Wrongful Death in Alabama
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Coping with the loss of a loved one—especially if it was caused by the negligent actions of another party—can be one of the most difficult times of your life. Not only does a wrongful death result in emotional distress for family members, but they sometimes contend with the loss of income, loss of support, and other costs associated with the death.
With more than 125 years of experience, our Alabama personal injury attorneys at Hare Wynn can help. We will thoroughly investigate your case, collect and analyze evidence, negotiate with insurance companies, and develop an effective strategy to try to obtain the most favorable outcome possible.
Alabama Wrongful Death Law
In Alabama, wrongful death is defined as one caused by a wrongful act, omission, or negligence of another party. The personal representative of the estate of the deceased individual can file a wrongful death lawsuit against the at-fault party. Since a deceased person no longer can bring a personal injury claim in order to seek compensation, the estate of the deceased person steps in to seek monetary damages on the deceased person’s behalf.
Unlike some other states, family members of the deceased individual are prohibited from filing a wrongful death claim in Alabama. Instead, only the personal representative of the deceased person’s estate—which is often named as such under the deceased’s last will and testament—may bring a wrongful death case. Additionally, all damages in such a case are paid to the estate then distributed to the rightful heirs pursuant to Alabama’s heirship laws.
Keep in mind, Alabama law allows only for punitive damages. While most other states take into account the loss of the deceased individual’s life and related damages, Alabama focuses entirely on the defendant’s wrongdoing by punishing him/her if found negligent and to deter similar negligence by other parties.
A wrongful death suit must be filed within two years of the date of death.
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If a loved one died as a result of negligence, our Alabama personal injury attorneys are ready to fight for you. Our experienced legal team possesses a comprehensive understanding of state law to guide you through the complexities of the legal system. We understand that no amount of money can ever replace the life and love of the deceased individual, but it can correct the injustice which caused the death.
For more information about wrongful death cases, contact us immediately.