Wrongful death is a legal claim brought in a civil lawsuit against an individual or entity (such as a store, workplace, business or restaurant) that alleges their negligence or wrongful conduct caused the death of another person.
What Are Some Examples of Wrongful Death Cases in Florida?
A wrongful death claim can arise from a number of accidents and dangerous situations. Here are some common examples:
Who Can Sue for Wrongful Death in Florida?
It’s important to understand exactly who can bring a wrongful death lawsuit in Florida.
Florida law provides that when an individual’s death “is caused by the wrongful act, negligence, default, or breach of contract” of another person or some other entity, the estate of the deceased person may bring a civil lawsuit. Thus, the personal representative or executor of the deceased’s estate is required to file the wrongful death action, but this action is filed “for the benefit of” the deceased person’s estate and his or her surviving family members.
Specifically, the “family members” or “survivors” who are entitled to recover damages in a Florida wrongful death case include the following:
What Are the Damages in Florida Wrongful Death Cases?
Florida Statute § 768.21(1) provides that each surviving family member may recover “the value of lost support and services from the date of the decedent’s injury to her or his death, with interest, and future loss of support and services from the date of death and reduced to present value.” Florida law also says that in evaluating loss of support and services, the following are considered:
When computing the duration of future losses, the joint life expectancies of the survivor and the decedent (and the period of minority for healthy minor children) may be considered.
The specific types of damages that the surviving family members may receive in a wrongful death case in Florida include:
In addition, the estate may recover other damages that include:
Note that a wrongful death lawsuit in Florida must be filed within two years of the date of death in most cases. However, this deadline may be “tolled” or the clock can be stopped or “paused” in a few very rare circumstances. If you fail to bring a wrongful death lawsuit within this two-year statute of limitations, you may forfeit your right to seek damages in court.
To be successful in a wrongful death lawsuit, you need an experienced attorney who can show the jury that the negligence or recklessness of the defendant directly caused the death of your loved one. Because this is a very stressful and complicated process, you need to hire an experienced wrongful death attorney.
Please contact Florin Gray Bouzas Owens. Our legal team is dedicated to the pursuit of justice for the people we represent.
We have more than 100 years of combined experience successfully representing loved ones and family members in wrongful death accidents.
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