Paragould, AR Wrongful Death Lawyer

Paragould, AR Wrongful Death Lawyer

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    Losing a loved one is one of the most excruciating experiences anyone can go through. The emotional turmoil and sense of loss can be overwhelming, and when their death is the result of someone else’s negligence, the pain can be even more profound.

    In addition to coping with their absence, you might also face financial hardship because of the loss of their financial and emotional support. Fortunately, you are entitled to compensation in a wrongful death lawsuit. If your loved one’s death was caused by someone else’s negligence, you and your family members might have the right to recover damages for your losses. Spouses, children, and other immediate family members can pursue compensation for the loss of their loved ones, including lost income, companionship, guidance, and support. Our team will be ready to help you get the justice you deserve.

    Call us at (479) 316-0438 to receive your free case assessment with our wrongful death lawyers.

    Defining Wrongful Death in Paragould, AR

    Wrongful death claims are a crucial aspect of personal injury law in Paragould. They provide a legal pathway for families to seek justice and compensation following the loss of a loved one because of another party’s negligence or intentional act. However, the intricacies of most wrongful death claims require the skilled hand of a wrongful death attorney. Our team can gather evidence in your case to help you maximize the compensation you are receiving for your incredible loss.

    Under Ark. Code. § 16-62-102(a), a wrongful death occurs when a person dies as a result of a wrongful act or neglect of another person or entity. This definition is quite broad and includes a wide range of circumstances, such as medical malpractice, car accidents, workplace accidents, and criminal acts.

    The underlying principle is that if the deceased had not died, they would have had grounds to pursue a personal injury claim. Therefore, certain surviving family members or representatives can seek damages on their behalf.

    However, wrongful death claims in Arkansas are subject to a statute of limitations. According to Ark. Code. § 16-62-102(c), the statute of limitations is generally three years from the date of death. Failing to file within this period typically results in the loss of the right to sue.

    However, this rule has certain exceptions and nuances, which could affect the time you have to file a claim. Therefore, it is crucial for those considering a wrongful death lawsuit to consult with our team as soon as they feel ready.

    Individuals Who Can Make a Wrongful Death Claim in Paragould, AR

    According to Ark. Code. § 16-62-102(b), wrongful death actions must be initiated by the personal representative of the deceased person’s estate. This individual is typically named in the deceased’s will or estate plan. However, if no personal representative has been appointed or the appointed individual is unable or unwilling to serve, the court might appoint one.

    The personal representative plays a vital role in wrongful death claims, acting on behalf of the estate and any potential beneficiaries to pursue the claim. It is their responsibility to gather and present evidence, negotiate with defendants, and, if necessary, represent the estate’s interests in court. The goal is to recover damages that compensate for the losses suffered by the estate and the deceased’s survivors because of the untimely death.

    In cases where a personal representative has not been designated or is not available, Arkansas law allows for the heirs at law of the deceased person to initiate the wrongful death claim. These heirs typically include the deceased’s surviving spouse, children, parents, and siblings in that order of precedence. This provision ensures that the deceased’s closest relatives have a means to seek justice and compensation, even in the absence of a formally appointed personal representative.

    How Benefits from a Wrongful Death Claim Are Distributed in Paragould, AR

    Initially, the personal representative of the deceased’s estate files the wrongful death claim. Any awarded damages are first used to cover the costs associated with pursuing the lawsuit, such as attorney’s fees and court costs. Subsequently, the compensation is divided into two main categories: estate claims and family claims.

    Estate Claims

    Estate claims encompass damages that directly relate to the deceased’s estate. These can include medical expenses incurred as a result of the injury leading to death, funeral and burial expenses and the pain and suffering endured by the deceased prior to death. The proceeds allocated for estate claims are distributed according to the deceased’s will or, if they died intestate (without a will), according to state laws governing intestate succession.

    Family Claims

    Family claims address the losses suffered by the surviving family members because of the wrongful death. This category of compensation can include loss of expected future earnings, loss of companionship, love, and affection, and the mental anguish suffered by the survivors.

    The distribution of these benefits among family members follows a specific hierarchy: the surviving spouse, children, parents, and then siblings of the deceased, reflecting the degree to which each survivor is presumed to suffer from the loss. If the deceased has no surviving immediate family, the benefits might then be distributed to more distant relatives according to the laws of intestate succession.

    Arkansas law also provides for special considerations in the distribution of wrongful death claim benefits. For example, if the deceased was a minor, the compensation awarded to the parents might reflect factors such as the age of the child and the circumstances of the parents’ dependency on the deceased.

    Moreover, the court overseeing the wrongful death lawsuit has the discretion to adjust the distribution of benefits among the survivors, taking into account the unique circumstances of each case. This ensures a fair and equitable allocation of compensation that accurately reflects the individual losses suffered by each survivor.

    Types of Benefits that Can Be Recovered in a Paragould, AR Wrongful Death Lawsuit

    Economic damages refer to the financial contributions that the deceased would have made to their family if they were still alive. These benefits are essential in lessening the financial impact of the loss. Examples of economic damages include lost wages and benefits, medical expenses, and funeral and burial expenses.

    Reasonable funeral and burial costs are also recoverable, easing the family’s immediate financial burden following their loss.

    Non-economic damages, however, address the less tangible but equally real impacts of the death on the surviving family members. These benefits are inherently more difficult to quantify. Examples of non-economic damages include compensation for the pain, suffering, and mental anguish endured by the deceased from the time of injury until death. It also encompasses the loss of consortium and companionship by surviving spouses and children, which refers to the loss of love, companionship, care, and protection that the deceased provided.

    In cases where the defendant’s actions were particularly egregious, punitive damages might also be awarded. Unlike economic and non-economic damages, which aim to compensate the survivors, punitive damages are intended to punish the wrongdoer and deter similar conduct in the future.

    Our Paragould, AR Wrongful Death Lawyers Can Help You Get Justice for Your Immense Loss

    For a free case review with our wrongful death attorneys, contact us by calling (479) 316-0438.