Framingham Wrongful Death Lawyer
Get justice and financial compensation for your loved one’s death. Find out what your options are by speaking with a Framingham wrongful death lawyer.
When someone else causes the death of a family member, the uncertainty, grief, and anger that follow can make it incredibly difficult to know what to do next. In some cases, criminal charges may apply, and a conviction may follow, giving your family some sense of justice and closure.
But what happens in other scenarios where criminal charges don’t apply? And even if they do, the conviction does nothing to secure your family’s future, and then you’re left wondering how to proceed without your loved one’s lost income and companionship.
Fortunately, there are answers to these questions, and a Framingham wrongful death lawyer from Joel H. Schwartz, PC can help you find them.
What Is Wrongful Death?
The term “wrongful death” actually covers a number of possible scenarios. In essence, any time a person dies due to someone else’s actions or inaction, it can be considered a wrongful death. This means that whether malice, negligence, or recklessness were the root cause, you might have a valid lawsuit.
This is quite different from the criminal charges of murder and manslaughter, which will also only serve to punish the responsible party. Wrongful death is a civil suit, and it allows you to collect financial compensation that can allow your family to protect everything you and your deceased loved one built.
Who Can Bring a Wrongful Death Lawsuit in Massachusetts?
In many states, the deceased’s family members are allowed to file a wrongful death suit seeking compensation. This is not the case in Massachusetts, however.
Here, only the personal representative or executor of the deceased’s estate may file. This person is more or less viewed as representing the family’s interests, and he or she will be expected to divide any settlement funds amongst the heirs. If you aren’t certain how to proceed or who is eligible to file, a Framingham wrongful death lawyer from our office can help you sort these details out.
Financial Compensation for Wrongful Death Lawsuits
Some of the damages you can pursue in a wrongful death case are similar to those found in personal injury lawsuits—but not quite the same. It will be important to determine the exact value of each of these items so that you can be certain that any settlement you are offered is fair and doesn’t overlook anything:
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Your loved one’s lost income, estimated through reaching retirement age
- Compensation for lost companionship and guidance
- Punitive damages
Punitive damages may only be awarded if the responsible party was guilty of truly egregious conduct or gross negligence. While you will still receive this money, punitive damages are awarded to punish the defendant and deter others from similar actions.
Your Framingham wrongful death lawyer will ensure that any settlement offer you accept is both fair and fully covers all of these damages and losses. Whether the other side is being represented by an insurance company or opposing attorney, they’ll be most interested in paying you as little as possible, so it’s important to make certain that you have professional legal counsel of your own.
Massachusetts Statute of Limitations for Wrongful Death
Regardless of how your loved one died, Massachusetts only provides a three-year statute of limitations in which a wrongful death lawsuit can be filed. So whether your loved one died in a car crash or was the victim of a dangerous property hazard, your case will be thrown out of court if you wait too long and exceed these time constraints.
You’ll want to begin working with a Framingham wrongful death lawyer as soon after the accident as possible. The immediate aftermath is when it’s easiest to collect evidence and gather eyewitness testimony. This will also allow more time for out-of-court negotiations, which could make going to court and enduring a lengthy trial proceeding unnecessary.
Talk to a Framingham Wrongful Death Lawyer
Don’t allow the responsible party who caused your family member’s death to get away with it. You have more options for justice available than what the criminal justice system has to offer. Seek justice through financial compensation, and protect your family’s future wellbeing.
At Joel H. Schwartz, PC, we have been practicing personal injury law for well over fifty years, and this includes litigating wrongful death lawsuits. If you would like to explore your options and find out what your next best move might be, you can schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with a Framingham wrongful death lawyer. To arrange yours, simply call 1-800-660-2270 or submit the contact form below.