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If your loved one has died due to someone else’s negligence or malpractice, it’s only natural you wish to seek justice and demand accountability.

In these cases, filing a wrongful death claim against an individual, business, or entity can give you closure if the defendant is held liable for their actions.

While going to court won’t bring your loved one back, a wrongful death claim can bring you financial compensation, the entity’s legal responsibility for your loved one’s death, and hopefully prevent more such deaths from happening.

But to win the case, you’ll need to hire an experienced and reliable wrongful death attorney. And to find one, you need to know the right questions to ask during initial consultations.

Here’s the list of the most important questions regarding a wrongful death claim to discuss with your attorney.

What is Considered Wrongful Death?

Wrongful death is the event of someone’s passing caused by another person’s or entity’s negligence or misconduct.

Common examples of wrongful deaths are work and traffic accidents, medical malpractice, and nursing home negligence.

In most cases, a wrongful death lawsuit is a civil action between a plaintiff and the defendant without the involvement of the official government bodies.

A wrongful death claim can be filled by any surviving family member, such as the deceased’s spouse, common-law partner, parents, grandparents, siblings or children.

If the defendant party is found liable, family members can seek substantial financial compensation from the guilty party.

Four Questions to Ask Your Wrongful Death Lawyer

Predicting the outcome of any legal trial is impossible, no matter how strong the evidence may seem. However, hiring an attorney specializing in wrongful death law will ease your path towards seeking the guilty party’s equity and accountability.

Before starting your wrongful death claim, make sure to ask the prospective lawyers all the right questions. More questions will undoubtedly arise during your conversation with the attorney, so ensure the attorney addresses all your concerns.

#1 What is the Lawyer’s Experience in Wrongful Death Claims

Wrongful death suits fall under civil cases and thus require an attorney specialized in the field of civil law.

In fact, the scope of wrongful death claims is so broad that some attorneys work solely on specific types of claims, such as medical malpractice, nursing home negligence, or animal attack

Before meeting with the prospective attorney, examine their portfolio and reach out to their past clients. If you know someone who recently filed a wrongful death claim, ask them to share their experience on the process.

#2 Do You Have a Strong Case for a Wrongful Death Claim

Many wrongful death lawyers practice the No Win No Fee civil claims procedure. This means they don’t charge fees if you don’t win the claim. Therefore, if the attorney takes you on as a client, you can assume your case against the defendant is strong.

Nevertheless, it’s advisable that, together with your attorney, you go over the case to uncover any possible reasons for dismissal.

While no law case is foolproof, a good attorney has substantial experience in wrongful death cases to predict the most likely outcome.

#3 What Type of Compensation Can You Expect from the Wrongful Death Claim

In wrongful death civil suits, financial compensation is the focal point of the trial. Therefore, prior to filing the claim, you and your attorney should define the specific compensation you seek from the defendant.

For example, depending on the circumstances of your loved one’s passing, you are eligible to demand compensation for:

  • The costs of your loved one’s funeral
  • The expenses of the deceased’s medical care
  • The emotional distress and pain you have experienced
  • The loss of financial security due to your loved one’s death

The above-mentioned are only some grounds for financial compensation, and you should keep in mind that these vary depending on the details of your loved one’s passing.

For example, in case a nursing home negligence caused the death of your loved one, you could seek recuperation of the care home expenses.

#4 Who Obtains the Evidence in a Wrongful Death Claim

Although wrongful death cases don’t usually require evidence beyond a reasonable doubt, conducting a thorough initial investigation is integral to winning these cases.

You will want to hire an attorney that understands and follows the necessary steps and procedures to ensure all evidence is admissible.

For example, in a claim against a nursing home where the deceased was subject to abuse, misconduct, or negligence, your attorney should conduct witness interviews, gather medical records, and investigate other potential cases of negligence.

Of course, you should always provide your nursing home negligence lawyer with all the documentation, findings, or information you have to help them build the case.

However, while it’s completely understandable you wish to conduct your own investigation, by flying solo, you risk compromising the evidence and, hence, your entire case.

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