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Do You Have the Right to Bring an Ohio Wrongful Death Claim?

by onApril 07, 2020

When you lose a loved one due to someone else’s negligence, it is an emotional time. It is understandable that you might have feelings of anger at the negligent party and be genuinely concerned about what your financial future now holds. Unfortunately, the only thing you can do is to pursue financial compensation from the negligent party. It will not bring your family member back, but perhaps it can help ease some anxiety about your finances moving forward.

Wrongful death claims can be complex, which is why you should contact an Ohio wrongful death attorney who can help. 

Who is Eligible to Bring a Wrongful Death Claim?

 Not everyone can bring a wrongful death claim. Determining who has the right to bring one can be challenging in some instances. Under Ohio law, only the personal representative, or executor, can bring a wrongful death claim. This is the person who will be responsible for pursuing the claim on behalf of all eligible family members.

How to Prove Liability in an Ohio Wrongful Death Claim

Wrongful death claims are handled similarly to other types of personal injury claims. That means there is a negligence standard you must meet in order to prevail. You have to prove that the defendant’s actions contributed to the deceased’s injuries. No two wrongful death claims are the same. You could have someone die from injuries sustained in an auto accident, but it could also be a dog bite, medical malpractice, or even a slip and fall. This is one of the reasons why it is in your best interest to hire an experienced Ohio wrongful death attorney. 

How Long Do You Have to Bring a Wrongful Death Claim in Ohio? 

Like other types of personal injury claims, you only have a limited amount of time to file a wrongful death claim. Ohio requires that a wrongful death claim be brought within two years in most cases. Failure to bring a claim within the two-year statute of limitations means you could lose your legal right to bring the claim. If the death stems from a medical malpractice claim, then you must bring a suit within a year to preserve the deceased’s right to survivorship damages.

Determining Value on a Wrongful Death Lawsuit

If you are successful in your wrongful death claim, the verdict or settlement offer should compensate the estate for its damages. The value of the claim will vary based on the unique circumstances of your situation. Again, no settlement will be the same as another, and the damages will vary. Some of the financial recovery you may be entitled to in a wrongful death case includes: 

  • Medical expenses
  • Expenses related to funeral and burial
  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of benefits like insurance coverage
  • Loss of consortium and companionship

Contact an Ohio Wrongful Death Attorney Today

If you are the personal representative for a loved one’s estate and you believe you have a valid wrongful death claim, we recommend consulting with a personal injury attorney who can advise you on your legal rights and potential recovery. Contact Lafferty, Gallagher & Scott, LLC today to schedule an initial consultation.

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