Washington DC Wrongful Death Lawyers
WE SEEK JUSTICE FOR FAMILIES IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA & MARYLAND
One of the most devastating things that any individual will ever experience in their lifetime is the sudden and unexpected loss of a loved one in a serious accident. When a loved one has been taken from you due to the negligence of another party, you may be left to battle the grief that coincides with these cases as you suffer from immeasurable losses and attempt to move forward. Filing a wrongful death claim with the help of a reputable Washington, D.C. attorney who specializes in wrongful death cases can help with this laborious and distressing process.
Our attorneys at the Fay Law Group understand the legal differences between a personal injury claim and the delicate aspects that are present in wrongful death cases. As you mourn the loss of a loved one, you will need a skilled advocate on your side who understands what your family is going through during this long period of adjustment. We would like to offer a helping hand to you in your time of need so that no matters are missed or details cast aside.
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To learn about our approach to client service in fatal accident cases in either jurisdiction, contact our office at (202) 589-1300 for a free consultation.
What is a Wrongful Death Case
A wrongful death claim is a lawsuit filed by a family member or personal representative on behalf of a loved one after their life has been taken due to the careless, reckless, or negligent actions of another person or entity. Wrongful death claims are applicable in cases where a victim is intentionally killed or outright negligence took place that led to the fatality. According to Washington, D.C. law, there are four elements that are present in a wrongful death claim.
These elements include the following:
- Negligence: The surviving family member or legal representative of the loved one’s estate must show that the careless, reckless, or negligent behavior of the defendant was the direct cause of the death of a loved one.
- Breach of Duty: To be successful in your wrongful death claim, you must also prove that the defendant owed the deceased victim a duty of care. For instance, on the roads, a motorist must obey all traffic laws and maintain a duty of care. If the accident led to the loss of your loved one, you must prove that the defendant was in violation of their duty of care. It is up to you to show that a duty existed and that the duty was breached through the negligent actions of the defendant.
- Causation: Your lawsuit must prove that there was not an underlying reason for your loved one’s death and that the death of your loved was directly caused by the defendant’s actions.
- Damages: The death of the victim must have generated damages, such as medical expenses, funeral costs, hospitalization, loss of income, pain, and suffering of the victim before their death, as well as other damages not listed. It is necessary, but difficult to prove these elements on your own. At Fay Law Group, our wrongful death attorneys have the experience and resources required to assist in your case.
How an Attorney Can Help Families Through Complex Wrongful Death Litigation
Because the loss of a loved one is a difficult experience, you should always have a skilled wrongful death attorney on your side who has handled cases like these in the past. There are many benefits to hiring an attorney who has many times been in the position of helping others. They can help you navigate the legal process.
Here are just a few of the benefits of hiring a wrongful death attorney:
- Understanding of the Legal Process: If your attorney specializes in many personal injury cases involving wrongful death claims, then they have a detailed knowledge of the legal process and can help you navigate the complicated legal process to help relieve the overwhelming feeling of being lost and confused. It is imperative to be able to meet all of the filing deadlines as imposed by the court, or you may jeopardize your case. It is important to also have detailed knowledge of wrongful death laws in Washington, D.C. and Maryland, where the laws are different. You can lessen your stress by having an experienced attorney on your side who has been through the process countless times and can help you succeed with your claim.
- Saving You Time and Money: Wrongful death claims are time-consuming, complex, and expensive at times. A skilled wrongful death attorney can help relieve the stress of handling the case on your own and allow you the time needed for you and your family to grieve the loss of a loved one. The dedicated Washington, D.C. attorneys at Fay Law Group can assist you as you navigate the complex requirements of the court granting your family their time needed to grieve.
- Understanding the Value: Attorneys understand how to properly value your claim so that you can receive the maximum compensation that you are entitled to under Washington, D.C. and Maryland laws. Your attorney will take into consideration a variety of aspects of the case, such as medical expenses for the victims care, funeral costs, loss of income due to their death, and pain and suffering that the victim may have endured prior to his or her death or that you and others have felt after a loved one has been taken from you prematurely.
- Providing You Support: After the tragic loss of a loved one, you may not be thinking clearly enough to file and follow the complicated legal system and might be in need of support. Your attorney will be able to clearly see the case at hand and build the strongest case possible under Washington D.C., law to help you move forward. This will grant you the time necessary to grieve the loss of a loved one.
- Going to Trial: Not all wrongful death claims will go to trial, and, in fact, a large majority of the cases may settle before the case goes to trial or the litigation process begins. However, if you do have to prepare for trial because settlement negotiations are not going as expected, it is necessary to have an experienced Fay Law Group attorney on your side fighting for your right to obtain the maximum compensation due to you and your family.
Who is Permitted to File a Wrongful Death Claim?
