Published in Personal Injury by Mitch Cornell on December 28, 2018.
Losing a loved one in an accident is absolutely devastating. The emotional pain can be even more dramatic when you find out that the accident could have been prevented if only proper care had been taken.
If your family member was killed as a result of the wrongful actions, careless inactions, negligence, or recklessness of another party, you may be able to hold that defendant legally liable through a wrongful death lawsuit.
At Eskew Law, our Indianapolis wrongful death attorneys have the skills and experience to handle the full range of wrongful death cases.
Here, we provide an overview of the most common examples of wrongful death claims and explain what you need to know about Indiana’s wrongful death law.
- Motor Vehicle Accidents
Car accidents remain one of the leading causes of avoidable fatalities in Indiana. According to data published by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), 821 people were killed in traffic accidents in the state in 2016.
Many of these accidents could or should have been avoided.
When fatal accidents occur as a result of negligence, the responsible party must be held accountable.
In many cases, auto accidents are caused by negligent drivers.
Though, deadly accidents can also occur due to the actions of negligent trucking companies, commercial vehicle operators, auto manufacturers, auto parts makers, construction companies, and even government agencies.
- Medical Malpractice
All medical professionals have a duty to provide patients with adequate care.
Unfortunately, in far too many cases, medical negligence results in severe harm to patients.
Medical malpractice claims are especially complex. These cases always require a comprehensive investigation.
If you believe that your loved one was killed as a result of medical negligence, please contact an experienced Indianapolis medical malpractice attorney immediately.
- Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect
Nursing home patients are especially vulnerable. While assisted living facilities in Indiana must comply with certain safety standards, nursing home abuse remains a serious problem.
While it is difficult to get precise figures, some estimates suggest that as many as one in ten nursing home residents experience some form of abuse or neglect each year.
In the worse cases, abuse and neglect can lead to the death of an elderly or vulnerable person.
- Product Liability Claims
Product designers, product manufacturers, and product sellers have a responsibility to ensure that they are putting reasonably safe goods on the market.
If a person is injured or killed by a defective product, they can hold any negligent companies liable through a product liability lawsuit.
If your loved one was killed by a dangerous or defective product, you need an Indiana wrongful death lawyer who has experience handling complex product liability cases.
- Premises Liability Claims
Finally, a premises liability claim may also be the basis for wrongful death cases.
Business and property owners have a legal duty to keep their premises in a reasonably safe condition for all customers and permitted guests.
When a person is injured or killed as a result of unreasonably dangerous conditions on the property — whether because of lack of maintenance, inadequate security, or any other reason — the property owner or occupier may be held legally liable.
What You Need to Know About Indiana’s Wrongful Death Law
Indiana has a wrongful death statute (Indiana Code Title 34 § 34-23-1-1). The law defines a wrongful death as one that occurs as a result of the “wrongful act or omission of another.”
With limited exceptions, family members of the victim have two years from the date of their loved one’s death to file a wrongful death claim in Indiana.
Notably, not all loved ones of the victim have a right to bring this type of legal action. The case must be initiated by a personal representative of the deceased person’s estate.
In most cases, immediate family members and dependents are the parties that are eligible to recover damages through wrongful death settlements.
Compensation may be available for funeral and burial expenses, loss of financial benefits, and certain noneconomic damages.
Contact Our Indiana Wrongful Death Lawyers Today
At Eskew Law, our Indianapolis wrongful death attorneys are committed, compassionate advocates for our clients.
While we know that nothing can truly make up for your losses, our law firm is here to protect your rights and to ensure that your family receives full financial support.
We will handle all of the legal aspects of your claim so that you can focus on yourself and your loved ones. For a free, fully private consultation, please do not hesitate to contact our Indianapolis law office today.