The loss of a loved one is inevitably difficult and painful, let alone when the death is caused by a fatal accident that is spontaneous and arguably preventable. A wrongful death lawsuit attempts to place liability on another party. While medical expenses are often a realistic part of the scenario, financial settlements also act as compensation to the claimant and hopefully serve as a sense of justice. The victim’s estate is ultimately awarded the money awarded from the settlement.
Recently, a case involving a woman in Connecticut and the owners and operators of the boat upon which the woman’s husband died, was settled for an undisclosed amount. The claimant, who sought $7.5 million, accused defendants of wrongful death, negligence and recklessness. According to the documents, her elderly husband endured significant injuries to the brain, head and spine prior to falling off a 70-foot boat while out in rough waters with the defendants. The woman filed the lawsuit six months after the fatal accident and waited two years before there was a conclusion reached.
Although the victim was located in the water and ultimately retrieved, he was already unconscious and could not be resuscitated. The large boat was apparently traveling fast in high tides even though an advisory warning was issued. One defendant claimed that the sea conditions were to blame for the victim’s injuries, while accusations were made by the claimant that passengers were not secured correctly in spite of the circumstances of the water.
While some wrongful death lawsuits go to trial, other times they are resolved the way this one was, via settlement. Whatever the method of resolution, the commencement of a case is the same. If you have experienced an unfortunate case of negligence or malpractice resulting in wrongful death, in most cases it is a good idea to seek professional legal advice to ensure you understand the best way to move forward.
Source: The Connecticut Law Tribune, “Stew Leonard Settles Wrongful Death Lawsuit,” Christian Nolan, April 11, 2014