3 FAQs About Filing a Wrongful Death Claim in Florida
If your loved one’s death is considered wrongful in the eyes of the law, your family may be entitled to compensation. While no amount of money will make up for the overwhelming loss you and your relatives suffered, recovering a payout could at least protect your financial security in the aftermath.
Should you choose to proceed with a wrongful death action, it’s wise to familiarize yourself with the proceedings. Read on to learn about the claims process and what it entails, so you have some idea of what to expect along the way:
1. Who Can Bring a Wrongful Death Suit in Florida?
The personal representative of the deceased’s estate must file the wrongful death action on behalf of all eligible beneficiaries. If the case results in a payout, those who may be entitled to some portion of it include the victim’s surviving spouse, children, parents, and siblings. Relatives who were partially or wholly dependent on the victim for financial support may also have a stake in the outcome of the claim.
If the deceased drafted a will prior to passing, he or she should have named a personal representative, or executor, in its terms. If the named party is unwilling or unable to carry out the duties required of the role—or if the victim died without having made any estate plans—the probate court will assign someone to serve as the representative.
2. How Long Do You Have to File a Wrongful Death Action?
Every state has strict filing deadlines for wrongful death lawsuits, and Florida is no exception. Most families have just two years from the date on which the death occurred to proceed to court if settling proves impossible.
There are a few variables, however, that can shorten or extend this deadline. Should any such factors apply to your case, you may have considerably less (or perhaps more) time to proceed. The easiest—and most accurate—way to determine how much time your family has is by discussing the situation with a knowledgeable personal injury attorney.
3. What Kinds of Damages Can You Include in Your Wrongful Death Claim?
Florida tort law recognizes the fact that an unanticipated death in the family can result in both economic and non-economic damages. As such, claimants are entitled to seek compensation for the following:
- Medical and funeral expenses,
- Lost income and benefits,
- Loss of household contributions,
- Mental pain and suffering,
- Loss of companionship, and
- Loss of consortium.
Speak with a Tampa Wrongful Death Attorney
At Capaz Law Firm, P.A., we know what kind of ripple effects an unanticipated death can have on the whole family. If someone you love died at the hands of another, whether directly or indirectly, our compassionate team will help you take the steps needed to prove it.
We won’t rest until we’ve exhausted all the resources at our disposal in the pursuit of justice. Call 813-551-3907 or complete our Online Contact Form to set up a free case review with a wrongful death lawyer in Tampa.