Law Offices of David G. Arganian, Seattle, WA

Understanding a Wrongful Death Claim

Those seeking a wrongful death claim have typically suffered loss due to negligence, malpractice or the inaction of another person, company or organization.

Some of the most common causes of wrongful death include traffic accidents, defective products, medical malpractice and death during construction accidents. Unfortunately wrongful deaths are commonplace*:

- In 2008, the U.S. Department of Transportation reported that the highway wrongful death count was at 37,261 nationwide;
- Medication errors affect more than 1.5 million people annually;
- 45,343 vehicular deaths during 2005 alone (5,212 involved truck accidents);
- In 2002, 17,419 traffics were DUI related;
- 19,656 slip and fall fatalities occurred in 2005;
- 5,840 people were killed at work in 2006.

Although a wrongful death claim may not bring the family's beloved member back, a lawsuit may help to right the wrong and aid in covering medical bills, lost wages, funeral and burial expenses.

Proof and evidence are vital components of making a successful wrongful death claim. The plaintiff must prove that the defendant caused the death through a preponderance of evidence. In a wrongful death claim, as in many cases, the preponderance of evidence means that the defendant most likely caused the death through his or her actions.

A wrongful death claim can typically be made by the deceased's family, however plaintiffs should always consult a Las Vegas wrongful death attorney, especially for certain circumstances such as:

- Children who file a wrongful death suit may require the aid of a legal guardian to pursue a case;
- Distant relatives should consult an attorney before making a wrongful death claim;
- Parental rights of those who want to pursue a wrongful death claim if their child died while in utero should consult with a legal expert;
- Restrictions may apply if a family member caused the death of another family member.

The law is complex and should be pursued with prudent caution. Before filing, consult a Las Vegas wrongful death attorney if you suspect you have a case.

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