Was your loved one’s death preventable? Have the reckless actions of another taken your close family member too soon? If so, you can bring the perpetrator to justice by filing a lawsuit with the help of a seasoned wrongful death lawyer in Kentucky.
Losing a treasured relative is devastating, and when your time of mourning is burdened by the knowledge that your family member didn’t have to die, your grief may turn to rage.
You can take action against the liable party by filing a civil claim against them. Here, you’ll be seeking compensation for your family’s and your deceased loved one’s losses so the person responsible has to be held accountable for their poor decisions. A claim can cover a wide variety of fatal accidents, from car crashes to medical malpractice and beyond.
However, pursuing such a claim can be intimidating. When you enlist the help of a regarded Kentucky wrongful death lawyer at Wilt & Klausing, PLLC, we’ll handle the legal details so you can focus on grieving your loss without having to worry about how you’ll cover the costs.
Who Can File a KY Wrongful Death Lawsuit?
If you are anxious to get started on your wrongful death claim against the person who intentionally or unintentionally caused the death of your loved one, you will first need to be sure that you have the right to do so.
The state of Kentucky requires that the probate court overseeing the decedent’s estate appoint a personal representative, who will then have the opportunity to file the lawsuit. Generally speaking, this party will be one of the following:
- A surviving spouse
- The decedent’s adult child
- Parents of the deceased
However, if the deceased does not have any of these relatives, the court may appoint a sibling, cousin, or anyone else who may have had an interest in the decedent’s life. If you have concerns over who may be named as the personal representative in your situation, you should speak with your wrongful death attorney as soon as possible.
Your Fatal Accident Claim Is Time-Sensitive
We mention that you should consult an attorney about who is going to be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit because these types of civil claims come with a strict statute of limitations attached. This refers to the amount of time you have, from the date of the decedent’s passing, to file a lawsuit.
Just like with Kentucky personal injury claims, wrongful death lawsuits filed in KY will need to be done before one year has passed. At that point, if you or the personal representative of the decedent’s estate has not filed the claim, then there is a strong possibility that the opportunity to obtain compensation will have been lost.
You could attempt to file a lawsuit, but the defense will likely file a petition to dismiss your case based on the statute of limitations having expired, and the judge will have no other option but to grant their request. For this reason, you need to act quickly after your family member has passed away if you hope to be successful with a wrongful death lawsuit.
Damages That Could Be Recovered in Your Case
Wrongful death lawsuits have some very stringent laws associated with them. This includes the types of losses that you can seek in your claim. Losses frequently sought after in a Kentucky wrongful death claim include:
- Loss of guidance and support
- Loss of companionship and love
- Lost income and earning potential
- Pain and suffering
- Lost household services and care
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Attorney and court fees
- Medical expenses incurred by the deceased
You can also be awarded punitive damages in the event that the Kentucky courts find your loved one’s death was caused intentionally, willfully, or by an egregious act of the liable party.
It should be noted that if your claim is a success, expenses accrued by the decedent’s estate will first be paid to the estate, and the remaining amount of the award will be distributed to the surviving family members, starting with the surviving spouse and children, who will split the award evenly. If the decedent had neither children nor a spouse, the remainder of the award will go to the decedent’s parents.
Discuss Your Case with a Wrongful Death Attorney in Kentucky
You don’t have to sit back and let the person responsible for causing your loved one’s death get away with it. You can take action by filing a lawsuit against them seeking maximum restitution for their wrongful actions.
Reach out to an experienced Kentucky wrongful death lawyer at Wilt & Klausing, PLLC, for assistance with your claim. You can schedule your free, no-obligation consultation by filling out the quick contact form included below or calling our office at 502-253-9110.