Wrongful Death Attorney Serving Old Lyme, Connecticut

Losing a family member or loved one because of someone else’s actions creates an empty space in your life, and it’s natural to fill that space with questions. Why did this happen? What can we do next? In addition to the physical and emotional losses you’re dealing with, you may face significant financial obstacles, including funeral and burial costs, unpaid medical bills, and the loss of your loved one’s income. These challenges can add stress to an already difficult situation.

Here at Holth & Kollman, LLC, we’ve dedicated ourselves to helping families in Old Lyme, Connecticut, find answers and peace. We believe in standing up for those who can’t speak for themselves anymore, and we’ve served families in the Old Lyme, Connecticut, area for 40 years from our office in New London. If you retain a wrongful death attorney from our firm to represent you, we will work tirelessly to help you find justice. We’re here to shoulder your legal burdens and guide you every step of the way, from helping you understand your options to fighting for what’s right in court. Call us today for a free consultation with a Connecticut wrongful death lawyer.

Why You Need an Experienced Lawyer for a Connecticut Wrongful Death Claim

Hiring an experienced and knowledgeable personal injury lawyer for a wrongful death case can help you avoid unnecessary headaches and frustrations. When you trust a personal injury attorney with experienced handling Connecticut wrongful death cases, you benefit from working with someone who knows the laws and legal issues that affect these cases.

Wrongful death cases in Connecticut involve a number of specific and unique challenges, beginning with proving someone else’s actions caused your family member’s death. These cases require gathering evidence, understanding complex laws, and sometimes going to court. A lawyer takes on these challenges for you, using their skills to build a strong case. They’re your guide through this difficult process, aiming to make it as smooth as possible for you and your family.

Lawyers help make your life easier by handling all the legal work, allowing you to focus on healing. Without skilled legal advice, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed and miss critical steps that could affect your case’s outcome. You might face insurance companies and other lawyers who want to deny your claim or minimize your compensation. A personal injury lawyer stands up for you, protects your rights, and fights for the compensation your family deserves.

Connecticut Wrongful Death Law

Wrongful death refers to any death resulting from someone else’s careless actions, failure to act, or intentional conduct. This definition includes intentional acts of violence like assaults, stabbings, and shootings, but it also includes incidents like fatal car crashes or premises liability accidents that result in death. In each of these examples, the person who died did so as the result of someone else’s careless action or inaction.

It’s important to understand that someone’s actions do not have to rise to the level of criminal activity for them to be liable in a wrongful death claim. For instance, if someone dies because they fell on the slippery floor at a business and suffered a fatal head injury, the business owners likely did not mean to injure them. However, the business might still be liable because they failed to clean up the spill, which led to the fatal accident.

Who Can File a Wrongful Death Suit in Connecticut?

Connecticut’s wrongful death statute says that only the administrator of the deceased’s estate (sometimes called the executor) can file a wrongful death claim. Unless the deceased named someone in their immediate family as their estate administrator, family members cannot directly file a wrongful death suit.

However, there are instances in which someone dies without naming an administrator for their estate, usually because they did not make a will. If this happens, the court can appoint someone to serve as the estate’s administrator. Depending on the circumstances of the case, the court may appoint the deceased’s surviving spouse, a surviving child, or another person to serve in this role. Whomever the court chooses, that person can then initiate a wrongful death action on behalf of any surviving family members.

Wrongful Death Claims vs. Survival Actions

There are two ways to seek justice for a family member’s death: wrongful death claims and survival actions. While these two legal actions both deal with the aftermath of losing someone unfairly, they do have some important differences.

Wrongful death claims are all about the loved ones left behind. They allow the family to recover compensation for the losses they experienced, including money for funeral costs, lost income, or the pain of losing their loved one’s company and support. It’s the law’s way of acknowledging that your family’s loss is significant and deserves attention.

Survival actions, meanwhile, focus on the pain or financial loss the decedent experienced between their injury and their death, for which they could’ve pursued compensation had they survived their injuries. In a survival action, the family can seek this compensation themselves. They may pursue compensation for their loved one’s medical bills and the pain and suffering they experienced prior to their death.

Compensation in Connecticut Wrongful Death Cases

One of the jobs of wrongful death law firms is to help you maximize your compensation for the loss you’ve experienced. You can seek compensation for many losses related to a family member’s death, including:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of emotional support, care, and affection from the deceased
  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • The deceased’s medical expenses from their fatal injuries
  • The lost income and other benefits the deceased would have earned had they lived

Common Accidents and Injuries That Cause Wrongful Deaths

Wrongful deaths occur due to a wide range of avoidable actions, accidents, or mistakes. Here are some common accidents and injuries that can lead to wrongful deaths:

  • Car Accidents– High-speed crashes or collisions resulting from careless or reckless driving can result in fatal injuries.
  • Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)– These severe injuries can happen from falls, sports accidents, or vehicle collisions. TBIs can be deadly, especially if not treated immediately and properly.
  • Medical Malpractice– When doctors or nurses make serious mistakes, like surgical errors or wrong medication doses, it can lead to someone’s untimely death. These are complex cases that need careful examination.
  • Workplace Accidents– Unsafe work environments, especially in construction or manufacturing, can lead to fatal accidents. These incidents might include falls from heights or machinery malfunctions.
  • Slip and Falls– Seemingly minor accidents, like slipping on an icy sidewalk, can cause deadly injuries, especially in older adults.

Deadline to File a Wrongful Death Claim in Connecticut

In most circumstances, you have two years from the date of your loved one’s death to file a wrongful death lawsuit. Speak to an attorney immediately to give yourself the most time to build a robust case without worrying about missing important legal deadlines.

Contact an Old Lyme, Connecticut, Wrongful Death Attorney Now

When you’re dealing with the unexpected death of a loved one due to another party’s negligence, you deserve the time and space to focus on grieving and healing. Let Holth & Kollman, LLC, handle the process of pursuing legal action against the liable party. Call our New London office or complete our online contact form to get started with a free consultation.