You might not be surprised to learn that heart disease and cancer are the top two leading causes of death in the US, but the third may come as a shock: According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, unintentional accidents claimed the lives of 169,936 people in 2017 – a 4.2% increase over the previous year. There are many different causes and contributing factors behind accidents, but they are usually preventable and only occur because of someone else’s negligence.
Losing a loved one in such a tragedy is emotionally overwhelming, but there are additional implications for your life. You may struggle financially without the support of the victim, and the void left behind may seem impossible to fill. Though you cannot bring back your family member, you may have options to recover compensation under Florida wrongful death laws. You can trust a Miami wrongful death lawyer to handle the details, but an overview of the legal basics may be useful.
Synopsis of Florida Wrongful Death Cases
If the victim of an accident would have had the right to bring a personal injury claim, surviving family members can do so to cover the losses they suffer as a result of the person’s death. The action is called a wrongful death claim, and the personal representative is the individual who has standing to act on behalf of the beneficiaries. Any funds the personal representative recovers will go to the surviving spouse and children – or other relatives in certain cases.
Types of Wrongful Death Claims
Some of the most common wrongful death actions arise from:
- Motor Vehicle Crashes: Fatal traffic accidents are an unfortunate reality in Miami, especially when there is a considerable size discrepancy between vehicles. Collisions involving 18-wheelers and other large trucks tend to be deadly, as are motorcycle crashes.
- Pedestrian and Bicycle Accidents: You do not even need to be in a motorized vehicle to be the victim of a motor vehicle collision. When drivers are careless or fail to exercise due caution, they can cause fatalities for people on foot, bicycle or scooter as well.
- Slips, Trips, and Falls on Property: Miami property and business owners are required to maintain the premises in a reasonably safe condition, but not all comply with this legal duty. Deadly accidents can result from dangerous conditions at restaurants, apartment complexes, shops, parking areas, and many other places.
- Defective Products: Manufacturers must ensure that their products are safe for normal usage by consumers, but some of these items can be deadly because of hidden defects.
Contact a Miami Wrongful Death Attorney for More Information
If a loved one died in an accident caused by negligence, you need a lawyer with extensive experience and a specific focus in handling wrongful death cases. Our team at Gerson & Schwartz, PA can assist with the legal requirements, including filing an insurance claim and going to court to get the compensation you deserve. Please contact our firm today to schedule a free case evaluation at our offices in Miami, Fort Lauderdale, or West Palm Beach, FL.