VA Eastern Shore Wrongful Death Lawyer
Losing someone you love prematurely is overwhelmingly difficult. Especially when your loved one’s death was the unnecessary result of another’s negligence, you may feel lost and unsure of what to do next. Negotiating with insurance companies and pursuing legal recovery is probably the last thing on your mind.
A compassionate VA Eastern Shore wrongful death lawyer could help you through this difficult time Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers regularly file lawsuits in Accomack and Northampton Counties. A seasoned, local attorney could take you step by step through the legal process and provide the guidance and support you need to get the justice you deserve for your loss.
An Overview of Wrongful Death Actions
Wrongful death is defined under Virginia Code § 8.01-50 as a death caused by a wrongful act, neglect, or default of another party. Wrongful death cases are a type of legal claim where the injured person dies from the accident or incident caused by another person. The Virginia wrongful death claim is brought by the personal representative of the estate of the decedent. This means the executor if there is a will or an administrator if there was no will. The family members who get the money are called beneficiaries.
Wrongful acts that may result in a claim include cases where a defendant negligently caused the deceased’s premature death. The same accidents that cause serious injuries can become the basis for a wrongful death lawsuit if the victim dies.
Filing a Claim on VA’s Eastern Shore
Virginia Code §8.01-53 states that wrongful death cases must be filed by the personal representative on behalf of the decedent’s statutory beneficiaries. Statutory beneficiaries are family members of the deceased, based on the survivors relationship to the dead person including:
- Siblings (brothers/sisters)
- Relatives in the same household (if financially dependent on the person who died)
Under the statutes, the rights for statutory beneficiaries to be claimants in a VA wrongful death case in a specific order. First surviving spouses are the first order of person to get money from the wrongful death claim in Virginia, followed by the surviving children and grandchildren. Parents, siblings, and others only get proceeds of the wrongful death case if there is no wife, husband, spouse, or children.
Statute of Limitations
A statute of limitations is the time period imposed by the state that limits a plaintiff’s ability to bring their cause of action. Virginia Code §8.01-244 generally gives plaintiffs two years after the death of the deceased to file a wrongful death claim. Failing to file a cause of action within the statute of limitations may result in losing the right to file a lawsuit to recover damages. The deadline is tricky in Virginia and so it is safer to use the date of two years from the accident rather than the death!
Consult a Wrongful Death Attorney on the Eastern Shore
Those who caused the loss of your loved one should pay the price for their actions. A VA Eastern Shore wrongful death lawyer could stand by your side and help hold the at-fault parties and their insurers accountable. Pursuing recovery on your own might be difficult without professional legal assistance. An experienced attorney could review your case and help you build a strategy to obtain the compensation your loved one would have wanted you to receive. To learn more about your options, call Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers now for a free consultation.