Goldsboro Wrongful Death Lawyers
When someone else’s negligence or intentional act results in the loss of a loved one, the pain and distress can be devastating. As a bereaved family member, it’s hard to know who to turn to in such circumstances and the complex nature of the law can leave you even more confused and distraught. This is especially true if you depended on your deceased loved one for financial support or household services as well as for the companionship, love, and affection they brought to your life.
This is why it is so important to know that you can always call on the experienced wrongful death attorneys at Strickland Agner Pittman to help you in your time of need. Our team of Goldsboro wrongful death attorneys is here to assist in securing the compensation you deserve for a loved one’s unpredicted and unnecessary death in North Carolina through appropriate legal action. With years of experience and a history of successful results, we know what to do and how to do it in the legal arena in these vital cases.
Find out more about your case by talking to a Goldsboro wrongful death attorney in a free consultation. Call Strickland Agner Pittman now at (919) 893-0090 or fill out our online contact form to get started no strings attached.
Causes of Accidents Resulting in Wrongful Death Claims
Any type of accident or incident in which negligence, carelessness, recklessness, or deliberate intent resulted in the preventable death of another can be grounds for a wrongful death claim.
Common accidents leading to wrongful death can include but are not limited to:
- Car accidents, truck accidents, motorcycle accidents, pedestrian accidents, and other traffic accidents
- Medical malpractice
- Product liability accidents involving defective consumer products
- Dangerous drugs and medical devices
- Workplace accidents
- Slip-and-fall accidents and other premises liability cases
- Sports-related accidents
- Boating accidents
- Bicycle accidents
- Criminal attacks, such as assault and battery
North Carolina’s Wrongful Death Law
North Carolina outlines wrongful death in N.C. Gen. Stat § 28A-18-2. The definition under this law is a death caused by a wrongful act, neglect, or default of another. It is a civil matter, even when a criminal act caused the victim’s death.
The law provides for the personal representative of the deceased’s estate to file a claim to recover damages that are a result of the wrongful death. A wrongful death claim may be pursued in civil court even while a criminal action is being prosecuted in criminal court for the same incident. This is because the civil action seeks monetary damages while the criminal action seeks to punish the wrongdoer with imprisonment, fines, or other penalties.
Damages Available in a Wrongful Death Claim
North Carolina’s law on wrongful death claims sets forth the types of damages one can recover in a wrongful death case. These include:
- Loss of the deceased’s future earnings
- Medical expenses incurred by the deceased before death
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Pain and suffering the deceased went through before death
- The loss of the deceased’s companionship
- The loss of the deceased’s services, protection, care, and support
- Punitive damages to punish the wrongdoer and warn others about similar conduct
Contact our firm today for a free consultation and set your appointment at a convenient time that fits your schedule.
The estate of the deceased is the entity that actually recovers damages in a wrongful death case. The estate, usually through its personal representative, will file the wrongful death action in state court on behalf of the estate and the surviving family members.
If the deceased had a will or an estate plan and named a personal representative, that person will serve as the representative in the claim. But if the deceased did not have an estate plan or a will, the court will appoint another person, usually a surviving spouse, a parent, or a child of the deceased.
Damages awarded to a deceased person’s estate first are applied to repaying the estate for the costs of pursuing the wrongful death action, payment of reasonable lawyers’ fees, and the payment of any outstanding funeral, medical, and burial bills. Any remaining amounts are then distributed to the beneficiaries of the deceased’s estate.
Proving Wrongful Death in North Carolina
To prove wrongful death, you must show that your loved one died as the result of the actions or inactions of the negligent party or parties. This involves presenting evidence showing what event occurred, what parties were at fault in the event, and what type of financial losses ensued, such as hospitalization of the deceased before death, funeral and burial expenses, and more.
Evidence that can be used in these cases can include death certificates, medical records, police reports, autopsy reports, witness statements, photographs, video footage, and financial data, such as tax returns and pay stubs to support monetary losses related to your family member’s income and benefits which are now gone.
At Strickland Agner Pittman, we are committed to helping the families of wrongful death victims seek the compensation they deserve. Our utmost concern lies in decreasing your anguish and overwhelming distress in the aftermath of such a devastating loss.
We are here to solve your legal problems while you and your family focus on grieving and putting your lives back together. We can pursue the wrongful death claim on behalf of the personal representative or court-appointed family member, handling all aspects of the case from the initial court filing through to final judgment and collection of damages. We also coordinate payment to all interested parties, satisfying any medical bills, funeral bills, or burial expenses that are outstanding.
The peace of mind you and your family can experience knowing that a qualified, experienced Goldsboro wrongful death lawyer is handling these matters is immeasurable.