What is Wrongful Death?
The loss of a loved one is never easy, but when that loss occurs due to the avoidable negligence or intentional act of another person, the loss can be even more devastating for a family. In addition to potentially pressing criminal charges for the fatal event, the family of a victim can also sue those responsible in Texas for wrongful death. In Bryan, Rick Davis & Associates has zealously represented families that have lost a loved one due to wrongful death and will provide compassionate representation for you and your family. To learn more about filing a wrongful death lawsuit, call or contact our office today for a free consultation.
What is Wrongful Death?
Under Texas law, wrongful death refers to any wrongful act, negligence, carelessness, or recklessness that causes the death of another person. It encompasses all acts of negligence, reckless behavior, or intentional acts that are fatal to another person. An action for wrongful death is similar to a personal injury lawsuit, where an injured person would file a lawsuit for damages, except that in a wrongful death case the family files the lawsuit on behalf of the victim.
Who can File a Wrongful Death Case?
Only certain people can file a wrongful death claim in Texas. Any surviving spouse, children, or parents of a victim can file a wrongful death lawsuit. If none exist or three months pass, the executor of the estate can file a wrongful death claim instead. In addition, adult children can file a claim for the wrongful death of a parent, and a legally adopted child can file a wrongful death case on behalf of an adoptive parent. However, Texas law has limitations on who can file a wrongful death claim. An adopted child cannot file a claim for the wrongful death of a biological parent, and siblings are also not allowed to file wrongful death claims for each other.
Compensation for Texas Wrongful Death Cases
Compensation for a wrongful death claim includes payment for both economic and noneconomic damages. Economic damages include out-of-pocket costs covered by the family and the victim prior to their death. This includes all final medical expenses related to the incident as well as funeral and burial costs. Noneconomic damages include payment for the loss of support, advice, mental anguish, and the loss of love, companionship, and comfort.
In the most egregious cases of wrongful death, the court may award the family of the victim punitive damages. This is compensation above and beyond economic or noneconomic damages and is meant to punish the wrongdoer for their actions in addition to serving as a deterrent to others who would consider similar actions.
Talk to Our Office Now
If you have suffered the tragic loss of a loved one due to an accident or willful act of another person, you may have a claim for wrongful death in Texas. To learn more and to receive a free consultation from an experienced wrongful death attorney, call or contact Rick Davis & Associates today.