The passing of a loved one is never an easy experience, but when you lose someone due to the negligent, reckless, or intentional acts of another person the loss can be even more traumatizing for you and your family. When an accident occurs that results in a person’s death, the family of the victim can seek a settlement for wrongful death. There are often many expenses that can build up quickly after someone’s passing, so it is normal to wonder what the average settlement is for a wrongful death case. The answer is that there is no true average, and compensation for this type of loss is determined by the specific facts of your case. For a review of your case, call or contact the wrongful death attorneys in Las Vegas at Henness & Haight today.
Wrongful Death in Nevada
Under Nevada law, wrongful death is defined as when an intentional, reckless, or negligent wrongful act causes the death of another person. In other words, wrongful death claims are allowed in situations where, had the victim lived, he would have been able to bring a personal injury lawsuit against those responsible for the harm. Because of the loss of life, the family of the deceased can now bring a claim for compensation for those liable for the death.
It is important to note that a wrongful death action is different than criminal charges brought against someone for the loss of life. Criminal charges are not necessary in order to bring a wrongful death claim, although a guilty plea or conviction can go a long way as evidence in a wrongful death case.
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit?
Nevada allows for the personal representative of the victim’s estate to file a claim for wrongful death on behalf of the victim’s family. A surviving spouse, domestic partner, children, or surviving parents if no spouse or children exist may also file on behalf of the victim’s loved ones. The law also allows others to file a claim of wrongful death so long as it can be shown that this person was dependent on the deceased, such as a stepchild.
In order to successfully file a claim, the lawsuit must be filed in a Nevada court within two years of the date of death. Known as the statute of limitations, if the case is not filed in this window of time the court can throw it out and bar recovery of any damages for the claim.
Compensation for a Wrongful Death Case
Compensation for the family in a wrongful death case includes payment for special damages, and in some cases, additional penalties. Special damages refer to both economic and noneconomic damages suffered by the victim’s loved ones as a result of the loss. Economic damages include reasonable funeral and burial expenses, final medical expenses resulting from the accident, property damage, and lost wages and benefits, including the future value that was lost. Noneconomic damages include pain and suffering, loss of companionship, care, affection, and loss of other benefits to heirs.
In cases of wrongful death that the court finds particularly egregious, the judge in the case may also award penalty damages. Penalties are not intended to benefit the family of the victim but to punish the wrongdoer for their actions as well as serve as a deterrent to others who may consider similar actions in the future. There are no limits on the amount of punitive penalty damages that can be awarded in a Nevada wrongful death case.
How a Lawyer Can Help
Hiring an experienced wrongful death attorney in these difficult cases can be the critical difference between your family getting the monetary help they need after a loss or suffering emotional, psychological, and financial burdens at the same time. A lawyer can handle the legal complexities of a wrongful death claim so that you can have the time you need to grieve. An attorney understands the substantive and procedural nuances of a wrongful death case and can ensure that everything is properly filed with the court to preserve your claims.
Talk To Our Attorneys Now
You have enough to worry about after the loss of a loved one, so let the knowledgeable wrongful death attorneys at the Las Vegas office of Henness & Haight navigate the case on your behalf. Call the office or contact us today to schedule a free appointment to review your claim.