Hot Springs, AR Wrongful Death Lawyer

Hot Springs, AR Wrongful Death Lawyer

Table of Contents

    The shocking death of a loved one due to negligence might turn your world upside down. To get justice on behalf of a victim you love, you could file a wrongful death lawsuit in Hot Springs.

    Generally speaking, bringing a wrongful death lawsuit is reserved for a victim’s personal representative. If they do not have a personal representative, their legal heirs can sue. Plaintiffs must bring these lawsuits no later than three years from a victim’s death unless an exception applies. After you file, our lawyers can proceed with proving the defendant’s fault should your case go to court. To do this, we will show how the defendant owed your loved one a duty of care and breached it, causing their untimely death. Arkansas allows survivors to recover economic and non-economic damages in wrongful death cases.

    Call our Hot Springs, AR wrongful death lawyers at (479) 316-0438 to get a free and confidential case assessment today.

    An Overview of Wrongful Death Cases in Hot Springs, AR

    When preparing for a potential wrongful death case in Hot Springs, it is important to get a basic overview of the process and how your claim might be carried out. For example, you should determine if you are an eligible plaintiff, the statute of limitations, and what damages could be available in your claim.

    Who Can Sue

    First and foremost, you should learn who among the victim’s survivors can file a lawsuit. Under Ark. Code. § 16-62-102(b), only the victims’ personal representative can file a survival action. If there is no personal representative, the victim’s legal heirs can bring a claim.

    When to Sue By

    Furthermore, you must know when to bring your lawsuit. In general, plaintiffs must file claims within three years of a victim’s death in Hot Springs. Try not to wait until the last possible moment to file your lawsuit, as that could put your case in a vulnerable situation.

    If the defendant was convicted of criminal charges in connection to the victim’s death, you would have the same amount of time to sue as the prosecution would have to bring charges, according to Ark. Code. § 16-62-102(c)(1).

    Our wrongful death lawyers can determine, based on the victim’s death, how much time you have left to file your lawsuit. We can then start preparing your case so we can bring it before the proper deadline in Hot Springs.

    How to Prove Fault

    When proving fault for a victim’s death, plaintiffs must establish four elements. The first is that the defendant owed the victim a duty of care. The level of duty owed will vary, depending on the situation at hand. But, generally, a duty of care requires one to act reasonably to avoid causing an accident or injury. So, a driver should not speed or make an illegal turn, as doing so would breach their duty.

    We will then tackle showing how the defendant breached the duty of care they owed the victim. For example, eyewitness testimony, incident reports, photos, medical records, and video footage can show how the defendant acted negligently or recklessly.

    Up next, we can show causation by demonstrating how the negligent act in question caused the victim’s death. For example, if the driver made an illegal turn into an intersection and hit your loved one, we would have to show that their injuries and cause of death were that specific accident, not some other event or pre-existing injury or condition.

    The final step will be to show the court the damages from the accident and the victim’s death. For example, this often includes economic damages like medical bills and funeral expenses.

    Possible Damages

    Arkansas lets survivors get compensation for both economic and non-economic damages due to a victim’s death. Under Ark. Code. § 16-62-102(f), the court can assess damages for monetary damages as well as damages for loss of spousal support and mental anguish.

    Our attorneys can help you sort and track damages from the victim’s death so that we can request a fair and accurate amount in your claim in Hot Springs.

    Distribution of Damages

    According to Ark. Code. § 16-62-102(d), wrongful death claims are for the benefit of the victim’s surviving spouse, children, and siblings, as well as those who had parental-like relationships with the victim. We can explain how the damages awarded in your claim will be distributed among you and any other eligible survivors so that you can plan accordingly.

    Impact of Comparative Fault Rules on Compensation in Wrongful Death Claims

    Arkansas is a modified comparative fault state with a 50% bar, according to Ark. Code. § 16-64-122. When victims are no longer living to speak about what happened and advocate for themselves, defendants might be more likely to try to employ a comparative fault defense.

    If a defendant successfully argues that the victim was more at fault for the accident that caused their death, the victim’s survivors would be barred from recovery entirely.

    If a victim was less than 50% at fault but still shared some blame, their survivors would recover lesser damages. The resulting settlement or award would be modified to account for the victim’s percentage of fault.

    To overcome this, we will focus on building our case against the defendant, showing how they acted irresponsibly and caused the accident in question. Even if the victim acted negligently at some point, if the defendant had the last clear chance to avoid the incident and failed to do so, they could be wholly liable for the victim’s death and damages.

    Our lawyers can evaluate the likelihood of the defendant using a comparative fault defense by carefully and honestly assessing the available evidence left from the accident.

    Call Our Hot Springs, AR Lawyers About Your Case Now

    Call (479) 316-0438 to have our wrongful death lawyers review your case for free today.