There is no rule on what type of accident may result in a wrongful death claim. The latest Louisiana statistics show that in 2017 there were 1,008 firearm deaths, 653 homicides, and 1,108 drug overdose cases. Any of these may be due to another person’s negligence.
The Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development states that obeying traffic laws would decrease the number of highway fatalities. In 2021 the state of Louisiana had 997 automobile fatalities. 40% of those are related to alcohol. This type of accident has the potential of becoming a wrongful death lawsuit.
When the accident leads to the tragic death of a loved one, everyone left behind suffers. The impact can be financial and emotional.
Filing a wrongful death claim in Louisiana can be complex. You want legal representation familiar with the laws, settlement negotiations, and insurance company attempts to get a lowball settlement. Keep reading for four quick facts about Shreveport, LA, wrongful death lawsuits.
1. Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim?
Louisiana Civil Code §2315.2 states that if a person dies because of the actions of another person, the following people may recover damages:
- Spouse and/or
- Children of the deceased
- Father and mother of deceased if there is no surviving spouse or child
- Brothers and sisters of the deceased, if there is no surviving spouse, children, or parent
- Grandparents of deceased if there is no surviving spouse, child, parent, or sibling
You only have one year from the date of death to file a wrongful death claim in Shreveport, LA. When using the term relationship, it includes both biological and family through adoption. Parents who abandon their children when still minors are not considered survivors if the child dies.
2. Proving a Wrongful Death Claim
When your wrongful death lawyer files a lawsuit, the complaint must show how the facts of the case meet the following four wrongful death elements:
a) That the defendant’s negligent actions lead to the death of another
b) That the defendant had a duty of care and they breached that duty
c) That the breach of duty is the direct and proximate cause of the accident leading to another person’s death
d) That the plaintiff is suffering damages as a result of the defendant’s negligence
Many people suffer through their loss, not realizing they may take legal action to obtain compensation.
3. Compensation in Wrongful Death Lawsuits
Many people stricken with grief aren’t aware that the event taking their loved one may qualify for a wrongful death lawsuit.
Some situations leading to Shreveport, LA wrongful death claims include:
- Car accidents due to the negligent behavior of a driver
- Defective products, including appliances, vehicles, medical supplies, and unsafe toys
- Medical errors leading to a patient’s death
- Nursing home neglect
- Property owner failing to keep property safe from hazards
The family member filing the wrongful death complaint may seek compensation for one or more areas of loss.
Financial losses include medical expenses, funeral costs, and loss of future income.
Emotional compensation may be for pain and suffering and loss of consortium.
4. Statute of Limitations
Louisiana wrongful death laws only provide one year from the time a person dies to file a wrongful death lawsuit. The months following a family member’s unexpected death are numbing. It is easy for time to slip away.
If a loved one dies in an accident, contact a New Orleans wrongful death attorney as quickly as possible. They are familiar with court requirements, legal deadlines, and obtaining evidence necessary to prove your case.
Schedule a Free Consultation
If you have a family member that has died under questionable circumstances, contact Wright & Gray Trial Lawyers to schedule a free consultation. We will evaluate your loved one’s death for a potential wrongful death claim.
You only have one year from the date of death to file. Call us today at 888-912-4944 or use our online contact form.