If someone in your family passes away due to the carelessness or negligence of another party, it can be a devastating situation. Even though there is no amount of money that can compensate for the loss of a loved one, filing a wrongful death lawsuit may help you recoup some of the financial losses you suffered due to their death. This lawsuit also ensures the at-fault party is held liable for their actions.
However, the wrongful death law in Florida is complicated. Because of this, it’s in your best interest to hire wrongful death lawyers from Fetterman & Fetterman Lawyers to represent your case and help you recover the compensation you are entitled to.
However, because our goal is to always be transparent with our clients, we also want to provide more information and insight related to the wrongful death laws in Florida and your rights.
What Is a Wrongful Death Claim in Florida?
In the state of Florida, a wrongful death claim is a type of civil lawsuit that is filed when another person’s negligence or direct act results in someone else’s death.
There are set laws related to how a claim is filed and who can file these claims. Also, in the state of Florida, there are limitations regarding how long family members have to file a wrongful death claim against the at-fault party. Because there is a time limit to file, it’s imperative you get in touch with wrongful death lawyers as soon as possible. Doing so will help you avoid missing deadlines in place.
The Wrongful Death Statutes in Florida
Florida statutes section 678.18 addresses the laws related to wrongful death claims. According to the law, if someone’s death results from a breach of contract, default of the contract, negligence, or wrongful act of another person, the deceased person’s estate has the right to file a wrongful death lawsuit.
To do this, the claim must be initiated by a personal representative of the deceased person’s estate. This is someone who has been named in their estate plan or a person who is appointed by the court.
Even though it is the personal representative who will file the claim, it is typically filed on behalf of the family members of the person who passed away. It’s required that the representative list all surviving family member who has any interest in the wrongful death lawsuit. Some of the individuals who can be included are the deceased individuals:
- Dependent relatives
What Is the Time Limit for Filing a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in Florida?
Most states, including Florida, put a time limit (called the Statute of Limitations) on how long someone has to file a wrongful death lawsuit. For the Sunshine State, the time limit is two years from the date of the person’s death. There are exceptions to this, but most claims must be filed within that two-year period.
Types of Damages Awarded in Florida Wrongful Death Cases
In wrongful death cases, the damages awarded are not the same as what is offered if the person is still living. Financial damages will be awarded to the individual’s surviving family members based on the rules outlined in Section 768.21 of Florida Statutes. According to this, it is possible for the surviving family members to receive damages for the following:
- Medical costs were incurred if the individual did not die right away and treatment was provided
- Funeral costs that the family paid after their loved one passed
- Lost wages, benefits, and earnings that the individual would have provided if they had not died
- Loss of protection and companionship
- Emotional and mental suffering due to losing a loved one
- Loss of potential net accumulations for the individual’s estate
Understanding the Elements of a Florida Wrongful Death Claim
The term “wrongful death” applies when a person’s death occurs because of the recklessness, negligence, or deliberate actions of another person or party. It’s necessary to have proof that shows the at-fault party owed some duty of care to the individual who passed away and that this duty was breached, which is what resulted in the person’s death.
While there are many causes of wrongful death, some of the most common cases involve:
- Car, truck, and motorcycle accidents
- Drunk driving
- Workplace accidents
- Medical malpractice
Get in Touch with Our Legal Team for Help with Your Wrongful Death Claim in Florida
Due to the complexities related to wrongful death cases in Florida, it is in your best interest to hire wrongful death lawyers from Fetterman & Fetterman Lawyers for help with your case. Our legal team has expensive experience in this field and can help you recover the compensation you are entitled to. We understand that no amount of money can “fix” the loss of someone you love. However, with this money, you can cover the costs related to their death and ensure you don’t face financial hardship in the months and years after their passing.
Our legal team is ready to help with your claim. The first step is to contact our office to schedule a free initial consultation. We can discuss your situation and create a plan of action to move forward with a lawsuit. You can count on us to help you recover the maximum amount of compensation possible for your case. Contact us for a free consultation.