Right now, you are mourning the loss of a loved one. Nothing can undo the harm you and your family have suffered. As you adjust to life without your loved one, you may be left with many questions, including whether you can, or should, pursue a wrongful death lawsuit.
The answer is different for every family, but every family deserves to know how a Michigan wrongful death action works.
Five Things to Know About Wrongful Death Lawsuits in Michigan
While every Michigan wrongful death action is unique, specific rules apply to all wrongful death lawsuits. These rules include:
- When you might have a wrongful death lawsuit. Michigan law allows families to pursue wrongful death actions if their loved one died because of the wrongful action, neglect, or fault of someone else. If your loved one would have had a personal injury case had they lived, then you may have a wrongful death case.
- Who can file a wrongful death lawsuit. The personal representative of your loved one’s estate may file a wrongful death lawsuit.
- How long you have to file a wrongful death lawsuit. In most cases, you have three years from the date of a loved one’s death to file a wrongful death lawsuit in a Michigan court.
- How to file a wrongful death lawsuit and what happens next. Your lawsuit formally begins when you file a complaint in court. Your wrongful death lawyer will help you at each stage of the wrongful death lawsuit, including investigating what happened, filing your complaint, filing all court pleadings and motions, negotiating with the right insurers, and trying your case in court, if necessary.
- What you may recover in a wrongful death lawsuit. No amount of money can ever compensate you for your loss. However, financial recovery may provide compensation for medical costs incurred before death, funeral expenses, lost income, and the pain and suffering your loved one endured before death. Compensation is also available for the pain and suffering of surviving family members, and the loss of care, love, companionship, and other intangible losses suffered because of your loved one’s death.
While the personal representative of your loved one’s estate must file the wrongful death case, you and other relatives may receive compensation from a wrongful death action. Michigan law allows the spouse, children, parents, grandparents, siblings, stepchildren, and anyone named heir in your loved one’s will to receive wrongful death damages. If none of these relatives are living or your loved one died without a will, then anyone who could inherit your loved one’s property may receive the damages.
Talk to a Michigan Wrongful Death Attorney
If your loved one died because of someone else’s negligence, then our Michigan personal injury lawyers are here to answer your questions. Contact us for a free consultation so that you can be confident in the legal decisions that you make after your loved one’s tragic death.