Wrongful Death Lawyer Arlington, TX
A wrongful death can completely upend your life, but a wrongful death lawyer in Arlington, Texas, can help you move forward. Any avoidable death is a tragedy, and if you’ve experienced the sudden loss of a loved one you may feel any number of conflicting emotions: Grief, anger, confusion – all of them can greatly affect your ability to properly adjust to your loss. Importantly, the emotional battle you’ll have to face after a wrongful death can prevent you from properly processing your loss.
When you’re trying to understand your loss, chances are you don’t have the ability (or time) to handle the paperwork, funerary planning, and sudden debts or medical bills all at once. However, depending on the nature of your loved one’s death, you could be entitled to financial compensation. While no amount of money can ever bring back a loved one, it can be used to help with the mounting debts and bills that have fallen on your shoulders.
Am I Entitled to Compensation?
Seeking compensation is a challenging process. In order to file a wrongful death suit, you have to understand what makes a death wrongful in the first place, and you need to consider whether the loss of your loved one qualifies in the first place. At its core, a wrongful death is a death that can be traced back to a negligent party. This party will be held responsible for the death in legal proceedings, so you need to have sufficient evidence they were responsible for your loss.
There are many different causes of a wrongful death, and in some cases there are multiple parties that can be held responsible. A wrongful death lawyer in Arlington, TX, can help you determine whose negligence was the greatest contributor the the death of your close friend or family member, and the right lawyer can assist you in building a case that lays the evidence clear for the court. Whether the cause of death was due to a drunk driver or improper safety equipment, every factor needs to be considered when it comes to building your case – and Brandy Austin Law Firm, PLLC leaves nothing to chance.
Reach Out to Brandy Austin Law Firm, PLLC
At Brandy Austin Law Firm, PLLC, we understand that the tragedy of a wrongful death may weigh heavy on your shoulders. In a delicate time and situation, you need effective and competent legal guidance, and a legal team that treats you like a person, instead of just another paycheck. We provide personalized case management (no cookie cutter plans or solutions) to help you determine who can be held accountable for your loss, and how much money you can expect to win in damages.
If you’ve experienced the sudden loss of a loved one, you shouldn’t lose yourself in your grief. Someone, or some organization may have contributed to the death of your close friend or relative, and they should be held accountable for their actions. Winning damages from a dangerously negligent party is your first step to getting the justice and closure you deserve. Contact Brandy Austin Law Firm, PLLC, and see how a wrongful death lawyer in Arlington, Texas, can help you move on.
Losing a loved one is one of the most difficult events to go through, but when their death was the result of negligent or reckless behavior or actions by another party or parties, the loss can be absolutely devastating. No settlement can make up for the loss, but it is important the parties are held accountable for the pain and suffering that families experience due to an accidental death. Under the law, families who have experienced the wrongful death of a loved one because of a negligent company or individual have the option of filing a claim. You have a right to seek legal action against the liable party if you have a loved one who suffered a wrongful death, and can potentially receive adequate compensation for any financial damages you’ve endured. National statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reveals that death from accidental injuries is the fourth leading cause of death in the United States. Such cases are not easy to handle alone, so working with a trusted lawyer who has helped many families achieve justice for their loved one’s death is highly recommended. If you believe your loved one’s accidental and untimely death was due to the contributing negligent actions of their employer, it may even be more difficult to get a favorable outcome on the case. When Texas families lose a loved one in an accidental death, many turn to a wrongful death lawyer Arlington, TX families trust from Brandy Austin Law Firm, PLLC in order to seek financial justice from the people responsible for that death.
Wrongful Death Laws in Texas
Wrongful death laws provide legal protections for families who are interested in seeking compensation after the accidental death of a loved one. Sometimes multiple parties play a contributing role in the death. When fatal accidents happen, families have a right to seek justice for their loved one. Texas law allows for survivors of victims killed in an accident caused by another party to pursue a wrongful death lawsuit against that party in cases where a person or corporation caused the death of someone else through any of the following manners:
- A wrongful act
The scenarios in which these deaths occur are widely varied. Some scenarios involve an employer failing to ensure sufficient protections at a workplace area. Others occur due to a lack of routine maintenance which then leads to accidents that results in a worker’s death. A lawyer who has previous experience handling wrongful death cases understands how to conduct a proper investigation into the cause of your loved one’s death and who may have played a role. The more parties that are involved, the more complicated the case may be. The majority of cases an Arlington, TX wrongful death lawyer handles includes:
- Automobile accidents
- Truck accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Pedestrian accidents
- Medical malpractice
- Dangerous premises/premises liability
- Dangerous or defective products
- Dangerous or defective pharmaceutical drugs
- The commission of a crime
Although deaths are unintentional in many cases, it is common for victims’ families to pursue compensation for wrongful death stemming from intentional murder or other criminal acts as well.
Wrongful Death Civil Lawsuits for Criminal Offenses
When a person commits a crime that causes the death of another, he or she will almost certainly be tried in criminal court. But it is also possible for the victim’s loved ones to pursue a civil lawsuit against the defendant for the same actions.
