When a close family member dies, grief and sadness consume you – and the last thing on your mind is filing a lawsuit. Yet, when the actions of another result in a loved one’s passing, immediate family members have the right to pursue legal action within a specific timeframe.

To give your family member justice, have Trantolo & Trantolo’s wrongful death attorneys in Connecticut guide you through the process. Our team will investigate your loved one’s death, gather evidence, and build a strong case, allowing you to focus on healing.

Our compassionate wrongful death law firm understands what you are facing in the aftermath of the death of a loved one through a preventable accident. To find out more about your rights, call us today or fill out our online contact form.

What is a Wrongful Death Claim?

A wrongful death claim is a legal action brought by the survivors of a person who has died due to the negligent actions of another party. The purpose of a wrongful death claim is to seek compensation for the damages and losses suffered by the deceased person’s family members or beneficiaries as a result of the untimely death.

You may want to consider hiring a Connecticut personal injury lawyer to represent your family in this claim, as wrongful death claims can be complex and emotionally challenging. We can help you navigate the claims process and ensure that your family’s rights and interests are protected.

How Long You Have to Sue for Wrongful Death in Connecticut?

In Connecticut, any claim must be filed within two years from the date of death, per the statute of limitations described in Section 52-555 of the General Statutes. In certain cases, filing sooner is required: if the claim is against the State of Connecticut or municipalities, or if it falls within certain statutory causes of action.

It’s crucial to consult with a Connecticut wrongful death attorney as soon as possible to ensure that your claim is filed within the appropriate time frame. Failing to meet the statute of limitations can result in losing your right to seek compensation for your loss. An attorney can help you understand the specific deadlines that apply to your case and guide you through the legal process, allowing you to focus on grieving and healing with your family during this difficult time.

The Elements of a Successful Wrongful Death Claim in Connecticut

In order to get compensation from a wrongful death claim in Connecticut, certain elements must be met to prove your claim. These include proving that the person who caused the death was legally required to follow laws or rules that were designed to keep others safe. For example, a trucking company is required to follow trucking regulations to keep drivers safe.

The next step in a strong claim is to prove that the person who caused your loved one’s death violated the laws and rules that were meant to protect others, leading to a fatal accident. It’s important to remember that even if you can prove all these elements, the outcome of your case will depend on the specific facts and circumstances surrounding your loved one’s death.

To build a strong case, it’s crucial to gather evidence that supports each of these elements. This may involve collecting medical records, witness statements, expert testimony, and financial documents. A Connecticut wrongful death attorney can help you compile this evidence and present it in a compelling manner to the insurance company or court.

Wrongful Death Claims We Represent in Connecticut

Whether intentional or unintentional, wrongful death potentially results from multiple incidents, with the following being the most common:

  • Car accident: With cars, motorcycles, or commercial vehicles involved, speeding, drunk or reckless driving, or equipment malfunctions result in thousands of fatal accidents per year.
  • Trucking accident: Large commercial trucks, due to their size and weight, can cause severe damage and injuries when involved in accidents, often a result of driver fatigue, improper loading, or mechanical issues.
  • Dog bite: When a dog attacks or bites a person, causing injuries, the dog’s owner may be held liable for damages, especially if the dog has a history of aggression or the owner was negligent in controlling the animal.
  • Nursing home negligence: Elderly residents in nursing homes can suffer harm due to inadequate care, neglect, or abuse by staff members, including failure to provide proper medical treatment, maintain a safe environment, or meet basic needs.
  • Motorcycle accident: Collisions involving motorcycles often result in severe injuries to riders, as they are more exposed and vulnerable compared to occupants of cars or trucks, with common causes like driver error, poor road conditions, and limited visibility.
  • Pedestrian accident: When a motor vehicle strikes a person on foot, often resulting in serious injuries or fatalities, due to factors such as driver inattention, failure to yield, or pedestrians crossing outside of designated areas.
  • Product liability: From buildings to manufacturing practices, companies have an obligation to employees’ and consumers’ safety. Yet, negligence and turning a blind eye have, over decades, resulted in injuries and deaths that never should have happened.
  • Slip and fall accident: Injuries occurring when a person slips or falls due to hazardous conditions on someone else’s property, such as wet floors or inadequate lighting, and the property owner may be liable if they failed to maintain a safe property.
  • Workers Comp: Workplaces failing to follow proper safety standards put their employees in jeopardy. Incidents from falls to falling objects to motor vehicle and equipment accidents to fires have killed many workers simply doing their jobs.
  • Medical malpractice: Doctors and other medical professionals must uphold a basic standard of care, but from dangerous drugs and prescription mistakes to failure to diagnose to negligent care, multiple medical malpractice-related deaths occur daily.

