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Wrongful Death Attorney in Boca Raton, Florida

It is a tragic and emotional time when you suddenly lose a family member – especially when someone is to blame for that family member’s death. Goldblatt Law is experienced in helping victims’ families in wrongful death and personal injury claims. Our wrongful death attorneys will take the time to explain your legal options, including how to get maximum compensation and justice. To learn more about how we can help, reach out to Goldblatt Law online or by calling (561) 868-2000.

Wrongful Death Lawyer Information Center

  • What Is Wrongful Death?

  • What Compensation Can I Get In A Wrongful Death Claim?

  • What Accidents Cause Wrongful Death?

  • How Do I File A Wrongful Death Claim?

  • How Is A Wrongful Death Claim Different From A Criminal Case?

  • How Much Is My Wrongful Death Claim Worth?

  • How Much Time Do I Have To File A Claim?

  • Florida Wrongful Death Attorneys

What Is Wrongful Death?

Wrongful death occurs when someone dies because of another person's negligence, carelessness, or recklessness. Wrongful death can include a crime, but it doesn't have to. It can simply be a terrible circumstance. 

Under Florida law, certain people can file a wrongful death claim. These people are:

  • The deceased's spouse

  • The deceased's children

  • The deceased's parents

Suppose no primary beneficiary listed above is available or can file a wrongful death claim. In that case, any other relative who relied on the decedent for financial support may be eligible to file a wrongful death claim. The deceased's personal representative may also file a claim. 

Wooden Casket with Flowers on TopWhat Compensation Can I Get In A Wrongful Death Claim?

If you're filing a wrongful death claim after the untimely passing of a loved one, you'll have many expenses related to your loved one's death. To help you shoulder the financial burden, you may be able to collect compensation for:

  • Funeral costs

  • Burial costs

  • Final medical expenses

  • Lost wages of the deceased

  • Loss of companionship

Depending on the stage of life the deceased was in, you could collect substantial compensation for their lost earnings over the course of their life, especially if you are financially dependent on those earnings. While no amount of money will bring your loved one back or cure your pain and suffering, financial compensation can help you avoid financial hardship because of your loved one's passing.

What Accidents Cause Wrongful Death?

Every wrongful death accident is terrible and tragic. Unfortunately, some people will experience the traumatic loss of a loved one in an untimely accident. But it happens in many different ways, each requiring a keen legal eye to help hold the negligent person accountable for their actions and the death of your loved one. Here are some common ways wrongful death claims arise.

Work Safety Violation

Workplace accidents are more common than people realize. In Florida, there are around 400 deaths caused by workplace accidents each year. Occupational deaths are tragic for the family left behind, whether caused by an egregious safety violation or a true accident. In many cases, workplace deaths are caused by severe accidents, resulting in costly life-saving medical procedures. Your family will still be on the hook for those bills. 

Rideshare Accident

Ridesharing apps are extremely popular because of their ease of use, lack of friction, and fast response time. But some drivers aren't always adhering to the rules of the road. Drivers for Uber or Lyft may also be in violation of taxi and rideshare laws, which could cause safety violations. These can easily lead to deadly accidents.

Bicycle Accident

Riding a bike in Florida is possible nearly all year. It's great exercise and a cheaper means of transportation to get around town. But bicycles, by their very nature, provide little to no protection for the rider. While having the wind in your face feels great, it can mean that even minor accidents can be deadly. When a bicyclist is struck by a car, the car driver is often at fault and could be held liable for the death of your loved one.

Medical Malpractice

It's shocking to hear this statistic, but it's true: medical errors are the third leading cause of death in the U.S. When most people hear about medical malpractice, they often assume that it means a doctor making a mistake during a surgery. While that is one of the ways that medical malpractice occurs, it isn't the only. A pharmacist can dispense the wrong prescription. A nurse can give an incorrect dosage. No matter how medical malpractice occurs, when it causes a death, it's tragic and usually preventable. Holding the negligent medical professional accountable can help you shoulder the financial costs.

