The death of a loved one is always a tragic event. The consequences can be devastating when a loved one is taken from us too soon by someone else’s negligent actions. Texas law gives families two options to seek justice and get compensation after the death of a loved one. After an unfortunate event like this, it may feel distasteful to think about money and lawsuits. This is a normal feeling. A wrongful death claim or a survival action can help bring your family closure after a sudden and expected death. With the help of an experienced San Antonio personal injury attorney from Janicek Law, you and your family can get justice for your lost family member. If your loved one was taken too early by someone’s negligent actions, call the personal injury lawyers at Janicek Law today at 210-366-4949.
What is a Wrongful Death Claim?
A wrongful death claim is a lawsuit meant to compensate surviving family members of the deceased person. Wrongful death lawsuits can recover financial compensation for funeral expenses, medical expenses, and loss of financial support for the surviving spouse or children. The damages awarded in a wrongful death claim are intended to compensate surviving family members for their losses. Besides medical bills and burial expenses for the deceased, compensation can include loss of companionship and loss of guidance.
Who Can Pursue a Wrongful Death Claim?
Immediate family members or a personal representative of the deceased person’s estate are the only ones who can pursue wrongful death claims under Texas law. This includes parents, children, and the deceased person’s spouse. In-laws, partners, and significant others cannot file a wrongful death claim.
What is a Survival Action Claim?
A survival action is essentially a personal injury lawsuit on behalf of a deceased person. Personal injury lawsuits recover compensation for a victim. A survival action can recover compensation for pain and suffering, lost wages, property damage, and other losses that the deceased suffered before their death. The damages are awarded directly to the decedent’s estate.
Who Can Pursue a Survival Action?
Unlike a wrongful death action, a survival action can only be pursued by a representative of the estate after the victim’s death. The executor of the will is the only person allowed to file a survival action. Once the damages are awarded, the money goes directly to the estate and is divided among people listed in the will.
Wrongful Death vs. Survival Action: What’s the Difference?
Wrongful death and survival actions may seem very similar. Survival actions differ in a few key ways. After a successful survival action, the damages are awarded to the deceased’s estate. In a wrongful death case, the damages are awarded to the surviving family members. A survival action focuses more on the losses suffered by the deceased before their death, while a wrongful death claim focuses on the surviving family’s losses.
What Evidence Do I Need to Pursue Wrongful Death Claim Or Survival Action?
To pursue a wrongful death claim, you and your legal team must prove that someone else’s negligence caused the death of your loved one. You also need to be able to prove that their death caused financial losses to you and your family.
Survival actions are meant to compensate the victim’s estate for financial losses that happened before they died. For a survival action, family members need to be able to prove that the injuries were caused by negligence.
Gathering evidence for these cases can be tricky, especially while still mourning your lost family member. Let the attorneys at Janicek Law support you through this difficult time. We can focus on gathering evidence while you focus on healing. We keep open communication throughout the process, so you can call us at any time to check the status of your case.
How Do I Know if I Have a Wrongful Death Case or a Survival Action?
Talking to a reputable law firm like Janicek Law can help you figure out which case to pursue. In some cases, both a wrongful death claim and a survival action can be pursued. If your family member succumbed to their injuries after starting legal action, Janicek Law can turn personal injury lawsuits filed before the victim’s death into a survival action.
Can I File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit and a Survival Action at the Same Time?
At Janicek Law, our experienced attorneys can help you file a wrongful death lawsuit and a survival action at the same time. The compensation for both of these claims focuses on different aspects, so Texas law allows family members to pursue both at the same time.
Can Survival Actions and Wrongful Death Claims Have Different Defendants?
Survival actions and wrongful death lawsuits don’t have to have the same defendant. The negligence of different parties may have led to injury and then an untimely death. At Janicek Law, our attorneys will investigate the case and pursue all possible leads for negligent parties.
Texas Statute of Limitations
The time following a loved one’s death can be overwhelming and full of despair. Texas law puts a time limit on personal injury lawsuits, including survival claims and wrongful death actions. You only have two years after a family member dies to recover damages from a civil lawsuit. Establishing an attorney-client relationship with an experienced lawyer at Janicek Law can make sure you meet all the legal deadlines. We can protect your right to legal action while you take the time you need to mourn.
Contact the Experienced Personal Injury Attorneys at Janicek Today
If your family member died due to someone else’s negligence, you have legal options available. The wrongful death attorneys at Janicek Law are ready to support you and your family through this emotional time. People should be held responsible for their negligent actions. Whether the death occurred due to a car accident or nursing home negligence, our personal injury attorneys can help. Call us today for a free consultation in your case at 210-366-4949.