An unexpected loss of a loved one is a tragic experience that can put your life on hold. The loss can change everything—the patterns of your everyday life and what you were planning for the future. It can be even more painful when you and your family learn that someone’s negligence led to your family member’s passing. Knowing that someone is responsible can leave you with many questions and wondering what actions you can take. If you’re seeking justice, you will need a Fayetteville wrongful death lawyer at your side.
McMath Woods P.A. is a personal injury law firm that has helped many grieving families with wrongful death claims. We know that you’re going through an incredibly difficult and emotional time, and handling legal matters may seem like too much. But we’re here to provide the expertise you need to have a successful claim. Our lawyers are compassionate and dedicated to helping Arkansas families.
When our lawyers investigate your case, you’ll know we’ll do everything we can to get to the truth. We’ll review accident reports, medical records, and anything else that will give us a clear picture of what led to your relative’s death. Compiling details on what happened and why is the critical first step to filing a claim.
Understanding What Wrongful Death Is
Whenever someone acts negligently, they put others around them at risk of injury or worse. Our attorneys have handled a myriad of Arkansas wrongful death cases. Let’s take a look at some of the most common ways wrongful death occurs.
- Medical Malpractice. Many of us trust medical professionals to take care of us. When a medical professional makes a mistake or doesn’t give someone the care they need, their life could be put at risk. These types of medical errors could involve a nurse administering the wrong medication or a doctor failing to diagnose a patient when they should have recognized the symptoms.
- Nursing Home Abuse. Negligent staff in a nursing home may not give a senior their medication on time or not have safety protocols in place to protect the senior from falling. There could also be cases of abuse where the staff is intentionally harming a resident.
- Car, Truck, and Motorcycle Accidents. Whenever a negligent driver is on the road, they could cause a car accident, truck collision, or motorcycle crash that results in death. Negligent car and truck drivers alike may pay more attention to their phones than the road or drive above the posted speed limit. Motorcyclists are in danger of fatal injuries because they lack the protection other vehicles provide.
- Slip and Fall Accidents. Slip and fall accidents often occur in hospitals and nursing homes, but they can happen on any premises that don’t take measures to prevent falls. Severe falls can cause brain damage, which can be fatal. Senior citizens are at a higher risk of falling than younger individuals. If the elderly sustain injuries, they may also get diagnosed with an infection that they may not be able to fight.
- Workplace Accidents. Wrongful death can also happen in the workplace. Construction workers can suffer a fatal accident if others act recklessly or negligently on the job site. However, workers in other industries can also get hurt or lose their lives.
If your loved one lost their life because of the negligence of others, our Fayetteville attorneys are here for you. We’ll look into what happened and determine if you’re eligible to seek damages by filing a wrongful death suit. Let’s look into who can bring this legal action forward in Arkansas.
Who Can File an Arkansas Wrongful Death Claim?
Arkansas Code §16-62-102 states that a personal representative of the deceased can bring a wrongful death claim forward when a person dies. If there isn’t a personal representative, then Arkansas law allows the heirs of the deceased person (the accident victim) to do so.
Your lawyer can help you make sure all the details are in order, and the claim gets to the right people. When building your case, we’ll look for evidence of how to prove the negligent party:
- Owed your loved one a duty of care
- Didn’t meet the duty of care
- Caused your relative’s death
It’s important to come forward with your wrongful death action promptly. There’s a time limit, known as the statute of limitations, on when you can seek damages for the wrongful death of one of your family members.
Speak with your Fayetteville attorney from McMath Woods P.A. to find out how much time you have to take legal action per Arkansas law. While you may think there’s a lot of time, the legal process can be slow to unfold.
You also may notice the financial stress soon after your loved one’s passing. The sooner you meet with a knowledgeable attorney and begin working to get justice, the sooner you and your family can resolve the matter, thus securing financial compensation so that you can continue to grieve your loved one’s loss.
Let’s examine how an Arkansas wrongful death lawsuit can benefit you and your relatives.
How a Fayetteville Wrongful Death Lawyer Can Help You
While losing a loved one causes immeasurable grief, you and your family can also suffer significant damages. If you depended on their financial support, you might be worried about your livelihood, given their lost income. There’s also the loss of support if you managed a household or were raising a family together.
