The death of a family member in an unexpected fatal accident caused by someone else’s negligent or wrongful actions can be hard to accept. Lives change in an instant as parents, wives, husbands, and children try to cope with the physical pain, mental anguish, and sorrow caused by a wrongful death and subsequent worries over medical bills, funeral bills, and other financial obligations.
The legal term “wrongful death” refers to a fatality that occurs because of the negligence or misdeeds of another person, corporation or entity. Part of the “personal injury” tort family, wrongful death holds an individual, group or corporation (defendant) accountable for causing injury to another person (plaintiff). The primary goal of a personal injury tort is to provide relief (damages) to the plaintiff. In some cases the damages may be sued to deter the defendant from inflicting harm to others. The death could occur because of a car accident, medical malpractice, an on-the-job injury, nursing home abuse or neglect, propane gas explosions, a tractor trailer wreck, product defects or from any other careless conduct.
Although damages in a wrongful death case cannot bring your loved one back, a successful wrongful death claim can provide your family with some security and certainty as you face the future.
In most wrongful death cases, the estate and certain surviving family members will have a claim for damages. The estate is typically allowed to claim damages for the following:
- Sorrow, mental anguish, and solace which may include society, companionship, comfort, guidance, kindly offices and advice of the decedent;
- Compensation for reasonably expected loss of (i) income of the decedent and (ii) services, protection, care and assistance provided by the decedent;
- Expenses for the care, treatment and hospitalization of the decedent incident to the injury resulting in death;
Reasonable funeral expenses; and
- Punitive damages may be recovered in Virginia for willful or wanton conduct, or such recklessness as evinces a conscious disregard for the safety of others.
If your family member or loved one has died due to the negligence of another, O’Bryan Law can help. We have over 30 years of experience investigating, pursuing and settling wrongful death claims. Virginia wrongful death attorney Wayne O’Bryan and O’Bryan Law have extensive experience working with the reputable experts necessary to secure a fair and reasonable wrongful death settlement. We also have the experience and skills necessary to present your wrongful death case in court before a jury and judge if the insurance company refuses to settle, or offers an inadequate settlement. Our experienced wrongful death attorneys and staff members will work hard to ensure the insurance company or the jury understands the depth of your loss.
Wrongful death cases are always emotional, which is why you should not make any major decisions while you are grieving. Consult an experienced Virginia wrongful death lawyer before you enter into any settlement, sign any release or accept any money in exchange for releasing an individual, corporation or insurance company from liability.
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Wrongful Death & Fatal Accidents
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Wrongful Death and Fatal Accident Resources:
Frequently Asked Questions:
- What is the statute of limitations for wrongful death in Virginia?
- What can I do if my loved one was killed in an accident or wreck that was not their fault?
- What is the difference between wrongful death and medical malpractice?
Accident Attorney Library:
- Wrong way driver kills father in bad car accident on 295 near Richmond, VA
- Virginia Deer Hunting Season Safety Tips
- On Halloween pedestrian deaths quadruple. Here are some tips to stay safe.
- The Virginia Wrongful Death Statute from the Code of Virginia in Layman’s Terms, part 3
- The Virginia Wrongful Death Statute from the Code of Virginia in Layman’s Terms, part 2
- This is part one of my layman’s explanation of the wrongful death statute from the Code of Virginia.
- Virginia Wrongful Death Statute from the Code of Virginia
- Virginia Supreme Court rules in Wrongful Death case
O’Bryan Law Firm is located in Richmond, VA, and serves the following counties, cities and towns:
Richmond: Church Hill, The Fan District, Near West end, Far West End, Jackson Ward, Carver, Southside, North side, Barton Heights, Bellevue, Ginter Park, Washington Park, Hermitage Rd, Highland Park, Sherwood Park, East End, Carytown, Museum District, Court End, Fulton Hill, Manchester, Newtowne West, Oregon Hill, Randolph, The River District, Shockoe Bottom, Three Corners District, Tobacco Row, Shockoe Slip, Union Hill, Westover Hills, Forest Hill, Bon Air, Stratford Hills, Meadowbrook, Woodland Heights, Montrose Heights, Fairfield Court, Creighton Court, Whitcomb Court, Mosby Court, Eastview, Brauers, Peter Paul, Woodville, North Church Hill, Chimborazo, Brandermill, and Oakwood. Henrico County: Chamberlayne, Dumbarton, East Highland Park, Glen Allen, Highland Springs, Lakeside, Laurel, Montrose, Short Pump, Tuckahoe, Wyndham, Sandston, Varina, Westhampton. Chesterfield County: Bellwood, Belmont, Bon Air, Brandermill, Chester, Courthouse, Enon, Ettrick, Genito, Gordon, Harrowgate, Hening, Jefferson Davis North, Manchester, Matoaca, Meadowbrook, Midlothian, Reams, Robiou, Rockwood, Salisbury, South Rockwood, Spring Run, Winterpock, Woodlake. Hanover County: Ashland, Atlee, Beaverdam, Doswell, Elmont, Hanover Courthouse, Mechanicsville, Montpelier, Old Church, Rockville. Petersburg. South Boston. Colonial Heights. Hopewell. South Hill. Farmville. Powhatan County: Ballsville, Beaumont, Belona, Chestnut Oaks, Clayville, Dorset, Fin Creek Mills, Flat Rock, Genito, Goode Crossing, Hatchers, Hideaway Lake, Holly Hills, Huguenot, Huguenot Springs, Jefferson, Lilburn, Macon, Michaux, Moseley, Pilkinton, Plain View, Powhatan, Provost, Red Lane, Smiths Crossroads, Subletts, Tobaccoville, Trenholm, Worshams. Amelia County: Amelia Courthouse, Winterham. Caroline County: Bowling Green, Port Royal Mecklenburg County: Boydton, Brodnax, Chase City, Clarksville, La Crosse, Bracey. Halifax County: Clarksville, Halifax, Scottsburg, Virginia, Clover, Cluster Springs, Cody, Nathalie, Omega, Turbeville, Vernon Hill. Lunenburg County: Kenbridge, Victoria, Lunenburg, Meherrin. Prince Edward County: Farmville, Pamplin City, Prospect, Hampden Sydney, Meherrin, Rice. Nottaway County: Blackstone, Burkeville, Crewe, Nottoway.