Proving Negligence in a Wrongful Death Claim
Posted on behalf of Gordon & Partners on Nov 05, 2018 in Wrongful Death
When you suddenly lose a loved one because of someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to file a wrongful death claim that can help provide the compensation you and your family need to move forward without financial hardship.
However, in order to prove liability in a wrongful death claim, you must establish the four legal elements of negligence. An attorney can help gather evidence and provide the assistance required to prove each of these elements. Contact a dependable West Palm Beach wrongful death lawyer at Gordon & Partners to help prove negligence directly resulted in your loved one’s death. We are here to support you during this difficult time and recover the compensation you deserve.
What is a Wrongful Death Claim?
Florida’s Wrongful Death Act allows the surviving family and dependents to seek damages owed for the accidental or intentional loss of life of their loved one. A wrongful death claim will provide compensation for pain and suffering, the loss of financial support from the income earner and even expenses for funeral costs and other damages, depending on the circumstances of the death.
Negligence in a Wrongful Death Claim
The following four elements of negligence must exist in order to pursue this type of case. These elements include:
- The at-fault party owed a duty of care to the victim
- The at-fault party breached his or her duty of care
- The at-fault party’s actions directly resulted in the victim’s death
- Damages suffered from that action
All of these elements must be established by gathering sufficient evidence to prove that another’s negligence or deliberate actions caused the untimely death of your loved one. These elements are discussed in further detail below.
Duty of Care
The at-fault party owed your loved one a legal duty to act as a reasonable person to help prevent your loved one from being involved in an accident that could cause injury.
The duty of care depends on the relationship between the parties and surrounding circumstances. For example, drivers have a duty to drive safely and obey all traffic signs and signals.
Breach of Duty of Care
A breach is present when the at-fault party violates the duty of care. Not implementing proper safety protocol could be a breach of duty of care. Drivers on the road can breach the duty of care by not paying attention or not following traffic rules. The judge or jury considers what a reasonable person would do in the same situation when trying to determine if there was a breach of the duty of care.
You must prove that the breach of duty of care caused harm and led to the death of your loved one. A wrongful death lawyer can review the accident report, medical records and other documentation and evidence to determine why your loved one died. This evidence can connect the death and the at-fault party’s breach of duty.
In negligence claims, it must be proven that the death of your loved one resulted in measurable damages to you or your family. This can include medical expenses, funeral costs, loss of earnings, emotional trauma or pain and suffering.
Contact Gordon & Partners for Legal Help Today
At Gordon & Partners, our team is here for you to support you through the devastating loss that a wrongful death causes. We have experience handling many different types of wrongful death cases and will work diligently to assist you in seeking the maximum compensation possible for your claim.
Contact us today to schedule your no-obligation free case evaluation. We can discuss the particular circumstances surrounding your claim to determine if you have a case against the at-fault party. We work on a contingency fee basis, which means you do not have to pay any upfront fees. Our firm only receives payment when you recover compensation for your case.