The term “wrongful death” is legally defined as the death of an individual caused by the negligence, recklessness or intentional act of another. Surviving family members or the executor of the victim’s estate can file wrongful death claims. In Georgia, however, there are strict statutes that govern over this type of lawsuit.
Who is Entitled to File a Wrongful Death Claim Under Georgia’s Laws?
Georgia’s wrongful death statutes state that the deceased person’s spouse is entitled to file a claim on behalf of him or herself and the surviving children. According to the statute, the spouse should receive no less than one-third of the total winnings of the claim, while the remainder will divided between the deceased’s living children. If the deceased person’s spouse refuses to sue the negligent party, however, the children are not entitled to file a claim even if they would like to.
Illegitimate children and common law spouses may also file for a wrongful death claim as long as they fit the criteria that specifically apply to this type of case. If the deceased was single and had no children, surviving parents or the victim’s executor of estate can file suit.
What Can Be Recovered From a Wrongful Death Lawsuit?
Naturally, wrongful death lawsuits will include reimbursement of any medical expenses that the deceased may have incurred before succumbing to death, as well as funeral and burial expenses. However, there are also other items that may be included in the calculation of the claim amount.
Georgia’s wrongful death statutes define recoverable damages as the “full value of the life of the decedent without deducting for any of the necessary or personal expenses of the decedent had he lived”. This is where the calculations can get a bit complicated due to several factors that come into play, including earning potential, possible salary increases, and inflation.
Loss of companionship, protection, as well as parental guidance will also be taken into account. Seeing as these factors are almost impossible to convert to monetary units, judges usually ask the jury to award the surviving family the amount that they see fit. According to Georgia laws, pain and suffering is not included in the list of recoverable damages for wrongful death claims, because only the deceased experiences this.
Hiring a Ted A. Greve & Associates, P.A. Augusta, Georgia Wrongful Death Attorney to Represent You
Ted A. Greve & Associates, P.A. has vast experience in handling wrongful death claims. While the firm’s attorneys understand that money will not make up for the loss of their clients’ loved one, it can surely make moving on with their lives a little bit easier because they will not have to worry about suffering financially. This is why they strive to obtain maximum compensation for their clients’ loss.
If you have lost a loved due to a wrongful death, call 1-800-375-9190 for a free consultation. The attorneys at Ted A. Greve & Associates, P.A. will evaluate your case and discuss your options with you without obligation. Furthermore, they work on a contingency fee agreement, which means they do not get paid until they’ve won your case and you’ve received your claim.