Losing a loved one is one of life’s most painful experiences. The Colorado Springs wrongful death lawyers at The Fang Law Firm know that a family member’s death becomes even more emotionally complex when caused by someone else’s wrongful conduct. When another person’s negligence or recklessness caused your loved one to suffer fatal injuries, he or she should be held accountable.
We know that no amount of money will make up for the loss of your family member. We also know that compensation from a wrongful death lawsuit may help you and your family with financial security. Aside from the emotional pain and suffering that you and your family have experienced, you may have also suffered other damages, such as loss of financial support and benefits, and you should be compensated for your losses.
Wrongful death is a legal term that exists within the civil justice system. It describes a fatal injury inflicted by another person or party’s wrongful act, neglect or default (Colorado Revised Statute 13-21-202). A simple way to understand wrongful death is if the deceased victim would have been able to file a personal injury claim against the defendant had the injury not been fatal, you and other surviving family members will most likely be able to file a wrongful death claim now.
Wrongful death does not have to be an outcome of the defendant’s intentional wrongdoing. Wrongful death is not the same as murder; it does not necessarily involve a crime at all. Instead, it describes someone inflicting a fatal injury through an act or omission that went against that party’s responsibility of care to the victim. A wrongful action or omission is called negligence. If someone did intentionally cause the fatal injury, however, that person could still face civil liability for damages in addition to criminal charges.
Whether the death was negligent or intentional, you and your family members can bring a claim to damages. Filing a claim against one or more at-fault parties can bring your loved one justice by holding someone accountable for his or her death. Holding someone responsible could give your family closure during this difficult time. It could also force the defendant to pay you financial compensation. If you are not sure whether you have grounds for a wrongful death claim in Colorado Springs, ask an attorney.
Our attorneys represent surviving family members in wrongful death cases. These cases are emotionally challenging for everyone involved, and our compassionate wrongful death attorneys in Colorado Springs will handle your case with care and respect. We want to help you achieve the closure that you need and the compensation that you deserve.
Our team of personal injury attorneys has handled more than 10,000 cases with a 98% success rate. We care about our clients and their future, which is why we are dedicated to pursuing maximum financial damages in every case.
We provide our clients with an outstanding level of service and communication. When you work with our wrongful death lawyers in Colorado Springs, we will keep you informed throughout the legal process. We will address all of your concerns and answer any questions that you have as your case progresses.
A valid Colorado Springs wrongful death claim requires a preponderance of the evidence. This is the burden of proof in every civil case in Colorado. It is a lesser burden than in criminal cases, which requires the prosecution to prove the defendant’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. During a civil case, the plaintiff will only have to prove the defendant’s fault for the injury or death as more likely to be true than untrue. This generally requires enough evidence to establish four main elements.
Not all wrongful death claims require proof of all four of these elements. If your case involves the law of strict liability, such as a product liability claim or some dog bite cases, the burden of proving dereliction is lifted. You or your lawyer will not need to prove the defendant was negligent or breached a duty of care to obtain compensation for a strict liability case. Learn more about the specific requirements for a valid wrongful death claim in your situation with help from a Colorado Springs wrongful death accident attorney.
Proving a wrongful death claim comes down to evidence. It will be up to you or your attorney to collect, preserve and present enough evidence of the defendant’s negligence for a successful case. Evidence that may be required for a valid claim includes photographs, video footage, eyewitness statements, expert testimony, medical records, police reports and accident reports. A wrongful death lawyer in Colorado Springs can help you meet your evidentiary standard.
Under Colorado law, you and other close family members may pursue a wrongful death claim against the person who caused your loved one’s fatal injuries. The deceased’s surviving spouse, children, and heirs may have a wrongful death claim for their losses. Depending on your wrongful death case facts, other family members, such as parents and those who were financially dependent on the deceased, may have a right to pursue a claim as well.
The person who files a wrongful death claim will do so on behalf of all living beneficiaries. If the claim succeeds, the plaintiff will be responsible for dividing any damages won among surviving family members according to the decedent’s will and/or Colorado’s laws of intestate succession. Ask a lawyer for advice if you are not sure who should act as the representative for your family’s wrongful death case. A lawyer can also help you divide and distribute a settlement award appropriately.
Fatal injuries are terrible tragedies that are often preventable. In many cases, they occur as a result of someone’s neglect to use the appropriate amount of care. In these situations, surviving family members can pursue a claim for justice, closure and financial compensation. Recognizing the most common causes of wrongful death can help you determine whether or not you have grounds for a claim. Many types of accidents can lead to wrongful death lawsuits in Colorado Springs. Search for a lawyer with experience handling the type of accident that took your loved one’s life.
At The Fang Law Firm, our lawyers have years of experience representing clients during all of these types of personal injury and wrongful death claims. We understand the most common causes of wrongful death in Colorado, as well as how to properly represent families during these types of civil claims. If you lost a loved one in any preventable circumstances in Colorado Springs, discuss your case in more detail with us. Our lawyers are here to answer your questions and guide you through the legal process.
Most wrongful death lawsuits aim to recover economic and non-economic damages. Recoverable damages in a wrongful death lawsuit include, but are not limited to, loss of financial support and benefits, funeral and burial expenses, loss of companionship, pain and suffering, and loss of guidance and protection.
In some wrongful death lawsuits, punitive damages, also called exemplary damages, can be recovered if the defendant was acting in a particularly malicious or fraudulent way. It will be up to you or your lawyer, however, to prove the defendant’s gross negligence or malice to recover punitive damages. A judge will not award punitive damages on every case.
The value of your wrongful death claim is directly related to the extent of your losses. The monetary worth of your settlement or jury verdict will depend on factors such as your loved one’s age, income level, final medical bills and legal costs. Before your family accepts less than the case is worth from an insurance provider, ask a lawyer to give you an accurate evaluation.
In Colorado, survival actions may be initiated by the decedent’s personal representative. Survival actions are intended to compensate the victim’s estate for the losses that he or she suffered before death. Survival actions are generally brought when the victim survived and suffered losses between the time that he or she was injured and the time of death.
Compensation for the victim’s losses may include loss of earning capacity, funeral and burial expenses, medical bills, and any other economic losses that the victim sustained after the fatal accident. Even though emotional damages, such as pain and suffering, are available for surviving family members under wrongful death claims, the victim’s emotional losses are not recoverable damages under survival actions.
Financial recovery from a wrongful death claim can help you and your family get closure and begin to heal after losing your loved one. Economic compensation can also protect your future by providing financial security. Contact The Fang Law Firm to schedule a free consultation. We will discuss your wrongful death case and go over your legal options.