Perhaps nothing compares to the grief of losing a loved one prematurely. And that grief is even stronger when your loved one was killed by the negligence of another person, business or organization. No amount of money can adequately compensate you for your loss, but it can help ease the very real financial burdens that you are likely facing.
At VanDette Law PLLC, we are tireless advocates for personal injury victims and the surviving family members of wrongful death victims. When you hire our firm, you’ll benefit from our decades of combined legal experience and our commitment to personalized service and attention for each client.
It is helpful to think of wrongful death litigation as an extension of personal injury cases. Indeed, the two types of lawsuits often stem from the same scenarios, including:
There are two major differences between personal injury and wrongful death. The first and most obvious is the degree of harm (nonfatal vs. fatal injuries). The second is who serves as the plaintiff. In a personal injury suit, the victim brings the lawsuit on their own behalf. In wrongful death litigation, someone else must serve as the plaintiff.
In many states, surviving family members of the victim are allowed to serve as plaintiffs in a wrongful death lawsuit (known as having legal standing). New York’s law is different. Only the person named as the personal representative (executor) of the victim’s estate has the standing to sue. Therefore, a family member can only bring the suit if they are also the estate representative.
Although they generally cannot bring the lawsuit, surviving family members are typically the beneficiaries of any money obtained in a settlement or jury award. The plaintiff can seek damages on behalf of the family for losses such as:
Our attorneys will carefully assess all sources of compensation to ensure that the victim’s family receives as much financial support as possible.
Losing someone you love to a preventable act of negligence is devastating. The attorneys at VanDette Law PLLC understand how difficult this time is for you, and we would be honored to help you seek justice and compensation in civil court. To discuss your options in a free consultation, call us at (716)806-3500 or fill out our online contact form.
Buffalo Office: 403 Main Street Suite 725, Buffalo, NY 14203
Dunkirk Office: 314 Central Ave. Suite 2000, Dunkirk, NY 14048
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