Most people do not know a lot about wrongful death. This is a type of lawsuit, but what exactly does wrongful death entail? This guide will explain what wrongful death is and the three most common types of cases. If you think you might have a wrongful death case, the very first thing you should do is speak with an attorney.
What Is Wrongful Death?
The easiest way to think about wrongful death is to consider filing a personal injury lawsuit on behalf of someone else. If someone is injured by another person’s actions, he or she can file a personal injury lawsuit against that person to receive compensation for the injury. However, if someone, unfortunately, succumbs to the injury, he or she cannot file a personal injury lawsuit. A wrongful death lawsuit is when the loved ones of the deceased file a lawsuit against the responsible person.
Types of Wrongful Death
There are all sorts of different scenarios where a wrongful death lawsuit is appropriate and viable, but most wrongful death lawsuits can be placed into one of three categories. These are:
- Medical Malpractice
- Intentional Harm
Wrongful death lawsuits involving negligence are when someone accidentally causes someone else to be injured. For example, if someone accidentally crashes his or her car into another vehicle and the other driver dies in the crash, that person performed negligent actions and can be held liable for the death.
Perhaps the most common type of wrongful death cases is medical malpractice. Technically, this is the same as negligence-based cases, but it is when the person who performed a negligent action is a doctor or hospital employee. For an action to be considered negligent, it must involve a violation of a duty. For medical malpractice cases, this duty is the physician’s obligation to meet a certain standard of care. If a doctor provides care below this standard, then medical malpractice might have taken place.
Finally, a wrongful death lawsuit might be appropriate after someone intentionally causes harm in another. A criminal case will probably be conducted if someone intentionally kills another, but you can file a civil lawsuit alongside the criminal case.
Remember, these three categories do not encompass all wrongful death lawsuits. If your case does not fit into any of these categories, that does not mean it is invalid. You should speak with an attorney, like a Wrongful Death Lawyer Minneapolis, MN, who specializes in wrongful death to learn how strong your case is and discover what your next steps should be.
Thank you to the experts at JOHNSTON | MARTINEAU PLLP, for their insight into wrongful death and the law.