Who Can File a Wrongful Death Suit in Florida?
Filing a wrongful death suit in Florida can be scary and frustrating, especially right after experiencing the death of someone you love. Wrongful death happens when someone passes away because of another person’s negligent actions. In most cases, the surviving family members of the victim can file the wrongful death suit. A Pensacola lawyer can help.
Who Is Entitled to Damages After a Wrongful Death Suit?
Usually, a person will name a personal representative in their will or estate documents. This person will be able to file a wrongful death suit. If the person did not name a personal representative before their death, the court will usually name a spouse, parent, or adult child of the deceased.
The personal representative is in charge of naming all the qualified surviving family members who are directly affected by the wrongful death so that they are included in the claim. However, there are still some rules when it comes to who can claim parts of the estate or participate in the lawsuit when there has been a wrongful death.
Usually, people who qualify include:
- The spouse
- The parents
- The children
- Blood relatives or adopted siblings who are partly or wholly financially dependent on the decedent
In the case that the parents were not married, some additional rules apply. If a child’s mother was the wrongful death victim, the child stands to win damages in the suit. However, if the father was the wrongful death victim, there are some additional rules. The father must have recognized the child as his own and contributed to paying child support.
What Compensation Will the Surviving Family Members Receive?
In any wrongful death suit, the surviving family members will want to know who can receive compensation and what they are entitled to. In the state of Florida, surviving family members are entitled to compensation for:
- Funeral and final medical expenses
- Emotional suffering, pain, and anguish
- Loss of guidance and companionship
- Loss of the services and support that the decedent provided
The estate can also seek compensation for lost wages and other income. This includes the decedent’s lost earning capacity. This includes all the income they could have reasonably received before the age of retirement.
Benefits of Speaking with a Lawyer
In many wrongful death suits, it might be a good idea to partner with a lawyer. They can help you file the lawsuit and make sure all the paperwork is in order. They can also ensure that all the entitled family members have access to fair compensation.
Get Ahold of a Lawyer Right Away
If you are going through a wrongful death suit, call us today at 850-434-3333. Our lawyers can help you appear in front of the judge and talk to a jury for you if needed. You can also fill out our online form to get help from our team.