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Nassau County Wrongful Death Lawyers

The loss of a loved one is one of the most challenging things to deal with in life, through this experience can be especially devastating if the loss was the result of a preventable accident. If you have lost a loved one in an accident, the Nassau County wrongful death lawyers at Foley Griffin, LLP, can provide immediate assistance helping your family in all legal matters associated with the tragedy, as well as representing your family’s interests against the parties at fault.

Contact a wrongful death attorney at Foley Griffin, LLP, for a free confidential consultation regarding your options in a wrongful death claim.

When is a death considered wrongful?

When a person dies due to another party’s negligence or intentional act, their surviving family may file a wrongful death claim against those responsible in pursuit of monetary damages. Under New York law, a wrongful death is defined as a death caused by the wrongful conduct of another person or party in which the conduct or negligence in question would have given rise to a lawsuit where the harmed person could have recovered damages if they had not died. In this sense, a wrongful death lawsuit is very similar to a personal injury claim with the difference being that it is being brought on behalf of the deceased.

Wrongful death claims can stem from a wide range of fatal incidents, including:

What may be recovered in a wrongful death lawsuit?

There are two separate wrongful death damages that may be awarded. One is wrongful death pecuniary loss. This is the loss of money that the person would have earned for the estate, for his/her spouse or children, and sometimes for a parent when a child contributes to the family. The second is loss of consortium, which is losing the companionship of a spouse or a child.

Recovery in a wrongful death claim may include damages for loss of parental guidance, lost wages, medical expenses, and for conscious pain and suffering. Conscious pain and suffering is the time a person is conscious from the time of the accident to the time of death and can include the fear of impending death. In one case, a family recovered $1.6 million for 3 to 5 seconds of conscious pain and suffering.

Who may file a wrongful death claim in Nassau County?

Unlike many other states which allow immediate family members to file a wrongful death claim, New York places the responsibility for filing a wrongful death claim solely on the personal representative of the deceased person’s estate. This person may be appointed in the deceased person’s estate plan or appointed by the court during the probate process. While the personal representative must file a claim, damages can be awarded to immediate family members, who include surviving spouses, children or the deceased's parents if no spouse, children or grandchildren are present.

Surviving spouses and children are given priority under the law for distribution of the awarded damages in a wrongful death claim, followed by the parents of the deceased if no spouse or children are present. Finally, siblings of the deceased may be eligible to receive the awarded damages if no spouse, children, or parents are present.

Is there a time limit for wrongful death lawsuits in New York?

Like other personal injury actions, wrongful death claims are subject to a time limit under the state’s statute of limitations. Wrongful death lawsuits in New York must be filed within 2 years of the date of death to be admissible in court. If you attempt to file a wrongful death claim after this deadline has expired, your case will almost certainly be dismissed and you will effectively be barred from recovering compensation. In addition, there are much shorter deadlines for filing a wrongful death claim against the government.

The statute of limitations period for wrongful death lawsuits is strictly enforced and can ultimately make or break your claim. For this reason, it is important to retain strong legal representation early to give your attorney enough time to build a strong case and maximize your chances of success.

Dedicated to helping families recover financial compensation for the loss of a family member.

If you have lost a loved one in an accident and are uncertain of how to proceed, contact a Nassau County wrongful death lawyer at Foley Griffin, LLP. We understand what you are going through and can provide the compassionate advocacy you and your family need to move forward.

We can help you administer the estate and file a wrongful death lawsuit. Contact us today at (888) 966-8480.

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