Legal action is the last thing a Pennsylvania resident might think about after losing a loved one in a fatal accident. However, a lawsuit may be necessary, since the loss of life often results in financial hardships and other challenging situations. That is where a wrongful death lawsuit comes into play. A Pennsylvania resident who wishes to seek justice may want to consider filing a lawsuit to help cope with the loss of the loved one and all of the implications that are involved.
A wrongful death lawsuit may be filed by a family member on behalf of the deceased accident victim or a wrongful death attorney may represent the family. The legal action has a wide scope. It can be filed for fatal accidents, such as workplace accidents, motor vehicle accidents and other incidents that have caused a fatality because of someone else's negligence. In addition to seeking justice, one of the main objectives of a wrongful death lawsuit is to seek compensation for the surviving family members.
The legal action takes into consideration wages that could have been provided by the victim for the family. Inflation and the victim's life expectancy will also be considered. For example, if the victim earned $50,000 a year and was expected to live for 10 more years, the compensation sought would be approximately $500,000, taking into account possible inflation. Nonetheless, in Pennsylvania, damages like loss of parental guidance and loss of companionship can also be included. Medical and funeral expenses are also considered.
Although a wrongful death case can run its course, settlements are not uncommon. If a Pennsylvania family agrees to the deal that the negligent party is offering, it can choose to settle the claim. It is sensible to seek legal guidance in such a matter to make sure that the settlement is truly beneficial to the present and future needs of the surviving family.
Source: Laws.com, "Actions Under Wrongful Death Statutes," accessed on Oct. 9, 2014