Wrongful Death Claims in Arizona
A wrongful death claim is a legal action that an individual may choose to take after losing a loved one. Medical malpractice, car accidents, construction site accidents, workplace accidents, and other incidents involving negligence or wrongdoing may lead to a wrongful death claim. If you have recently lost a spouse, parent, child, or another relative, you may be interested in exploring your legal options. Read on to learn about what wrongful death is in Arizona and how a wrongful death claim can be initiated.
How Can you File a Wrongful Death Claim in Arizona?
If you are currently grieving the unexpected death of a loved one, you may be unsure of how legal action can even help you. Wrongful death claims serve two primary purposes: holding the party responsible for your loved one’s death accountable for their actions and pursuing financial compensation. Losing a loved one is not only painful, but it can also create an overwhelming financial burden. Through a wrongful death claim, the deceased person’s family may be entitled to compensation for:
· The decedent’s medical expenses.
· Funeral and burial expenses.
· The loss of the decedent’s financial support and work benefits.
· Mental suffering and grief.
· The loss of the decedent’s companionship, parental nurturing, and care.
A personal representative can bring wrongful death claims on a deceased person’s behalf. Often, this personal representative is the administrator of the decedent’s estate that they named in their will. If the decedent passed away without a will, the court might appoint a personal representative to represent the victim. The person who files a wrongful death claim is often a close relative such as a spouse, sibling, parent, or adult child. Monetary damages from a wrongful death claim are typically paid to the decedent’s surviving spouse and next of kin.
There are time limitations on wrongful death claims. In Arizona, the statute of limitations to file a wrongful death claim is generally within two years of the death. There are exceptions for minors and criminal actions. However, it is always best to start legal proceedings as soon as possible to avoid inadvertently missing these deadlines.
A wrongful death case in Arizona typically follows these steps:
- Getting prepared for litigation: Before proceeding with litigation for the wrongful death claim, usually in Arizona, there is an investigation, identification of guilty parties, and establishing a decedent’s estate with the county they lived in.
- Settlement through negotiation: The entity you are suing may propose a settlement outside of court in some instances. You may be able to avoid taking your issue to court if you and the other party can agree on a fair settlement through a process of negotiation.
- Lawsuit Initiation: If negotiations fail, you will need to file a Complaint or Writ of Summons to commence the process of a court case.
- Litigation: After the lawsuit is initiated, there will be phases of discovery, questioning, document requests, and more throughout the litigation process. Before a judge or jury renders a decision, there may be a preliminary hearing, a trial, or an arbitration.
Contact a Phoenix Wrongful Death Lawyer
A wrongful death claim may enable you to recover financial compensation for the losses caused by your loved one’s death and hold the liable party accountable. Contact an experienced personal injury attorney to learn more about filing a wrongful death claim in Phoenix, Arizona. Call our office today at 602-833-2944 to schedule your free, no-obligation case evaluation.