Wrongful Death Attorney
Seeking Justice After Losing a Loved One
The loss of a loved one in an accident is extremely traumatic, and can leave a family both emotionally shocked and grief stricken. Many times the family may not know exactly what caused the accident or whether or not another party was responsible for the incident. A personal injury attorney will ensure that an independent, comprehensive investigation is conducted, and help you pursue wrongful death benefits if someone else’s negligence contributed to the death of your loved one.
Why Call Our NY Wrongful Death Lawyers?
- We have more than 150 years of combined experience
- We have recovered millions of dollars for our clients
- We don’t get paid unless we win your case
In many cases, the insurance company or responsible party will push back and attempt to get the family to settle for lower damages than they are owed. At The Odierno Law Firm, P.C., we find it unacceptable to take advantage of a grieving family. We dedicate our knowledge and experience to helping victims and families of victims obtain compensation for the financial effects of their losses.
We know that nothing can bring a loved one back, but we can at least make sure that the expenses incurred in an accident don’t financially ruin the family. With our trusted and compassionate legal team, we will ensure your pursuit of damages is done with the utmost of care and concern following your loss.
Request a free case evaluation with our Long Island wrongful death lawyers today.
What is a Wrongful Death Suit?
A wrongful death claim typically involves the filing of a lawsuit in civil court to recover monetary damages for a death caused by another party’s negligence.
The types of compensation awarded in these cases can include:
- Hospital and medical expenses prior to death
- Any pain or suffering experienced by the deceased prior to his or her death
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Loss of support
- Loss of companionship
- Loss of care provided to dependents
- The value of household services provided by the deceased
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Suit?
A personal representative of the deceased is legally able to file a wrongful death suit. Unlike many other states, family members who typically are able to file a wrongful death case must also be appointed a personal representative in the state of New York in order to have the right to file a wrongful death lawsuit.
The claim must be filed within two years of the date of death before the statute of limitations runs out.
Who Gets the Money in a New York Wrongful Death Lawsuit?
If your loved one lost his or her life as a result of another’s negligence, you may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit to help cover the losses you incurred as a result of the death.
Unfortunately, not just anyone can file a wrongful death lawsuit on behalf of a decedent in the state of New York. Only the estate’s personal representative has the authority to file a wrongful death case.
So where does the money from a New York wrongful death lawsuit go? Read on to find out.
How Compensation From a New York Wrongful Death Lawsuit Is Distributed
The distribution of compensation from a wrongful death lawsuit in New York is based on the monetary losses resulting from the fatality. The settlement documents will provide details regarding how much money goes to each individual impacted by the death.
Oftentimes, the decedent’s spouse and children are the distributees (legal heirs to inherit the estate) of the wrongful death awards, but this is not always the case. The distributees will depend on who the decedent provided financial support for when he or she passed.
The decedent’s estate will be awarded damages for conscious pain and suffering or for fear of impending death.
Then, the estate will be distributed according to the specifications listed in the decedent’s last will and testament. If the decedent did not have a will when he or she passed, the estate will be distributed according to the New York intestate law:
- If a decedent passes with a spouse and no children, the estate will go to the spouse.
- If a decedent had a spouse and children upon their passing, $50,000 and half of the balance will go to the spouse and the other half will be split equally between the children.
- If a decedent had children and no spouse, the estate will be distributed equally among the children.
- If a decedent had living parents and no spouse or children, the estate will go to the parent(s).
- If a decedent had siblings but no spouse, children, or parents, the siblings will divide the estate evenly.
If for some reason your wrongful death lawsuit enters a jury verdict, rather than settled out-of-court, the jury will decide how to distribute the award.
What Can a Family Do to Move Forward After a Wrongful Death?
There are few things that can impact a family more than losing a loved one as a result of someone else’s negligent actions. Unfortunately, these situations happen far too often, and in the world of personal injury, it is a situation referred to as wrongful death.
It’s imperative for the family to recognize what rights they have regarding what comes next, who is liable, and what can be done to help move forward. While it is nearly impossible to overcome the grief by going through legal remedies, it can help in several different ways.
During this difficult time, you should know that we’re here to help you navigate the complex legal system and get through the claims-filing process with confidence.
Taking Legal Action
When grieving, it’s easy to understand how legal action isn’t always top of mind. However, it’s imperative to know who can take legal action and what is needed in order to file a claim. In the state of New York, there must be five elements required to actually file a wrongful death claim or lawsuit:
- Death: The easiest evidence to show is that there was in fact a death that occurred.
- Defendant negligence: It must be shown that the death was the result of the defendant’s wrongful and reckless conduct.
- Eligibility: It must be shown that the action could have been pursued in a personal injury case had the deceased not passed.
- Surviving parties: It must be shown that the deceased has at least one surviving persons who is suffering due to the loss.
- Damages: It must be shown that there are damages that the estate can recover from the negligent party.
For some, this type of evidence can be difficult to recognize and understand, especially when the deceased’s personal representative handles the claim. This makes it imperative to have legal representation to get through this difficult time.
How Does Legal Action Help?
We know that in many different civil matters involving negligence, the monetary compensation that can be pursued can help with many of the expenses stemming from the losses experienced. However, for some situations, legal action can do more than that.
For some, taking legal action means getting some closure on the situation that occurred. It means knowing that the negligent party is held accountable for his or her actions and that they’re forced to take responsibility for the wrongful death.
In many other situations, it also means the opportunity to create change. By showing that negligence can result in a wrongful death, it means that others can see the consequences of negligent actions—possibly deterring them from acting in a reckless manner.
Hire a Caring Legal Team You Can Trust
If you are the spouse, parent or child of an individual that lost his or her life in an accident, speak with an attorney at The Odierno Law Firm, P.C. We have successfully represented many family members in wrongful death cases, and we can discuss the steps involved in pursuing a claim. Our firm has all of the resources needed to investigate the incident, and we will pursue a just settlement with relentless determination.
It is important that any party responsible for the accident be held accountable for their negligent acts. We will work tirelessly to establish fault and will never back down from complex cases involving large corporate entities.
Call The Odierno Law Firm, P.C. today to discuss your case.
Dedicated To You
We are committed to getting you the compensation you deserve for the injuries you have sustained. We are determined to fight for you. We have a no recovery, no fee policy, so you don’t pay unless we win.Contact Us
- You Will Not Pay Us Unless We Win Your Case
- Our Firm is Backed By Trial Success & Client Satisfaction
- We Will Review Your Personal Injury Claim For Free
- We Have Over 150 Years of Combined Legal Experience