If your family member passed away due to the negligent actions of a person, corporation, or government entity, you may be able to recover damages by pursuing a wrongful death lawsuit. In Connecticut, a wrongful death claim can only be filed by an executor who is acting on behalf of the decedent’s estate. If necessary, the court can appoint an executor if one isn’t already listed in the decedent’s will.
Do I Have Grounds for a Wrongful Death Lawsuit?
There are many legal nuances associated with wrongful death claims, so it’s important to review your case with a qualified attorney before taking legal action. However, you may have grounds to file a claim if your loved one’s hypothetical survival could have led to a personal injury lawsuit. An experienced attorney can meticulously research the case, interview witnesses, and consult with medical experts to prove the negligent party is responsible for your family member’s death.
If your lawsuit is successful, the damages will be paid to your loved one’s estate and then distributed according to their will. If your family member didn’t complete an estate plan before passing away, the damages will be distributed per the intestacy laws of Connecticut.
The estate can recover the following economic and non-economic damages:
- Funeral and burial costs
- Medical bills
- Nursing services
- Loss of consortium
- Pain and suffering
- Lost earning capacity
According to Section 14-295 of the Connecticut General Statutes, additional damages can be awarded in a wrongful death case if a driver’s “reckless disregard” for traffic laws played a role in your loved one’s death.
The Statute of Limitations
Per the statute of limitations in Connecticut, executors only have 2 years to file wrongful death claims against any negligent parties. If you fail to file your claim within this time period, the court can legally refuse to hear your case. Also, the defendant’s legal team may use the terms set by the statute of limitations to dismiss your case or limit your potential damages.
Of course, there are exceptions to this law, so it’s important to discuss your specific circumstances with a wrongful death lawyer.
Schedule a Consultation with an Experienced Wrongful Death Lawyer
It’s not unusual for grieving families to face countless personal, legal, and financial obstacles after the death of a cherished loved one. At Fitzpatrick Mariano Santos Sousa P.C., we can help you file a wrongful death claim that yields compensation and provides you with a necessary sense of closure. Our compassionate Waterbury wrongful death attorneys have been providing legal services to the residents of Connecticut for over 35 years. We have the skills, experience, and resources to handle every detail of your case so that you can focus on grieving and spending time with your family.
Contact Fitzpatrick Mariano Santos Sousa P.C. at (203) 583-8299 to schedule a free consultation.