Survival Actions for a Fatal Accident in Palm Beach County, FL
It is a terrible event when a family member passes away due to another person’s negligent or wrongful behavior in Palm Beach County. However, the relatives and beneficiaries have the option to pursue financial recovery in the aftermath of their loved one’s death through a survival action.
A survival action can provide financial assistance to cover the unexpected expenses that arise following the death of a loved one, such as medical and funeral bills and the loss of the deceased person’s income. Surviving spouses, parents, and children are eligible to seek compensation for the losses they will experience in the future due to the absence of their loved ones. Additionally, family members have the option to file a wrongful death claim in addition to their survival action.
For a free case assessment with our Palm Beach County car accident lawyers, contact the Law Offices of David I. Fuchs, Injury & Accident Lawyer, P.A. at (954) 751-4258 today.
What is a Survival Action for a Fatal Accident in Palm Beach County, FL?
Losing a loved one to wrongful death is a tragic experience that nobody should have to endure. However, there is a legal option for survivors to seek justice and closure by filing a survival action lawsuit. According to Fla. Stat. § 768.19, when the decedent’s death is caused by a wrongful act, negligence, default, or breach of contract by another party, the decedent’s estate can bring a survival action in Palm Beach County to seek a legal remedy for the death and resulting losses suffered by family members. The primary objective of a survival action is to compensate the estate of the deceased for any damages incurred prior to their death.
In Florida, there are specific requirements that must be met in order to file a survival action. Fortunately, our Palm Beach County personal injury lawyers can help you determine if you meet these requirements and navigate the legal process so you recover the compensation you deserve. Firstly, the death must have been caused by the wrongful act, negligence, or default of another party. Secondly, the survivors must be able to demonstrate that they have suffered financial damages as a result of the death. If a loved one has died due to someone else’s wrongful act, you are likely eligible to file a survival action.
Who Can Recover Compensation in a Palm Beach County, FL Survival Action?
Compensation in a survival action is not available to every member of the family. Typically, only the immediate family members of the deceased are eligible to pursue a claim. This category includes the surviving spouse, children, and, in some cases, parents of the deceased.
However, other family members might also be eligible to seek compensation. This applies to any family member who was financially dependent on the deceased, such as a grandchild who was living with and being supported by the deceased. In such cases, the grandchild would be able to file a survival action.
Keep in mind that only the personal representative of the decedent’s estate can file a survival action. However, any compensation received from a survival action claim is not distributed to individual family members. Instead, the compensation is paid to the decedent’s estate as it is intended to compensate for damages suffered by the decedent and not by the family members.
What is a Wrongful Death Claim in Palm Beach County, FL?
In Palm Beach County, a lawsuit can also be filed for wrongful death. The purpose of this lawsuit is to provide compensation to family members who have lost their loved ones. The compensation is calculated based on the time from the death of the person until the end of their expected life span if the injury or accident had not occurred. Typically, a wrongful death claim is filed simultaneously with a survival action.
The basis for a wrongful death claim is that the surviving family members have suffered a loss. The losses that the family members can claim include financial support that the deceased would have provided to the family, such as payment for housing, food, clothing, education, medical care, entertainment, and gifts. Additionally, the work that the deceased would have contributed to the home, such as child care, cooking, cleaning, and yard work, can also be claimed. Family members can also seek compensation for the loss of the deceased’s guidance, companionship, and comfort. Spouses might also claim loss of affection, love, and sexual relationships.
To file a wrongful death claim in Florida, the plaintiff must prove four elements. These include the defendant’s conduct, the victim’s ability to bring a personal injury claim against the defendant if they had survived, identification of the personal representative and relevant family members, and causation and damages.
If a settlement or jury award is granted, the compensation must be distributed equally among all beneficiaries. The court will generally honor any specific plan for allocation that the adult beneficiaries can agree upon.
What is the Time Limit to File a Survival Action in Palm Beach County, FL?
It is crucial to understand the statute of limitations if you are considering filing a wrongful death or survival action claim after losing a loved one. In Palm Beach County, the statute of limitations for these types of cases is two years, which means that you have two years from the date of death to file a lawsuit.
Failure to file your case within this time frame will likely result in your case being barred and dismissed from court. However, it is possible to extend the statute of limitations under certain circumstances, such as when the cause of death is not immediately known. Nonetheless, it is best to seek assistance from our team as early as possible to ensure that you file your case in a timely manner.
What Damages Can I Recover in a Survival Action in Palm Beach County, FL?
As mentioned, when an accident results in the death of an individual, the estate is entitled to recover damages that the deceased would have been entitled to had they survived. Survival action claims can seek damages for medical expenses related to the injuries sustained in the accident, lost wages from the time of the accident until the time of death, and lost earning capacity if the deceased was forced to take a lower-paying job due to their injuries. Additionally, survivors can seek damages for the pain and suffering experienced by the deceased before their death.
When determining the damages awarded in a survival action claim, the jury will consider several factors, including the level of pain and suffering experienced by the deceased, the length of time the deceased suffered, and any fear or anxiety they experienced prior to their death.
The primary difference between wrongful death and survival action claims is that wrongful death claims seek damages for surviving family members, while survival action claims seek damages for the deceased individual prior to their death, which will then be allocated to family members.
Our Palm Beach County, FL Survival Action Attorneys Can Help
Contact the Law Offices of David I. Fuchs, Injury & Accident Lawyer, P.A. at (954) 751-4258 for a free case review with our West Beach County car accident attorneys.