Brooklyn Wrongful Death Attorney
Losing a loved one because of the acts of another person can be one of the most devastating events in a person’s life. Recovering compensation for your incredible loss can be difficult, especially during a time of grief.
You deserve to be compensated for the early loss of your loved one. While wrongful death lawsuits can be challenging, an experienced Brooklyn wrongful death attorney can be helpful. New York has laws governing wrongful death lawsuits and the types of claims you can make. There are also important rules directing how damages should be divided among the deceased’s surviving beneficiaries. However, you will only have a limited amount of time to file your lawsuit, depending on how your loved one passed.
If you lost a loved one because of the wrongful acts of another person, our Brooklyn wrongful death attorneys can help you hold the responsible party accountable. For a free case evaluation, contact The Carrion Law Firm at (718) 841-0083.
What is Wrongful Death in Brooklyn, NY
A wrongful death occurs when someone dies due to negligence, default, or the intentionally wrongful act of another person. Put simply, a person can be held liable if the death would have likely been avoided if the person had exercised an ordinary level of care.
In Brooklyn, many acts that cause wrongful death rise to a criminal level. You will still be able to file a civil claim for wrongful death, while the state will likely file criminal charges. If you have questions, our Brooklyn wrongful death attorneys can explain how wrongful death lawsuits work.
Types of Wrongful Death Claims that Can Be Filed in Brooklyn, NY
There are two types of claims that can be filed after the wrongful death of a loved one, wrongful death actions, and survival actions. While the two claims are similar, they are intended to compensate the deceased’s beneficiaries differently.
However, under E.P.T. Law § 5-4.1, only the deceased’s personal representative is permitted to file each type of claim. The personal representative will either be named by the deceased in their will or appointed by the court. In most cases, a close family member will likely act as the personal representative. Our Brooklyn wrongful death attorneys can help you understand the differences between wrongful death and survival actions and what each provides.
Wrongful Death Actions
Wrongful death actions are intended to compensate the deceased’s family for the damages they have suffered because of the loss of their loved one. Under E.P.T. Law § 5-4.3, only pecuniary damages can be awarded. New York law considers the following damages pecuniary for the purposes of a wrongful death action:
- Lost wages, benefits, and financial support the deceased would have received had they survived
- Medical bills and other expenses to treat their injuries, if they survived for some time after the accident
- Funeral expenses and cost of burial
- Loss of inheritance
- Loss of the value of services and support the deceased would have provided had they survived
Non-economic damages associated with grief or pain and suffering will not be awarded, however.
A survival action is intended to compensate the family for the damages the deceased would have been entitled to recover in a lawsuit had they survived. A victim who survives their accident can typically file a personal injury lawsuit to recover economic damages, like medical bills and lost wages, and non-economic damages, like pain and suffering. When the victim dies from their injuries, the right the file a lawsuit to recover the pre-death damages is passed to the deceased’s personal representative.
The deceased’s personal representative will usually file the survival action and the wrongful death action in the same lawsuit. If the lawsuit succeeds, the damages will be evenly distributed to the deceased’s beneficiaries after certain expenses, like medical bills and funeral costs, are paid. Our Brooklyn wrongful death attorneys can help you craft the right legal strategy to recover the compensation you and your family are owed.
Beneficiaries Who Can Recover Damages in a Brooklyn, NY Wrongful Death Lawsuit
Damages from a wrongful death action are paid directly to the deceased’s family, with the spouse and children receiving a majority of the damages first. According to E.P.T. Law § 4-1.1(a), if a spouse and children survive the deceased, the spouse will receive $50,000, with the remaining amount equally divided between the spouse and children. If the deceased is survived only by their spouse, all damages will be awarded to the spouse. The rule works the same if the deceased is unmarried but has children.
The law also allows the deceased’s parents to recover damages if there is no surviving spouse or children. In rarer cases with no surviving spouse, children, or parents, a deceased’s siblings may receive the damages. If the deceased is survived only by grandparents, uncles, or aunts, the law allows these family members to claim a percentage of the damages. Our Brooklyn wrongful death attorneys can help you determine the damages available depending on your relationship with the deceased.
Time Limit to File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in Brooklyn, NY
The time limit for a personal representative to file a Brooklyn wrongful death lawsuit is known as the statute of limitations. Under E.P.T. Law § 5-4.1, the deceased’s personal representative will have two years from the date of death to file a lawsuit in Brooklyn. However, if the death resulted from medical malpractice, the time limit to file increases to two and a half years. Also, if a criminal case is pending against the person responsible for your loved one’s death, the statute of limitations will last for one year from the date the criminal case ends. Our Brooklyn wrongful death attorneys can help you identify the time available to file your lawsuit.
Our Brooklyn, NY, Wrongful Death Attorneys Can Help
If you have lost a loved one and need help with your wrongful death claim, our Brooklyn wrongful death attorneys at The Carrion Law Firm can provide you with a free case review. Call us today at (718) 841-0083.