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Wrongful Death Lawsuits

Wrongful Death Lawsuits in Philadelphia

If you believe a loved one has been the victim of a wrongful death in Philadelphia, please contact the Law Offices of Daniel P. Hartstein today for a free consultation. Our Philadelphia wrongful death attorneys have over 22 years of experience, and we can help you navigate the process of filing a civil lawsuit.

Defining a Wrongful Death Claim

A wrongful death lawsuit may be brought in the event of death caused by neglect, negligence, or unlawful violence. Claims are typically based on actions such as those in a personal injury claim, but here the injury has resulted in death. A wrongful death claim may not be brought if the decedent brought a claim during his or her lifetime for the same cause of action.

Previous lawsuits have cited medical malpractice, automobile accidents, or product liability; however, there are many other types of incidents that could have caused a wrongful death. Our lawyers can assist you in determining if your loved one’s death should be brought as a civil action for wrongful death.

Who May File a Wrongful Death Claim and When Must the Claim Be Filed?

The personal representative of the victim’s estate may bring a wrongful death lawsuit on behalf of the victim’s beneficiaries. There is a two-year statute of limitations for such claims. If you believe time is running out in your case, please contact our offices today. Otherwise, your claim could be barred, meaning you will not be able to pursue damages.

Damages

In a successful claim, the victim’s estate may be awarded costs, such as funeral and burial expenses, medical bills, and lost wages. Pain and suffering damages may be awarded to spouses, children, and parents. Unlike the damages awarded to the victim’s estate, pain and suffering damages are meant to compensate the victim’s family members for loss of comfort, companionship, and guidance. Pursuant to the Pennsylvania Wrongful Death Act, beneficiaries may only recover damages “in the proportion they would take the personal estate of the decedent in the case of intestacy [meaning as if the decedent died without a will],” but these damages are separate from those of the estate.

What Is a Survival Action?

The victim’s personal representative may also be able to bring what is known as a survival action in the event of a wrongful death. These are based on claims that the victim could have brought if he or she survived. Like wrongful death lawsuits, survival actions must be brought within two years of the incident, or the action may be time-barred forever. Thus, it is crucial to seek legal advice as soon as possible.

When a loved one has passed away as the result of a negligent, wrongful, or unlawful act, the victim’s estate may be entitled to bring a wrongful death action or a survival action. Our Philadelphia wrongful death attorneys have more than two decades of handling these claims, which we typically handle on a contingent fee basis. Contact the Law Offices of Daniel P. Hartstein today for a free consultation.

Sources:

http://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/wrongful-death-claims-overview-30141.html
http://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/wrongful-death-lawsuits-pennsylvania.html
http://peph.com/PEPH/RedBook/chapter04/a.htm
http://www2.ca3.uscourts.gov/opinarch/133341np.pdf
http://law.onecle.com/pennsylvania/judiciary-and-judicial-procedure/00.083.001.000.html

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Law Offices Of Daniel P. Hartstein, LLC

(215) 732-0306

1500 Walnut Street

Suite 1920

Philadelphia, PA 19102

www.danhartsteinlaw.com

The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create an attorney client relationship.

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