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Wrongful Death vs Catastrophic Injury

by | Last updated May 9, 2023

When a family suffers the loss of a loved one, whether by accident or due to the negligible conduct of a person or organization, the legal ramifications can be a stressful and emotional experience; however, by retaining a wrongful death lawyer who can handle the details of your case and help you mitigate financial hardship, the recovery process can be made easier.

At the Shiner Law Group, we understand the difficulty of pursuing legal action when a family member or loved one has been wrongfully killed, so we aggressively pursue the best results to help victims’ families navigate Florida’s complex legal system and secure the strongest financial compensation available under Florida law.

If your family member or loved one has been wrongfully killed due to a person’s or organization’s negligible or illegal conduct, our wrongful death lawyers at the Shiner Law Group are standing by to discuss your legal rights and options. We will provide you with the legal resources to build a compelling claim, answer any questions, and help you avoid insurance traps and pitfalls.

What is a “Wrongful Death”?

Personal injury claims and wrongful death lawsuits are both adjudicated under the state’s negligence standard, which means that a person or business can be held liable for negligence. A wrongful death, as interpreted by Florida courts, occurs when a person is killed in what should have been an avoidable accident.

Claimants in a wrongful death lawsuit must show causation: the defendant owed a legal duty of care, the duty of care was breached, and the victim died as a result of the breach. Only surviving family members, dependent blood relatives, and beneficiaries of the decedent’s estate are eligible to recover damages, though the type and amount are typically more substantial for family members.

If the victim’s injuries were not immediately fatal, your wrongful death attorney can also file a personal injury claim – a claim the decedent could have filed if they survived the incident of negligence. In rare circumstances, punitive damages could also be pursued to punish and prevent individuals or businesses from engaging in further reckless behavior.

David Shiner and the experienced wrongful death lawyers at the Shiner Law Group provide a list of common causes of wrongful deaths:

  • Motor vehicle accidents.
  • Pedestrian accidents.
  • Premises liability cases, including swimming pool accidents.
  • Product liability stemming from safety oversight.
  • Alcohol or drug-related accidents.

Wrongful Death vs Catastrophic Injury

The Statute of Limitations in a Wrongful Death Lawsuit

Florida’s Wrongful Death Act allows family members and estate beneficiaries to recover a broad range of damages within two years from the incident. Your wrongful death lawyer can help you obtain financial compensation for medical expenses, lost income and benefits, lost inheritance, lost security and household services, and funeral expenses.

What is a “Catastrophic Injury”

It takes merely a second to tragically change someone’s life. A small negligent act can not only lead to life-altering consequences but can even prove fatal for someone. If an individual fails to follow simple rules and laws, severe accidents might occur, resulting in catastrophic injuries. These injuries can be debilitating and/or permanent.

Since catastrophic injuries occur without a warning, the victim is typically not financially prepared for the expensive and extensive therapy and medical bills. Moreover, the victim might not be able to earn in future, experience lifelong emotional pain, and/or might leave behind dependents. However, the victim and their family are allowed by law to file a claim against the people responsible for such severe injuries.

A catastrophic injury lawyer can help with the case by examining it, creating a strong case and fighting it for the victim. If the lawyer is experienced, the victim would be able to recover damages for the losses they have suffered due to the injury. Read on to understand more about catastrophic injuries and how a personal injury lawyer can assist in such cases.

Types of Catastrophic Injuries

Injuries are considered catastrophic if they happen unexpectedly and with no warning, leaving the victim with long-term consequences and life-altering impacts. One minute the victim’s life would be completely fine and the next, it would be upside down.

Typically, spinal cord injury is considered by many as the most common catastrophic injury; however, there are numerous kinds of catastrophic injuries. Loss of hearing, loss of sight, birth issues are also catastrophic injuries.

Following are some of the examples of catastrophic injuries:

  • Organ damage
  • Amputations
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Burn injuries
  • Paralysis
  • Brain injuries
  • Crush injury
  • Nerve damage
  • Facial injury
  • Birth injury
  • Eye injury

There can be other catastrophic injuries aside from the ones mentioned above. An experienced catastrophic injury lawyer can help you in determining what qualifies as a catastrophic injury and how you can file for damages if it was caused due to someone else’s negligence.

Common Causes of Catastrophic Injuries

Numerous accidents can lead to catastrophic injuries, from defective products to minor slip and fall accidents. Following are some of the main causes of catastrophic injuries:

  • Dangerous properties
  • Gas drilling accidents
  • Mining injuries
  • Construction injuries
  • Medical mistakes
  • Violent acts and crime
  • Work injuries
  • Automobile accidents
  • Jet Ski accidents
  • Bicycle accidents
  • Horseback riding accidents
  • Fires, burns, and explosions
  • Trampoline accidents
  • Sports injuries

Despite the type of injury you attain, your personal injury lawyer can fight your case. Suffering through a devastating injury can make the recovery process difficult. Getting compensated for your damages can make the coping process slightly easier for you and your family.

How Can a Personal Injury Lawyer Assist?

In all cases, it is essential for the plaintiff to prove that the individuals or organizations were at fault and were responsible for causing damages and injuries. It can be confusing and complex to file a financial compensation claim but your lawyer will create a solid claim stating how the avoidance of the negligence would have prevented the accident from occurring.

A skilled personal injury lawyer will help you in making a solid case to prove this by:

  • Examining the entire cause and filing the claim against the defendants
  • Making an attempt to negotiate the best offer of settlement
  • Creating and filing a strong lawsuit
  • Litigating your lawsuit
  • In case an acceptable offer is not made, opting for alternative resolution

It is best to understand that consulting the right personal injury lawyer can make your case stronger. An inexperienced lawyer might still be able to win the case but with lesser compensation than you actually deserve. Therefore, it is important to opt for an experienced and qualified legal aid team that would ensure you get the best possible settlement for the injuries you sustained due to someone else’s negligence.

Catastrophic Injury Claims

Remember each case is different and the best way to determine accurately the best value of your catastrophic injury is when a lawyer fully investigates the impact the injury would make on your current and future lifestyle. These cases which involve brain damage, severe burns and other life-changing injuries can add up to hundreds and thousands of dollars, even millions, depending on the severity of the injury and the amount of care, treatment and other factors the victims have to go through.

Depending on your situation, you can recover compensation for:

  • Diminished earning capacity
  • Mental pain / emotional anguish
  • Physical suffering and pain
  • Current and future rehabilitation costs
  • Loss of income and wages
  • Past and future medical expenses

Other claims can also be made, again depending on your case. Your personal injury lawyer will take each and everything into account when creating a case for compensation. If you or someone you know has suffered catastrophic injuries due to someone else’s negligence, it is essential that you find the right lawyer who understands your challenges and is compassionate enough to help you.

Why Hire A Wrongful Death / Catastrophic Injury Attorney?

At the Shiner Law Group, our experienced wrongful death lawyers customize our legal services to provide unparalleled support as your family recovers from this tragic incident. We conduct an independent investigation of the accident, quantify your damages, facilitate insurance negotiations, and work with a team of accident reconstructionists to identify the appropriate defendants and safeguard your legal and financial interests.

If you are looking for a personal injury lawyer to help you with filing a lawsuit against the negligent party responsible for your catastrophic injuries, you can get a free evaluation by contacting Shiner Law Group. Our experienced legal team is compassionate and would do everything to help you recover compensation for the damages you experienced through this devastating experience. We will help you in estimating the value of your loses – physical, emotional and financial, and assist in holding the ones responsible/accountable for their negligence.

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