How To Fully Recover For A Wrongful Death

If your loved one has been killed as the result of someone else’s negligence, wrongful death attorney Rocky Walton can help you pursue justice with a lawsuit at his Arlington, TX, practice. Cases of wrongful death can be especially traumatic to loved ones as it is usually unexpected. If surviving family members relied on the deceased person to provide financial support, the death can be even more catastrophic. Contact our office today to make your appointment and learn more. We understand there is no amount of money that can take the place of your lost loved one, but holding the responsible party accountable can provide the closure your family needs to face their future.

What Is Wrongful Death?

When someone is killed due to the negligent acts of another, it is a wrongful death. Many wrongful deaths are caused by motor vehicle accidents, such as those involving motorcycles18-wheelers, or impaired drivers. Wrongful deaths can also be caused by unsafe premisesdangerous drugsdefective medical devices, or dangerous working conditions. We are ready to fight for the rights of those who have lost their loved ones due to negligence. In order to make your case, we start by proving who or what was at fault, by taking these actions:

  • Establishing duty: the first step is to show the party causing the accident owed your loved one a certain duty. This can be the duty to drive safely, the duty to provide a hazard free workplace, or the duty to perform medical procedures in accordance with acceptable standards.
  • Breach of duty: proving the negligent party failed to meet the proper standard of care or reasonable behavior establishes a breach of the duty owed.
  • Causation: the breach of duty must be the actual cause of incident that resulted in death, which is shown through medical records, eyewitness testimony, police reports, workplace policies and procedures, and other forms of evidence relevant to your specific case. 

Once all of the evidence is in, if the Judge or jury finds that it is more likely than not that the negligent party’s breach of duty caused the death of your loved one, the determination as to liability is made. When liability is established the next step is to provide proof of damages and these can be in the form of medical expenses, lost wages, loss of future earnings, pain and suffering, and the costs of final care and burial. Reliable reports and other documents must be presented to prove your damages, and a demand for repayment of those expenses must be made.

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We are ready to fight for the rights of those who have lost their loved ones due to negligence.

Who Can Receive Compensation?

In Texas, wrongful death compensation is limited to the spouse, children, and parents. Siblings and grandparents are not eligible for compensation. Each eligible person’s compensation depends on their closeness to the deceased person and how much financial support they could have reasonably anticipated receiving from the deceased person. Generally, the compensation awards are not equal among the beneficiaries.

Accidents leading to wrongful death leaves loved ones devastated both emotionally and financially. We help you recover the compensation your family deserves.

If the person survived for even a short amount of time and had conscious pain and suffering, the estate of the person would have a survival claim. In the survival action, the deceased person’s estate would be entitled to the same damages that the person would have received if he or she had lived. Then the beneficiaries of the estate would be entitled to survival damages according to the person’s will, or the laws of descent and distribution if there was no will.

I really got good results with my settlement. I feel sure it was because Rocky and his staff fought so hard for me. - Betty M.

Types Of Compensation

Monetary damages that are available in a wrongful death lawsuit can include:

  • Loss of the deceased person’s earning capacity and the value of the care, services, and advice the family members would have received from the deceased person
  • Mental anguish, meaning emotional pain and suffering from the loss
  • Loss of companionship and society
  • Loss of inheritance

Under the Texas Survival Statute, the deceased person’s heirs or estate can make a claim for the personal injury that the deceased person would have been able to claim if he or she had survived. These damages can include medical expenses and pain and suffering, as well as funeral expenses.

In certain instances, exemplary (punitive) damages may be awarded to punish the negligent party in a wrongful death or survival claim (or both).

Time Limit On Filing A Lawsuit

The deadline for filing a lawsuit for a wrongful death claim is generally two years from the date of the deadly accident, but it could be two years from the date of death. That period could be extended if the person responsible for the death was a resident of Texas but was out of the state for a period of time.

The deadline for filing a lawsuit for a wrongful death claim is generally two years from the date of the accident, but it could be two years from the date of death.

It is important for loved ones to consult with an attorney as soon as possible after a suspected wrongful death in order to preserve any evidence necessary to prove negligence. Additionally, the two-year deadline can approach quickly when loved ones are focused on the emotional and financial strain of the death.

Common Causes Of Wrongful Death

A wrongful death can be the result of many types of accidents. Among the most common causes are:

  • Car and truck accidents: catastrophic motor vehicle accidents account for a large number of wrongful death claims. Any time two or more vehicles collide at high rates of speed, the chance for devastating and fatal injuries is great. Seatbelts and other safety features such as airbags do a lot to help minimize injury and prevent death but in the worst cases, such as head on collisions or rollover accidents, death is possible.
  • Medical malpractice: physicians and other healthcare professionals are held to a certain standard when providing services, but can still make mistakes. When a surgical error, misdiagnosis, or administration of an improper dose of medicine takes place the patient can lose their life and survivors in these cases should initiate a wrongful death action.
  • Products liability: manufacturers and other entities along the line of production are required to turn out a safe product. When a defective product hits the market and causes a death, surviving family has the right to sue the maker, designer, end distributor, or other party responsible for the defect and ultimate death.
  • Construction or worksite accident: with many moving parts and large pieces of equipment on most construction jobsites, it is easy to see how a life ending accident can take place. Machinery can malfunction and cause an accident, electrical fires are common, and falls from high places or slips along loose scaffolding can all be the cause of a death on a worksite.

Every case is unique and requires a thorough investigation to determine the cause and type of death. Rocky Walton has been helping families and other victims since 1987 and is here to help you too.

Wrongful Death In Texas

In Texas, only certain parties are able to file a wrongful death suit. This includes a surviving spouse or child, or the parents of the deceased. The death must be caused by the negligent or wrongful act of another, carelessness, recklessness, or breach of acceptable standards in the industry. When the duty and subsequent breach are proven to be the cause of death, the parties allowed by law to bring an action should act fast to preserve evidence and begin developing a solid strategy.

Learn More About How We Can Help

Roger ‘Rocky’ Walton is one of fewer than 3% of personal injury trial law specialists in the State of Texas. With a practice that dates back to 1987, Rocky knows what steps to take to properly handle your case and works with you every step of the way. We offer a fee initial consultation and work on a contingency fee basis, allowing you to focus on your family rather than pay upfront fees and costs. To learn more, contact us online or call us at (817) 576-8219 today.

The personal injury information offered and contained herein, regarding personal injury statutes and claimants' rights is general in scope. No attorney client relationship with our attorneys is hereby formed nor is the information herein intended as formal legal advice.

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Arlington Office

2310 W Interstate 20
Ste 200
Arlington, TX 76017

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We are located on I20 in south Arlington.