Proving your loved one’s death was caused by someone else needs evidence. To make a winning case in a wrongful death lawsuit, you must have all the necessary legal documents ready.
Like other states, Texas has a set of laws that govern wrongful death claims. Survivors can file a claim when the death of a loved one is a consequence of another person’s negligence. Learn how wrongful death can be proven to win compensation from your claim.
What Is Wrongful Death in Texas?
Before diving into the legal aspect, you must understand what is considered a wrongful death in Texas. According to Texas law, a person or entity is responsible for damages when the cause of death is due to:
- Wrongful acts
The most common reasons for a wrongful death lawsuit are negligence and wrongdoing. In either case, it is the family’s responsibility to prove the case with evidence.
A personal injury lawyer in Texas who specializes in wrongful death claims can handle the legal aspect.
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in Texas?
In Texas, certain survivors can file a lawsuit for wrongful death. If you want to submit a wrongful death claim in Texas, you must fall into one of the following categories, which are ordered such by eligibility:
- You are the surviving partner
- You are either an adult or a minor surviving child
- You are the only remaining parent
- You were formally adopted by the deceased
- You are representative of the dead person’s estate
- You are the adopted kid or child eligible for compensation
A negligence claim is a civil case, which makes it tricky. Regardless of the criminal charges filed against the offender, any qualifying family member can file a civil complaint. In Texas, in most cases, you will have two years to file your claim from the time of the accident that caused your loved one’s death.
Damages Included in a Texas Wrongful Death Claim
Texas state laws identify the following damages in a wrongful death case:
- Loss of income the deceased would have made had they lived
- Expenditure on cremation, funeral, and burial
- Inheritance loss
- Mental suffering
- Loss of domestic support
- Loss of direction, advice, and support
- Medical treatment costs by the dead, from the date of injury till death.
- Loss of companionship
The jury could also give punitive damages if the defendant’s behavior meets the requirements.
The person in charge of the estate can also file a “survival action.” Claims of wrongful death can be tricky. Working with an experienced wrongful death lawyer is the best way to get justice for a loved one.
Can I Sue a Company for Wrongful Death?
You can sue another person, a firm, a professional, or a government organization. Terms like “neglect” or “wrongful behavior” are not subjective; they are particular legal terms that you must prove. Getting assistance from our wrongful death attorneys in Texas can help prove your claim.
How Do I Win a Wrongful Death Case Based on Negligence?
Most claims for personal injuries are based on negligence. From a legal standpoint, here are the elements you must take into consideration:
- Duty: The party at fault owes the deceased duty of care.
- Breach: Duty of care was breached.
- Cause: The person responsible was either directly responsible for the death or closely related to it.
- Damage: Damage incurred due to the death of your family member.
All these elements are subjective to your specific case findings. Getting in touch with a wrongful death attorney in Texas will help to build a strong case.
How Do I Prove a Wrongful Act to Win a Texas Wrongful Death Case?
Wrongful acts are conscious decisions. You must prove the accused intended to conduct the behavior that resulted in the death of your family member. An example of a wrongful act is assault.
An intentional act that resulted in the death of another person can be prosecuted in a criminal court. This criminal case is different from the wrongful death case. However, even if the person resonsible is acquitted in criminal court, they can still be found liable for damages in a civil court.
If all this information seems overwhelming, you can contact a Texas Wrongful death lawyer to help you with your case. Expert assistance will strengthen your chances of winning.
What Else Do I Need to Know About a Texas Wrongful Death Claim?
Under Tex. Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code § 16.003, the Texas statute of limitations for wrongful death cases indicates that lawsuits must be filed within two years. So, file for a claim before the deadline, or you could hurt your chances of even being eligible to apply.
How Do Wrongful Death Settlements Work?
If your case results in a settlement, the compensation will be distributed among family members named in the claim. But first, your lawyer must get paid.
Wrongful death lawyers work on contingency, so they only get paid when your case is successful. Your lawyer will receive a check from the insurance company of the person who caused the wrongful death. The lawyer then takes their agreed-upon percentage and gives the remaining amount to the survivors of the decedent.
Also, the settlement you get for wrongful death is free from income, estate, or inheritance tax.
Contact a Wrongful Death Lawyer in Texas for Legal Representation
Proving wrongful death in a lawsuit is tricky. That is why it is important to have an attorney on your side. A wrongful death lawyer in Texas will help you make a strong case.
Our lawyers at the Buzbee Law Firm understand the complexities of claims and can guide you through the process. Our competent wrongful death lawyers can give you a free case review. Contact us to discuss the specifics of your case.