A wrongful death occurs when someone dies because of the mistake, error, malice, or other negligence of someone else. These can be some of the hardest situations for a family to deal with. However, when you work with a Statesville wrongful death lawyer, you give your family a strong chance of getting the financial restitution that they deserve.
Wrongful deaths are almost always sudden, unexpected, and preventable. For many families, it leaves them wondering why this had to happen. The pain of those circumstances is greater than most can even imagine.
For many families, it’s hard to consider pursuing a wrongful death claim because money won’t bring back what’s been lost. That is true, and we would never suggest that money is going to make the loss and grief any easier. There are, though, unfortunate financial realities that need to be addressed in these circumstances, and a wrongful death claim is the most effective way to do that.
At The Law Office of Michael D. Cleaves, PLLC, we know that money isn’t the most important thing in these circumstances. However, we hope to get you the compensation you deserve while maintaining the care and compassion that the circumstance demands. Our team is here to support you in your efforts to hold the responsible party accountable for your loss.
When you work with a lawyer on your wrongful death claim, they can represent you, advocate for your interests, and stand up for the compensation that you deserve. Particularly in a wrongful death claim, though, a lawyer can help ease some of the burden that a family is under.
A good wrongful death lawyer can make the process as least burdensome to you as possible while still seeking the compensation that your family needs.
Our process in a wrongful death case typically begins with a thorough investigation of the circumstances around the death. However it occurred, it’s critical that we examine the situation to understand any potential points of liability. We also gather facts that can be helpful in demonstrating that liability in court. If possible, we also get any eyewitness testimony as well.
We understand how painful this part of the process can be for people, so we try to keep your involvement at the minimum level necessary or however much you’re comfortable with. Some people want to know more about what we find, while others want to know as little as possible. We try to respect those wishes as much as we can.
Before a case goes to court, it’s possible that there will be an attempt to negotiate a settlement instead. There are some advantages to doing so if a fair agreement can be found. By allowing a lawyer to negotiate the process, you are more likely to get a reasonable offer, as the insurance companies that are usually responsible for paying the claim know that we understand what constitutes a fair value.
When a lawyer negotiates, it also indicates a clear possibility of the case going to court. If the insurance company wishes to avoid this, it could also inspire its representatives to make a more substantial offer.
Sometimes, though, a fair agreement just can’t be found. In that case, the claim will have to go to court to seek the reward that you need. In these situations, we are prepared to represent you and argue for the liability of the defendant. We can make your case, advocate for your interests, and defend your right to collect the compensation that you’re owed.
For someone to be liable for compensation in a wrongful death claim in Statesville, NC, they must also be liable for the wrongful death. This means that something about their actions was negligent and led to the wrongful death. Proving this negligence is the job of the plaintiff’s lawyer and usually involves proving three elements:
A wrongful death claim can compensate for the costs that are a direct result of the death. Their connection to the death must be demonstrated by your lawyer. This compensation can cover financial costs, psychological costs, and costs related to the death. Some of the more common things include:
What is compensated in each case depends on the particulars of that case. Your lawyer should be able to give you a better idea of what may be compensated in your situation.
One of the most difficult decisions you may have to make in this process is whether to agree to a settlement or take the claim to trial. Of course, each of these decisions is entirely unique and dependent on a variety of different factors, including your own preferences and what you are hoping to achieve, compared with whether you want to go through the trial process.
There are still some broad things to understand about a settlement versus going to court, no matter the specifics of your case.
A settlement is a form of compromise, so it’s important to recognize that both parties will likely need to give up something to gain a benefit. For you, this likely means giving up some of the money compared to the absolute maximum that you might receive if you were to take the case to trial.
On the other hand, the defendant is giving up the opportunity to go to trial and possibly not have to give up anything if they were to win. For you, this potential financial reduction should be weighed against the benefits of agreeing to a settlement.
One of the most significant benefits of settling a case is the elimination of risk. Even the strongest case heading into a trial could produce an outcome that is the opposite of what you were hoping for.
No matter how confident you are in your claim, there’s no such thing as a no-risk claim once it goes to court. A settlement, on the other hand, carries at least the guarantee that you will get the agreed upon amount.
Another potential benefit of settling a case is the time involved. Taking a claim to trial has the potential to drag on for months and even years before you finally see the compensation that you’re owed. For those looking to secure their funds sooner, a settlement may be a better option. If that is not a priority, then it may be possible to secure more compensation through a trial.
In a wrongful death claim, another reason to settle could be related to the grieving process and coming to terms with what has happened. For some, the prospect of going through the trial process can be too painful, as it feels too much like opening the wound again. For those who are looking to avoid the pain of a trial, a settlement can help close the chapter for them.
However, others may feel that taking the defendant to a civil trial can bring a sense of justice being done. Your greving process is your own, so it is up to you to decide how you would want to proceed.
No one can pretend to know what it’s like to handle a situation where you’ve had a spouse, a parent, a child, or another loved one die because of the negligence of someone else. We can’t fully understand the pain and loss. What we can understand, though, is that this can be a challenging time, and you need compassion, care, and room to grieve.
We also understand how hard it can be to consider something like a wrongful death claim. It’s true that no money will ever replace a loved one who you have passed. In some ways, it can feel crass to be thinking about money at a time like that.
However, it is necessary to realize that you are legally owed compensation for what you’ve had to endure, and while the money will never be enough, it can help ease some of the other stresses and burdens in life. It can also address the financial realities, especially if the deceased helped provide income for the family.
Working with the right Statesville wrongful death lawyer is critical for families in these difficult situations. At The Law Office of Michael D. Cleaves, PLLC, we understand that dynamic and are careful about our approach to wrongful death claims.
We recognize the need for a balance between getting your family the compensation that you deserve and giving you the compassion and care that you need. Our hope is that we can get you fair restitution without the process being too much of a burden and prolonging your grief.
If you’re looking for someone to approach your possible wrongful death claim with compassion and care, contact us today.