To learn more about how we can help in your wrongful death claim in Connecticut, call Trantolo Law today or contact us online.

Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim in Connecticut?

Because wrongful death lawsuits pursue compensation rather than criminal action from the negligent party, only immediate family members can file a claim on behalf of the decedent in most states. In certain instances, these rights extend to cousins, aunts, uncles, or grandparents, and if the surviving family member is under 18 years of age, the court will appoint a guardian to act in the minor’s best interest.

In Connecticut, wrongful death law specifies that probate court approves a fiduciary, who is named in the deceased’s will, to represent the decedent’s estate. If no one is listed in a will, the surviving spouse has the right to file; if there is no spouse, any surviving children have the right. If the deceased does not have surviving children, the decedent’s parents can pursue the lawsuit. If the deceased has no spouse, children, or surviving parents, the court selects a fiduciary for the case.

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Compensation You Can Recover in a Connecticut Wrongful Death Claim

Depending upon who in your family files a wrongful death claim, the following may be awarded in a case:

  • Medical, hospital, and nursing expenses
  • Funeral expenses
  • Economic loss, such as loss of anticipated earnings, loss of benefits, and loss of inheritance
  • For spouses, loss of companionship
  • Punitive damages
  • Pain and suffering and mental anguish
  • Bystander emotional distress, for close family members who witnessed the incident
  • General damages

The death of a child, parent, or spouse is a distressing, difficult time for all family members, and navigating a claim turns into a convoluted, trying process. For the help, direction, and knowledge your case requires, bring it to the attention of Trantolo & Trantolo’s experienced attorneys.

Is Wrongful Death the Same as Negligence?

Wrongful death and negligence are related but distinct legal concepts.

Negligence is a type of civil wrong (or “tort”) that occurs when a person fails to exercise reasonable care in a way that causes harm or injury to another person. To prove negligence, the plaintiff must show that the defendant owed them a duty of care, and when they failed to uphold that duty of care, it led to your loved one’s death and the resulting losses.

A wrongful death is a specific type of legal claim that arises when a person dies due to the careless or intentional actions of another party. In other words, negligence is one of the possible grounds for a wrongful death claim, but not all negligence cases involve wrongful death.

Negligence is a legal theory that may form the basis for a wrongful death claim, but not all negligence cases involve wrongful death, and not all wrongful death claims are based on negligence.

What’s the Difference Between Homicide and Wrongful Death?

Homicide and wrongful death are related but distinct concepts in criminal and civil law, respectively.

Homicide refers to the killing of one person by another, regardless of the circumstances or legal culpability. On the other hand, wrongful death is a civil law concept and refers to a legal claim that can be filed by surviving family members or the personal representative of a deceased person’s estate when the death is caused by the negligent, reckless, or intentional actions of another party.

In a criminal homicide case, the prosecution must prove the defendant is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, while in a civil wrongful death case, the plaintiff must prove their case with evidence, but the standard of proof is lower. A homicide conviction can result in criminal penalties, while a successful wrongful death claim results in monetary damages awarded to the deceased person’s family or estate.

Get a Free Consultation with a Connecticut Wrongful Death Lawyer

If you have lost a loved one to a preventable act of negligence or wrongdoing, you may be entitled to file a wrongful death claim to get compensation. During this difficult time, it’s crucial to have an experienced and compassionate legal team on your side to help you throughout the complex legal process and fight for the justice your family deserves.

At Trantolo & Trantolo, our dedicated Connecticut wrongful death attorneys have a deep understanding of the state’s laws and a proven track record of success in handling these sensitive cases. We offer a free, no-obligation consultation to discuss your situation, answer your questions, and provide guidance on your legal options.

Don’t wait to seek the legal support you need during this challenging time. Contact Trantolo & Trantolo today to schedule your free consultation with a Connecticut wrongful death lawyer and take the first step towards securing the compensation and closure your family deserves. Call our team today or complete our online contact form to get started.

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