Trying to cope with the loss of a loved one can be on the most difficult and trying times of your life. You may feel overwhelmed and do not know where to turn to for guidance and support. When your family member’s death was caused by another person’s negligence or wrongdoing you may be overcome with emotions and be even more confused and even angry. You may be overwhelmed not only with grief, but with medical expenses. Your loved one may have been the only person in your family making an income, and you may now be wondering how you and the rest of your family is going to continue living your lives. While you may be overwhelmed, it is important to know that you may have the right to file a wrongful death lawsuit and receive not only closure but also financial compensation for your loved ones’ loss.
While the law cannot answer these questions, it can work to make your whole through monetary damages. Ken Kieklak, Attorney at Law can work to help you start putting your life back together by holding the responsible party accountable.
What is Wrongful Death?
When a loved one dies because of someone else’s actions you may be able to recover for what is known as wrongful death. Arkansas’s Wrongful Death Statute AR Code § 16-62-102 (2014) provides that “wrongful death” is “the death of a person resulting from any act, conduct, occurrence, transaction, or circumstance which, if death had not ensued, would have entitled such person to recover damages. A wrongful death claim is as a special type of personal injury case because it is not the person who was injured who is bringing the claim, but rather the injured person’s personal representative or the deceased person’s estate.
What Does a Wrongful Death Claim Cover?
Wrongful death claims provide the family or estate of someone who has passed away a means of recovering for expenses resulting from whatever conduct caused the person’s death and also for certain other expenses that may arise in the future. The personal representatives of an estate, which generally includes immediately family members, administrators, and legal guardians, or the heirs may bring a wrongful death claim to cover damages involved in:
- Medical bills and other bills associated with the accident before the decedent passed away.
- Loss of value of the decedent’s remaining life.
- Wages the decedent would have earned had the negligence not occurred.
- The economic damages the immediate family has suffered as a result of the decedent’s death.
- Funeral and burial costs.
- Loss of any and all financial support by the decedent.
- Any loss of household services that the decedent was responsible for.
- Loss of companionship for family members of the decedent.
- Loss of the care, comfort, and guidance by the decedent.
The claims under the Wrongful Death Statute are two-fold. Some of them may be brought by the estate of the decedent. Others may be brought by personal representatives of the decedent. In order to learn more about what claims you and your decedent’s estate may bring in a wrongful death action, contact Ken Kieklak.
What Types of Claims do our Attorneys Handle?
Ken Kieklak handles many different areas of wrongful death claims. If your loved one has suffered a death as a result of any of the following, then you need to contact our firm immediately:
- Fatal Car Accidents
- Fatal Truck Accidents
- Fatal Motorcycle Accidents
- Medical Malpractice
- Hospital Administration Negligence
- Products Liability Issues
- Workplace Accidents
- Theme & Water Park Accidents
- Medication Errors
- Medical Device Errors
- Pedestrian Accidents
Losing a loved one to any of these types of accidents can be devastating. If your loved one has died of any of these or another fatal accident, then you need to contact Ken Kieklak as soon as possible with the details of your case. Time may be running out on your claim, so it is important that you act quickly.
Wrongful Death Statute vs. Survival Statute – What’s the Difference?
So far in this article, we described how a loved one’s death as a result of another’s negligence may be a recoverable claim based on the wrongful death statute. However, there is another form of recovery that you should be aware of when you are considering seeking recovery for your loved ones death. Arkansas law provides for a survival action which is a separate yet related claim to wrongful death.
Despite these claims sharing many of the same elements and there are some notable differences between these two legal remedies. The main difference between wrongful death claims and survival claims is that the survival statute allows the estate to be awarded damages that the decedent would have recovered had he or she only been injured, and not died. This means that the estate may recover for things such as medical expenses, pain, and suffering, and for lost earnings.
Your Family Needs Knowledgeable and Skilled Rogers Wrongful Death Attorney
If your wife, husband, mother, father, son or daughter was involved in a fatal accident, contact our firm immediately. You need representation that will protect your family’s rights.
For more than 20 years, Ken Kieklak has stood-up for Arkansas families who have suffered the loss of a loved one. For your free and confidential consultation, contact our offices by calling (479) 316-0438 or contact us online today.