Experienced Princeton Wrongful Death Attorney Helps You Recover for Your Loss
When a car or truck accident, medical negligence, or other negligent act causes a death, the surviving family who are left to deal with the loss of a loved one are also forced to face additional immediate and long-term costs, from hospital and funeral expenses to the loss of income and support their loved one provided. In these cases, West Virginia allows for the recovery of such expenses against the negligent party in what is known as a Wrongful Death action.
As a skilled and knowledgeable personal injury attorney with years of experience dealing with serious accidents and medical malpractice, Kay Bayless has also successfully handled many wrongful death cases for the benefit of the surviving family members. In southern West Virginia, the Bayless Law Firm is here to help you cope with your loss and hold the responsible parties accountable for the harm they have caused your family.
West Virginia Wrongful Death Law
West Virginia law allows a lawsuit for wrongful death to be filed within two years from the date of the death. The action is brought by the personal representative of the deceased for the benefit of the surviving spouse and children, as well as surviving siblings, parents and others who were financially dependent on the deceased. The judge or jury decides how to apportion the monetary award among the family members after hospital and funeral expenses have been paid. If there are no surviving family members, the money is distributed according to the terms of the deceased’s will or according to West Virginia laws of intestate succession, if the person died without a will.
The judge or jury is authorized to award any legal damages which it deems to be fair and just. There are certain categories of damages which must be considered and awarded if appropriate. These damages include:
- Sorrow, mental anguish & solace
- Loss of society, companionship, comfort, guidance, kindly offices and advice
- Reasonably expected loss of income, services, protection, care and assistance
- Expenses for care, treatment and hospitalization
- Reasonable funeral expenses
Survival Actions Included
West Virginia law also recognizes that a person may have at first been injured and initiated a personal injury case, or may have been planning a personal injury lawsuit, but died before the lawsuit could be brought or concluded. In these instances, the personal representative may bring this Survival action along with the Wrongful Death case, which allows the family members to secure the maximum amount of compensation available and hold the negligent party or parties fully responsible for the hurt they have caused.
Help is Available for Difficult Wrongful Death Cases
Wrongful death and survival actions are often challenging cases to bring, because the person who was killed by the negligent act is not available to describe what happened. These cases must be carefully and thoroughly investigated by an experienced personal injury attorney who can determine the level of negligence and prepare and present a persuasive case to the insurance company for settlement or to a judge or jury in court. Princeton attorney Kay Bayless has that level of experience and has an estimable record of success in medical negligence and vehicle accident cases which resulted in death. In southern West Virginia, contact the Bayless Law Firm for a free consultation to talk about what happened and find out how we can help you recover for your loss.