Wrongful death claims are part of personal injury law, offering a legal option for families who have lost a loved one due to the negligence or intentional acts of another. These claims are designed to provide financial compensation and a sense of justice to the bereaved family. But who can file a wrongful death claim?

What is a wrongful death claim?

A wrongful death claim arises when an individual dies as a result of the negligent, reckless, or intentional actions of another party. Unlike criminal cases, which seek to punish the wrongdoer, wrongful death claims are civil actions that aim to compensate the deceased person’s estate and surviving family members for their losses. These losses often include medical expenses, funeral costs, loss of income, loss of companionship and emotional distress.

Who can sue for wrongful death?

In Ohio, a wrongful death claim must be filed by the personal representative of the deceased person’s estate. This individual is often named in the deceased person’s will. If there is no will, the court will appoint a personal representative, who is usually a close family member. The personal representative acts on behalf of the deceased person’s estate and the surviving family members.

While the personal representative files the wrongful death claim, the beneficiaries of any awarded damages are typically the deceased person’s surviving family members. Ohio law specifies that the surviving spouse, children (including adopted children) and parents are all eligible to recover compensation.

Other relatives or dependents may also be eligible to receive compensation if they can prove they suffered damages due to the death. These individuals might include siblings, grandparents or other extended family members who relied on the deceased for financial or emotional support.

Filing a wrongful death claim

Wrongful death claims offer a means for families to seek justice and compensation for their losses. Although losing a loved one is devastating, it’s important to have their personal representative call the Law Offices of Tim Misny as soon as possible—the statute of limitations can run out while you’re still grieving, which bars filing a suit and recovering damages.

When you call our firm, we’ll evaluate your claim and explain the best legal options for your unique case, as well as what you might expect to recover if the claim is successful. Whether your case settles out of court or proceeds to trial, your rights will be protected.

Discuss your case with a Columbus wrongful death lawyer

The Law Offices of Tim Misny can review your wrongful death case. When your loved one was the victim of negligence or recklessness, I’ll Make Them Pay!® Call my office at (877) 614-9524 so that I can evaluate your case right away.

Wrongful Death