A wrongful death is one that occurs due to the negligent conduct of another party. A person who causes another person to die because their negligent or reckless actions may be held civilly liable for the harm they cause. They may also be charged with a crime if their actions support charges and potential criminal sanctions.
Civil actions such as wrongful death are brought by individuals who administer the estates of the deceased victims. They can be brought for the benefit of the victims’ family members and through them wrongful death actions can, when successful, provide the victims’ families with compensation for the losses they experience without the victims in their lives.
The right to file a wrongful death claim does not last forever. In Connecticut the administrator of a decedent’s estate has two years from the date of the decedent’s death to file a claim; if the decedent lives for a period of time after their accident before succumbing to their injuries the administrator has up to five years from the date of the incident to lodge their wrongful death claims.
The damages that may be recovered in a wrongful death action are diverse. A successful suit may require the responsible party to pay for the victim’s medical bills, if any accrued, funeral costs, and other actual costs associated with the victim’s involvement in the fatal accident. Damages can also extend to other losses, such as the survivors’ pain and suffering, loss of companionship and consortium, and other losses.
The loss of a loved one can be an event that derails the normal functioning of a family. By filing a wrongful death action the decedent’s loved ones may be able to secure financial support in the wake of their death to help keep their struggling lives moving forward.