To be eligible to bring a wrongful death claim in Washington, D.C. or Maryland, you must be a surviving family member or a legal representative of the deceased who has suffered damages as a result of a victim’s death. Those who file a wrongful death claim must have a close personal relationship with the decedent. Most of the time, one of these claims are brought by the following parties:
- Surviving spouse
- Children of the decedent
- Dependent parent
- A personal representative of the estate
- Domestic partner
- Minor living with the deceased, including biological or adoptive children
Our wrongful death attorneys at Fay Law Group want you to understand the importance of acting quickly to retain your rights after you have lost a loved one in a devastating accident. You need an attorney who has handled wrongful death claims in the past to work diligently to obtain the compensation you and your family deserve. The lawyers at Fay Law Group have more than 50 years of experience successfully handling the most complex and complicated wrongful death claims in the Washington, D.C. area. Contact Fay Lay Group at (202) 589-1300 to find out how we can help you and your family.
Compensation Available in Wrongful Death Cases
Compensation that can be awarded in a Washington D.C., wrongful death claim tends to fall into two different categories. In the first category, damages include those experienced by the decedent from the accident until their death. These could include aspects such as the following:
- Medical expenses that they incurred during any time they spent in the hospital
- Mental and physical pain and suffering endured by the victim
- Lost wages from missing time at work
- Funeral and burial expenses.
The second category of damages are those suffered by the family after the sudden death of the victim in an accident. Surviving family members may claim damages for the following:
- Loss of current and future earnings
- Medical bills remaining from the accident
- Compensation for loss of love and companionship
You may also be compensated for any other contributions to support their surviving loved ones, as well as other damages not listed above.
It is not always easy to put a monetary value on the loss caused by the wrongful death of a loved one. For this reason, it is impossible to be objective and fair-minded if you were to try and handle the case on your own. There are many complicated rules of the court that must be followed when filing a claim. An experienced District of Columbia wrongful death attorney at the Fay Law Group can stay impartial and handle your case to gain the compensation the family deserves.
Accidents That Typically Lead to Wrongful Death Cases
Motor Vehicle Accidents: Motor vehicle accidents tend to account for the highest number of wrongful death cases every year across the Washington, D.C. area and beyond. These accidents take place due to drivers who are driving while drowsy, distracted by texting and driving, intoxicated, speeding, and more. In the blink of an eye, a loved one could be taken in one of these accidents.
Truck Accidents: Big rigs and semi-trucks are involved in a large number of fatalities every year. That is primarily because they are some of the largest vehicles that occupy our roads. Truck accidents happen frequently due to drivers who were not adequately training, operate a truck in an unsafe manner, drive more than the legal number of hours permitted, as well as many other reasons. If you have lost a loved one in a truck accident, the liability could fall on several different parties. It is important that you contact an experienced attorney at the Fay Law Group to discuss the many facets of your case.
Pedestrian Accidents: When a driver fails to yield for a pedestrian, drives recklessly, or does not see an individual who has entered into a crosswalk, a pedestrian accident can occur. Pedestrians have no protection from harm against a vehicle, which is why these accidents can be life-changing and are often fatal.
Medical Malpractice: When a medical professional does not provide the proper duty of care expected, a medical malpractice claim could be filed. The common mistakes that are made that lead to these claims include mistakes involving pharmaceuticals, misdiagnosis, or malfunction of healthcare equipment, among many other reasons.
Product Liability: Products are expected to be designed and manufactured in a manner safe for use. This is why, if there have been issues in the design, manufacture, distribution, or selling of a product and a person is harmed as a result, a product liability claim could be brought.
Work Fatalities: When an employer fails to maintain a safe work environment and your loved one is killed as a result, you have risen to a wrongful death claim against the negligent employer or coworker who caused the death. Work fatality accidents can include defective workplace equipment, failure to provide adequate training, and other reasons not listed above.
The Length of Your Wrongful Death Claim
It is difficult to determine how long a wrongful death claim will take to be resolved. There are many factors that must be considered in determining the outcome of your wrongful death claim. Many times, wrongful death suits do not make it to court or litigation. Many people opt for an out-of-court settlement to avoid the stress of litigation and court. By accepting a settlement, you may not obtain the full and fair compensation you deserve. If you plan on pursuing a lawsuit, you may find that the initial filing, the gathering of evidence, the discovery phase, and the process of a trial could take anywhere from two to four years.
Every wrongful death case is unique and can involve many different facets that will affect your case. It is imperative that you speak with a qualified wrongful death attorney in Washington, D.C. or Maryland about your options and the length of time that your case could take to complete.
Why You Should Trust Fay Law Group with Your Wrongful Death Claim
The loss of a loved one may be one of the most tragic things that you will ever endure, especially if another person’s recklessness or negligence was the cause of losing your loved one. Through this burdening process of grieving and pursuing compensation for losses, it is essential to have an experienced attorney on your side who understands the complex legal issues surrounding wrongful death cases.
The lawyers at Fay Law Group have more than 50 years of personal injury and wrongful death law experience and can offer help and assurance when you and your family are going through this difficult and challenging time. Contact us at Fay Law Group to find out how we can assist you to get the compensation you are entitled to for the death of your loved one. We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call us today to schedule your free initial consultation with one of our wrongful death specialists at (202) 589-1300.
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