How Do I File a Wrongful Death Claim? | Colorado Springs Injury Lawyers
If you had a loved one who died due to the wrongful act or omission of an individual or entity, you may be able to pursue a claim for wrongful death.
In Colorado Springs, wrongful death is a civil lawsuit that is available when the person who died could have recovered damages based on the injury, condition, or other tortious act that led to their death. In other words, the first question involved in a wrongful death action is if your loved one–had they survived–would have been able to sue the at-fault party. If the answer to that question is yes, you may be able to sue the bad actor on behalf of the victim.
At Zinda Law Group, our Colorado Springs personal injury lawyers have the experience and resources necessary to help you seek compensation for medical and funeral expenses, lost income, pain and suffering, and more. Call us today at 800-863-5312 for a free consultation with a skilled wrongful death attorney in Colorado Springs.
What Kinds of Acts Are Covered by Wrongful Death?
While many wrongful death claims stem from motor vehicle accidents, defective products, or medical malpractice, any kind of fault or negligence that brings about a death can form the basis for a wrongful death action in Colorado Springs.
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim?
Whether you can file a wrongful death claim in Colorado Springs depends on your relationship with the decedent and the length of time that has passed since their death:
- During the first year following the death, a wrongful death claim may be brought by the decedent’s spouse; the decedent’s heirs if the spouse consents; or if there is no spouse, the decedent’s heirs or designated beneficiary.
- During the second year following the death, a wrongful death claim may be brought by the decedent’s spouse, heirs, or designated beneficiary and heirs.
- Parents may sue for the wrongful death of a child only if the child was unmarried and without heirs.
Although “heirs” generally has a broader meaning, in this context it refers only to lineal descendants and thus doesn’t include siblings and parents.
It is important to note that in Colorado Springs the statute of limitations restricts the time period for filing a wrongful death action to two years following the death of the individual.
What Kinds of Damages Can a Plaintiff Recover?
“Damages” refers to the compensation a successful party recovers in a lawsuit. In a wrongful death action, Colorado Springs plaintiffs can recover economic damages to compensate for financial losses, as well as noneconomic damages to compensate for loss of companionship, pain and suffering, and other intangible harms.
Typical economic damages include not only funeral expenses but also financial benefits that the plaintiff would have received from the decedent had he or she survived. To measure the latter, one must evaluate various aspects of the decedent’s life, such as their occupation, relationship to the plaintiff, and life expectancy.
Noneconomic damages, which are meant to compensate the plaintiff for emotional and psychological harm caused by the death of a loved one, are also available in Colorado Springs. However, the total amount of noneconomic damages recoverable is limited to $250,000 per claim, adjusted upward for inflation. A knowledgeable personal injury attorney can help you determine what, if any, damages you can recover when pursuing a wrongful death claim in Colorado Springs
Skilled Colorado Springs Wrongful Death Lawyers
The first step when contemplating a wrongful death claim is to speak with a personal injury attorney who is experienced in handling the particular type of case involved.
Losing a loved one is never easy, and the pain of that loss is only heightened when the person or entity responsible for causing it does not shoulder the consequences. Though speaking with an attorney about your case and asserting a wrongful death claim will not bring back your loved one, it can help you find both financial wholeness and emotional resolution.
At Zinda Law Group, our team of wrongful death attorneys will help you seek the compensation you deserve under the law. Our lawyers have handled hundreds of wrongful death cases, and we work on a contingency fee basis, which means you pay nothing unless we win. Call us today at 800-863-5312 for a free consultation with one of our Colorado Springs wrongful death lawyers.