When someone you love dies because of the negligence of another person, it can be traumatic and confusing. It can be hard to make decisions or know what you should do. In a wrongful death lawsuit, surviving relatives can seek justice on behalf of a loved one who was killed by negligence. While no amount of money can ever replace your loss, it is important to hold those responsible accountable for their actions.
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim in Texas?
The right to file a wrongful death claim in Texas is not available to everyone. To file a wrongful death claim, you must meet at least one of the following criteria:
You are the surviving spouse
You are the surviving parent(s)
You are the surviving adoptive parent(s)
You are a surviving child (adult or minor)
You are a legally adopted child of the deceased
You are the personal representative of the estate of the deceased
It’s important to note that a wrongful death claim is a civil matter, meaning that you may file regardless of whether criminal charges are made against the at-fault party.
Proving Wrongful Death in Texas
Wrongful death claims in Texas involve four elements that surviving family members must prove in order to be successful in a lawsuit:
Breach of Duty
For a plaintiff (person who brings a case against another in a court of law) to succeed in a wrongful death case, they will need to prove that the defendant (person being accused/sued) owed the victim a duty of care. For example, medical care providers have a duty to maintain a patient's health. Motorists have a duty to follow traffic laws and drive safely.
In order to prove wrongful death, one must show that the defendant was careless, reckless, or negligent in some way that caused the victim's death. A plaintiff must demonstrate that the defendant violated its duty to act in a responsible manner.
It is necessary for the plaintiff to demonstrate how the defendant breached his or her duty towards the victim and how this negligence contributed to the death of the victim.
To substantiate the impact of wrongful death, there must be quantifiable damages such as:
Hospital stay expenses
Funeral and burial expenses
Loss of income or potential earnings
Pain and suffering of the victim before their death
Corporations, insurance companies, or individuals responsible for your loss will do everything in their power to avoid being held accountable. Our wrongful death lawyers at VB Attorneys will help you get the justice you deserve. Before you cash any checks, sign forms, or speak with an adjuster, consult our knowledgeable lawyers to make sure you get justice for your loss. When a loved one suddenly and wrongfully dies due to negligent or reckless action or inaction, contact our experienced Texas wrongful death lawyers at (877) 724-7800.