Tampa Wrongful Death Attorney
Filing a Wrongful Death Lawsuit
Experiencing the sudden and tragic loss of a loved one is perhaps the most difficult thing anyone can endure. If someone in your family died in an accident or due to serious injuries caused by someone else’s negligent or wrongful conduct, you deserve justice—and Gunn Law Group, P.A. can help.
While we understand that nothing can bring your loved one back or undo the devastating trauma you and your family have been through, we also recognize that the unexpected death of a family member often comes with significant financial hardships. You may be facing massive medical bills for your loved one’s final treatment and care, along with considerable funeral costs and lost income, especially if your loved one was the primary financial provider for your family.
At Gunn Law Group, P.A., we believe that you should not have to suffer these financial challenges on your own. More than this, we believe that the person or party responsible for your loved one’s untimely death should be held accountable to the full extent of the law. As your legal team, we can help you bring a wrongful death action against the liable party and seek the justice and fair financial compensation you are owed.
When Is a Death Considered “Wrongful” in Florida?
Florida law defines a “wrongful” death as one that occurs due to another person or party’s negligent or wrongful conduct, by default, or due to breach of contract and/or warranty. Essentially, if the person who died (known as the “decedent”) would have had grounds to file a personal injury claim had they lived, their death is likely considered “wrongful” in the eyes of the law.
Wrongful death cases arise from a variety of accidents and incidents, including but not limited to:
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Medical malpractice
- Nursing home abuse and neglect
- Accidents involving defective products
- Pedestrian and bicycle accidents
- Dog bites and animal attacks
- Serious falls
- Workplace accidents and deaths
- Criminal activity, including homicide, murder, and assault
Wrongful death claims are separate from any criminal proceedings the at-fault party may (or may not) face. The purpose of a wrongful death action is not to punish the defendant with criminal penalties but, rather, to compensate the victims’ surviving family members and loved ones for their monetary and non-financial losses related to the death.
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Claim?
In Florida, only the personal representative of the decedent’s estate may file a wrongful death claim. Also known as the executor of the estate, the personal representative must be the one to bring the wrongful death action, but they do so on behalf of certain surviving family members and dependents. If the decedent died without naming a personal representative, the court will appoint one.
Potential beneficiaries in a wrongful death lawsuit in Florida may include:
- The decedent’s surviving spouse
- The decedent’s surviving child/children (if any)
- The decedent’s surviving parent(s)
- Any blood or adoptive relative of the decedent who was dependent on the decedent in life for support and/or services
It is important to note that wrongful death lawsuits must be filed within two years of the date of death in Florida. Known as the “statute of limitations,” this deadline bars anyone from bringing a claim and recovering damages after more than two years have passed except in extremely rare circumstances.
What Damages Can Be Recovered in Wrongful Death Lawsuits?
In wrongful death lawsuits in Florida, both eligible surviving family members and the decedent’s estate may recover for certain damages.
Typically, eligible family members can receive compensation for:
- Out-of-pocket medical expenses paid by the family member for the decedent’s final care
- Out-of-pocket costs paid by the family member for the decedent’s funeral/burial
- Mental/emotional pain, suffering, trauma, and distress
- Loss of support/services provided by the decedent in life
- Loss of parental support, counsel, instruction, guidance, companionship, etc.
- Loss of love, protection, and companionship provided by the decedent in life
Meanwhile, the estate can typically recover for:
- Medical expenses paid by the estate for the decedent’s final treatment/care
- Funeral/burial costs paid directly by the estate
- Lost income, wages, earnings, and other benefits from the date of injury until the date of death
- The overall value of income, wages, earnings, and benefits the decedent could have been reasonably expected to earn and leave to the estate had they lived
Our Tampa wrongful death attorneys can help you understand how the specific details of your case may affect the types of damages you may be able to recover, along with the overall potential value of your claim. We provide free initial consultations and do not collect any attorney fees unless/until we win your case.
How Can Gunn Law Group, P.A. Help?
Navigating the aftermath of a family member’s tragic death is incredibly difficult. At Gunn Law Group, P.A., we believe that you should not have to also deal with the stress of the legal system. Instead, our attorneys are here to provide the personalized support you need, as well as the compassionate and dedicated advocacy you deserve.
Our firm is known for our aggressive approach to litigation. We are not afraid to go up against major insurance companies and other powerful entities in our pursuit of justice for our clients, and we have the results to prove it. To date, we have recovered millions of dollars in compensation for clients located across Florida. We have not only achieved numerous favorable settlements but have also secured impressive verdicts in courtrooms throughout the state.
Whether you are unsure of how to begin seeking justice on behalf of your loved one or are experiencing challenges from the insurance company, our Tampa wrongful death attorneys are here to fight for you. As one of Florida’s fiercest law firms, we have what it takes to protect your rights and do everything possible to secure the fair financial compensation you and your family are owed.