If someone else’s wrongful act caused the untimely death of your close relative in Franklin, Tennessee, or a nearby area, a Franklin wrongful death lawyer may be able to help. Tennessee law allows the deceased person’s estate and the legal beneficiaries to seek compensation for their losses.
You do not have to go through this trying situation on your own. You need to be present for your family and yourself. Working with a lawyer on your legal claim can allow you to focus on the most important matters at hand.
The Cochran Firm - Nashville can help you hold the at-fault party financially responsible for the death of your loved one. If we take your case, we will work tirelessly to get the compensation you deserve to help your family rebuild your lives.
We handle wrongful death claims on a contingency-fee basis, which means that you will not have to pay upfront legal fees to get our help. The initial consultation is free, and there is no obligation to work with us. You can call us today at (615) 651-7451 to get started.
Money Damages in Franklin Wrongful Death Cases
In our state, the deceased person’s estate and the legal beneficiaries can file one combined lawsuit seeking compensation for the loss of the decedent. Many other states require two separate lawsuits.
Tennessee Code § 20-5-113 allows the estate of the deceased person to seek financial damages for:
- The medical bills from the injury
- Reasonable funeral and burial expenses
- The decedent’s pain and suffering from the moment of injury until death
The survivors can pursue compensation for:
- Loss of the financial support the deceased person provided for the family
- The survivors’ mental anguish about the death of their loved one
- Loss of companionship, shared experiences, emotional support, advice, and guidance of the loved one.
The amount of compensation that a person might qualify for will depend on the specific details of the situation and the relationship the survivor had with the decedent. For example, a spouse might receive a different amount of money damages than a young child.
The Cochran Firm - Nashville, can calculate the amount of financial damages that may be appropriate in a given case. You can call us today at (615) 651-7451 to find out how we can help you.
How To Know if You Can File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit
Most wrongful death lawsuits are the result of a negligent act that ends a person’s life. Sometimes, people die at the hands of another person from an intentional or illegal act. Both situations can lead to a wrongful death case.
If the defendant faces criminal charges for the conduct that killed your loved one, the criminal case does not prevent you from going after compensation for your losses. You would file a wrongful death lawsuit in the civil courts to seek money damages. A Franklin wrongful death lawyer can guide you through the process and handle the litigation and settlement negotiations on your behalf.
How to Hold the Defendant Liable in a Wrongful Death Case
When the defendant caused the death of your loved one through a mistake, like a simple car accident, we will have to prove all four of these factors to hold the defendant responsible for the losses:
Duty of Care
The defendant must have owed the deceased person a duty of care. For example, a hauling company has a responsibility to maintain its tractor-trailers in a safe, road-worthy condition.
Breach of Duty
When someone’s conduct does not meet the legal standard, the person is negligent. Let us say that the trucking company knew the tires on its tractor-trailers needed replacement because the tread was worn off, but did not do so, to save money. Putting massive trucks with cargo on the road with unsafe tires violates the duty of care.
The negligence must be the thing that caused the death of someone. By way of example, one of the tractor-trailers has a blow-out of a tire while traveling at highway speeds. The truck loses control and smashed into a car, killing the driver and passenger. The trucking company’s careless maintenance of its fleet was the negligence that caused the wrongful deaths.
Most personal injury claims require measurable losses to hold the at-fault party responsible. In a non-fatal accident, physical injuries satisfy the quantifiable damages element. In a wrongful death case, the harm that killed the decedent is the measurable losses.
Filing a Wrongful Death Claim in Tennessee
State law controls who gets to collect compensation for the wrongful death of a loved one. Tennessee Code § 20-5-107 limits wrongful death lawsuits to these people or entities:
- The surviving spouse
- If there is no surviving spouse, the decedent’s child or next of kin
- In some circumstances, the parents of the deceased person
- The personal representative of the decedent’s estate
The statutes contain additional requirements in these claims for compensation. A Franklin wrongful death lawyer can help you determine who is a legal beneficiary under Tennessee law.
Please be sure to contact a lawyer as soon as possible. Tennessee gives you one year to file a wrongful death lawsuit, per Tennessee Code § 28-3-104. If you miss the deadline, you may lose the right to get any money damages for the death of your loved one.
Working with a Lawyer on Your Wrongful Death Claim
We understand the grief when a close relative dies. Knowing that the death was the result of someone’s careless or illegal act can make the situation even harder to bear.
At The Cochran Firm - Nashville, we treat our clients with compassion and dignity. We know that you are going through one of the most challenging times of your life. We can fight your legal battles for you so that you can focus on taking care of yourself and your family.
The last thing you need in your time of loss is to negotiate the value of your loved one’s life. When we handle the wrongful death claim for your family, you get the space you need for healing and rebuilding your life.
You can call us today at (615) 651-7451 for a free consultation. There is no obligation.