Wrongful Death Lawyer In Tampa, FL
A wrongful death lawyer in Tampa, FL at Jeff Murphy Law understands how an untimely death can be devastating for the loved ones who survive, but especially when that death occurs because of the negligence or intent of someone else. The devastation goes beyond grief and affects the regular day-to-day routines through a loss of presence and finances. Therefore, it is entirely understandable when a family wishes to recover some of their loss. However, many grieving families may not understand the types of damages they can claim or even what damages are recoverable.
Fortunately, the recoverable losses can typically be covered under the umbrella of two categories with help from a Florida wrongful death lawyer in Tampa:
Pecuniary damages essentially equate to the value placed on a person’s life. Therefore, the courts and your Tampa, FL wrongful death lawyer will attempt to quantify the financial worth of your loved one, which sounds archaic. However, to act fairly and impartially, the judicial system must use means that are measurable and easily applied to future claims, but they are not inept of your loss. Therefore, the pecuniary value comes down to two considerations.
- Lost future income: lost future income is not merely the amount of money the decedent was expected to earn over the rest of their working years. This value is a part of the equation, but the family will only see a portion of that money because the real value is less the living expenses of the decedent. Therefore, the courts will determine how much it would have cost to clothe and feed your loved one and subtract that value from the gross earnings expectation.
- Loss of consortium: where emotional loss is represented. This element of pecuniary damages attempts to put a value on the loss of love, affection, and even society. Therefore, the courts try to offer compensation for lifestyle changes and turmoil. While the amount of recoverable damages depends on several factors, a spouse with a child can typically seek more than a spouse alone or a relative; however, this depends on the municipality.
A Tampa wrongful death lawyer in Florida may talk with you about how punitive damages are not always recoverable, but in instances of intentional neglect or harm, it may be possible. These damages are designed to punish the accused. While many families will want to seek such losses, not every case warrants such action and not every court will allow it.
Filing a Lawsuit
Considering filing a wrongful death suit? Our team of attorneys understands that this can be an extremely difficult process as you are mourning the loss of your loved one. In Florida, a family member of the deceased person is allowed to file a wrongful death lawsuit if their loved one died from:
- Someone else’s negligence
- Someone else breaching a contract they made with your loved one
- Someone else committing a wrongful act
We know that this is a hard time for you and we would like to be here to help you throughout the legal process. If you would like to speak with a member of our team today, please give Jeff Murphy a call now.
How long do I have to file a wrongful death lawsuit?
When you are in Florida, you typically have two years to file a wrongful death lawsuit after your loved one has passed away. That said, there are extreme circumstances or special situations that will allow you to file a lawsuit after this deadline, though that is not always granted.
Who can file this lawsuit or claim?
Even if you were friends with the deceased, that does not mean you had a relationship that would make you eligible for filing a wrongful death claim. Typically, the person bringing the claim forward is going to be a representative of the deceased’s estate. They will typically fit into one of the following categories:
- The spouse of the deceased
- The children of the deceased
- The parents of the deceased
It is possible that other people may file a claim if someone from the group above does not initiate the process. When you think about who should file the claim, it is important to think about it by asking who relied on the deceased. Minor children and the deceased’s spouse will rely on them financially, they will rely on them for emotional support, and young children will rely on them for care and guidance. These are all things that they no longer have once the deceased is gone.
Working with an Attorney
It is important to work with a wrongful death attorney you can trust so that you know you are filing a claim that seeks the maximum damages. Especially when you are the one filing on behalf of your family, we know that this is a particularly large burden for you to bear.
Recovering from the loss of a loved one, especially when that loss occurs because of the negligence of someone else, is not easy. You will experience financial and emotional hardships. Thankfully, there are ways to recover some of your losses, and while pecuniary and punitive damages will not bring your loved one back, they can help you rebuild your life. If you wish to seek such damages, then contact a wrongful death lawyer in Tampa, FL at Jeff Murphy Law to discuss your options.