Houston Wrongful Death Lawyers
Legal Guidance Paired with Moral Support
There is nothing to prepare you for the harrowing experience of losing a loved one, especially due to someone else’s negligence. From everyone at Dunk Law Firm, we hope you accept our condolences during this difficult time. We also want you to know that we are here to help you with your wrongful death claim filed in your loved one’s name.
When negligence, recklessness, or intentional wrongdoing is the cause of someone’s death, a wrongful death claim can be filed in pursuit of fair compensation that helps bring a sense of justice and closure. We are known for being able to combine professional legal counsel with genuine moral support. Our objective is doing the most possible for your claim while also making this situation less painful for you by eliminating legal complications and distractions.
Whenever you are ready, call our wrongful death attorneys in Houston at (713) 575-1991 to learn more about how to file a wrongful death claim in Houston.
On This Page:
- What Is Wrongful Death?
- Wrongful Death Resulting from Car Accidents
- Wrongful Death Damage Caps
- Who Can File a Claim?
- Who Receives Money in a Wrongful Death Suit?
- How to Choose a Wrongful Death Lawyer
Texas' official definition of wrongful death can be found in the Texas Statutes section 71.001, and is described as "the wrongful act, neglect, carelessness, unskillfulness or default" that leads to an accident causing another individual's death. Under Texas law you are able to pursue compensation for damages resulting from any such accident. Below, we cover more about the different types of damages covered in a wrongful death claim.
Our law firm has intentionally placed our focus on car accidents and truck accident claims, as well as wrongful death claims following fatal traffic accidents. If you lost a loved one in a crash that was not their fault, then we should be your first choice of Houston law firms to help manage your wrongful death claim.
Dunk Law Firm was first established in 2004, which means we have more than 15 years of legal experience to put to use when working on your case. We know how to look for evidence of liability, as well as ways to accurately calculate total damages owed to you for the loss of your loved one.
Most wrongful death claims in Texas will seek damages for:
- Household’s reduced earning capacity due to the loss
- Value of services, support, and counsel the deceased provided to the claimant
- Emotional suffering experienced by all involved
- Loss of love, comfort, and companionship
- Lost inheritance and savings the deceased likely would have put away
In some circumstances, the court might approve punitive damages used solely to penalize the defendant from egregious negligence or criminal wrongdoing. For example, punitive damages could be approved in a wrongful death claim involving a fatal traffic accident caused by a driver who was speeding, using their cellphone, and intoxicated.
A "damage cap" refers to a limitation put on the amount of financial compensation that can be recovered for a particular set of damages in a case. Texas puts a cap on non-economic damages in wrongful death claims (i.e. compensation for pain and suffering). The original cap limit is $500,000 but when adjusted with inflation the actual cap amount ends up being closer to $1,500,000.
There is only a limited selection of people who can file a wrongful death claim after losing a loved one in Texas. Spouses, children, and parents of the deceased all have the right to file a wrongful death claim, which they can do as an individual or as a group. It is expected for a group claim to be filed that represents all eligible claimants.
When no parent, child, or spouse filed a wrongful death claim within three months of the deceased person’s death, a personal representative of the deceased’s estate can decide to file the claim instead. Although, whoever filed the claim does not change who is eligible to receive any collected damages.
There is also a two-year statute of limitations on wrongful death claims in Texas. It begins on the day the deceased passes away unless a court makes an extremely rare exception and decides to extend the deadline. An exception could occur, for example, if someone passes away due to taking a dangerous drug, but the dangers of that drug are not known to the general public until after the date of death.
The people receiving the money from a wrongful death lawsuit are known as the "beneficiaries." According to Texas law (Civil Practice Code, Title 4, Sec. 71.004), the following individuals may be able to receive money from a wrongful death lawsuit (starting with those most immediately related to the deceased and moving outward from there):
- Spouse of the deceased
- Children of the deceased
- Parents of the deceased
When choosing the right wrongful death attorney it's important that you do your research. Here are some of the top things to look out for when hiring an attorney to represent you:
- Do they get results? At the end of the day you want someone who can get you the compensation you deserve. Look for an attorney who gets results and fights for your best interests. Looking at previous case results is a good way to check this.
- What do their former clients say about them? Testimonials from former clients are a great way to find out how professional an attorney may be, as well as what kind of experience you may be in for if you hire them.
- How much experience do they have? Wrongful death cases can be very difficult. It's important that the attorney you hire has the experience necessary to bring the case to its conclusion. This means being able to take a case to trial if your aren't able to settle outside of court.
- What resources are at their disposal? Particularly when putting together a wrongful death case, having the resources necessary to research the accident and call reputable witnesses during trial can make or break your case.
- Have they received any awards for their performance? Awards from the state bar association or other reputable legal websites such as Avvo, The National Trial Lawyers Association, etc. can also help prove a lawyer's abilities.
Start Your Claim without Stress or Worry
You need time to grieve after losing someone close to you. Give yourself all the time you need without jeopardizing your chances of filing a wrongful death claim by coming to Dunk Law Firm. Our Houston wrongful death attorneys can help move your case along and manage all of the technical details on your behalf. We do not want to rush anything or pressure you to make a decision in a situation this sensitive and important, so we always keep you informed as much as you would like to be.
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