could result in incomplete or inaccurate information, which may jeopardize the case.
4. Settlement Offers
If the plaintiff receives a settlement offer from the defendant before filing the lawsuit, it may be tempting to accept it and avoid litigation. However, consulting with an attorney before accepting any settlement offer is imperative. An experienced attorney can help you evaluate the offer and determine if it is a fair compensation for your loss.
5. Emotional Recovery Before Filing a Claim
The death of a loved one is a traumatic and emotional experience that takes time to process before making any legal decisions. It is important to prioritize emotional recovery and wait until you are in a stable and clear-headed state before considering filing a wrongful death lawsuit.
Newport Beach Wrongful Death Lawyers
If you or a loved one has been injured due to someone else's negligence, don't hesitate to contact Manning Law, APC. Our dedicated team of personal injury attorneys will work tirelessly to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve. Reach out to us today at (800) 783-5006 to schedule a free consultation and learn more about how we can help you on your path to recovery.