A good example is a fatal drunk-driving accident. The defendant may be charged with and (hopefully) convicted of a criminal offense like vehicular manslaughter. But regardless of the outcome of the criminal proceedings, the victim’s family can also sue the defendant for wrongful death.
This is even possible in cases of intentional homicide, whether or not the jury chooses to convict. In the infamous O.J. Simpson murder trial of the early 1990s, Simpson was acquitted by a criminal jury. But he later lost a wrongful death lawsuit filed by the families of the victims. It is worth noting that civil lawsuits are won or lost on a “preponderance of the evidence,” which is a lower standard than “guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.” Therefore, it is very possible for plaintiffs to win a wrongful death lawsuit even if there was no criminal conviction. To the average person who is not familiar with these laws, these differences may be difficult to understand. Talk to a wrongful death lawyer if you have questions about the details of your case or if you need further explanation regarding how wrongful death civil lawsuits work.
Other Information to Know
Not everyone has the standing to file a wrongful death lawsuit. Wrongful death lawsuits are limited to specific family members. Texas law dictates that the potential plaintiffs are generally limited to the victim’s spouse, children, or parents. Adoptive parents and adoptive children are also permitted. Siblings of a decedent cannot sue for wrongful death. However, the estate of the deceased may also be able to make a wrongful death claim, which makes the issue of standing to sue a little more complex. If you have questions regarding if you are eligible to file a wrongful death lawsuit, you can ask a trusted lawyer about your particular situation. An experienced Arlington, TX wrongful death lawyer understands these legal nuances and can explain who may take legal action on behalf of your specific lost loved one.
Finally, it is important to observe the statute of limitations. After an accidental death, a family has a limited time to file a lawsuit. Texas law requires plaintiffs to file a wrongful death lawsuit within two years of the victim’s death (with very few exceptions). As such, you should consult an attorney as soon as reasonably possible if you are considering litigation. You want to act as soon as you can as wrongful death lawsuits require a lot of preparation. You have to meet all the requirements in order to submit a claim, which can take some time to complete. The more time that passes, the harder it can become to collect strong evidence. It is important to consult with a wrongful death lawyer as soon as you suspect that your loved one’s death may have been due to negligence or other factors that reasonably call for an investigation.
What Steps Do You Need To Take in a Wrongful Death Case?
Wrongful death lawsuits are generally quite complicated. This is to be expected because many points have to be proved for the case to qualify as wrongful death. Fortunately, when you work with an experienced wrongful death lawyer Arlington, TX, you can follow the correct steps needed.
Contact a Wrongful Death Lawyer Right Away
It’s understandable to feel dazed, angry or emotionally drained after the passing of a loved one, and even more when the tragedy was caused by a physician’s negligence. These emotions can make it hard to think straight. A wrongful death lawyer Arlington, TX can assist by offering practical guidance. That way, you can make decisions that are good for your family right now and in the future.
At the Brandy Austin Law Firm, we are happy to answer your questions in a kind, compassionate and easy-to-understand way. We can file a lawsuit immediately so you avoid running into problems with the statute of limitations.
Gather Needed Evidence
A family member or personal representative needs to gather certain documents, such as the death certificate and medical records. This is often difficult for surviving family members at such a difficult time. You can give your wrongful death lawyer Arlington, TX permission to gather the evidence needed for your case instead. Doing this gives you time to grieve while making sure your wrongful death claim can move forward.
What evidence is generally needed in this type of lawsuit?
- Past and present medical records
- Medical bills
- Testimony from eyewitnesses
- Testimony from other medical professionals
- Footage/videos of the accident if available
- Polite reports (for motor vehicle accidents)
- Work records (for workplace accidents)
- Financial records
At the Brandy Austin Law Firm, we can handle evidence gathering completely. One of the reasons we have an excellent reputation with clients is that they can sense that we want to ease suffering as much as possible by taking care of all of these needs.
Negotiate With the Insurance Company
In many cases of wrongful death, it’s necessary to negotiate with the negligent person’s insurance company. Having a lawyer take care of this step is wise because many insurers try to keep claims as low as possible. An attorney can often help you reach a larger settlement that covers your needs without having to go to court. This provides the compensation you need more quickly.
If the insurer refuses to budge, then it’s time to sue. Your wrongful death lawyer Arlington, TX can file the lawsuit and represent you in court.
Contact a Wrongful Death Lawyer Arlington, TX, Trusts
To learn more about your rights and options after the death of a loved one, contact our firm to arrange an initial consultation today. It is recommended that you first gain an understanding of your legal options if you are considering filing a wrongful death lawsuit. We understand the legal process can seem complex and overwhelming for the average person. You may be reluctant to pursue a claim and have to deal with the complexities that come with legal matters. However, it is strongly advised that you at least discover your full options pertaining to your loved one’s death. In this difficult time, we are committed to providing you the best quality legal advice and give you some peace of mind. We will be straightforward and disclose our honest and professional opinions to you. If we believe your case to be invalid, we will tell you. Our team has years of experience in wrongful death claims and will fiercely fight for you rights. We believe in holding parties at fault accountable and will persistently negotiate for fair and just compensation. Please feel free to write down any questions you may want to ask our Arlington, TX wrongful death lawyer team. You may also bring any records or documents related to your case that the legal team can evaluate. That way, you can easily reference your concerns when we meet. We look forward to speaking with you.
