Seattle Wrongful Death Lawyer

Wrongful death is a terrible tragedy that can occur if someone is negligent reckless in regard to the safety of the people around them. Being a survivor after losing a loved one in a fatal accident can leave you with many questions, including who may be held responsible for causing the death. If someone else’s negligence took your loved one’s life, your family may be eligible for compensation. The Seattle wrongful death lawyer at Washington Injury Law are here for your family during this difficult time. Contact us for a free consultation.

Seattle Wrongful Death Resources

Why Choose Washington Injury Law?

  • You will not pay anything unless we win. We use our own money to advance all the necessary costs to move your case forward. We use a contingency fee agreement, so you will only have to pay if we secure your family monetary damages.
  • You will benefit from our years of trial experience. Our Seattle wrongful death attorneys have what it takes to bring your wrongful death case to court in Seattle, if necessary. Your wrongful death claim may require a trial if an insurer treats you unfairly.
  • You will have peace of mind while our Seattle personal injury lawyers handles everything. We are passionate about helping families after a wrongful death. You can concentrate on grieving while our wrongful death lawyer takes care of your case.

What are Washington’s Wrongful Death Laws?

Each state has unique wrongful death laws. As a potential claimant, you must learn the laws regarding what deaths qualify as a wrongful death, when to file a claim, and what damages to seek. A wrongful death lawyer in Seattle can help you navigate the laws in Washington.

Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim in Seattle?

Many states around the country allow these surviving family members of the deceased to file a wrongful death lawsuit in court. However, Washington law specifically requires that the personal representative, sometimes referred to as the executor, of the estate be the one to file the claim in court.

If the deceased individual had a will or an estate plan in place, then there will likely be a personal representative named in these documents. In the event there was no will or estate plan, or if the personal representative named cannot serve, the court will appoint a person to act as the executor. Often, family members are already named the personal representative in the will or named by the court, but that is not always the case.

Please note that even though the personal representative of the deceased is the one responsible for filing the row for death claim, any damages awarded as a result of a successful claim will be for the benefit of the deceased’s survivors.

What Type of Compensation is Available for a Wrongful Death in Seattle?

Family members of those who lose their lives due to the negligent party should be able to recover a range of compensation types if their claim or lawsuit is successful. Our attorneys work diligently to recover economic and non-economic damages for wrongful death claims.

Economic damages for a wrongful death claim in Seattle revolve around the types of expenses that include current and future monetary losses related to the death of a loved one. Common types of damages awarded can include:

  • Medical expenses and medical bills that occurred after the incident but before the person’s death
  • Funeral expenses and other burial expenses, which can be costly
  • Any wages the deceased would have burned after the incident and before their death
  • Loss of future earnings the deceased would have provided throughout their lifetime
  • Loss of various types of benefits, including inheritance, health insurance, etc.

When calculating future losses for a wrongful death claim, various factors will need to be examined. This includes the victim’s age, health, education, earning capacity, occupation, and prior contributions to the family.

Non-economic damages are more difficult to measure but equally as important as the economic losses mentioned above. State law allows wrongful death victims’ families to collect for losses based on what the victim would have likely provided to their families based on their past contributions and expected future contributions, had they lived.

For example, spouses or partners of the deceased may be eligible to receive compensation for the loss of emotional support, affection, love, care, companionship, and other services for assistance. Children, stepchildren, siblings, and parents may also be entitled to economic damages related to the loss, including the loss of companionship, guidance, love, affection, and the overall mental anguish and negative impact of losing a loved one.

We strongly encourage working with a skilled attorney who will enlist assistance from medical, economic, and financial experts when working to calculate the family’s total expected losses. These individuals may provide written or in-person testimony to insurance carriers or a personal injury jury if the case goes to trial.

When is the Deadline for Filing a Wrongful Death Claim in Washington?

Claimants must file wrongful death lawsuits or survival actions within three years of the date of death for the courts to hear the case. This time limit does not change because of an ongoing criminal case.

You do not have to navigate Washington’s wrongful death laws alone. Hire a Seattle wrongful death lawyer today who specializes in wrongful death cases to take care of your case for you, and benefit from years of legal experience.

When to Hire a Seattle Wrongful Death Lawyer

Wrongful death is the ultimate price to pay for another person’s negligence and wrongdoing. If your family member has passed away unexpectedly, do not go through the insurance claim process alone. Following the unexpected loss of loved ones, navigating the legal process alone can be daunting.  The insurance companies, unfortunately, want what is best for them, not for you. This can lead to unfair settlement offers or denied claims. Hire a Seattle attorney to handle your insurance company claim for your family. A skilled wrongful death attorney can take care of everything, filing all paperwork before Washington’s statute of limitations, giving you as much peace of mind as possible throughout the legal process.

what to do after a wrongful death in seattle, wa

What to Do After a Wrongful Death in Seattle

After experiencing the wrongful death of a loved one, many families and friends are unsure of what they can do next. The reason behind why the death actually occurred and who is responsible may also be unclear to the people left behind. If you believe that a wrongful death has occurred, it’s important to do as much as you can immediately after to support a future legal action. After the incident, take these steps:

  • Gather as much evidence as possible after the accident. This can include witness statements, photos of the scene of the accident and damages, and notes of what happened.
  • Make note of what your loved one was doing before the accident and at the time the fatal injuries occurred.
  • Keep statements, bills for all medical expenses, and receipts of any medical records and medical care that was received.
  • Contact a skilled Seattle wrongful death attorney prior to making any statements or insurance claims.

What Evidence Do You Need for a Wrongful Death Claim?

In a wrongful death suit, the most common legal basis is negligence. Regarding evidence, negligent actions of another party involve four factors that need to be addressed, which includes:

  1. The defendant had a duty to the deceased person. Ex: The driver of a car having the duty of stopping at a stop sign.
  2. The defendant breached that duty. Ex: The driver does not stop at the stop sign.
  3. The death was a result of the breach of duty. Ex: The deceased sustained fatal wounds from the crash.
  4. The family of the deceased suffered an economic loss. Ex: The deceased party was the main provider for the family. 

What Injuries & Accidents Can Lead to a Wrongful Death?

While no one starts their day out with plans of getting into a life-changing situation, it can happen. Something as simple as a short fall could ultimately lead to a brain injury that could result in a wrongful death. There are several injuries that can lead to a wrongful death including spinal cord injuries, burn injuries, labor and delivery injuries, and dog bites. It’s important to practice caution when engaging in risky or potentially harmful situations. Though wrongful death situations are completely unpredictable, your pain and suffering should not go unnoticed.

Wrongful death in Seattle can occur in many circumstances. In 2015, truck and car accidents alone took 553 lives in Washington state. Knowing how your loved one died is one of the first steps toward obtaining financial compensation in a negligence claim. Some types of incidents cause wrongful death more than others.

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Call Today to Speak to a Wrongful Death Attorney in Seattle

The  Seattle wrongful death lawyers at Washington Injury Law have years of experience handling complicated wrongful death claims. We can evaluate your case, discuss your options with you, help you prove liability, and fight for full compensation for your losses. We know a claim cannot bring back your loved one. Financial recovery could, however, give you justice, closure, and financial stability during a tough time. Request your free consultation in Seattle today.