When a loved one dies, there are often numerous financial struggles left upon the surviving spouse and children. These financial burdens often make dealing with the tragic loss all the more difficult. Whether the decedent was the sole provider for the family or shared the responsibility with their spouse, the death can cause overwhelming financial instability.
If your loved one died as the result of another party’s negligence, Siegfried & Jensen can help you recover compensation to offset some of the financial burdens you face. Utah law provides surviving family members the legal ability to file a wrongful death lawsuit to recover compensation for the loss of their loved one from the responsible party.
What Is A Wrongful Death Lawsuit?
Under Utah law, a wrongful death lawsuit is a legal case filed against a party responsible for the death of another person. In wrongful death lawsuits, the responsible party acted negligently or recklessly and, as a result, another person lost their life.
These lawsuits are filed by surviving family members or the heirs of the victim in order to recover compensation for damages they sustained due to the death. At Siegfried & Jensen, we help surviving family members recover compensation for various damages, including medical expenses, funeral expenses, and pain and suffering. Quite often, the largest award for compensation is made regarding the lost wages of the decedent.
Filing A Wrongful Death Lawsuit For Lost Wages
Individuals who relied on the decedent for financial support are able to recover compensation for lost wages on behalf of the decedent. The amount of support received by each dependent depends on several factors. First, it is critical to look at what the decedent earned before they passed, as well as the projected earning capacity up until their retirement. Attorneys at Siegfried & Jensen will hire a financial expert to accurately calculate estimates for raises and promotions.
The amount of support the decedent provided to his or her dependents will also play a role in determining the amounts awarded to the claimant. In cases where the decedent was the sole provider, the surviving spouse may be entitled to financial support from the decedent through to age 65. If both spouses worked, the surviving spouse must provide documented proof of the support provided by the decedent before their death.
Minor children of the decedent are able to recover financial support from the decedent until they reach the age of 18-years. In some cases, children are able to receive financial support through college if there is sufficient evidence that the decedent would have paid the costs of the child’s higher education.
Who Can File A Wrongful Death Claim In Utah?
The state of Utah extends the rights of certain surviving family members to file a wrongful death lawsuit on behalf of their loved one. These parties often include:
- The decedent’s surviving spouse;
- The decedent’s surviving adult children;
- The decedent’s surviving birth parents;
- The decedent’s surviving adopted parents; and
- Other surviving relations of the decedent.
There may be instances where another party is able to file a wrongful death lawsuit on behalf of the decedent’s estate. In these cases, the personal representative of the estate files a claim for wrongful death on behalf of other surviving family members. The damages awarded to the claimant are then entered into the estate and distributed to family members, according to estate laws.
In rare instances, other parties are able to file wrongful death lawsuits to receive remuneration. Working with an experienced lawyer from Siegfried & Jensen will ensure you recover the full amount of compensation you are entitled to for your loss.
Utah’s Wrongful Death Claim Statute Of Limitations
In Utah, the surviving family members of the decedent have a set time in which they are required to file a wrongful death lawsuit. In most cases, the statute of limitations is set for two years after the death of the decedent. Cases in which a government entity is responsible for the death require the lawsuit to be filed within one year of the death.
It is imperative to work with a wrongful death attorney to ensure your case is filed within the statute of limitations. Not filing the lawsuit on time can prevent you from recovering compensation and obtaining the justice you deserve for your loved one.
How An Attorney Can Help
Wrongful death claims are extremely complex. Determining the potential earning capacity for a loved one is a task best entrusted to experts. At Siegfried & Jensen, our attorneys work with numerous financial experts to provide all of the necessary proof you need to support your claim. Whether you need documentation to show your loved one’s earnings and level of support, or their potential earning capacity, we will work diligently to ensure you recover the full amount of restitution you are entitled to for your loss.
Not only do we help clients recover reparations based on their loved one’s earnings at the time of their death, but we ensure experts investigate deeper to determine if their loved one was able to earn more income. We will examine your loved one’s employment history, education level, and various other factors that can directly influence his or her future earnings. Siegfried & Jensen will ensure the needs of all dependents are met so they can restore their financial security during this very difficult time.
Hire A Salt Lake City Wrongful Death Lawyer To Help You
If your loved one died as the result of another party’s negligence, it is crucial to contact an experienced wrongful death attorney as soon as possible. You might be able to recover compensation for the damages you sustained as the result of losing your loved one so tragically.
Siegfried & Jensen is dedicated to helping clients recover full and fair amounts of remuneration for their losses. Contact our law firm today at (801) 845-9000 to see what legal options are available for you. We are determined to help your family recover compensation and justice for your loss.
Content checked by personal injury attorney Todd Bradford. I worked for a small law firm in Utah County, where I handled various types of cases. My main focus was personal injury and I decided that is what I enjoyed doing the most. I rejoined Siegfried and Jensen in 2012 where my focus is solely on helping personal injury clients. I take pride in helping personal injury clients and enjoy serving them. If you need an attorney for auto accidents or injuries of any kind in Salt Lake City, UT, Ogden, UT, Spokane, WA, or Boise, ID, contact us.