When Can a Wrongful Death Claim Be Pursued in New Jersey?
No one expects to lose a loved one due to another person’s negligence. But, unfortunately, it can, and does, occur. If another person’s intentional harm or act of negligence led to you losing a loved one, then you might be eligible for a wrongful death claim.
Determining if You are Eligible for a Wrongful Death Claim
In order to file a wrongful death claim in New Jersey, the following four elements must be present:
- Duty of care: The negligent and responsible individual must have held a legal duty of care for the victim.
- Breach of duty: The responsible individual must have breached that duty of care in one way or another. This might include negligence or an intentional act of harm.
- Causation: The negligent actions of the responsible party must have directly led to the injuries, or ultimately, the death of the victim.
- Damages: In order to file a wrongful death claim, there must be actual damages that are present and can be compensated. These damages must be financial in nature.
Working with a wrongful death lawyer, you can evaluate the details of your case and determine whether it includes each of these important elements. If your lawyer determines that wrongful death is present, then they will help you with collecting the necessary documentation.
What Family Members Can File a Wrongful Death Case in New Jersey?
When a loss occurs, it is likely that many family members are affected. But, the state of New Jersey only allows certain family members to file a claim, including:
- Surviving spouse
- Surviving children
- Victim’s parents
- Victim’s siblings
- Victim’s nieces or nephews
The individual filing the claim must have been financially dependent on the victim. Other individuals who were financially dependent might also be eligible.
Recoverable Damages in a Wrongful Death Case
The loss of a loved one can put you in a difficult emotional and financial place. Fortunately, the state of New Jersey allows individuals to recover the following damages in a wrongful death case:
- Lost wages
- Lost benefits
- Medical bills
- Pain and suffering of family members
- Pain and suffering of the individual
- Property damage
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of parental support
While some of these costs, including unpaid medical bills and lost wages are easier to calculate, others can be more difficult to place a value on. It can be difficult to determine how much the cost of child care will be with the loss of one parent. Additionally, the children can lose parental support, which can also be difficult to place a value on. When you work with an experienced wrongful death lawyer, they can assist you in calculating the value of your case.
New Jersey Time Limits for Wrongful Death Claims
It is also important to be mindful of statute of limitations. New Jersey will only allow you to file a wrongful death claim within two years from the date of the victim’s death. Failing to do so can deem you ineligible for any compensation or benefits that you and your family are eligible for.
Contact a Ventnor City Lawyer to Discuss Your Wrongful Death Case in New Jersey
Did you lose a loved one due to someone else’s negligence in New Jersey? Don’t let the medical bills pile up while you wait for the negligent party or their insurance company to do the right thing. Right now, you need an aggressive wrongful death lawyer on your side, fighting to get you the compensation you need, want, and deserve. The skilled attorneys at Brown Law represent clients in a wrongful death claim in Galloway Township, Pleasantville, Ventnor City, Hammonton, and throughout New Jersey. Call (609) 344-8270 or fill out our online contact form to schedule a free consultation about your case. We have an office conveniently located at 3123 Atlantic Avenue, Suite 201, Atlantic City, NJ 08041.
The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.