Arkansas law does allow you to recover the full value of these economic and non-economic damages, which we’ll discuss more at length below. A wrongful death attorney from our Arkansas personal injury law firm, McMath Woods P.A., can help you tabulate the damages your loss has caused. Schedule a free consultation to discuss your case today.
Recover Compensation for Your Loss Stemming From a Wrongful Death
Your Fayetteville wrongful death attorney will consider all the damages and losses. When we investigate the financial losses your family has suffered, we’ll calculate all the expenses that have arisen before making a demand for monetary recovery.
Here are some of the aspects we consider when we’re determining what you’re owed:
- Funeral Expenses and Burial Costs. Our lawyers will fight for funeral and burial costs. These costs can get expensive quickly, and it’s not fair for them to be put on you when the negligence of another party caused your loved one to lose their life.
- Lost Earnings. There is also the loss of earnings, which refers to the income your loved one would have made had they survived the accident. If you depended on your relative financially, dealing with your financial responsibilities can be overwhelming. We’ll seek loss of earnings and recover damages for medical bills.
- Medical Expenses. Your loved one may have spent some time in the hospital or undergone treatment before passing away. Hospital expenses can be another major financial stressor, which is why we’re here to fight for your compensation to cover those costs.
- Property Damage. If there was property damage involved with the accident, like a damaged car, we’ll also consider those costs.
- Emotional Losses. The other aspect of damages you can recover is the emotional consequences of losing your loved one. You may be able to seek compensation for loss of companionship and consortium, especially if you depended on the deceased person for running a household, raising a family, or looking to them for guidance.
- Pain and Suffering. You may also seek pain and suffering damages on your loved one’s behalf. This is for the pain of the injuries they incurred.
If gross negligence was involved in your case, then you may be able to recover punitive damages. These damages are to punish the responsible party for the wrongful act they committed. They would have had to know that their actions would result in their loved one’s death, and they continued to act recklessly. If your attorney determines that this applies to your case, then we will carefully investigate to find evidence of gross negligence.
The emotional distress or mental anguish of losing someone special to you is traumatic. Our Fayetteville wrongful death lawyers at McMath Woods P.A. will do everything possible to fight for you to recover these non-financial or non-economic damages in addition to the financial losses.
Get Justice for Your Loved One in Fayetteville, AR
When you’re coming forward with a wrongful death action, you may have some misgivings about seeking compensation after losing your family member. We understand how you may feel about this situation. While it can be difficult to think about putting a price on what you’ve suffered, taking legal action can be how you get justice for your loved one and your relatives.
It may also be helpful to think about what your deceased loved one would have done had they survived the accident. They would have likely filed a personal injury claim and sought recovery for the damages they incurred. This includes financial losses for their lost wages and medical costs, and for the non-economic losses like pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life. You can think of the wrongful death lawsuit as the personal injury claim your close relative would have filed.
This is also your chance to hold the responsible party accountable for their actions. You can show them the consequences of their irresponsibility and its impact on you and your relatives. It may bring some comfort to you to seek justice and cause the negligent party to never do what they did again.
The manufacturing company may implement better safety measures if they were negligent. If it was a distracted driver, they may lose their license for some time, and when they can drive again, might always stay focused on the road.
Your claim can bring financial peace of mind to you and your family. You’ll be able to cover the costs of the accident. You can grieve without worrying about how you will pay bills or keep food on the table.
While the process may be difficult, your Fayetteville wrongful death attorney from our law office will be at your side throughout the process. Our legal team at McMath Woods P.A. is here to answer questions, provide support, and help you stand up for your loved one.
We Help Arkansas Citizens in Filing a Wrongful Death Lawsuit
McMath Woods P.A. fiercely protects the rights of Arkansas citizens. When you’ve lost a loved one because of negligence, you may be able to take legal action. We’ll fight on your loved one’s behalf and show the liable party what their actions caused. Your Fayetteville wrongful death lawyer will seek full and fair compensation for you and your family.
Get in touch with our office as soon as possible so we can review your case. If we believe you have a valid claim, we can start discussing how to proceed. We’ll help you go over your legal options and then can begin fighting for you and your family.