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Lancaster Wrongful Death Lawyer

Losing a close family member before their time is a devastating experience that no one should ever have to go through. As every experienced personal injury attorney unfortunately knows, fatal accidents happen every day across the Commonwealth and bring financial and personal losses with them that surviving family members did nothing to cause or deserve.

Money alone cannot possibly make up for a life being unfairly cut short or for the grief you and your family have sustained as a result. With help from a Lancaster wrongful death lawyer, you could alleviate the effects of specific losses you are dealing with and will have to deal with in the future. A lawsuit could help your family move on past this tragedy and maximize your quality of life in the long term.

Establishing Grounds for a Wrongful Death Claim

In legal terms, a wrongful death claim is the survival of a cause of action for personal injury past the death of the injured person. Since the person directly injured by another’s misconduct can no longer file suit on their own behalf, the right to sue passes to the deceased person’s surviving family members, who can subsequently seek civil compensation for their own ensuing losses.

In order to receive restitution, those family members need to prove another holds civil liability for their loved one’s death and their subsequent losses. This typically entails proving negligence by showing the defendant directly caused the decedent’s death by breaching a duty of care owed to them. However, it is also possible to sue over a wrongful death in Lancaster caused by an intentional criminal act, as a practiced attorney can further explain.

Who Can Sue Over a Wrongful Death?

According to 42 Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes § 8301, only certain family members can file and recover compensation through a wrongful death claim. Subsection (b) of this statute specifies that the deceased person’s spouse, children, and parents are the only people who can be beneficiaries.

When none of those family members are available to file suit after a wrongful death, the deceased person’s personal representative may file suit in their stead. This is typically someone named in the decedent’s will to manage their affairs after their death. They can sue for things like medical bills, funeral costs, estate administration expenses, and other financial losses sustained by the decedent’s estate.

Recovering for All Available Damages

Eligible beneficiaries may seek restitution for various economic and non-economic forms of harm they have sustained and will sustain because of their loved one’s death. This can include things like:

  • Lost future financial support
  • Lost future value of inheritance
  • Lost love and companionship
  • Lost guidance and advice
  • Lost household services and assistance
  • Lost consortium with a spouse
  • Emotional anguish

A wrongful death lawyer in Lancaster could discuss what damages a particular family can and should pursue restitution for during a confidential consultation.

Contact a Lancaster Wrongful Death Attorney for Assistance

Any time someone harms another by acting irresponsibly or unlawfully, they may hold civil liability for any injuries and losses the person suffers due to their misconduct. That liability does not go away when the injured person passes away as a result of their injuries—instead, it allows surviving family members to take action in their loved one’s name.

You have help available in a situation like this from a capable and compassionate Lancaster wrongful death lawyer. Call today to discuss your options.