Someone passing away before their natural time is always a tragedy, but it can be especially heartbreaking to lose a family member because of someone else’s irresponsible actions. In a situation like this, you likely have a right to take legal action in your loved one’s name and demand compensation for all harm you and your family will experience because of their death.

As any experienced personal injury attorney knows, successfully filing suit over “wrongful death” can be challenging on both legal and personal levels. There is no shortage of procedural roadblocks that could get in the way of you getting paid what you deserve. You should seek help from a Mt. Sterling wrongful death lawyer at Maze Law Offices who may help you get the most money possible from your claim. Our services are completely free—we only get paid through the insurance company.

How State Law Handles Wrongful Death Claims

When someone passes away in Kentucky, their estate plan will usually specify someone to act as their “personal representative” or “executor” and manage financial matters on behalf of their estate. Most of the time, this personal representative is the only person with legal standing to file a wrongful death lawsuit. They generally must do this no later than one year after their appointment as personal representative, or two years afterward if the appointment occurs more than a year after the death.

As a Mt. Sterling wrongful death attorney can further explain, there are exceptions to these rules under specific circumstances. For example, if someone passes away due to someone else’s negligent or criminal use of a deadly weapon, the deceased person’s spouse or children both have standing to file a wrongful death lawsuit. Likewise, if a minor child wrongfully passes away due to another person’s misconduct, that minor’s parent(s) may join in on any claim filed by the child’s personal representative.

What Damages Could Be Recoverable in a Wrongful Death?

If a personal representative is the one filing a wrongful death lawsuit, they will seek restitution on behalf of both the decedent’s estate and the decedent’s surviving family members for specific losses. If the claim is successful, the court will typically award compensation to the estate first, to cover financial damages like funeral costs, attorneys’ fees, and estate administration expenses.

After that, surviving family members will receive whatever compensation remains for damages like lost future financial support, emotional anguish, and loss of household services. The people who can recover that compensation will depend on the following guidelines:

  • Surviving spouse but no surviving children: the spouse gets everything
  • Surviving spouse and surviving children: the spouse and children each receive an equal share of compensation
  • Surviving children but no spouse: the children get everything
  • Surviving parent(s) but no surviving spouse or children: the parent(s) gets everything
  • No surviving spouse, children, or parents: the estate gets everything, to then be paid out to whoever the decedent designated in their will or, if not otherwise noted, to their heirs at law

It is worth noting that a spouse who wishes to seek restitution for “loss of consortium” must file a separate claim, in addition to the standard claim, to do so. This is something which a skilled wrongful death lawyer in Mt. Sterling can provide crucial assistance with.

Learn How a Mt. Sterling Wrongful Death Attorney Could Help

Wrongful death can make for a uniquely challenging civil claim under any circumstances, especially if there is any question about who is at fault for a fatal accident. Among many other reasons, this is why working closely with experienced legal counsel will be essential to achieving a favorable outcome.

Our compassionate Mt. Sterling wrongful death lawyer would help you through any challenge in the wake of this terrible accident. Call today to schedule your free consultation at Maze Law Offices.

Maze Law Offices N/a (859) 328-1908