COMPASSIONATE ASSISTANCE FOR GRIEVING FAMILIES
Few experiences can be as devastating as losing a loved one due to the reckless or careless actions of someone else. In many instances, families dealing with this unexpected, preventable loss not only have to cope with the emotional pain and suffering that losing a loved one often brings, but they may also be confronted with costly medical bills, funeral expenses, and the loss of a crucial source of support and security.
For all of these reasons, families who lose a loved one as a result of someone else’s irresponsible behavior, such as due to a drunk driving accident or surgical error, may be entitled to seek financial compensation. If you have lost a family member because of another person’s negligence in Texas, our experienced, compassionate Waco wrongful death attorneys at the Law Offices of Vic Feazell, P.C. can help you fight for justice and closure.
To begin filing a claim, call (254) 938-6885 to schedule a free initial consultation.
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim?
In Texas, only certain individuals are eligible to file a wrongful death claim after the loss of a loved one. Unfortunately, non-family members, such as friends and unmarried partners, are not allowed to bring wrongful death lawsuits in Texas. Additionally, the state does not allow siblings, adoptive or biological, to seek compensation for wrongful death.
In Texas, the following individuals are permitted to file wrongful death claims:
- The surviving spouse
- A surviving child or children (minors and adults)
- An adoptive child (if fully and legally adopted)
- The surviving parent(s)
- An adoptive parent (if the child was legally adopted)
Eligible family members can file wrongful death claims individually or collectively, but they should do so within three months of the date of death. After three months, the personal representative/executor of the decedent’s estate may bring a wrongful death claim if the surviving spouse, children, or parents have not yet done so. Surviving family members may explicitly request that no wrongful death claim be brought, which can prevent the representative/executor of the decedent’s estate from filing a claim.
What Types of Compensation Can Families Recover?
As with personal injury claims, the purpose of filing a wrongful death lawsuit is to recover monetary damages. In some cases, the defendant may also face criminal charges, such as negligent manslaughter, homicide, or murder. However, the proceedings and outcome of a criminal case are separate from and do not necessarily affect the civil wrongful death lawsuit.
When filing a wrongful death lawsuit, surviving family members can seek financial compensation for both economic and non-economic losses. Damages in wrongful death cases are awarded based on compensation owed to the decedent from the moment of death due to negligent or wrongful conduct, as well as losses experienced by the family.
Depending on the specifics of your case, you could be eligible to receive the following types of compensation in your wrongful death case:
- Medical expenses related to the decedent’s treatment for their final illness/injury
- Reasonable funeral and/or burial costs
- Loss of income and other financial benefits provided by the decedent
- Loss of expected inheritance
- The value of services and support provided by the decedent
- Loss of care, counsel, guidance, and maintenance the decedent would have provided
- Mental and emotional pain, suffering, and anguish experienced by the surviving loved ones
- Pain and suffering endured by the decedent
- Loss of love, companionship, consortium, and comfort
In some cases, the court may also award exemplary damages. Also known as “punitive damages,” these are not meant to compensate claimants for specific losses they endured but, rather, to punish the defendant for willful, wanton, or intentional conduct or egregious negligence that caused the wrongful death. Exemplary damages are relatively rare but may be awarded in cases involving reckless drunk driving, assault, homicide, or other similar acts.
In Texas wrongful death cases, damages are divided among all family members according to their losses, as determined by the court. For more information, contact our Waco wrongful death attorneys today for a free and confidential consultation.
Compassionately Representing Surviving Family Members
At the Law Offices of Vic Feazell, P.C., we believe that those who cause others to suffer the heartbreaking loss of a loved one should be held accountable for their actions.
Our legal team has the skills and resources to represent clients in a wide range of situations, including those involving:
- Car accidents – All too often, motorists’ negligent and reckless actions lead to fatal collisions. If your loved one was killed by a drunk driver, died after being hit by someone who was texting while driving, or otherwise suffered fatal injuries in an automobile accident, our attorneys can help you understand your options and fight for the justice your family deserves.
- Motorcycle accidents – Sadly, motorcyclists are at a higher risk of severe injury and death when they are involved in traffic accidents. If your loved one was killed due to a negligent driver’s careless, reckless, or wrongful actions, our firm can help you file a wrongful death lawsuit against the at-fault person or party.
- Truck accidents – Due to their massive size and weight, semi-trucks and other large commercial vehicles cause serious damage when they collide with other, smaller vehicles. In many cases, large truck accidents are fatal. Our team can help you bring a wrongful death claim if your loved one died after a motor vehicle accident with a truck or commercial vehicle.
- Product liability – Product manufacturers have a responsibility to ensure their products are reasonably safe for consumers. When they fail to do this, people can die. If your family member died in an accident caused by a defective vehicle, faulty tool, contaminated medication, or any other unsafe product, we can help.
- Premises liability – When property owners fail to maintain their premises and ensure they are free of hazards, people can be seriously injured or even killed. If someone you love died after a slip and fall, dog bite or attack, swimming pool accident, or any other incident caused by property owner negligence, turn to our firm to learn how we can help.
Families dealing with the loss of a loved one as a result of someone else’s carelessness may be due compensation for funeral expenses, loss of financial support, and more. It is important to contact an attorney as soon as possible, as there is a two-year statute of limitations in Texas that limits the amount of time families have to seek compensation. If this deadline is missed, a family may be barred from taking legal action for their loss in the future.
CALL VIC FEAZELL TO REQUEST YOUR FREE CASE REVIEW
If you or someone you know has lost a loved one as a result of another person’s irresponsible behavior, we can help. Contact a Waco wrongful death lawyer at the Law Offices of Vic Feazell, P.C. by calling (254) 938-6885 today to learn more about how we can serve you in this tragic circumstance.
Do not hesitate to get in touch with us today to discuss your wrongful death case.
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