Child Accident

The most tragic types of accidents often involve a child's death. Losing a child to a tragedy is likely the most gut-wrenching and emotional time in a parent's life. There is nothing like the loss of losing a child. To help you get through that, you can seek to hold the negligent party responsible for your child's death and get compensation to help you shoulder the financial burden you face.

Witnessed a Wrongful Death?

How Do I File A Wrongful Death Claim?

After losing a loved one, we understand that the last thing on your mind is to deal with a lawsuit. No amount of money can bring your loved one back, fully ease the pain you feel, or fill the gap that will remain for the rest of your life. Filing a wrongful death claim isn't about getting money to make your pain disappear — it won't even come close to doing that. 

The point of a wrongful death claim is to help you avoid financial hardship because of the loss of your loved one caused by someone else's negligence. And that's a key component to a wrongful death claim in Florida: negligence. You will need to prove through evidence that another person acted recklessly, carelessly, or negligently and that their action, or inaction, directly caused your loved one's death. 

Here are some examples:

  • A driver running a red light and causing a fatal crash

  • Nursing home neglect that results in a resident's death

  • Medical malpractice

There are countless examples of wrongful death actions, and the above list is not exhaustive. If someone else has caused or contributed to the death of your loved one, you may have a valid wrongful death action. 

You'll need to collect as much evidence as possible to help support your claim. Make sure you keep every letter and bill from medical providers and insurance companies. Your lawyer may also need to speak with medical experts to determine precisely how your loved one died. They may also need to speak with accident reconstruction experts who can help analyze accident details to determine an exact cause of death.

Your legal team may also need to work with actuaries who can help put a dollar amount on the lost life. While this may sound cold, it can help you get through some of the most personally challenging times in your life. An actuary will review your loved one's life and calculate their earning potential, investments, and other value. This evaluation is critical if you were dependent on your loved one for financial support. All of this is considered when determining your claim's total value. 

How Is A Wrongful Death Claim Different From A Criminal Case?

Some wrongful deaths occur because of a crime. For example, if your loved one worked in a retail store and someone came in to rob the store and shot and killed your loved one, that person would likely face criminal charges if caught. They may be charged with felony murder, manslaughter, or any other criminal charge that fits the circumstances. 

But do not mistake a criminal case for a civil wrongful death case. The state brings criminal cases that seek to hold a person responsible for violating Florida law. While they may be required to pay restitution to the family of the person they killed, that amount of money will do little to help you cover the exorbitant costs associated with your loved one's death. 

A criminal conviction may send the person to jail or prison for a long time. They may face probation when released and have to pay fines and penalties for their crime. In a wrongful death claim, conversely, you're not trying to send the person to prison but rather collect financial compensation from them to cover your losses, both economic and non-economic. 

There's also a different burden of proof. In criminal cases, the state must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the person caused your loved one's death. In a wrongful death civil case, however, you only need to prove beyond a preponderance of the evidence that the person caused your loved one's death. This is a much lower standard, and while it's not necessarily an easy standard to meet in complex situations, a skilled lawyer on your side can help you with the proof you will need to prevail. 

How Much Is My Wrongful Death Claim Worth?

Everyone wants to know the answer to this question, but it's also the hardest to answer accurately. Because every wrongful death case is different, every wrongful death claim has a unique value. 

The total value of your wrongful death claim will depend on many factors, including:

  • Your loved one's earning potential

  • Their lost income

  • Funeral and burial expenses

  • The egregiousness of the accident

Many factors will help to determine the compensation you can receive. Above all, it's vital that you retain as much information and documentation as possible to help your legal team put up the best possible case. Especially if your case is based on medical malpractice, you can expect the other side to put up an aggressive and bold defense. You must be prepared with as much information as possible to hold the negligent party responsible for your unimaginable loss.

Can I Just Settle My Case?

We don't recommend trying to resolve your case on your own. When you initiate a wrongful death lawsuit, and possibly even before that, perhaps just days after your loved one's passing, you may get a call from the insurance company representing the negligent party. If your loved one died in a car accident, that call might come from the other driver's insurance carrier. If your loved one died from medical malpractice, the call might come from the medical professional's medical malpractice insurance carrier or the hospital or medical facility's insurance. 

