The unexpected death of a loved one can be devastating for everyone involved. The surviving family members of the decedent are often left to deal with long-term emotional and financial consequences. Whit Thomas is a skilled Alabama wrongful death attorney who has provided vigorous legal representation to clients suffering from the loss of a loved one. With decades of experience, we will help you pursue those at fault so you can move forward with your life.
Wrongful death lawsuits are based upon state law. In Alabama, “wrongful death” is defined as death caused by the “wrongful act, omission or negligence” of another person or entity. These claims allow the estate of a deceased person to bring a lawsuit against the party that caused the death in a situation where the decedent could have brought the lawsuit had he or she lived.
Wrongful death accidents can result from a variety of circumstances, such as:
- Fatal automobile crashes
- Drunk or distracted driving accidents
- Medical malpractice
- Prescription drugs
- Construction accidents
- Premises liability, such as slip and fall cases
- Work-related accidents
- Defective products
Under Alabama law, wrongful death cases are handled differently than most other states. Surviving family members of the decedent are not permitted to file a wrongful death claim on their own behalf. Alabama law allows only the personal representative of the decedent’s estate to bring a wrongful death claim.
This action must be filed within two years from the date that the decedent passed away. However, certain factors can affect this time frame in some cases. It is crucial to seek the advice of an experienced wrongful death lawyer to ensure that you don’t lose your right to file a lawsuit altogether.Wrongful Death Plaintiffs Must Seek Punitive Damages
Alabama law regarding wrongful death damages is distinctive. While other states allow the plaintiff to recover compensatory damages, Alabama allows plaintiffs to pursue only punitive damages. This means compensatory damages are not recoverable for wrongful death cases in Alabama. Put another way, while most states try to focus on compensating for the losses or costs associated with the decedent’s death, Alabama law focuses on the at-fault party’s wrongdoing. The extent of damages will depend on the nature and circumstances of the particular case.
Pursuing a wrongful death claim is a daunting task in Alabama due to the complexity of the law. Our firm’s experience with these types of claim goes a long way.Helping Alabama Wrongful Death Clients
Whit A. Thomas is a compassionate and hardworking Alabama wrongful death lawyer who is dedicated to pursuing justice for your family. Wrongful death claims are complicated and require extensive legal effort. We understand that families who have lost a loved one are coping with painful emotional heartbreak and require time to heal. This is why we are committed to representing clients with respect, empathy, and the utmost vigor. Together, we will come up with a strategy tailored to further your pursuit of recovery under the law. Please call us today at (251) 943-9330 or contact us online for an initial consultation at no cost to you.