Losing a loved one can be devastating, but hearing the news that it was due to the wrongful actions of another can make this unbearable. One of the only ways in which you can ensure that justice is served is by filing a wrongful death claim. However, only certain individuals are allowed to file this claim on behalf of your loved one. Find out if you are eligible to enter this lawsuit and how a proficient St. Mary’s County wrongful death lawyer at The Dorsey Law Firm can guide you every step of the way.
Am I qualified to file a wrongful death claim in the state of Maryland?
Unfortunately, by Maryland law, not all those who were affected by the wrongful passing of a loved one may bring forward a wrongful death claim. In this state, only the surviving spouse, child, or parent of a decedent may do so. However, if the decedent did not leave behind a spouse, child, or parent, then anyone related to the decedent by blood or marriage may sue, so long as they can prove the following:
- The decedent lost their life due to another party’s negligence.
- The decedent lost their life under circumstances wherein they would have been entitled to financial compensation had they not lost their life.
- You, as the decedent’s relative, suffered damages due to their wrongful death.
What compensation can I recover in a wrongful death claim?
With sufficient evidence, you should be able to recover compensation for both economic and non-economic damages. Examples read as follows:
- Economic damages:
- The cost of the funeral and burial.
- The cost of medical care your loved one received before passing away.
- The cost of lost wages that your loved one would have contributed to your family.
- Non-economic damages:
- The loss of care, companionship, and guidance your loved one provided, especially if you were their child.
- Pain and suffering.
- Emotional distress.
- The loss of enjoyment of life.
What is the statute of limitations for wrongful death claims in the state of Maryland?
Of course, compensation cannot fill the void left behind by the loss of your loved one. But it may be the only way in which you hold the at-fault party accountable. Nonetheless, you must file your wrongful death claim before Maryland’s statute of limitations of three years from the date of your loved one’s passing. Importantly, if your loved one wrongfully lost their life in a municipality in Maryland, you will have even less time to file a Notice of Claim.
To avoid being barred from suing and in turn recovering damages, it is in your best interest to reach out to a talented Leonardtown personal injury lawyer as soon as you can.
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