Personal injuries happen every day in the Brighton area and across Colorado. Whenever one party harms another through negligence, or failure to use reasonable care, this can form the basis of a personal injury claim. If the victim does not survive, this will transform the case into a wrongful death suit. A wrongful death is one where one party’s actions result in another person’s death. While most wrongful deaths result from negligence, it is possible for intentional and illegal misconduct to have fatal consequences.
Helping Brighton, CO, Clients Navigate Challenging Wrongful Death Suits
If your family is mourning the death of a loved one who died due to another party’s actions, it is vital to know your rights and legal options for holding the responsible party accountable for the wrongful death. However, even if fault seems perfectly clear, the actual process of filing and winning a wrongful death suit is likely to be far more complex than you may expect. A Brighton wrongful death attorney is an invaluable asset for your impending case, and trustworthy legal counsel will make it easier for your family to endure the difficult proceedings ahead.
The Law Firm of Jeremy Rosenthal can offer the compassionate legal counsel you need for your wrongful death suit in Brighton. Throughout the years of our firm’s operation, our team has helped many clients overcome very complex civil cases, from those pertaining to all types of personal injuries to those arising from wrongful deaths. When you choose our firm to represent your case, you are investing in years of professional experience and a team with the skills necessary to guide you to a favorable outcome.
Establishing Liability for a Wrongful Death in Brighton
Before you and your family can secure any compensation for your loved one’s death, you must prove who was at fault for the death and identify the party or parties responsible for it. Wrongful deaths can occur from many of the situations that often cause personal injuries. A few commonly cited causes of wrongful deaths in the Brighton area include:
- Motor vehicle accidents. These incidents are a leading cause of accidental injuries and deaths in the United States each year, and any accident has the potential to cause life-changing injuries. Unfortunately, some victims do not survive their accidents, leaving their families wondering how they can recover. Our firm can assist your family with all aspects of the recovery process after a fatal accident.
- Premises liability. If an accident on someone else’s property caused the death of your loved one, the property owner may be liable for the death under the state’s premises liability laws. All property owners must address foreseeable safety issues before they can cause harm to lawful guests, and failure to do so can lead to liability for any resulting injuries.
- Illegal misconduct. Unfortunately, some people do not survive some criminal actions. Driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol or drugs, violent crime, and other intentional and illegal acts will not only lead to wrongful death suits but also criminal prosecution of those responsible. It’s possible for the plaintiffs to recover punitive damages if their loved one was killed by another party’s illegal misconduct.
These are only a few examples of commonly reported causes of wrongful deaths. The first step in any wrongful death suit is for the plaintiff to prove exactly how the death occurred. Your Brighton wrongful death attorney can help your family gather evidence from the scene of the fatal incident, testimony from witnesses who saw it happen, and even consult with expert witnesses if necessary. Once you have proven fault for the wrongful death, you can proceed with claiming compensation from the party responsible.
Compensation Available in Wrongful Death Suits
Money may not be much comfort in light of a loved one’s death, but a successful wrongful death suit will hold the defendant accountable for their actions and provide compensation that can make adjusting to new circumstances a bit easier for you and your family. When you have an experienced Brighton wrongful death attorney representing you, they can potentially help secure economic and non-economic damages from the defendant.
Economic damages in a wrongful death claim are straightforward, typically including the direct financial effects the death has on the family. These may include the lost financial support the deceased can no longer provide, funeral and burial expenses, and damages incurred by the estate of the deceased. Your Brighton wrongful death attorney can assist you with calculating these losses and securing any documentation you need to firmly establish the defendant’s liability.
Non-economic damages include the family’s pain and suffering. Colorado law allows them to claim compensation for their grief, emotional distress, and the loss of affection, care, and guidance provided by the deceased. State law limits how much the plaintiffs may receive, but a good attorney will know how to secure as much compensation as possible for their client’s non-economic damages.
It is possible for other variables to influence the final case award. For example, if the defendant caused the death through some illegal action, they may owe punitive damages alongside the family’s other claimed losses. The Law Firm of Jeremy Rosenthal can work closely with you to help determine the scope of the damages you can include in your wrongful death suit. We typically aim to settle our clients’ cases as swiftly as possible, but if settlement is not an option for any reason, we can represent you in litigation. Whatever your case entails, our firm provides the compassionate and responsive legal advocacy you need to approach the case with peace of mind.
Personal Injury Lawyers FAQs
Q: How Much Compensation Can I Claim in a Wrongful Death Case?
A: Under the state’s wrongful death statutes, the plaintiffs in a wrongful death case can seek full repayment of all financial losses associated with the death and compensation for their pain and suffering. Your Brighton wrongful death attorney can help calculate all your claimable economic losses, and state law limits how much compensation for pain and suffering the family may receive. It is also possible to receive punitive damages if the defendant caused the death through any illegal action.
Q: Is My Wrongful Death Settlement Taxable in Brighton?
A: The proceeds from successful personal injury or wrongful death claims do not qualify as income, so they are not taxable at the state or federal levels. The only possible exception would be if you receive punitive damages. These are not paid to a plaintiff to compensate a loss but to punish a defendant, so they technically qualify as income, and you may face a tax obligation on this aspect of the case award.
Q: How Long Do I Have to File a Wrongful Death Suit in Brighton?
A: If you intend to file a wrongful death claim in the state, you must do so within the two-year statute of limitations. If you do not file your claim within this timeframe, you will lose the ability to seek compensation from the party responsible for your family member’s death. The statute of limitations may extend if the defendant used fraud or some type of concealment to hide their responsibility for the death. Ultimately, a plaintiff should consult an experienced Brighton wrongful death attorney as soon as possible to start the claim filing process within the applicable deadline.
Q: How Long Does It Take to Settle a Wrongful Death Suit?
A: When someone is clearly liable for a wrongful death, it benefits them to settle quickly rather than demand a trial. If you have an experienced Brighton wrongful death attorney representing you and the defendant is clearly at fault, it may only take a few weeks to resolve your case. However, if settlement is not an option for any reason, the case will need to go to trial, and this will take longer to complete.
Q: What Will It Cost to Hire a Brighton Wrongful Death Attorney?
A: It is understandable to have concerns about the potential cost of legal representation when you are already struggling with the financial impact of the unexpected death. The Law Firm of Jeremy Rosenthal ensures legal counsel is accessible when you need it in this situation with a contingency fee billing policy. You will only pay a fee if and when our team wins your case, and the fee is a percentage of the final case award. If our team cannot secure compensation for your wrongful death claim for any reason, you pay nothing, so there is no financial risk to you by hiring our firm to represent you.
The Law Firm of Jeremy Rosenthal provides responsive, compassionate, and detail-oriented legal counsel to our Brighton-area clients who are facing all types of civil cases, including emotionally charged wrongful death suits. If your family is struggling in the aftermath of a loved one’s untimely death and you believe another party is responsible for the death, we can assist you in holding them accountable. Contact us today and schedule a free consult with an experienced Brighton wrongful death attorney and learn more about the legal services we offer.