Charleston Wrongful Death Attorney
If you recently lost a loved one and believe that someone else might be legally responsible then contact the Max Sparwasser Law Firm, LLC. Our Charleston wrongful death lawyer represents families of loved ones and helps them secure the compensation they deserve under South Carolina law.
Unintentional injury deaths are the fourth leading cause of all deaths in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Deaths may occur from car collisions, falls, workplace injuries, even poisoning.
What is a “Wrongful Death?”
The South Carolina Code of Laws defines a wrongful death as one that results from a “wrongful act, neglect, or default” of another party. Like personal injury cases, a wrongful death claim requires:
- That the alleged guilty party owed the victim a duty of care,
- That the party violated this duty of care, acting negligently, and
- The party’s negligence led to the victim’s death.
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim in Charleston?
South Carolina state law requires the executor of the deceased’s estate file the wrongful death action in court. If the deceased had a will, then he or she named an executor or administrator of the estate that is tasked to carry out the terms of the deceased’s will. If the deceased does not have a will the court will appoint a personal representative.
The executor of the estate is the only party who can file a wrongful death action in court, but he or she does so to benefit the victims surviving family members. The following surviving family members, or beneficiaries, may recover damages in a wrongful death action:
- The surviving spouse and/or children
- The surviving parents, if the deceased has no spouse or children
- Any named heirs
If you’re looking to file a wrongful death claim, contact one of our experienced Charleston wrongful death lawyers today. Our Charleston personal injury lawyers will help provide legal guidance and advice.
Damages in a Wrongful Death Suit
Surviving members of a family can recover several types of damages in a wrongful death suit, including:
- Economic damages. These compensate for the quantifiable expenses associated with your loved one’s death. Examples include the medical expenses, any familial loss in earning capacity and income, and the costs of the funeral and burial.
- General damages. These types of damages reimburse for the immaterial losses of an accident, which include mental anguish and loss of consortium.
In some cases, families may be able to pursue punitive damages against the defendant, which serve as a punishment for wrongdoing. These are most common in cases where a defendant commits gross negligent or willful misconduct leads to the decedent’s death.
What to Do After a Wrongful Death
If you recently lost a loved one in an accident and believe that someone else may be responsible then it’s essential to contact the Max Sparwasser Law Firm, LLC as soon as possible. Wrongful death suits follow strict timelines, referred to as a “statute of limitations.” Failing to file a lawsuit within the appropriate timeframe could result in dismissal of your case – even if another party was negligent.
The Max Sparwasser Law Firm, LLC is committed to helping you gain compensation for the full amount of your damages, pain, and suffering. If you lost a loved one in an accident, contact the firm today and speak to a Charleston wrongful death attorney to discuss your legal options in a free, no-obligation consultation. Max Sparwasser offers his services on a contingency-fee basis, so there is no fee unless you win a settlement or court judgment.