Kentucky Wrongful Death Lawyer
A needless death at the hands of a careless person, corporation, doctor, or hospital leaves families stunned and shocked by the sudden absence of the loved one.
Look at the many things our loved ones provide us with:
- love and affection
- parent and nurturer
- income and economic security
- care giver
- loving spouse and partner
- emotional and moral support
- household services like meal preparation, cleaning, and laundry
- transportation for activities
No one can replace the void left by the death of a loved one, but under Kentucky law the family may be able to file what is called a wrongful death lawsuit and recover money damages from the person or company responsible for the death. Spouses and children may also have the right to file their own claims for money damages for the loss of the affection and companionship of the loved one.
Bowling Green attorney Mike Breen has helped assure the financial future of numerous families during the difficult times following the tragic and unnecessary loss of a loved one.
What You Should Know
During our 28 years of experience we have seen many types of mistakes that have caused the needless deaths of others. Here are the types of causes where someone's negligence and carelessness has led to a wrongful death:
Big Truck Accidents
Nursing Home Abuse
Defective Medical Devices
Defective Swimming Pools
There are many other types of accidents that can cause a wrongful death. Any time someone has died there should be an immediate investigation by an experienced attorney. This is because evidence needs to be preserved, and witnesses must be interviewed while everything is still fresh. Evidence sometimes disappears, accidentally or not, and the accident scene may become contaminated or fade from weather. State authorities may need to be contacted to investigate.
Immediate action is also important because under Kentucky law there is a one year statute of limitations for bringing a lawsuit unless specific steps are taken to extend it. If suit is not brought within a year, or legal steps are not taken to extend it, then the right to bring a claim or file a lawsuit is lost.
Special Wrongful Death Issues
Wrongful death claims and cases have special considerations not found in other types of personal injury cases. One is the types of damages that can be claimed.
The claim must be made by the estate of the person who died, so it is necessary to have a formal estate opened in probate court before a judge. The estate has a claim for "destruction of earning capacity," meaning the amount of money the deceased person might have earned during the rest of their lifetime. There are several ways to prove this. Sometimes it can be a simple computation using recognized life expectancy tables and the amount of income the person would have received for the rest of their life. However, it is sometimes necessary to use vocational and economic experts to calculate damages when the person who died had the ability to increase their income over time, or had employment that involved benefits.
Besides the estate, spouses and children may have claims for "loss of consortium." These claims are for the loss of society, companionship, affection, and services of the person who died. This is where many of the items described above, like, love, intimacy, nurturing, and housekeeping are considered and awarded money damages. There are a number of different ways to prove this too.
Parents may also have claims for loss of consortium when a child dies. These cases are especially tragic since our children are our very lives, and their death is unlike anything else we experience in life. Because of this, an attorney with experience in these types of claims is essential.
Put Our Experience on Your Side
Mike Breen has handled numerous wrongful death cases in Bowling Green and throughout Kentucky. Let Mike and his team help you during this time of crisis. Call wrongful death attorney Mike Breen today for a free consultation.