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Wrongful Death Lawyer in Atlanta
Losing someone you love is never easy. But losing a loved one due to someone else’s negligent or intentional actions can be especially devastating. Your anguish paired with the sudden loss of financial support may prompt you to settle quickly for much less than you and your family deserve.
Although a modest settlement from the at-fault party’s insurance company may seem fair at first, you may realize it’s not enough to help you overcome long-term financial hardships due to a significant drop in your household income. Unfortunately, many insurance companies take advantage of the surviving family members’ vulnerability by offering them a quick but severely undervalued and ultimately unfair claim settlement.
At the Law Office of Johnny Phillips, we understand how difficult it is to make ends meet after losing a family member. Before you accept an insufficient settlement from the insurance company, reach out to an experienced wrongful death attorney like Johnny Phillips. He will take the time to review your wrongful death case and help you recover fair compensation.
What Is Wrongful Death?
Wrongful death happens when a person loses their life because of someone else’s negligence or intentional actions. It’s not uncommon for companies or government entities to be responsible for the wrongful death of a customer, employee or another individual. Many wrongful death accidents occur because of medical malpractice, unsafe work conditions, motor vehicle accidents and defective products.
Sometimes wrongful death can lead to criminal charges. For example, if a person responsible for causing a fatal accident was charged with a DUI, they may be convicted for their actions. However, criminal charges don’t preclude the possibility of filing a wrongful death claim or lawsuit. You can still seek compensation for your family member’s wrongful passing even if the at-fault person is charged with a crime.
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Can My Loved One’s Suicide Be Considered a Wrongful Death?
Although suicide is usually a culmination of years of anguish, depression and other mental disorders, in some cases it may involve intentional actions of others. If you’ve lost someone close to you to suicide, you may have a particularly difficult time coming to grips with their untimely death.
There are circumstances where other people cause someone to take their life:
- Bullying: Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon for children to be bullied relentlessly by their peers. With the rise of social media and access to smart devices, many young people engage in bullying both online and in person. Adults are not immune to bullying either and can suffer tremendously due to other people’s aggressive behavior and mental abuse. If you believe bullying drove your loved one to commit suicide, you may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the perpetrator and their parents.
- Medical malpractice: Mental health professionals have a responsibility to intervene if they suspect their patient is a threat to themselves or others. If a psychiatrist or therapist fails to recognize signs of suicidal ideation, they could be held liable for their lack of intervention.
Do you believe someone else’s influence caused your loved one to take their own life? Consider speaking with an Atlanta personal injury lawyer to discuss your case.
Damages in a Wrongful Death Lawsuit
Under Georgia law, family members of deceased victims can pursue compensation by filing a claim or lawsuit against the person or entity who caused the death. Any damages recovered in a wrongful death lawsuit are meant to benefit surviving family members, including the spouse, children and parents of the decedent.
Some common types of damages you can pursue in a wrongful death lawsuit or claim include:
- Expenses family members incurred because of the decedent’s passing, such as medical bills and funeral expenses
- Compensation for the loss of the decedent’s income and benefits
- Compensation for personal losses, such as loss of love, care and companionship stemming from the victim’s untimely departure
- Compensation for the mental pain and suffering resulting from the victim’s death
Keep in mind, there is a deadline on how long surviving family members have to file a wrongful death lawsuit or claim. In Georgia, the statute of limitations for wrongful death is two years from the day the victim passed. However, there may be exceptions to this rule depending on the unique circumstances of your claim.
Who Can Bring a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in Georgia?
Not everyone is legally permitted to file a wrongful death lawsuit. In Georgia, there are strict rules as to who can file these lawsuits:
- The decedent’s spouse: The surviving spouse is the first in line to file a wrongful death lawsuit.
- The decedent’s children: If the decedent was unmarried, his or her children are next in line to file a wrongful death lawsuit.
- The decedent’s parents: If the decedent was unmarried and had no children, his or her parents can file a wrongful death lawsuit.
- The decedent’s estate representative: If the decedent had no surviving spouse, children or parents, an estate representative may file a wrongful death lawsuit. Any damages recovered in the lawsuit are granted to the next of kin.
How an Atlanta Wrongful Death Attorney Can Help
Wrongful death claims are typically complicated and require a lot of hard work. An experienced and compassionate attorney can take on the task of gathering necessary evidence, submitting paperwork, negotiating a settlement and escalating your claim to court should your claim be lowballed or denied.
Dealing with the untimely and preventable passing of a loved one is hard enough. At the Law Office of Johnny Phillips, we are committed to helping grieving families recover the compensation they deserve to honor their loved ones’ life and secure a financially stable future.
Contact us today for a free legal consultation.
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At the Law Offices of Johnny Phillips, our auto accident attorneys have handled the most demanding cases, helping our clients recover the compensation they deserve. Our team of dedicated lawyers works passionately to get our clients the checks they need.