A wrongful death lawsuit can help you recover damages if your loved one passed away because of the negligence or intentional misbehavior of another party. A wrongful death lawsuit, governed by Ohio Revised Statutes Section 2125, is a type of civil lawsuit. An individual called a personal representative can file a wrongful death lawsuit against a person, company, organization or government agency.
In Ohio, wrongful death cases are held similar to personal injury claims that the deceased person cannot file. An attorney can help you understand which court to file in, how to address a will, and how to communicate with insurance companies.
What Are the Main Elements of a Wrongful Death Lawsuit?
Wrongful death lawsuits have four main elements:
- the defendant owed the deceased person a duty of care;
- the defendant breached the duty of care;
- the breach caused the deceased to suffer fatal injuries; and
- the deceased and/or their survivors incurred damages.
In addition, the correct person must bring the wrongful death lawsuit. Ohio presumes the following parties to have suffered a loss:
- the surviving spouse;
- the surviving children; and
- the surviving parents.
The statute of limitations for a wrongful death lawsuit in Ohio is two years.
What Damages Can I Recover?
In a wrongful death lawsuit in Ohio, you can expect to recover damages for:
- loss of support, based on compensation or earnings the deceased person would have reasonably earned had they lived;
- loss of services of the deceased person, for work such as child care and housework;
- loss of the care and companionship of the deceased person;
- loss of the prospective inheritance of the deceased person; and
- mental anguish suffered by survivors.
An experienced attorney will work with you to estimate the value of these damages so that you can receive funds to compensate you for your loss and help you heal. You should provide your attorney with important documents such as accident reports, medical records and hospital records relating to the deceased person and his or her survivors, as well as pay stubs relating to the deceased person.
Contact the legal team at Friedman, Domiano & Smith Co., L.P.A. to learn more about your potential for recovery through a settlement or jury trial. We look forward to representing you well in court.