When you get this call, the representative for the insurance company will probably try to persuade you to take the offer immediately. They may tell you that the offer is only good right now while you're on the phone and that it's the best offer they can make. They may also suggest that you don't need to hire a lawyer, saying that the lawyer will only take money out of this settlement, leaving you with even less. 

Unfortunately, none of these statements are accurate. We strongly urge you to speak with a lawyer before signing any settlement agreement. Not only can a lawyer potentially negotiate a much better settlement offer, but it's also crucial to realize that once you sign the agreement, you waive your right to bring any future claims against the person responsible for your loved one's death. You cannot go back to the insurance company months or years later when you still have expenses related to your loved one's passing and ask for more money. That's why it's vital that you get a complete understanding of the value of your claim. 

A seasoned wrongful death attorney will have negotiated many settlements successfully. You need an aggressive legal advocate on your side to avoid being taken advantage of by the insurance company.

Your lawyer will also be able to help you understand the total value of your claim. Too many people vastly underestimate the amount of money they'll need to collect to cover all of the expenses they face after the untimely death of their loved one. Don't fall prey to the insurance company. Partner with an experienced wrongful death lawyer right away.

Will My Case Go To Trial?

We know that many people don't want to set foot in a courtroom. While we make every effort to settle your case quickly and for as much money as possible, some wrongful death cases are too complicated to resolve without a trial and may require a jury to help sort them out. Whether your case goes to trial depends on many factors.

Suppose the negligent party's insurance company or legal team refuses to settle for a fair and reasonable amount. In that case, it may be necessary to go to trial to get maximum compensation. But don't worry. We'll be beside you the entire time, speaking on your behalf. We'll also prepare you in advance if a trial is necessary.

But this also raises a good point about choosing the right attorney. You want to choose a lawyer skilled in negotiation and trial work. If your lawyer cannot successfully settle your case for whatever reason, you'll need a lawyer you trust to go to trial. 

Preparing for and handling a trial is a complex and time-consuming experience. Your legal team will need to sort through boxes of records, interview all witnesses, and prepare a solid case on your behalf. You may also be required to attend mediation to attempt to settle the case before trial, even if settlement negotiations earlier on were unsuccessful. 

Having a lawyer at your side who has been down this road before provides a sense of calm. While there are no guarantees, you want a lawyer who has proven success handling cases like yours in the past. A lawyer with that experience will know how best to navigate the complex waters of wrongful death legal proceedings. Without that guidance and advice on your side, you risk having to shoulder not only the emotional but also the financial burden of the loss of your loved one.

How Much Time Do I Have To File A Claim?

For most people, losing a loved one untimely is one of the most personally challenging and tragic moments in their life. We completely understand that you simply want to grieve and remember your loved one while spending time with other supportive family and friends.

However, Florida law limits your time to file a wrongful death claim. That time is just two years after the victim’s death. That may seem like a long time right now, but consider everything you face in the immediate aftermath of your loved one's passing:

  • Dealing with funeral and burial issues

  • Planning a funeral

  • Dealing with potential creditors harassing you

  • Asking yourself why this happened

  • Going through the grieving process

You're doing all this while trying to close out the details of someone's life. Not only will these tasks be incredibly emotional, but you'll need to take time to do them all. Before you know it, those two years will have gone by, and you'll miss out on your chance to collect compensation from the person who caused your loved one's death. Don't waste another minute.

Florida Wrongful Death Attorneys

The lawyer you choose can make a big difference in your Florida wrongful death claim. Speak with a lawyer who provides compassionate representation that you can count on. Goldblatt Law experienced wrongful death attorneys handle wrongful death lawsuits on a contingent fee basis. You will not owe any attorney’s fee unless we are successful in obtaining compensation for you. Our wrongful death lawyers will guide you through the process of holding the responsible parties accountable. Contact Goldblatt Law online or by calling (561) 868-2000 today for a free case evaluation.