What to expect in a wrongful death lawsuit

On Behalf of | Mar 6, 2020 | Firm News

It is hard enough to deal with the untimely loss of a loved without thinking too much about the circumstances leading to the death. But if you suspect that someone or even an organization is responsible for the passing of a family member, you have the right to file a wrongful death lawsuit. 

The lawsuit is a civil court action that allows surviving family members to claim settlement following the loss of their loved one due to the deliberate behavior or negligence of a third party. The requirements, details and proceedings of a wrongful death lawsuit vary slightly from state to state; here are the basics of how Michigan handles such lawsuits. 

Who may file a wrongful death claim? 

Michigan law requires that the personal representative of the deceased person’s estate files the wrongful death claim. However, the law defines the family members eligible for compensation over the claim. The following may receive damages following the wrongful death of a family member: 

  • Spouse and children 
  • Children of the deceased person’s spouse 
  • Brothers and sisters 
  • Parents and grandparents 
  • Any heirs mentioned in the deceased person’s will 

Those eligible for damages must prove that a loved one’s death caused them emotional and financial distress. Also, according to Michigan’s statutes of limitation, the plaintiff must file the case within three years. 

What are the available damages? 

Once the court establishes wrongful death, eligible family members of the diseased may receive monetary compensation for various damages. Depending on the case, the damages may include healthcare and funeral expenses, lost income, pain and suffering, the mental and emotional distress of the family, and loss of care and companionship. 

Every wrongful death lawsuit is unique in its own right. Make sure that you work with a reputable Michigan lawyer to navigate the legal landscape when seeking fair compensation and justice for wrongful death. Educate yourself on your rights and the most current laws presiding over your situation.