A death is always a tragedy. Sometimes, you can hold someone liable in court for the death of a loved one in specific circumstances. Incidents where a person dies because of their own negligence, or deaths that result from natural phenomena are no one’s fault. Still, some deaths are avoidable and are the result of another’s carless actions or negligence.

Whenever a death can be traced to the reckless actions of another party, the decedent’s family has the right to demand compensation from those responsible. This can include payments needed to cover end of life expenses such as a funeral, but also payments intended to compensate the family for the void left in their lives.

A Newport News wrongful death lawyer could help you during this difficult time. Our compassionate injury lawyers can work with you to help you understand the relevant Virginia laws and how they govern actions for wrongful death. The attorneys at Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers can then work to gather the necessary evidence to hold individuals, insurance companies, and corporations liable for causing a wrongful death.

When the Law Considers a Death Wrongful

Tragically, many serious Newport News, Virginia car, truck, and motorcycle accidents result in the death of loved ones. There is no amount of money that can ever truly compensate for the loss of a family member whether it be a husband, wife, child, brother, sister, or parent. If your relative dies as a result of negligence, a Virginia Death by Wrongful Act claim or case can be filed. A Virginia Death by Wrongful Act claim seeks compensation for the survivors of the deceased for their loss of a loved one. The Virginia statute, Va. Code §8.01-50 et seq., identifies the family members eligible to receive money for their grief and losses because of the death of a family member.

A death is considered wrongful when another party is responsible for negligent actions that lead to the death. VA Code §8.01-50 says that a wrongful death suit is appropriate when someone would have had a personal injury lawsuit if the person survived.

For example, car accidents like rear-end collisions on Jefferson Ave or on Interstate 64 are a common source of personal injury lawsuits. If a person is in a car crash and is killed because of the actions of the negligent driver, the family of the person killed can bring a wrongful death claim.

Other examples of accident situations that may result in wrongful death cases include:

A Newport News wrongful death lawyer could help you understand your rights following the wrongful loss of a loved one.

Damages You may Claim in the Newport News Circuit Court

Virginia’s laws concerning potential compensation in a wrongful death lawsuit are straightforward. Virginia does not place a damages cap on wrongful death lawsuits except as to punitive damages. Instead, VA Code §8.01-52 says that a jury in a wrongful death case can award damages that they deem are fair and just.

Surviving family may be entitled to recovery following the wrongful death for damages including:

  • Sorrow
  • Mental anguish
  • Loss of solace (companionship, comfort, guidance, and advice from the deceased)
  • Loss of income of the deceased suffered by survivors
  • Payment for the replacement value of the loss of services provided by the deceased for the survivors
  • Payment for medical expenses incurred for the care and treatment of the deceased resulting from the injuries that caused their death
  • Funeral and burial expenses

A Newport News wrongful death lawyer could work with families to help them understand which damages they may claim in a wrongful death lawsuit. We then can work to form demand packages that make a full accounting of those losses and that demand full payment from the at-fault defendants.

Our decades of helping grieving families in Newport News and across Tidewater, Virginia has taught us the special challenges of wrongful death cases. The compassion and professionalism of a good wrongful death attorney can be a comfort at that difficult time. All wrongful death settlements in Virginia must be approved by a court. We know how to properly handle these cases in the Newport News Circuit Court.

Work with a Newport News Wrongful Death Attorney

The loss of a family member is never easy. While the emotional toll following the death is always high, surviving family members must also be aware of the financial impact that the death may bring.

Whenever a loss can be traced to careless actions of another, the surviving family members have the right to demand compensation. A Newport News wrongful death lawyer could help you understand your rights and demand appropriate compensation in settlement talks and in court. One of the first things we can help with is to have you appointed as the administrator for suit purposes if your husband or wife who died did not have a will. Call us today for a free consultation to learn more.

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