If you're considering a wrongful death case, it probably means you're already dealing with some tough things. Adding complicated legal proceedings can only make it worse. That's why it's important to be informed before you start. A wrongful death suit falls under the category of negligence. To win a negligence case, you've got to be able to prove three things. Here's what you need to be able to prove, and how it applies to a wrongful death case.
Breach of Duty
In short, breach of duty just means that someone wasn't doing what they were supposed to be. This doesn't mean "duty" like a job duty, but that someone did not act with the same care that a normal person would under those same circumstances. It could mean that a driver wasn't paying attention to the road, a doctor prescribed a wrong medication, or someone didn't clean up a dangerous spill quickly. For a successful wrongful death case, the first step is proving breach of duty.
After proving that someone acted improperly, you must prove that those actions actually caused a death. Using an example from before, you would have to undeniably prove that it was the accused driver who hit the deceased, and that it wasn't another driver who did it. This area can become complex pretty quickly. For instance, if there's a car accident where someone is seriously injured through breach of duty, but a third vehicle actually causes the death, you may not have a valid case. This can be the toughest of the elements to prove.
Once it's been proven that someone acted wrongly and that those actions were the direct cause of an accident, the next step in a negligence case is to prove that there was significant damage. In other types of negligence cases, it may be deemed that the plaintiff did not suffer any true harm. But if you're pursuing a wrongful death case, the significant damage here is obvious: someone has died. In a wrongful death case, this element is the easiest to prove.
A wrongful death lawsuit is never an easy thing to deal with. Fortunately, you don't have to handle it alone. A professional wrongful death attorney likely has years of experience and has seen plenty of cases like yours. When you trust the professionals with your case, you're not only taking the worry and stress off of the family, but you're giving yourself a higher chance of a successful case.
For more information, contact an experienced law firm like Bangel, Bangel, & Bangel.