Preservation of evidence is critically important in any case, particularly one involving the death of a loved one. It’s important that you contact an attorney as early as you can in the process so that attorney can begin an investigation and preserve evidence wherever possible. Things like security camera footage tends to be overwritten within a relatively short period of time so time is of the essence.

A wrongful death claim must have the following elements:

  • The at-fault party had a duty of care concerning the deceased. ”Duty of care,” in legal terms, is an obligation to act with sensible care around others. For instance, a vehicle driver has the obligation to move safely among other motorists, and a building owner has the obligation to keep their premises are hazard-free for guests.
  • The responsible party breached their duty of care. In car accidents, examples of failing or breaching the duty of care could be exceeding the speed limit, driving under the influence, and failing to obey traffic signs.
  • The failure directly caused the death. You and your attorney must establish that the decedent’s death was generated by the liable party’s negligence, and not, let’s say, by a prior injury or illness.
  • The casualty incurred actual damages. “Actual damages” refers to losses you experienced due to your loved one’s passing. These can be financial, emotional, and physical losses, such as the decedent’s medical bills and loss of companionship.

Where Did the Wrongful Death Occur?