Questions You May Have For a Wrongful Death Lawyer
Dealing with the aftermath of an accidental death is tremendously difficult. Filing a lawsuit adds another layer of difficulty to this hardship, and it may be challenging to find answers on your own. You may have specific concerns you want addressed during your consultation. Consulting with a wrongful death lawyer can help relieve some of the stress associated with filing a claim. Some questions you may have for a lawyer include the following:
- What are the steps in a wrongful death lawsuit?
- What if the liable party retaliates?
- What documents and do I need to bring?
- How much will compensation cover?
- Are all emotional and financial damages covered?
Filing a Wrongful Death Lawsuit
Whether or not there have been criminal charges filed against the at-fault party – such as a drunk driving crash or assault – a wrongful death lawsuit is addressed in a separate legal action and in a different court. Texas law only allows certain family members and/or estate representatives to file an action and there is a statute of limitations in place that determines how long after the victim’s death the lawsuit must be filed by.
A wrongful death lawyer from our firm can evaluate a family’s case to determine if their loved one’s death qualifies as wrongful death in the eyes of the law. In order to be successful, the lawyer will need to prove three elements to the court:
The alleged at-fault party had a duty of care to the victim. For example, in a drunk driving crash, the driver who caused the accident had a duty of care to other motorists and the public to obey all traffic laws. Driving under the influence is a violation of Texas law.
The alleged at-fault party breached that duty of care. In the drunk driving crash, when the driver got in their vehicle and began driving even though they had been drinking, that is a breach of the duty of care they owe the public.
The alleged at-fault party’s actions caused the death of the victim. In the above example, if the driver’s inebriated state caused the crash in which the victim was killed.
Call Our Office Today
We understand that no amount of money will ever make up for the loss of your loved one, but your family has the right to financial justice for the negligent actions of the party responsible for the death. If a party has played a contributing role in your loved one’s death, they deserve to be brought to justice. You may be hesitant if you fear retaliation from the individual who caused the death. You may be unsure if you have the resources or if your claim is strong enough. Many families have these concerns and a lawyer understands that you may need some time to prepare before your consultation. However, every wrongdoer should be held accountable if they have caused an accidental death and justice should be served. A lawyer has the skills and knowledge to closely examine the details of a case and offer you suggestions for the right course of action. Time is limited though and the more time that passes, and you don’t want to act when it’s too late. We have successfully advocated for many clients and helped them earn the rightful compensation that they deserve. Call Brandy Austin Law Firm, PLLC to meet with an Arlington, TX wrongful death lawyer and find out what legal recourse you may have.
Common Myths About Wrongful Death Claims
If your family member was killed due to another person’s negligence, you have the right to file a wrongful death claim. However, you may have come across several myths that might impact your claim. Speak to a wrongful death lawyer if you have come across any claims that you’re not sure are true and they can clear up any uncertainties or dispel false information. Here are a few misconceptions about these claims you shouldn’t believe:
- Anyone Can File a Wrongful Death Claim: This isn’t true. In the state of Texas, the only people who can file a wrongful death claim are the deceased person’s parents, spouse, and children, including adoptive parents and children.
- A Person Found Liable of Wrongful Death Will Be Arrested: A wrongful death claim is a civil claim rather than a criminal one. The person found liable for wrongful death will be expected to pay money to the surviving family members for damages, like medical bills, funeral and burial expenses, and loss of income. He or she won’t serve jail time.
- You Can File a Wrongful Death Claim Whenever: In Texas, you can only file a wrongful death claim within two years of your family member’s death. Once that deadline has passed, you will no longer be eligible for compensation. That’s why you should discuss your case with a wrongful death lawyer in Arlington, TX as soon as possible.
- Life Insurance Benefits Are Enough: Unfortunately, not everyone has a life insurance policy. Even if your family member did take out a life insurance policy, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t file a wrongful death claim. A claim can provide benefits that life insurance doesn’t address, like pain and suffering.
- You’re Greedy If You File a Wrongful Death Claim: Some people may be reluctant to file a wrongful death claim because they’re afraid they will be seen as greedy. While nothing will make up for the death of a loved one, filing a wrongful death claim doesn’t make you greedy. It is a rational response and families have a right to seek justice for their loved one’s death. It can help relieve some of the financial burden caused by death, like medical bills and funeral expenses.
- The Insurance Company Will Offer Me a Fair Settlement: Although it would be nice if the negligent party’s insurance company would offer you a fair settlement for your family member’s death, it’s not realistic. Be cautious of any claims that an insurance company will always give the best offer. Most of the time, the first offer extended to you does not include enough compensation. Insurance companies are in the business of making money and won’t have your best interests at heart. They are not obligated to compensate you for the amount you want or need. For this reason, it’s critical to have an experienced wrongful death lawyer in Arlington, TX on your side who will vet any offer you come across. They will determine whether an offer is fair and should be accepted or not. He or she will negotiate with the insurer on your behalf and protect your rights.